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The Validity of Pope Benedict XVI’s resignation must be questioned — Part I

Resignation

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

Recently, the noted Vatican theologian, and former member of the Congregation for the Faith, Msgr. Nichola Bux publicly opined that the validity of the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI should be studied in regard to the question of what appears to be substantial error in the formula of resignation. (For a correct English translation of the formula, see here).

Msgr. Bux was not the first to raise this issue. In fact, doubts as to the validity of the act of resignation were raised immediately upon the news being made known. Flavien Blanchon, a French journalist working at Rome, writing only 2 days afterwards, cited an eminent Latin scholar who pointed out errors in the text of abdication, and who noted that the presence of any error, according to canonical tradition, was held to be a sign of lack of deliberation, rendering the act null and void. These errors in the Latin were also reported by Luciano Canfora, Corriere della Serra, Feb. 12, 2013, p. 17.

More importantly, the famous Italian Philosopher, Prof. Enrico Radaelli wrote a supplication to Pope Benedict XVI, on Feb. 18, begging him to withdraw the resignation, because, inasmuch as it was done in a secular fashion, it would result in the consequent election of an Anti-Pope. His article was entitled: Perché Papa Ratzinger-Benedetto XVI dovrebbe ritirare le sue dimissioni: non è ancora tempo per un nuovo papa, perché sarebbe quello di un Anti-Papa. (Link to text with commentary, here). Which warning, alas, was ignored, even by myself at the time, for frivolous reasons.

Then a year later, the famous Italian controversialist, Antonio Socci openly speculated that the resignation might be invalid on account of the lack of interior will given by Benedict. In the same year, a very noteworthy study published by a Professor in canon law at the Theological Institute of Legano, Switzerland, in 2014 by Fr. Stefano Violi, which discussed canonically the renunciation: The Resignation of Pope Benedict XVI Between History, Law and Conscience, without, however, raising the question of its invalidity. (Its a must read on account of its rich citation to the canonical history of papal resignations, despite its glaring error of affirming that a novel way of resigning was fulling in accord with Tradition!) — However, the study by the professor of Canon Law at the Faculty of Theology, Lugano, Switzerland, by identifying the matter of the renunciation to regard the active ministry, not the munus, made it clear that the question of substantial error invalidating the resignation was a real question, founded upon the text of the act itself.

On Nov. 14, 2014, in a public conference, Fr. Nicholas Gruner, “the Fatima Priest” of Canada, affirmed of Pope Benedict, on Feb 11, 2013, that “whatever he was doing, he was not resigning the papacy”.

However, on June 19, 2016, the USA citizen Ann Barnhardt raised specifically the question of a doubt arising from canon 188, which cites substantial error as sufficient grounds to establish the grounds for a canonical determination of invalidity in any resignation. She did this following the remarkable comments by Pope Benedict’s personal Secretary on May 20th earlier, in which he claimed that Benedict still occupied the Papal Office (Full Text, English Translation).

Barnhard was not the first to make such an observation. Dr. Cathy Caridi, JCL, a canonist, openly speculated in January of 2013, more than a month before Pope Benedict XVI acted, that a substantial error in a papal renunciation could in fact invalidate it in virtue of Canon 188.

Then the blogger, Sarmaticus, discussed the issue raised by Ganswein’s words on August 5, 2016, with a post drawing out the significance of what the Archbishop had said at the Gregorian University, in a post entitled: “Ockham’s Razor Finds: Benedict Still Pope, Francis Is False Pope, Universal Church in State of Necessity since 24 April, 2005.”

Msgr. Henry Gracida, Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi, Texas, in the United States, and a former member of Opus Dei, has also sustained this same doubt and others regarding the validity of the resignation. I understand that the Bishop has written many members of the Sacred Hierarchy and Curia about these matters urging action be taken (He suggests a public declaration by 12 pre-Bergoglian Cardinals).

According to Ann Barnhart, in the following year, the Americans, Attorney Chris Ferrara and Mrs. Anne Kreitzer also sustained this same doubt. The Italian historian Richard Cowden Guido opined the same on May 11, 2017. And, the famous Italian controversialist, Antonio Socci quoted Violi at length on May 31, 2017 and sustained the same thesis.

On August 11, 2017, the popular Catholic TV program from Colombia, founded by Dr. Galat and know as Cafe con Galat, in an English edition, discussed why Pope Benedict XVI is still the true pope. While this program emphasizes the lack of freedom in the act, it does include the matter regarding the lack of conformity to Canon 332 §2 and canon 188.

Sometime before March of this year, Fr. Paul Kramer, a priest from the United States of America sustained also that canon 188 nullified the resignation, on account of the lack of the resignations conformity to canon 332 §2 in mentioning ministerium rather than munus.

In May of this year, at the latest, the Spaniard Fr. Juan Juarez Falcon expounded the canonical reason for the invalidity of the resignation, on the basis of substantial error, in an article entitled, “Dos Graves Razones”Dr. José Alberto Villasana Munguía followed from Mexico on June 27th, concurring with his opinion.

Finally, Pope Benedict XVI in his private letters to Cardinal Brandmueller, published in the summer of 2018, openly asks for suggestions for a better way to resign, if he did not do it correctly.

There being a number of notable Catholics sustaining this doubt, and since Msgr. Bux called for an investigation of this matter, I will add here in Scholastic Form, some arguments in favor of sustaining it, in course of which I will refute all substantial arguments against it. In the course of time, as I find other arguments, or think of new ones, I will add them to this list.

All the arguments for and against should be understood in context of canon 124 §1, which reads: For the validity of a juridic act it is required that the act is placed by a qualified person and includes those things which essentially constitute the act itself as well as the formalities and requirements imposed by law for the validity of the act.

Can. 188, A resignation made out of grave fear that is inflicted unjustly or out of malice, substantial error, or simony is invalid by the law itself.

And Canon 322 §2: If it happens that the Roman Pontiff resigns his munus, it is required for validity that the resignation is made freely and be properly manifested (rite manifestatur), but not that it be accepted by anyone at all.

Its also important to note, for native speakers of German, that the German translation of the Code of Canon Law gives the erroneous translation of munus as Dienst in canon 145 §1, where munus if it be translated at all, should be rendered Verantwortung, which is a proper synonym of the Latin munus, as an onus. Moreover, the correct sense of munus in canon 332 §2 is “office, charge and gift of grace” (Amt, Verantwortung, Geschenk der Gnade), not ministry or service (dienst), for only this full sense of munus, as an officium, onus, donum reflects the magisterial teaching of Pope Boniface VIII in his rescript, Quoniam.

 

Whether Pope Benedict XVI by means of the act expressed in his address, “Non solum propter”, resigned the office of the Bishop of Rome?

And it seems that he did not:

1. First, because substantial error, in an act of resignation, regards the vis verborum, or signification of the words, as they regard the form and matter of the act.  But the act of renouncing a ministry regards one of the proper accidents of the office [cf. canon 41] by which that ministry can be rightfully exercised.  Therefore, if one renounces a ministry, he does not renounce the office. And if he believes to have renounced the office, by renouncing one of the ministries, he is in substantial error as to the signification of the words he has used. But in the text, Non Solum Propter, Benedict XVI renounces the ministerium which he received as Bishop of Rome, when he was elected.  Therefore, to understand that act as a renunciation of the office is to be in substantial error as to the effect of the act. Therefore as per canon 188, the resignation is invalid.

2. Saint Peter the Apostle exercised many ministries in many places. But no one is the real successor of Saint Peter except the Bishop of Rome (canon 331). If one renounces a petrine ministry, therefore, he does not renounce the office of Bishopric of Rome (cf. canons 331 & 332), who has other ministries in virtue of his office. Therefore, if one believes he has renounced the Bishopric of Rome by renouncing a petrine ministry, he is in substantial error, and thus as per canon 188, the resignation is invalid.

3. According to Saint Paul (1 Corinthians 12) there are diverse graces, ministries and offices in the Church, inasmuch as the Church is the Body of Christ. Therefore, since the Bishop of Rome can exercise several of these ministries, it follows that one does not renounce the Bishopric of Rome if one renounces one of these ministries, since no one ministry is coextensive with the Bishopric of Rome. Ergo in such a renunciation, if one believes he has sufficiently signified the renunciation of the Bishopric of Rome, he is in substantial error. Therefore, as per canon 188, the resignation is invalid.

4. According to Seneca (Moral Essays, vol. 3, John W. Basore, Heineman, 1935), one must distinguish between benefices, offices and ministries. Benefices are that which are given by an alien, offices by sons, mothers and others with necessary relationships, and ministries by servants who do what superiors do not do.  The Petrine ministry is a service to the Church. But the office of the Bishop of Rome is a duty to Christ. If one renounces the ministry of a servant, he does not renounce the office of a son. Ergo in such a renunciation etc…

5. The validity of an act of resignation cannot be founded upon the subjective definition of words, or the mere intention of the one renouncing. If that were the case, the interpretation would make the act an act of resignation. The act itself would not declare it. But the Church is a public society founded by the Incarnate Living God. Therefore, the renunciation of offices must be not only intentional but public, to give witness to the fact that the office was established by the Living and Incarnate God. But the office of the Bishop of Rome is such an office. Ergo in such a renunciation etc..

6. As Msgr. Henry Gracida argues on his blog, abyssum.org: If Christ did not accept the resignation of Benedict as valid, because the act itself was not canonically valid per canon 188, then Christ would be obliged in justice to deprive Bergoglio of grace, so that his lack of being pope be MOST EVIDENT to all with Faith, Hope and Charity. But it is MOST EVIDENT to everyone, even non Catholics, that he has NOT the grace of God in him or in his actions. Ergo, either Christ is unjust, or Christ is just. He cannot be unjust. Ergo, Bergoglio is not pope! But the Cardinals hold that his election was in accord with the procedures required by the Papal Law on Elections. Therefore, if he is not the pope, it can only be because someone else is still the Pope. Therefore, Benedict is still the pope, because in a resignation of this kind, the substantial error of renouncing the ministry, rather than the munus, renders it invalid.

7. Likewise, Christ prayed for Peter that his faith might not fail, and so that he could confirm his brethren in the Apostolic College. Now this prayer of Christ must be efficacious, since Christ is God and the Beloved Son of the Eternal Father, and because of the office of Saint Peter is not something merely useful to the Body of Christ, but necessary in matters of faith and unity. Therefore, Christ’s prayer for the Successors of Saint Peter must be efficacious in some manner as regards the faith and unity of the Church. But Bergoglio manifestly attacks both the faith and unity of the Church. Far be it, therefore, to judge that in this one man Christ’s prayer was not intended to be effective. Ergo, Bergoglio is not a valid successor of Saint Peter! But the Cardinals hold that his election was in accord with the procedures required by the Papal Law on Elections. Therefore, if he is not the pope, it can only be because someone else is still the Pope. Therefore, Benedict is still the pope, because in a resignation of this kind, the substantial error of renouncing the ministry, rather than the munus, renders it invalid.

8. From the text of the act of resignation. Pope Benedict admits in the first sentence that he holds the munus petrinum. But further down, he says he renounces the ministerium which he had received as Bishop of Rome. Therefore, he has not renounced the munus. But munus means office and gift of grace (cf. Canon 145 §1 and Paul VI, Christus Dominus). Therefore, he has not stated that he has renounced the office and gift of grace. Therefore, in such a resignation etc..

9.From the sense of the Latin tongue, which lacks the definite and indefinite article. When you say: Renuntio ministerio, you do not say whether you have renounced the ministry or a ministry. Therefore, you leave unsaid what ministry you have renounced. Therefore, in such a resignation etc..

10.From the papal law Universi Dominici Gregis, on Papal elections:  One is not elected to the Petrine Ministry, but to be the Bishop of Rome.  Therefore, unless one renounce the Bishopric of Rome one has not vacated the See of Saint Peter. But in public statements Pope Benedict XVI after March 2013 says only that he has renounced the ministerium. Therefore, he is in substantial habitual error as regards what is required in an act of resignation of the office of the Bishopric of Rome.  Therefore, in such a resignation etc..

11. From the Code of Canon Law:  Canonical resignations are valid if 3 things are valid: liberty from coercion, right intention, unambiguous signification. This is confirmed in canon 332, § 2 which expressly denies that the acceptance of a resignation affects is validity or non-validity. But Pope Benedict admits in his letters to Cardinal Brandmueller that his intent was to retain something of the Pontifical Dignity. His private secretary also publicly has affirmed that he occupies the  See of Peter but shares the Petrine Ministry still. This is incontrovertible evidence that the act of resignation is ambiguous. For either it means he has renounced the See or has not renounced the See, that he has renounced the ministry, or has not renounced the ministry.  Therefore, in such a resignation etc..

12. From Pneumetology, that is, from the theology of the Holy Spirit. After Feb 2013 the whole Church still recognizes and accepts Pope Benedict with the title of pope and with papal prerogatives. All call him Benedict, not Ratzinger or Joseph (even Bergoglio, during his visit to Panama in January 2019, exhorted the crowds to wave to “Pope Benedict XVI”.) But the whole Church cannot be deceived. Nevertheless, according to Divine Institution, the Papacy cannot be held by more than one person at one time. And he who holds it first, has the valid claim to the office. Therefore, the Church does not understand the act as one which renounces the office. Therefore, in such a resignation etc..

13. From insufficiency of intention:  If a Pope renounces eating bananas, he has not renounced the office of Bishopric of Rome. Therefore, if he says, “I have renounced eating bananas, to vacate the See of Rome”, he is in substantial error as to the effect of his act.  But in his text of renunciation he says he has renounced the ministry so as to vacate the see of Saint Peter [ut sedes Sancti Petri vacet]. But that is a substantial error, since the ministry is only a proper accident of the Bishopric of Rome, for to be the Bishop of Rome is the first act of its being [esse primum], to exercise the ministries of the Bishopric of Rome is the second act of its being [esse secundum]. Therefore, since the second act of being is in potency to the first act, and potency is divided from act as accident to substance, to renounce a or all ministries of an office is an act regarding the accidents not the substance of the office. Therefore, one could just as well renounce any or all of its ministries and retain the office. Therefore, by renouncing a or the ministry he does not renounce the office. Indeed, in public statements, he explicitly affirms only to have renounced the ministry. Therefore, his insufficiency of expressed intention does not save the act from substantial error.  Therefore, in such a renunciation etc..

14. The Pope is not more powerful than God the Son. But God the Son in becoming the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Altar, at the moment of Consecration, renounces all the accidents and action of His Sacred Humanity, yet remains still God and Man.  Hence, even if a Pope were to renounce all his actions and ministries as Pope, he remains the Pope. But Pope Benedict XVI in his declaration of Feb. 11, 2013, renounces only the ministerium of his office, not the office. Therefore, he remains the Pope.

15. If you get up from your chair, but to not give the chair to another, the chair becomes vacant but remains your property.  Now the office of St. Peter’s Successor is to Saint Peter’s Successor as a throne is to the one enthroned. So if a Pope renounces the ministry of his office, but not the office, even if he intends by such a renunciation that the Throne of St. Peter be vacant, he does not cede his right and holding of the office. So when Pope Benedict writes declaro me ministerio … renuntiare ita ut Sedes Petri vacet its clear that while he renounces serving as Pope, he does not renounce the Papacy.

16. If any President, Prime Minister or father of a family renounces fulfilling the duties of his office, he nevertheless has not ceased to be President, Prime Minister or father. Likewise with the Pope, if he textually renounces only the ministry of his office, he has not lost his office.

17. God, who is Being, as the institutor of the Office of Peter, cannot regard as resigned from the office of the Successor of Saint Peter, any Roman Pontiff, validly elected, who only renounces accidents or second acts of the being of that office. But Pope Benedict XVI renounced only the ministerium, or exercise of the office, which he had received, not the munus, which is the office itself [cf. Canons 332 §2 and 749 §1]. Therefore, since the exercise of office is the second act of the being of the office, God cannot acknowledge such a resignation as valid. And if God does not recognize it as valid, neither can the Church. Therefore, in such a resignation, etc..

18. The essence of ‘being the Pope’ is the dignity of the office held. The essence of a ministry is the service rendered. Therefore, just as renunciation of a service does not cause the loss of dignity, so the renunciation of the Petrine Ministry does not cause the loss of Papal office.   Therefore, in such a resignation, etc..

19. In Canon Law ministerium is not the locus of right (ius), that is found only in sacraments (sacramenta) and offices (munera).  Therefore, he who renounces ministerium, renounces no right. But Pope Benedict XVI in his renunciation, Non solum propter, renounces the ministerium he received from the hands of the Cardinals. Therefore, he does not renounce any right. And if he renounces no right, he retains all rights, and thus remains the Pope.  If it be objected, that he renounced the ministerium so as to vacate the See of St. Peter (ita ut Sedes S Petri vacet), it must be responded that, since vacare, in Latin has 2 senses: that of conceding right and that of simply going away, as on a vacation, the assertion of renouncing ministerium so as to vacet the Roman See implies no necessity of signifying a renunciation of right.  Therefore, in such a resignation etc..

20. As the learned canonists Juan Juárez Falcó argues:  Canon 332 which is the only canon regarding Papal renunciations speaks of the renunciation of the munus, not of the ministerium. But Benedict XVI speaks only of renouncing the ministerium, not the munus. Ergo per canon 188, the renunciation is invalid to effect a renunciation of munus. But as per canon 145, the munus is the office. Therefore, in such a resignation, etc..

For the arguments, to the Contrary, and their refutations, see part II.

In summation:

As the eminent Canon Lawyer, Fr. Juan Ignacio Arrieta, says, commenting on Canon 126:  When the ignorance or error regards the essential object of the act, … then the act must be considered as never having been posited, invalid. (Codice di Diritto Canonico, e Leggi Complementari: Commentato, Coletti a San Pietro, 2004, commentary on canon 126).

Hence, it appears, that if a Pope were to intend to retire from active ministry, but retain the Papal Office in all its fullness, that he could just as well read out loud the statement made by Pope Benedict XVI, Non solum propter, since the vis verborum of that text is that he renounced the ministry of the office of the Bishop of Rome, but not the office. Herein lies the substantial error, and thus that act of Benedict XVI on Feb. 11, 2013 must be judged to be invalid, as per canon 188, if it be asserted to be an act of resignation of the office of Bishop of Rome. However, if one were to assert that it is only the act of renunciation of active ministry, not of office, then yes, it should be said to be a valid act, containing no substantial error.

In Conclusion, Philosophical Reason

Though there can be many kinds of substantial error in an act of resignation, there is NONE more SUBSTANTIAL than the one which involves confusing the accidents of the office to be resigned as sufficient terms to signify the substance of the office itself. Now, according to canon 188, where substantial error is present in such an act, the act is invalid in its effect “by the law itself”. Therefore, the text of Non solum propter, of Benedict XVI does not effect validly his resignation from the office of the Bishopric of Rome.

In Conclusion, Canonical Reason

This is corroborated by undisputed facts of law, namely that the only Canon in the Code of Canon Law, Canon 322 §2, which speaks expressly of a papal resignation, requires that the man who is pope resign the munus and do so rite (i.e. properly according to the norms of law). But the text of Benedict’s resignation speaks only of a renunciation of ministerium.  Therefore, since it regards an act wholly outside the meaning of Canon 332 §2, the act is invalid to effect a Papal resignation. It is also thus invalid to effect the same by the law itself, according to Canon 188, and by canon 126.

Indeed, the inherent separability of ministerium from munus in Ecclesiastical history and canonical tradition is the fundamental reason why no renunciation of ministerium can be equated in law as a due manifestation of the resignation of an office. For that reason, the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI made through the act, Non solum propter, of February 11, 2013 A.D., has no valid canonical effect regarding the office of the Papacy. He remains the Pope, therefore, with all rights and privileges.

On which account, as a baptized Roman Catholic, Italian Citizen and legal resident of the City of Rome, I call upon the Italian Government to invoke its right, as a party to the Lateran Pact and its subsequent agreements, to convene the entire Clergy of the Diocese of Rome, to judge in tribunal, just as they did in A. D. 1046 at Sutri, at the command of the Germany King Henry III, the validity of the claim to office of Popes Benedict and Francis, namely, whether the act of renunciation of Benedict XVI was valid as to a renunciation of office, and if not, to declare the Conclave of 2013 canonically invalid ex radicibus.

 

Yes, a Pope can be canonically deposed

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

There is a lot of talk about the Pope resigning, being constrained to resign, or being deposed. So much so, that Reuters (a news agency founded by Jews and allied to Freemasonry) ran a story saying a Pope cannot be deposed.

This of course is a lie.

Let’s consider the question, then, “Can a Pope be deposed?” by first defining our terms.  Here, “pope” means the Bishop of Rome, who ex officio is the Vicar of Christ and the Successor of Saint Peter.

By “deposed” there is meant removal from office.

The first determination we must make is to distinguish the auxiliary verb “can”.  A thing can be done physically, morally and legally.  An enemy of the Church could arrest the Pope, force him under pain of death to sign a decree of abdication. That is a physical deposition.  A moral deposition, is where the Pope is asked to resign and he acquiesces and signs a decree of resignation.  A legal deposition, would be where the Church by trial and in Synod or Council removes him from office.

Clerics can be canonically, that is legally, removed from office by their superiors, generally speaking.  But since the Pope has no superior on earth, being the Vicar of Christ, many think he cannot be canonically removed from office.

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Pope Benedict IX

That argument sounds valid on the face of it, but the Synod of Sutri in 1046 argues against it.  In that Synod, which the Church to this day considers canonically valid, the Clergy of the Diocese of Rome, at the invitation of the German King, Henry III, met to decide the fate of Pope Benedict IX and two other anti-popes Gregory VI and Sylvester III.  Gregory VI claimed the papacy on account of having bought it from Benedict IX; Sylvester III claimed it, having been elected after mobs drove Benedict IX from Rome. Neither were canonically elected, nor true popes, regardless of what some historians say, because to be pope you must be canonically elected after the death or resignation of your predecessor.

The events are summarized by John Cardinal Newman, and summarized in the Old Catholic Encyclopedia summarizes the events:

The proceedings of the Synod of Sutri, 20 December, are well summarized by Cardinal Newman in his “Essays Critical and Historical” (II, 262 sqq.). Of the three papal claimants, Benedict refused to appear; he was again summoned and afterwards pronounced deposed at Rome. Sylvester was “stripped of his sacerdotal rank and shut up in a monastery”. Gregory showed himself to be, if not an idiota, at least a man miræ simplicitatis, by explaining in straightforward speech his compact with Benedict, and he made no other defence than his good intentions, and deposed himself (Watterich, Vitæ Rom. Pont., I, 76); an act by some interpreted as a voluntary resignation, by others (Hefele), in keeping with the contemporary annals, as a deposition by the synod. The Synod of Sutri adjourned to meet again in Rome 23 and 24 December. Benedict, failing to appear, was condemned and deposed in contumaciam, and the papal chair was declared vacant. As King Henry was not yet crowned emperor, he had no canonical right to take part in the new election; but the Romans had no candidate to propose and begged the monarch to suggest a worthy subject.

Thus, The Synod deposed all three claimants to the papacy.*  Gregory VI admitted his claim to the office was “vitiated” by simony. Pope Benedict IX objected,  but the Church has always accepted his deposition as valid. The King of Germany then appointed Clement II as Pope, who promptly crowned the King, Holy Roman Emperor. Benedict IX, after the death of Clement, claimed the papacy again! The Church to this day recognizes Clement II as a true Pope.

That seems to run in the face of the current Code of Canon Law which expressly says a pope’s resignation cannot be forced and must be free.  The relevant Canon is 332, which reads in Latin:

Can. 332 —  2. Si contingat ut Romanus Pontifex muneri suo renuntiet, ad validitatem requiritur ut renuntiatio libere fiat et rite manifestetur, non vero ut a quopiam acceptetur.

And in the official English translation:

Can. 332 — § 2. If it happens that the Roman Pontiff resigns his office, it is required for validity that the resignation is made freely and properly manifested but not that it is accepted by anyone.

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Henry III, Holy Roman Emperor

But from this canon, its obvious, that there is no definition of the freedom required. Thus, just as a man freely resigns by an act which separates himself from the office, as Pope Benedict XVI intended to do, so a man can freely resign by acting in a manner so contrary to the office and the good of the Church, that he no longer wishes to act according to its duties.

Some argue, that since a thousand years have passed, and since we now have a College of Cardinals who elects the Pope, that a pope cannot be deposed like Benedict IX was.

But such an inference, which is by no means supported by anything but conjecture, assumes that the principles which validated the Synod of Sutri are not valid today. I am talking about canonical and theological principles.

Let’s look at what they were:

  1. The Clergy of the Roman Church acting for the good of the Church
  2. Against a corrupt Pope, who was by all impartial observers, unfit for the office.
  3. With the patronage of Henry II, King of the Germans.

I think all can agree, that though Henry II’s intention was Church reform, that his motives were not pure, since He had come to Italy to be crowned Holy Roman Emperor, a thing which only a Pope could grant him, and either Benedict IX would not grant it, or he was of such a degraded morality, that Henry II did not want to receive the crown from him.

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Saint Hildebrand, who attended the Synod of Sutri as secretary to Gregory VI and accepted its decisions, going into exile with Gratian until his death in 1048.

Nevertheless, Henry II proceeded by canonical grounds: He convened the clergy of the Church of Rome, whose good was immediately threatened by Benedict IX. The Synod was called by Gregory VI, but deposed all three Popes. Benedict IX objected, but the Church accepted the results of the Synod, inasmuch as it recognizes as canonical the election of Clement II which followed immediately.

I think anyone who argues that the same could NOT be done today, therefore, has a very tenuous argument. He would have to argue that the form of canon 332 overrides the good of the entire Church, the good of the Diocese of Rome, and that it is more authoritative than the canonical precedent of the Synod of Sutri, which for the last 1000 years the Church has considered just and valid in all which it did. Indeed, the fact that Saint Hildebrand, later the great reforming pope, Gregory VII, attended this Synod and accepted its decisions to depose all three popes, argues strongly for its validity. Saint Peter Damnian, though there is no record that he attended, was in Rome the day after the Synod concluded and accepted its judgement. Pope Blessed Victor III also wrote about the Synod and accepted its judgments.

I for one think any opinion in law which has as its authority 1000 years of Church witness, 2 Canonized Saint Reformers, and 2 holy Popes, is much stronger than any interpretation of a canon which appears intended only for enemies of the Church.  Especially since, Benedict IX does not seem to have accepted his deposition, yet is regarded by the Church and historians to have been validly deposed.

But, for those who love the Church, its obvious who the enemy is here.

NOTA BENE;  For historical sources on the Synod of Sutri, look to the original sources and not to historians who were trying to make it appear, after the Council of Constance, that a Pope can never be deposed by anyone. And hold fast to the testimony of John Gratian (Gregory VI) at the Council of Sutri, who admitted his claim to the papacy was vitiated by the objective crime of simony. That Saint Hildebrand took the name of Gregory VII, to honor his patron John Gratian, proves nothing but his respect for the man and what he was trying to do (remove a bad Pope and begin a Reform), since in that age the numbers after a name did not prove or disprove the validity of the claim to the papacy. Those who attack the validity of the Synod of Sutri will run into crucial problems: if they accept Gregory VI as having a valid claim, they must recognize that he both convened the Synod and declared, therein, that his claim to the Papacy was invalid by reason of Simony; if they accept Benedict IX as having a valid claim, and deny the validity of his deposition, then how do they explain that Clement II is regarded by all subsequent Popes as canonically elected? The legitimacy of the Synod, therefore, must canonically be attributed to this, that it convened the Clergy of Rome to judge the man who was the Pope, not the Pope as Pope, so as to end all controversy as to who was pope and to put out of office all those who were morally unfit for office.

The Best Source we have found so far, besides that of Cardinal Newman, is the Dialogues of Blessed Pope Victor III, Patrologia Latina, vol. 149, columns 1004/5, which give the same history as above.

Finally, note, that in the Codex Iuris Canonicis of 1983, promulgated by John Paul II, in canon 188, it is explicitly stated that a resignation made by way of simony is invalid. Hence, it appears the Church never recognized as valid the resignation of Benedict IX, when he sold the papacy to Gregory VI. Which bolsters the argument, that Benedict IX’s deposition from the papacy by the Synod of Sutri, meeting at Rome in its second session, was indeed of epochal significance. A Pope can be deposed for immorality: for simony of his own office at least.

Veri Catholici, the international Association for protecting the faith from Kasperite heresies, is advocating calling a Synod like Sutri to depose Bergoglio, if he won’t resign. See vericatholici.wordpress.com for more information about that.)

 

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*  Synods which depose clerics are canonical trials, where the accusers and accused appear and are interrogated by the Tribunal, which includes senior clerics or all the clergy present. There is a libellus of accusations and testimonies are given. For this reason, there is no reason to call for an investigation in the matter of Viganò’s Letter of Accusation. What is needed is that the witnesses and accused appear and give their defense against what is charged. This is the Catholic and Legal way of ending the controversy.

Archbishop Fisichella, full of hate, attempts a shell game on the word, “tradition”

By Br. Alexis Bugnolo

As a member of the Roman Church, I cannot remain silent at the gross and vile attack on the Catholic Faithful, given in such a hateful spirit, by one of the formerly chief members of the Clergy at the Vatican: Archbishop Fisichella.  His talk can be read in part here and in full here during his interview.

In this talk, the Archbishop cannot be excused for moral perversion, since he so blatantly attacks the immutability of truth. Truth, of the species of which we speak here, refers to the coherence of signification in a verbal phrase with the relation between the mind and the object known by the mind.

For example:  If one finds a white stone, his mind recognizes it as such, and his mouth says: “This stone is a white stone”, or “I found a white stone”.  Its obvious that the truth of this statement is not dynamic, as the Archbishop claims all truth is, but static, since it exist in the static relationship between mind and object known.

If upon examination, one recognizes that the stone is quartz, then the statement, “The white stone which I found is quartz”, represents a deeper truth, but does not alter or deteriorate the truth of what was said.   However, if one says, “The stone which I found was black” or “I did not find a white stone at all”. Its clear that there is a negation of the first truth, a complete alteration of signification.

What the Archbishop in his interview is claiming is that Catholics are not faithful to Tradition because they hold to a notion of fixism in truth, whereas the true notion of truth means that verbal statements can so change as to morph into negations of what was previous affirmed.

Innanzitutto, quando parliamo della verità, dobbiamo sempre averne un concetto dinamico. La verità non è una dimensione fissista.(1)

What the Archbishop is purporting is is pure crap, using “crap” in the metaphorical sense of a discourse full of lies and deceit. And no one can so attack the truth, without having a great and diabolic hatred for it.

All this discourse is an attempt to play a shell game on the word “tradition”. Because in the Catholic Faith, “tradition” is from the Latin for “handing on”. Sacred or Apostolic or Divine Tradition means nothing more than handing on the truth in an unchanged manner, which we have received from God, Christ, or the Apostles, through Scripture or the deeds of the Lord Jesus, the Prophets, and the Apostles. Tradition includes not only truths to believe, but faith in Scripture, the Sacraments and Apostolic Succession. Tradition is living, precisely and only when the truth which is handed down is unaltered in its content.

Its patently obvious that such a malicious attack on truth, to defend Bergoglio’s heretical attempt at altering the Faith of the Church, must be understood as a pertinacious act of heresy against the Catholic Faith. No Catholic in good conscience can regard Fischella as an Archbishop of the Catholic Church, if he refuses to repent.

Let us pray for Fischella, for he has greatly lost his way, and replaced Jesus Christ in his heart and mind, with Modernist nonsense.


(1) “Above all, when we speak of the truth, we should always have in mind a dynamic concept.  The truth is not a fixist dimension.” — My unofficial translation of the original Italian, found in the link above: 25.mo Veritatis Splendor, mons. Fisichella: critiche al Papa non fedeli alla tradizione, Vatican News, August, 2018, Interview with Archbishop Fischella.

An Open Letter to all the Faithful, from a Catholic of the Diocese of Rome

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

As a consecrated person of private vows. holding my legal residence in the Diocese of Rome, Italy, I wish to publicly declare my adhesion to the perennial Faith of Christ on all questions, and in particular, on the legitimacy of the imposition of Capital Punishment in due circumstances by justly constituted temporal authorities, holding full jurisdiction.

This Faith is what God has revealed in Genesis 9:6, when He warned the wicked that they would be slain in body for the sin of murder.

This authority is given by God, as Jesus Christ Himself taught during His Passion, in John 19:11, when He confirmed publicly that Pontius Pilate had authority to impose capital punishment.  This is the express teaching of the Apostle Saint Paul in Romans 13:4, where he declares that Almighty God has given the temporal authority the power to wield the sword, that is, impose the ultimate punishment of death, upon malefactors.

This has ever been the Faith of the Fathers of the Church.  The Popes too, like Innocent III in his profession of faith for Waldensian heretics to be received back into the Church, required them to confess that capital punishment can be justly imposed without mortal sin. This Faith was practiced boldly by saints such as Saint Pius V, O.P., who ordered 5000 brigands to be put to death.

Saint Alphonsus dei Liguori, Doctor of the Church on all questions of moral authority, and approved as such by the Holy Office under Bl. Pius IX, also teaches this.  This is the same teaching of the Catechism of the Council of Trent and of the new Catechism published by John Paul II in its form prior during his reign.

Let us not imagine that this is not a DE FIDE DOGMA OF THE FAITH, that must be held by all the faithful forever.

Let us not imagine that the phrase “is inadmissable” according to the “light of the Gospel” means anything else but “immoral” and “illicit” and “unjust”.

Do not be fooled by a heretic who claims his teaching, which contradicts God, is the teaching of the Church or faithful to the Gospel.

And remember precisely, that Vatican I gave the Pope no authority to teach novel doctrines nor to contradict the Faith, in fact, it expressly said he had no such authority.

With all true Catholics at Rome, I hold the proposed alteration of the Catechism to be a public act of pertinacious heresy against the Catholic Faith.  I recognize that all who posit such acts ipso facto without any needed sentence lose all office and authority in the Church. I also recognize that the Cardinals and Bishops should publicly denounce this heresy and alteration.  I expect them to do so.

I warn them, however, if they remain silent, that they must be presumed to adhere to this heresy, and lose all office in the Church.

The Pope needs to repent, be corrected and publicly recant. If he does not, no Catholic should regard him any longer as the Vicar of Christ or Bishop of Rome.

 

Open Letter to Bishop Gracida

A few days ago, a Catholic Bishop in Texas, USA, proposed that the Cardinals meet to discuss the invalidity of the election of Bergoglio to the papacy.

You can read his blog post on that here:

As editor of the From Rome Blog, I have written the following open Letter to Bishop Gracida, which I have posted to his blog, as a comment, but which I republish here for the sake of all the Cardinals and Bishops and clergy of the Church:

Your Excellency,

As the blogger who covered the “Team Bergoglio” scandal (from Nov. 2014 onwards) regarding the irregularities of the Conclave of 2013, I would like to comment on your proposal, if I may.

Surely one of the habitual graces of office of the Roman Pontiff is that of infallibility. And I grant that if an occupant of the Holy See show himself not to enjoy such a habit of grace, this is facti species admissible to consideration.

But I submit there are objective canonical reasons, more weighty, to make this consideration.

First of all, we have the written and oral testimony of Bergoglio’s own supporters, who are unanimous in asserting that there was a conspiracy to have him elected by means of the solicitation of vote promises to obtain 25 votes in the first ballot. This is a formal violation of UDG 81, which imposes an excommunication latae sententiae on such offendors, and all who participated in obtaining those votes are also ipso facto excommunicated in virtue of Canon 1329 § 2.

Thus,, if Bergoglio participated formally in this conspiracy he would also be excommunciated and thus in virtue of Canon 1331 incapable of validly assuming the office to which he is elected.

However, even if he did not, Canon 171 §2 would make his election invalid, since it forbids the counting of votes of those who are excommunicate at the time of voting, and thus presumably at least 25 of the 78 votes which he received in the final decisive vote, by which he appeared to be elected, must be struck from the record, leaving the Conclave unconsummated and a sede vacante.

I wrote about all of this more than 4 years ago, and its extremely disappointing that no Cardinal or Bishop has taken any action on these matters. I also proposed a way to encourage Bergoglio and the Cardinals to discuss this in proper canonical form.

I am therefore gratified that you have raised the issue, once again. I hope the number of those who believe Canon Law should be followed grows, as it does provide a solution to the present problem, even if an imperfect Synod is not called.

One could also bring to bear the terms of Pope Paul IV’s Bull “Cum ex apostolatus officio” (never abrogated), which expressly invalidates the election of a heretic, or of anyone who transgressed the decrees of any previous ecumenical council (Trent for example), as Bergoglio is known to have done, by approving the giving of communion to public heretics while Archbishop of Buenas Aires.

For more information about these charges see: A Chronology of Reports on Team Bergoglio.

Get your Lepanto Flag!

LepantoActual

This Historical Reproduction of the Banner of the Holy League of 1571

is now available for the first time from Ordo Militaris Inc..  Shown above is the prototype, printed on high tensile nylon and with a sewn sleeve on the left for mounting on any pole during processions.

The reproduction available from Ordo Militaris Inc. will be slightly different:  It will be double sided on 3 ply cloth with gold tasseled trimming.  Click the flag image for more information!

HISTORY:  In 1571, faced with the naval invasion of the Italian peninsula by the Islamic forces of the Ottoman Empire, Saint Pius V called for the establishment of an international Catholic Alliance to meet them in a decisive naval battle and destroy once and for all the Muslim domination of the Mediterranean.

Responding to this call were King Philip II of Spain (Coat of arms at bottom of Crucifix on the Left), the forces of the Papal States (Coat of arms of Saint Pius V at the center), the forces of the Republic of Venice (Coat of arms to the right), and the naval forces of Austria under the command of Don Juan of Austria (Coat of arms at the bottom). Designed by Pope Saint Pius V this flag flew on the Flagship of Don Juan of Austria.

Bergoglio was a pertinacious public heretic years before the 2013 Conclave

As the prophecy given by Zacharia gives in Chapter 11:16-17:

For behold I will raise up a shepherd in the land, who shall not visit what is forsaken, nor seek what is scattered, nor heal what is broken, nor nourish that which standeth, and he shall eat the flesh of the fat ones, and break their hoofs. [17] O shepherd, and idol, that forsaketh the flock: the sword upon his arm and upon his right eye: his arm shall quite wither away, and his right eye shall be utterly darkened!

Ordo Militaris Catholicus: First Meeting for Europe — Saturday, Nov. 19: Piazza Risorgimento

Insignia of the Ordo Militaris Catholicus
Insignia of the Ordo Militaris Catholicus

Catholics who grieve for the persecution and genocide of Catholics at the hands of DAESH (ISIL) are cordially invited to attend the First Meeting of the Ordo Militaris Catholicus, at the Piazza Risorgimento, Roma, on Saturday, Nov. 19, at 10 A.M..

The Ordo Militaris Catholicus is a international defense and security initiative of Catholics for Catholics who are suffering persecution for their faith, where their defense and liberation requires military intervention or security actions, and this is allowed by local and/or international law.

Unlike many other humanitarian efforts or Order’s of Knighthood, the Ordo Militaris aims to be a true military organization which undertakes military actions in accordance with international law, where this is permitted and/or sponsored by sovereign states: and this to protect and liberate Catholics from the hands of their enemies.

Those interested in joining this humanitarian effort, whether they are members of the military, ex-military, or non-military, men or women, are invited to attend our First Meeting in Europe to see how they can assist in founding a national Chapter in Italy or their native land.

To attend the Meeting, which is open to the public and to journalists, meet at the Piazza Risorgimento, adjacent to the Vatican at 10:00 A.M. under the insignia of the Order, which will be unfurled at 9:55 A.M..  The location has been chosen to indicate the desire of the Order to participate in the restoration of the Catholic Order of things.  In case of rain, the meeting will be held at the Ris Cafe, on the north side of the same Piazza.

During the meeting, the founder of the Order will speak about the nature, structure, rule and requirements for membership, as well as the goals and methods to be employed.

For more information about the Order, click the Insignia to go to their website.

Swiss bishops confirm existence of St. Gallen ‘mafia’

Cardinal Bergoglio takes the oath of conclave, March 11, 2015, with Cardinal Daneels standing behind him.
Cardinal Bergoglio takes the oath of conclave, March 11, 2015, with Cardinal Daneels standing behind him.

The From Rome blog has covered the “Team Bergoglio” voting scandal during the 2013 Conclave from the beginning.  In this, one of our last and culminating reports which verifies all the facti species, the Swiss Bishop’s Conference confirms the existence of the 20 yr conspiracy, not only operative in the Conclave of 2005, but also in 2013. For the entire timeline of reports, see here.

Reblogged in part from Litesite news (original here)

September 29, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) — While correcting local media reports, the Swiss bishops today confirmed the existence of the so-called “mafia” of bishops that aimed to counter the influence of Cardinal Ratzinger during the pontificate of John Paul II.

The confirmation came amid intense discussion in Switzerland about the question of the now well-known group of cardinals, called the “St. Gallen Group,” about which Cardinal Godfried Danneels recently made some disturbing, even embarrassing revelations.

This morning, the local radio station FM1 Today in Sankt Gallen, Switerland, reported on the alleged secret meetings of this “St. Gallen Group” that supposedly worked both on making Pope Benedict XVI resign and on getting Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio then elected for the Papal office. As sources for their claims, the radio station cited a new biography about Bishop Danneels, as well as a candid public statement that the cardinal himself made.  Summing up their claims about this seeming conspiracy, the radio station said:

(See original for full text)

The culminating substance of this final report from Life Site News, is that all the evidence points to this, that a homosexual-heretical cabal violated the Papal law against vote-promising and put into power Jorge Mario Bergoglio with express purpose of overthrowing the Catholic Faith on sexual morals and establishing a new false religion, posing as the Catholic Church.

What should you do about this? — Demand that the Catholic Cardinals act and denounce this cabal, for the sake of their own immortal souls and the good of the whole Church, and investigate and determine the validity of the election of 2013.

Fare Frate tradizionale!

franstig

Nuova opportunità vocazionale francescana in Italia, per frati e vocazioni:

Se ha avuto il desiderio di seguire San Francesco come i suoi primi compagni facevano, adesso c’è una nuova opportunità di farlo, osservando la Regola Bollata di San Francesco secondo i decreti papali di un tempo:

L’osservanza antica della Regola Bollata di San Francesco d’Assisi è la forma di vita ispirata di Gesù Cristo, scritta dalle mani di San Francesco, approvata da Papa Onorio III il 26 Novembre 1223 e confermata da più che 20 papi.  Essa è la forma di vita originaria della vita Francescana che non si osserva in nessun altra comunità religiosa in tutto il mondo.

Questa vita è distinta dal non uso dei soldi, il non avere di proprietà sia personale sia in comune, il portare indosso del saio francescano sempre e ovunque ecc., della predica dei quattro nuovissimi: in somma, dalla osservanza di tutti i precetti della Regola Bollata di San Francesco senza mitigazioni. (leggi più qui  sull’invito di formare comunità).

Libellus di Condanna

Che dicono i Ultraconservatori? Forse…

Veri Catholici

 Christ the King

Libellus di condanna degli errori contenuti nel , presupposta dalla , o alla base del documento ‘ Amoris Laetitia ‘

Memori dell’insegnamento di Nostro Sommo Signore, Gesù Cristo, che il nostro, “Si”, sia un “si”, e il nostro “No”, un “no”, e similarmente memori dell’insegnamento del suo Vicario sulla terra, il Papa Pio VI di buona memoria, che ci insegnava:

“Quando diviene necessario esporre affermazioni che nascondono qualche errore sospetto o qualche pericolo sotto il velo dell’ambiguità, si deve denunciare il significato perverso sotto il quale l’errore opposto alla verità cattolica è mascherato”

noi membri di Veri Catholici desideriamo esprimere la nostra lealtà alla fede che abbiamo ricevuto dalle labbra di Cristo tramite la predicazione degli Apostoli, tramandata nella Chiesa Cattolica e fortificata dal Magistero infallibile della Chiesa, nel condannare la così detta Esortazione Apostolica, “Amoris Laetitia”, come una opera di inganno e raggiro, di errore e eresia, tra…

View original post 2,550 more words

#ALConf — Opening Salutation and Introduction

We receive and republish, the opening talks from the “International Conference on Amoris Laetitia”, held in Rome over the weekend:

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#AL Conference

9:00 AM — Salutation

by Frà Reginal Maria del Cuore Immacolato

VERI-LOGO-FILESOn behalf of the members of the International Association of the Faithful for the promotion and defense of the Catholic Faith, known as, « Veri Catholici », I welcome you to the International Conference to condemn the errors contained in the recent Post Synodal Exhortation on the Family, by Pope Francis, entitled:  ‘Amoris Laetitia’

This conference is the first meeting of the Association and the first Conference we have sponsored.  We have figuratively named it: A Pilgrimage of Grace & Mercy, because as Catholics from all over the world, we wanted to come to Rome in pilgrimage during the Holy Year of Mercy, to do a spiritual work of mercy which we believe is both necessary for the good and welfare of the entire Church universal, but in particular for the healing of the conscience of Our Holy Father, Pope Francis.

Indeed, the first duty of fraternal charity is to correct an erring brother. Jorge Mario Bergoglio, after his election as Roman Pontiff, does not cease to be our brother in Christ. And Christ Himself, when rebuked wrongly by Simon Peter, confirmed for us by His example, that charity can at times rightfully move us to correct a superior: for on that occasion Our Lord did not rebuke Peter for attempting to correct Him, but rather for having done so on the basis of worldly prudence.  The Holy Spirit confirms this teaching by inspiring the Evangelists to record it, and by moving the Apostle St. Paul to rebuke Peter after Pentecost for his dissimulation.

This is the same reason we have been motivated to hold this conference to Condemn ‘Amoris Laetitia’.  We expressly intend to avoid to speak according to worldly prudence and to reaffirm that we hold the faith which comes from the lips of the historic Christ through the preaching of the Apostles and the perennial Magisterium of the Church.

For it is not enough to consider whether Peter has spoken or not, to know if a Catholic should assent to his teaching. The Sacrosanct and Infallible Council of the Vatican, held during the reign of Bl. Pius IX confirmed that the office of teaching was not entrusted by Christ to His Church or to the Vicar of Christ, the Pope, that they might teach novelties, but only so that the self same doctrine which the Son of God handed down, through the Apostles might be forever believed in the same sense and terms throughout all the ages until the end of time.

From this there flows the theological truth, that even if a Pope should in private conversation affirm that what he has said or written is magisterial or infallible, nevertheless there remains the rule of Faith, whereby if what he has said or written in any aspect is discordant with it, a Catholic is not only not obliged to accept that, but to contradict it and give his reasons for such.

It is with this same spirit we have come together today, to speak the truth of the Catholic Faith as the Church has handed it down and to give an occasion to the Holy Father to examine his own conscience, while calling upon the entire Sacred Hierarchy and the whole body of Christ’s faithful to join us in doing the same, while praying for the immortal soul of Pope Francis, which is gravely jeopardized by the monstrous sin and scandal of signing the document, ‘Amoris laetitia’, even if he did not author it in part or in its entirety.

Finally, I will close this opening salutation, by thanking one and all who have helped this Conference be a reality, for the time, talent and treasure which they shared as members and friends of our Association, Veri Catholici. With especial thanks to the true daughter of St. John of Arc who made a very generous donation so that we could afford this Sala Magna for our conference, and to the individual donors who as of today have donated approx. 80% of the costs for it, but in particular to the translators who have worked with us since our founding in February of last year, and especially for this Conference, to bring to the world of Italian and Spanish speakers knowledge about what is being and will be said, here.  I wish also to personally thank the volunteers who have agreed to read those texts in Italian and Spanish and the other languages, for the convenience of those who are attending via Video-Conference and who are following us via GOTO Meeting throughout the entire world.

9:20  The Crisis of Kasperism or the Heretical Conspiracy of Team Bergoglio

Never before in the history of the Church have we seen a case in which the friends of the Pope, while remaining his friends and continuing to receive his favors, openly accuse him of being part of a heretical conspiracy to overthrow the Catholic Faith and undermine the ecclesiastical discipline of the Church, which the Church Herself received from Christ and the Apostles.

The testimony of the Pope’s personal friends and collaborators cannot be ignored, by any means. For it is a self-evident principle of forensic analysis that the uncontested testimony of friends is the most probative of all evidence as to the intentions and character of an human person.

Thus, if what was said of the Pope by these friends were said by anyone else, it could be dismissed as slander, gossip or calumny. But in the case of his friends, so long as they are not publicly disapproved of, we must regard the testimony as true and act on it.

Long before the St. Gallen Mafia were formed — this is Cardinal Daneels name for the group of Cardinals who meet in 2005 at the Monastery of St. Gallen in Switzerland, to plot the ascension to power of Cardinal Bergoglio, during the conclave which elected, instead, Jospeh Cardinal Ratzinger — the theological leader of this group, Cardinal Kasper, was notorious for his stated and manifest plan to destroy the Catholic Church and Faith by means of a theological project which attempted to circumvent the principle of non-contradiction.

I speak of his Article which appeared in the London Tablet, on May 24, 2003, “So that all might be one? But how”.  The Tablet has long since pulled that link, so I will make my comments from an unofficial Italian translation which appeared shortly afterwards on the net.

It was in that talk, that the Cardinal spoke significantly of the God of Surprises, saying:

  1. Ma – e questo è il mio secondo punto – mi chiedo se sia utile in questo momento ricordare a noi stessi che lo Spirito Santo può non essere l’ente ingenuo che molti suppongono.  Lo Spirito Santo come pioniere del movimento ecumenico ci chiama a riflettere sulla natura del nostro viaggio, poiché lo Spirito è dinamico, è vita, è libertà.  Lo Spirito Santo ci può sempre sorprendere.  In questa prospettiva, non è possibile tracciare una copia fotografica della futura unità della Chiesa.  La luce emanata dallo Spirito Santo è simile a quella di una lanterna che illumina il nostro prossimo passo e che risplende soltanto se proseguiamo il nostro cammino.

The appeal to a God of Surprises, here identified with the Holy Spirit, was a clever theological trick to introduce novelty under the guise of inspiration, even though all the Catholic and Orthodox Fathers have forever condemned novelty in matters of faith or discipline.

A God of Surprises, however, is not the God of the Bible or of Holy Mother Church.  He is rather a false and deceptive demon, who would have himself worshiped as the true God.

The reason for this is that the living God, who has revealed Himself, is not just a God of love and mercy, but also a God of fidelity.  Indeed, just as in the time of Arius, and so throughout all the ages of the Church, every heresy or arch-heretic who has moved against the Church, has founded his error on a corrupted notion of one of the Names of God.

Some of the first heretics in the Church were the Anomians of Corinth. They held that since Christ had fulfilled the Law, not only the ritual precepts of Leviticus, but also all the moral precepts of the old Law were no longer binding on Christians.  St. Paul rebuked them in his Letters.  But this error has smouldered in the Church, appealing at times to the teaching of the Apostle St. John, who revealed another essential name of God, when he wrought, “God is Love”.

Like the Anomians of old, the Kasperites love to appeal to God’s Names. God is Love, God is Mercy, they say.  Love is an essential name of God, because it reflects His very being as He is in Himself, apart from every other consideration. But Mercy is not an essential name of God, because mercy presupposes fault, and there is no fault in God.

The name of God which the Kasperites don’t want you to hear, is that God is Justice.  Justice is an essential name of God, because God is perfectly just in Himself, in the inter-trinitarian relations of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

But God is both Justice and Mercy, because another  of His true essential names is: Faithful Love.  Indeed, when the Apostle St. John said God was love, he spoke in Greek, though it can be argued that he was thinking in Hebrew.  That he thought in Hebrew even at the late date of his writing of the Book of the Apocalypse can be shown from the expression he uses there frequently:  He who was, and is, and who is to come.  This is because in Hebrew, the signification of verbs in relation to time differs from the western languages.  Thus when we say in Italian, English, Latin or Greek, “I am who am”, we mean only that, but in Hebrew the same ancient expression found in the book of Exodus, which reproduces the exact quotation from God, when He spoke to Moses on Mt. Sinai, means much more:  For each verb can have three senses. was, is and will be. Thus the expression can mean, “I was who I was, I was who I am, I was who I will be”, and “I am who I was, I am who I am, and I am who I will be”, and finally, “I will be who I was, I will be who I am, and I will be who I will be”.

For this reason, when St. John the Apostle wrote, God is love, we can with greats probability argue that he meant the word “love”, not in the Greek sense of the word, “agape”, free love, but in the Hebrew sense of the word, which means “faithful love”.

Indeed, if we contemplate this Hebraic meaning we see that the entirety of Scripture and Tradition, all the perennial teaching of the Church, especially on the Sacraments, reflects this Name of the Triune God.  God is Faithful Love.

Because God is Faithful Love, He is true to His promise to love, He is merciful and forgiving, because He prefers the salvation of all men, even if He has foreseen that many will ultimately reject Him.  For that reason the God who is Faithful Love has created a hell, a purgatory and a heaven, to recompense each man according to his personal merits.  A God who was only love and not fidelity, would never create hell, because He would not have to be faithful to His justice; He would not create a purgatory, because He would not have to be faithful to His mercy, and He would not create a Heaven, because there would be no necessity that He remain faithful to His love for us, through all eternity.

This name of God, that God is Faithful Love is denied by the thesis of Kasper that God is a God of surprises.  A surprise is the work of an imperfect creature who aims to instill an emotional response by doing something out of the ordinary, to which His fidelity has no relation. He is a trickster and a deceiver, a worker of novelties and thus a tempter and a seducer.

Those who are experts in using the human kiss to seduce know these things well. For that reason it does not surprise me in the least bit that  the famous journalist Sandro Magister should have discovered that key passages in the Exhortation, Amoris Laetitia, were written by a self-proclaimed expert in the art and culture of the kiss.

But none of this impresses us who are true Catholics. Because we have learned from the God who is Faithful Love, that a violation of fidelity is a hateful and loathsome thing, to be shunned, lamented, vituperated and condemned.

And it is for this reason, that such Catholics despise and abhor much of what is contained in Chapter 8 of the Exhortation, though not only Chapter 8 is stained with error, because this Exhortation is an inducement against remaining faithful to the God who is Faithful Love, and seeks to convince Catholics that the God of Love is no longer Faithful, or that the Church of His Love does not have to remain Faithful.

The document, therefore, is an act of adultery and a call to adultery in the worse possible kind: not only to promote adultery among men and women, or in the Church, but of the Church Herself with the world, even though She be called to be and is the Immaculate ever Faithful and Loving Bride of Christ.

That the St. Gallen group should thus, be addicted to infidelity and false love, should not surprise us, having taken as they have Cardinal Kasper as their chief theologian.  For them, therefore, it is nothing to violate the Papal Law against vote canvassing, a thing of which no one accused them except their own friends and members.

That the Cardinals and Bishops of the Church, heretofore, have not called out this conspiracy is very sad. But we hope that at the news of this present conference, they may harken to their duty, and show a faithful love to God by fulfilling it.

Finally, if you want to know more about the St. Gallen group or the Team Bergoglio scandal, just google those words in English for more information.