Tag Archives: Canon 332

From straw man to superstition

By Br. Alexis Bugnolo

I have watched Steve Skojek’s argumentation over the last 14 months go from straw man arguments, to unreasoning blather, to insults and vicious invective against almost anyone who would point out the unreasonableness of his approach to the problems with the Declaratio of Pope Benedict XVI and its consequences in the Church.

And I have kept silent about it, except for a passing comment here and there, here at FromRome.Info, because I am not concerned with nit picking the sophistries of immature people who do not have the intellectual or moral integrity to discuss something honestly as an adult. I am concerned with the truth of history in this matter, not in the sense of what people might write about it now or in the future, but in the sense of what really did happen, and what it really does mean in canonical and theological terms.

But as Skojec’s private magisterium has become a personal superstition and grows daily among some minds as a cult of superstition, I consider it necessary to say something, because I want every one to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. And for this, error must be refuted, by all who can ably refute it.

So I will broach this topic by commenting on some twitter conversations, the screen shots I was given. Here Steve comments on two groups, as he calls them, the Sedevacantists and the Bennyvacantists. Steve says he did not invent the latter term, but he keeps using it as a 13 yr old petulant school-boy uses a phrase he thinks is cool, but which makes him appear in reality stupid. Because by the term, Steve thinks he is referring to those who hold that Pope Benedict is still the pope, but the term obviously refers to those who think that Benedict vacated the see. So the term really refers to himself. The other term, for those who do not know, refers to those who think there have been no popes since Pius XII. — So of these 2 groups, Steve says:

Screenshot_2020-02-04 Steve Skojec on Twitter JZmirak chesterbelloc3 I think if the Catholic Church's claims were ever some[...]

Steve, if my sources are correct, has admitted to taking one introductory course to Canon Law at Steubenville, where he graduated. My sources tell me that Steve also cannot read the Code of Canon Law, because he does not read Latin. So he reads it, when he does, in the English translation, which, as I have mentioned many times, is both not authoritative and full of errors. As far as I know, also, Steve has never tried to investigate the matter further than his limit of knowledge and has not gone to Rome to speak with anyone about the questions of law or fact. — I have it that he corresponds or at least knows Ryan Grant, whom I showed the other day does not know the basic principles of Canon Law. Ryan, himself, though he is a published translator, is not a very good one. The passages I have examined in his translation of Saint Alphonsus have more than one error in every sentence, and hence I conclude they are worthless for anyone to use.

For this reason, I think that Steve’s first tweet, above, is very honest. I do not think he has the intellectual preparation to see the differences or appreciate them. Even if he knew what they are. Sedevacantists are a group of individuals who do not care about the Church in the least. They only care about condemning others so that like Jansenists they can revel in a being better than everyone else kind of spirit.  Catholics, on the other hand, when they encounter schism and heresy, do something about it, by either trying to reconcile the parties involved or seeking their canonical solutions, because their love is for the Church and for the salvation of souls.

That is why, if you love the Church, you can probably see the difference between Sedevacantists and Catholics. It is not just an argument over what was said by so and so and whether that is heretical or not. Though, Sedes nearly always get this wrong, because they have an animus to find fault where not as much fault is found as they would want, in order to continually justify themselves as better than everyone else.

Catholics, concerned about the canonical problems in the Declaratio of Pope Benedict XVI, are obviously not interested at all in themselves, they are interested solely in the good of the entire Church and solving the problems at the root. To deny that is merely a glib ad hominem of a person who cares nothing for the Church and has no consideration for the possibility that his fellow man might actually care for the common good of the Church. His desire, rather, is always to put him down, because that is the only way to prove his superiority.

In his next, tweet Steve recites his straw man argument, which he brings out and dangles about like a shaman does with the bones of a dead man, before reciting an incantation on cue.  Steve has been shown by many interlocutors over the past year that the opinion of John of Saint Thomas about universal acceptance refers to a canonical election, not to a doubtful or uncanonical election — taking doubt here in the objective positive sense. — So his continued appeal to universal acceptance is simply dishonest. And his continued use of it as a dogma is superstition.

At this point A. J. Baalman shares a series of tweets, drawing on the commentary on Canons 332, 187 and 188 made by Cathy Caridi on her blog, Canon Law Made Easy, which I reviewed yesterday.  A. J. says:

Screenshot_2020-02-04 Steve Skojec on Twitter AjBaalman chesterbelloc3 But if there is such doubt about this centuries-old [...]

Notice how Steve brings out his straw man, again, and rattles it in the air, as if by such an incantation you can participate in a rational argument. He omits the word “canonical” in front of “papal” once again, to make it seem more supportive of his position. But here he goes one step further. There can be no question of an problematic papal election so long as it was accepted. No need to investigate. — I do not know what others might thing about such a line of reasoning, but it sounds to me the kind of thing a canon lawyer working for the Lavender Mafia might use, because it really aids and abets almost any possible course of corruption and interference in a papal election, as to defy rational explanation. No honest man can reason thus.

A. J., counters and insists on an investigation, and Steve responds:

Screenshot_2020-02-04 Steve Skojec on Twitter AjBaalman chesterbelloc3 But if there is such doubt about this centuries-old [...](1)

Steve says an investigation should be done, but it won’t be completed in the life time of the Pope or of Bergoglio. That is a very bold claim coming from someone who is not an investigator and who has shown no inclination to examine the facts already presented in the historical record. It is also another attempt at gaslighting, because it takes about 5 seconds to see the Renunciation is invalid.

Because all you have to do is 1) see that the Latin of Canon 332 §2 says munus, and that the Latin of the Declaratio says ministerium, and 2) recognize that what you do not renounce, you keep.

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Canonist declares substantial error can invalidate a Papal resignation

By Br. Alexis Bugnolo

I am impressed with the growing number of canonists who off the record are admitting that they recognize that Pope Benedict is still the true pope, because his renunciation was doubtful. While the fact that nearly all of them work for the Church, prevents the ones I have spoken with from being eager for public recognition of their stand, others have in the past admitted the truth of the problem.

One Canonist who spoke explicitly about the issue was Cathy Caridi, J.C.L.. Those letters after her name signify that she eared a Licentiate in Canon Law from a faculty recognized by the Apostolic See.

In a post, entitled, Can a Pope ever resign?, she explicitly discusses the meaning of Canon 332 §2 and what it requires.

She writes:

Only one canon of the entire Code of Canon Law makes any mention of this. Canon 332.2 states that if it happens that the Roman Pontiff resigns from his office, it is required for validity that his resignation be freely made and properly manifested, but it isn’t necessary that it be accepted by anyone.  At first glance, it may strike readers as a rather odd thing to say at all!  But when it’s read in the context of the entire Code of Canon Law and viewed in light of Catholic ecclesiology, it makes perfect sense.  After all, the Pope is a bishop, the Bishop of Rome

After discussing the renunciation Bishops, she returns to the discussion of the Pope, addressing conditions for the renunciation, in order, first liberty. And refers her readers to Canon 187, which explains in what the necessary liberty consists.

But it is the next part, that she makes the explosively correct statements about the facts of law, that nearly everyone has been ignoring for 7 years:

The very next canon talks about external forces being brought to bear on a person who resigns his office.   Canon 188 observes that a resignation is invalid if it is made because of unjustly inflicted grave fear, deceit, substantial error, or simony.  How would this panoply of situations apply to the Pope.

What is nearly prophetic about what she says, is that she touches upon a pope who on account of a misunderstanding, resigns incorrectly and thus, whose resignation IS INVALID IN VIRTUE OF CANON 188:

“Substantial error” is harder to envision in the case of a papal resignation. Such error can theoretically occur if the person holding an ecclesiastical office incorrectly thinks that (for example) he is required to submit his resignation after holding it for a certain number of years, or when his superior dies and is replaced by someone else.  A resignation that is made as the result of such a misunderstanding is invalid under canon 188.  When it comes to the Pope, who knows full well that his office is intended to last until his death, it is difficult to imagine that he could make such a mistake!

Here she uses a classic example of a substantial error which arises out of errors of fact or law, using timing as the example. An error is called substantial, because it corrupts the whole substance of the juridical act. As one can see from canon 126, this can occur through several causes. Caridi was not a prophetess, so she did not discuss errors which arise from renouncing the wrong thing, however.

Finally, she boldly affirms that an ambiguous renunciation is invalided by Canon 332 §2 itself, in its clause on due manifestation:

We can now see all that canon 332.2’s phrase “freely made” entails.  But there is definite uncertainty about the exact meaning of another phrase of canon 332.2 which asserts that a Pope’s resignation has to be “properly manifested.”  Would the Pope have to announce it in the presence of the College of Cardinals, for example?  Nobody really knows—but since the Pope is the Church’s Supreme Legislator, he can interpret this law however he wishes.  In the end, therefore, it wouldn’t really matter, so long as the Pope’s decision was expressed clearly, i.e., neither ambiguously nor secretly.

You can read the entire article she wrote, here.

You might be scratching your head, right now, and asking why no one has ever spoke of Caridi’s opinion before? Why did it not cause a controversy or storm of arguments?

That is because, what I just quoted, came from a post on her blog, Canon Law Made Easy, from January 2013, when the Catholic world was still Catholic and Trad Inc. was still sane!

Here at FromRome.Info, unlike many other blogs and websites, we keep the same categories and meanings of words and laws as they were on Feb. 10, 2013. We do not change.

Modernists change the meanings of things to push the revolution they back.

So when next you hear someone say, Bergoglio is certainly the pope, ask them, on what day they changed the meanings of the words in the Code of Canon Law!

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CREDITS: The Featured Image is a screen capture of the blog page of Cathy Caridi cited in this article. The quotations from her blog are used here according to the fair use standard for editorial commentary.

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An Index to Pope Benedict’s Renunciation

So much has been written about Pope Benedict’s renunciation of Feb. 11, 2013, that it is easy to forget or miss important articles. Since a lot of visitors who come to The From Rome Blog want to read about Benedict’s renunciation, it is helpful to have in one post, a list of all the Articles published here.

This is a topical, not chronological list: that is, it lists articles according to what aspect of the controversy they principally deal with, not according to the date they were published.

Before reading any of the Articles, see this public notice about FACTS VS CONJECTURE

And make sure to read the last section, which is the MOST important: What we must now do!

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An Index to our Articles on Pope Benedict’s Renunciation

The Renunciation of Feb. 11, 2013

Latin Text of Non Solum propter

Vernacular Translations of Non solum propter

The History of the Claim that the Text means Benedict resigned the Papacy

Why Pope Benedict Renounced the Ministry which He had received from the Cardinals

What Pope Benedict says His resignation means and meant

  1. Pope Benedict XVI in Feb. 2013 said in every way possible that He had not resigned the Papacy
  2. Pope Benedict XVI on Feb. 14, 2013 explained to the Clergy of Rome how to see that He had not resigned the Papacy
  3. How the Vatican’s attempt to get Benedict to call Bergoglio the Pope failed in June 2019

What in truth does the Act of Renouncing the Ministry mean or effect?

  1. Jesus Christ’s Point of view on this.
  2. Pope John Paul II admitted that a Papal renunciation could be invalid.
  3. The 6 Canonical Errors in the Act of Renunciation, which deprive it of all effect.
  4. The Canonical Argument that the Act does not cause the loss of the Papacy (ppbxvi.org)
  5. Video Explanation, prepared by Brian Murphy with input from Br. Bugnolo
  6. Ann Barnhardt’s authoritative Video on Substantial Error
  7. L’argomento canonico che dimostra che la Rinuncia non effettua la perdita del papato
  8. What Pope John Paul II taught about Munus and Ministerium, and how it binds the whole Church.
  9. The Magisterial Teaching of Pope Boniface VIII regarding the necessity of renouncing the Munus
  10. Why Saint Alponsus dei Liguori would say that the Renunciation, as written, is invalid.
  11. Why, on account of only resigning the Ministry, Pope Benedict made it dogmatically impossible that Bergoglio be the Pope
  12. Why, on account of only resigning the Ministry. Pope Benedict made it canonically impossible that Bergoglio’s election as pope was valid.

A Scholastic Investigation into the Canonical Meaning of the Resignation

Here Br. Bugnolo has gathered all the major arguments for and against and shows which side has the better argument.

The Dubious Arguments and outright Falsehoods used to defend that the renunciation caused Benedict to lose the Papacy

CONFIRMATIONS FROM ROME THAT BENEDICT IS STILL THE POPE

WHAT CATHOLICS SHOULD DO IN RESPONSE

The Vatican Coup d’Etat of Feb. 2013

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December 18, 2018 — A silent secret Coup d’Etat occured at the Vatican nearly 6 years ago, the facts of which case have only recently come to light.  The leading figures in the takeover were Cardinals Sodano and Bergoglio.  Sodano, the former, the Dean of the College of Cardinals, charged with calling a Conclave in the event of the death or valid resignation of the Roman Pontiff; the Latter, the head of the Saint Gallen Mafia, which had plotted since 2004 to take over the Church and transform the Catholic Religion into a hollow mockery of the Gospel.

The coup d’etat was put in motion by the decision by His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI to resign from active ministry on February, 11th, which he announced to the world in the Latin text, “Non solum propter”. (For the original text and English translation, see here).  The carefully worded text, based on the distinction put forward by Karl Rahner in 1974, in his work, Vorfragen zu einem okumenischen Amtsverstandnis, that one could retain the munus petrinum and share the ministerium petrinum, renounced the latter and explicitly affirmed the holding of the former.

This very obscure distinction in the Latin text allowed a coup d’etat, that is an unlawful take over of the Vatican. Because, according to the norm of Canon Law, the Cardinal Deacon was NOT empowered by the act of resignation to call a Conclave. Nay, he was obliged to confer with his Holiness as to the nature of the Vicar he wanted to appoint to govern the Vatican in his retirement, and ask direction on how the institution of the College of Cardinals could accomplish this, since the rules of a Conclave only regard the election of a successor not a Vicar sharing the active ministry.

No sooner had Pope Benedict XVI read his text, that Cardinal Sodano began to play up the event, by saying out-loud in Italian: “‘Holiness, this news catches us like a lightning bolt in a clear blue sky.’” (source)

Then the Italian journalist, Giovanna Chirri, a pool reporter for the Italian News Cooperative, ANSA, after attempting to speak with Cardinal Sodano by phone, following the consistory, and receiving the go ahead from Fr. Lombardi, ran the fake news story that the Pope had resigned his office.  She went to far in later reports to claim that she understands Latin perfectly, and that the renunciation was unequivocal!

Amazingly, Chirri announced this “news” via Twitter! Here is the historic tweet, upon which the entire Catholic world bases its idea that Benedict resigned the papacy!

However, the full responsibility and liability for the decision to call a Conclave to elect another Pope — during the lifetime of a Pope who only retired from active ministry, but did not resign his office — must be laid at the feet of Cardinal Sodano. That he was urged to this by the Saint Gallen Mafia may be supposed, but the evidence from the Law of the Church is indisputable.  As Canon 332 §2 reads in its official form, which in Latin — a Latin in which Cardinal Sodano is fluent, says:

CANON 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.

The law of the Church is clear: a pope resigns when he resigns his Munus (muneri suo renuntiet). And the validity of such a resignation arises from the act itself when it is conform with the norm of law (rite manifestetur) and is free.

The crime of Sodano consists in the pretense he made, based on the common translations of that Canon into modern languages, that you could renounce the office of the papacy without renouncing the petrine munus.

Obviously, canonically speaking, its impossible to demonstrate that a renunciation of ministerium is a due and proper manifestation of a renunciation of munus according to the norm of law, when the law itself says that papal resignations regard only the munus.*

Cardinal Sodano was of an age in which he could not vote in any further Conclaves, but by summoning a Conclave to elect another pope AND omitting a conference with His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI, he set in motion a revolution which resulted in Jorge Mario Bergoglio seizing control of the Vatican government and presenting himself to the world as the Vicar of Christ.

How many of the Cardinals who attended the Conclave of 2013 raised questions about this is not yet publicly known. However, its not a question of any form of secrecy to which they were or are bound, since if any of them noticed the sleight of hand of Sodano, he would have spoken about it before the Conclave began.

Today it is evident to the whole Catholic world that Bergoglio is an Anti-Pope in the sense that he has not the Faith of the Church and daily attacks the Faith. May God grant that Catholics everywhere read the Latin text of Canon 332 §2 to see that a renunciation of active ministry does not renounce the papal office, and that therefore the Conclave of 2013 was illicity convened and uncanonical, and that Bergoglio was never the Pope, never the Bishop of Rome, never the Successor of Saint Peter.

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NOTES

For further reading, I recommend:  How and Why the Resignation of Pope Benedict XVI on Feb. 11, 2013 is invalid by the law itself.

* Can. 17 — Leges ecclesiasticae intellegendae sunt secundum propriam verborum significationem in textu et contextu consideratam; quae si dubia et obscura manserit, ad locos parallelos, si qui sint, ad legis finem ac circumstantias et ad mentem legislatoris est recurrendum.

Cardinal Sodano was obliged, by this canon, in the matter of any doubt concerning whether the act of Benedict XVI was valid per canon 322 §2, to look in the Code itself for the usage of ministerium and munus. However, in the Code there is no equation of these two terms. Not finding one, he would be obliged to look at the canonical history of the term munus in papal resignations, in which in previous resignations the word munus, not ministerium, has always been used. So he had no grounds to call a Conclave. (cf. Dos graves razones, by Juan Suárez Falcó, and Fr. Stefano Violi, The Resignation of Pope Benedict XVI Between History, Law and Conscience)

 

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.