Tag Archives: Papal heresy

Bishop Schneider, your Essay is a porridge of falsehood and presumption!

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

French Translation

The Angelic Doctor, Saint Thomas Aquinas, in his Summa Theologica hands down the Catholic Tradition on the duties of the Catholic Faithful in matters where the Faith itself is put into public doubt or danger by the actions or statements of prelates, even of one’s own Bishop, when he writes:

To withstand anyone in public exceeds the mode of fraternal correction, and so Paul would not have withstood Peter then, unless he were in some way his equal as regards the defense of the Faith. But one who is not an equal can reprove privately and respectufully. Hence the Apostle, writing to the Colossians (4:17), tells them to admonish their prelate: “Say to Archippus, Fulfill thy ministry!”. It must be observed, however, that if the Faith were endangered, a subject ought to rebuke his prelate even publicly. Hence, Paul, who was Peter’s subject, rebuked him in public, on account of the imminent danger of scandal concerning the Faith, and, as the gloss on St. Augustine says, on Galatians 2:11, “Peter gave an example to superiors, that if at any time they happen to stray from the straight path, they should not disdain to be reproved by their subjects.” (Summa Theologica, II II, Q. 33, a. 4, ad 2)

Thus, I take up my pen to publicly rebuke Mons. Athanasius Schneider for statements made in his Essay published today at LifeSite News,  entitled, On the question of the true pope in the light of the opinion of the automatic loss of the papal office for heresy and the speculations about the resignation of Benedict XVI.

First, I find remarkable, that the Monsignor has doubled down on his opinion that the canonical crime of heresy publicly posited does not cause one to lose immediately every office in the Church, both theologically and canonically. He has sustained this opinion before, against all the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, as has been shown by several other writers (refuted ably here). His attempt to do so again, by arguing that a particular passage of Gratian is spurious is simply an absurd recourse to an absurd argument. Gratian was never a magisterial authority, so whether a particular passage is authentic or not, does not change the fact that notable authors, including Pope Innocent III, before and after Gratian held the opinion that heresy causes the loss of office, for anyone whomsoever. — Is he really saying, that Innocent III taught error, because of a faulty gloss? I say that he himself, that Bishop Schneider, is teaching error on the basis of a bad hermeneutic. To claim that the Church can lose Her Faith because She cannot discern that an unauthentic gloss presents false teaching, is to say the Church has no grace of discernment in matters of the Faith, but I, Bishop Schneider, know better than them all. Who do you think you are, your Excellency? Do you think you are greater that Saint Robert Bellarmine, S. J., who is as Doctor of the Church, and who disagrees with you?

Canon 1364 makes no exceptions whatsoever for a pope. The principle of The First See is judged by no one, which is enshrined in canon 1404, regards cases before a tribunal and acts of the Roman Pontiff. It does not regard the man who is the pope, in the case of his personal faith. Because just as a man who is a heretic, is not a member of the Church, a man who is a heretic holds no office. And thus a man considered or judged on account of heresy, is not considered or judged on account of any office. This is why Canon 1364 has no exceptions and imposes an excommunication upon each and everyone who commits a public crime of heresy, schism or apostasy.

Second, as regard the Declaratio of Pope Benedict: Your excellency shows that you either do not understand Canon Law or that you do not understand causality itself. If you had apprised yourself of even some of the documents sent to you by many Catholics round the world, you can see that the Code of Canon Law — an authentic Magisterial Document which you have no right to disregard or misrepresent — itself requires for a valid papal resignation, that the act posited by the man who is the Roman Pontiff, be an act of renunciation of petrine munus. But Pope Benedict XVI never posited such an act. Statements made before or after such an act, regarding intention or signification of the act, have no bearing whatsoever on the nature of the act. If your excellency had done as much due diligence as I have, when you were in Rome, and paid a visit to Mons. Arrieta, Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Legal Texts, you would have understood that an act of papal renunciation has to be clear in itself, it cannot be subject to the interpretation of anyone, not even by the pope. For if it needs interpretation or explanation, then it is not clear, and not valid. And if the man has validly resigned, any interpretation he gives is not authoritative. Nor can a pope resign, by authoritatively interpreting an invalid act as valid, after the fact. Because Canon 332 §2 requires an act of renunciation of petrine munus: and by such it does not permit an act of resignation by means of a post-factum papal interpretation of a not clearly manifest act.

Your opinion runs contrary to Saint Alphonsus dei Liguori, C. Ss.R., a Doctor of the Church, on legal interpretation. Do you think you know better than he, who held 2 doctorates in Law, one in canon law and another in civil law?

Third, all the quotes you cite, though they have no bearing, nevertheless, do not even prove the case you make with them, as I shall show here, by quoting each and commenting:

“Among you, in the College of Cardinals, there is also the future pope to whom today I promise my unconditional reverence and obedience” (Farewell address to the Cardinals, 28 February 2013).

Since, normally speaking, all Popes were former Cardinals, this statement can be said at any time to the College of Cardinals, whether all of them are present or not. It means nothing. We all should promise our obedience to all legitimate future popes, and past popes, because our obedience is owed to the office.

“I have taken this step with full awareness of its gravity and even its novelty, but with profound interior serenity” (Last General Audience, February 27, 2013).

Howsoever aware one is of an act, does not make an act valid, unless you think you are God or that the one acting is God. Canon 332 §2 by imposing conditions upon a papal resignation and defining it as a papal renunciation of petrine munus, teaches implicitly that Pope John Paul II held invalid a renunciation of ministerium, that John Paul II judged his successor, as the man who was Pope, and that the act itself must be duly manifest, to be valid.  All of which make no provision for full awareness of substantial error or novelty as a cause of validity (cf. canon 188 and 126).

“There is not the slightest doubt about the validity of my renunciation of the Petrine ministry. The only condition of validity is the full freedom of the decision. Speculation about the invalidity of renunciation is simply absurd” (Letter from February 18, 2014, to Andrea Tornielli, published in La Stampa, February 27, 2014).

The controversy over the canonical effect of the Declaratio has nothing to do with the claim that a renunciation of ministerium cannot be valid or is not valid. It has to do with the claim that the renunciation of ministerium effects the same thing as a renunciation of munus, and that it fulfills the requirements of Canon 332 §2, as not being corrupted by substantial error (cf. canon 188).  Moreover, if Pope Benedict XVI thinks that liberty of action alone is the cause of a valid renunciation, then, he shows himself to be in invincible error as regards his own act, because clearly in Canon 332 §2 there are 2 causes of validity of a renunciation of munus: freedom and due manifestation. And if you think you can transpose those 2 causes of validity for an act of renunciation of munus to an act of renunciation of ministerium, to make the renunciation of ministerium a renunciation of munus, then clearly you are in error, grave error! Then your act is invalid either on account of Canons 38 when reading an administrative act in violation of 36 §2, and/or of canon 15 §1 for all such cases of error in juridical acts against canons 188 and 332 §2.

During a conversation with a journalist from the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, the former Pope Benedict XVI said: “The Pope is one, he is Francis.” These words of Benedict XVI were reported in the written edition of Corriere della Sera, June 28, 2019 and anticipated in the Italian version of Vatican News on June 27, 2019.

This statement by Bishop Schneider is amazing of itself, because it is made regarding a report which was debunked by LifeSite News just days later. I suppose, the Bishop does not read the very electronic journal which publishes his Essay. And I suppose the editors of the same electronic journal omitted fraternal correction to help him save face by repeating such a false claim. But again, maybe I suppose too much.

Fourth, your excellency, why do you quote statements by Pope Benedict regarding his intentions to prove the Act of renunciation of ministry means an act of renunciation of papal munus, and then, in the next section of your essay, tell us not to hold that the actions and statements made by Pope Benedict which clearly show his intention to hold on to the papal dignity and office are not to be interpreted thus?

The Church is a visible society. Therefore, what was essential for the fulfillment of Benedict XVI’s resignation was not his possible internal thought but what he externally declared, for the Church does not judge about internal intentions (de internis non iudicat Ecclesia). Pope Benedict XVI’s ambiguous acts, like wearing a white cassock, keeping his name, imparting the apostolic blessing, etc., do not affect the unequivocal meaning of his act of renunciation. Many of his demonstrable and unequivocal words and actions after his resignation also confirm that he considers Pope Francis, and not himself, to be the pope.

Is evidence only to be interpreted to support your theory, and not objective reality? Do you honestly think that a validly resigned pope, should dress as the Pope, sign as the Pope, give blessings as the Pope? Moreover, do you think a real pope would salute a retired pope, at Panama City, saying to the crowds:  Look, Benedict, the pope!

If you want to close your eyes to facts which disprove your allegations, that is your affair, but asking the rest of the Church to do so is the very consummation of pride.

Finally, I must publicly reprove you for blasphemy against the Saints of Holy Mother Church, when you write:

Declaring Pope Francis to be an invalid pope, either because of his heresies or because of an invalid election (for reasons of alleged violations of the Conclave norms or for the reason that Pope Benedict XVI is still the pope because of his invalid renunciation) are desperate and subjectively taken actions aimed at remedying the current unprecedented crisis of the papacy. They are purely human and betray a spiritual myopia. All such endeavors are ultimately a dead end, a cul-de-sac. Such solutions reveal an implicit Pelagian approach to resolving a problem with human means; a problem, indeed, which cannot be resolved by human efforts, but which requires a divine intervention.

Many Councils, not the least of which the Council of Etampes, France, in 1130 A.D., presided over by Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, and the Synod of Sutri, approved of by St. Peter Damian and Bl. Pope Victor III and Pope St. Gregory VIII, have pronounced men to be invalid popes. To say that all such endeavors are pelagian and a dead end is not only a historical lie but a blasphemy against these holy men.

For all these reasons, I publicly ask you to withdraw the false assertions of your essay, if you want to be regarded any longer by Catholics as a Bishop who is faithful to the teaching and practice of the Church over the last 2000 years. Your desire to sustain the claim of Bergoglio to the papacy is clearly not based on facts, history or canon law, and is causing grave scandal to the faithful.

The true way forward, is the Catholic way, and it was proposed today by Catholics who know their faith and accept the teaching of the Church in its entirety.

_________

CREDITS: The Featured Image is a screen shot of the page at LifeSite News, where Bishop Schneider’s Essay has been published. It and the citations from his essay are used here in accord with fair use standards for editorial commentary.

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Pope Francis twists Scripture to promote heresy of false mercy

Pope Francis preaches during Mass March 22 in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae, the Vatican residence where the new pontiff resides. Among those in attendance were Vatican gardeners, garbage collectors and cleaning crews. (CNS photo/L'Ossevatore Romano) (April 9, 2013) See FRANCIS-WORKERS March 22, 2013.
Pope Francis preaches during Mass March 22 in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae, the Vatican residence where the new pontiff resides. Among those in attendance were Vatican gardeners, garbage collectors and cleaning crews. (CNS photo/L’Ossevatore Romano) (April 9, 2013)

Rome, March 17, 2015: It was and is the will of Our Lord Jesus Christ that all who come to Him with faith and repentance receive the Mercy and forgiveness of God, and He won these great gifts for all mankind by His most bloody death on the Cross.  But He established a prerequisite for every man, woman, or child who would come to Him, to receive these gifts:  namely, faith and penance.  It was with this exhortation, that He began His public ministry, when He said, The time is accomplished, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent, and believe the gospel. (Mk 1:15).  For many Christians, who revere the Bible as the source of their faith, these may only be nice sounding words, but for the Catholic Church, which Christ Founded, these words are both an exhortation unto the end of time and the very form and practice of our Holy Religion.+

The Path of true Repentance & Faith which Christ taught

When a man recognizes that he is a sinner, he comes to Christ by confessing his sins and professing His faith in the Lord Jesus, as God and his Redeemer. He accepts Christ’s teaching as a whole, that is entirely and in every respect, and he submits to the authority of Christ which He handed down, in part, to the Apostles and through them to all the Bishops and priests of His Church.  To be incorporated into Christ, therefore, a sinner must present himself to a Catholic priest and receive Baptism, making a profession of faith in Christ and His teachings, and repenting of all his sins.  He shows publicly that he is sincere in his repentance by removing himself from the public profession of sin, which consists in those forms or lifestyles which are contrary to the Gospel.  Thus, drunkards give up drink and remove it from their homes; fornicators give up fornication, adulterers leave their lovers, sodomites give up their sodomy and its lifestyle, etc.

For Catholics, who have fallen away from the practice of the Faith, and have entered into sinful relations, such as marrying one who is already married but separated or divorced, or cohabiting with anyone, the return to the practice of the Faith requires this same repentance and faith, separation from the life of sin and reception of the Sacrament of Confession. Then one can receive the Eucharist.  In the Catholic Church, we take the Sacraments seriously, because we believe just as Our Lord taught us, that in the Eucharist there is really, truly and substantially the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of the Most High and Holy God of Israel, the Eternal Son of God, Jesus Christ, before whom, even in Christ, no one is worthy to come, unless he repent and believe, but by Whose mercy and grace a man is made worthy to receive in the Sacrament of the Eucharist, if he repent of his sins and believe the entirety (not just what he picks and chooses) of the Gospel.

This is the discipline and faith which the Catholic Church has received from Our Lord Himself, through the Apostles, and from the Apostles through the very men they chose for Bishops and priests (presbyters), and through these down through the ages. Our teachings and disciplines have never changed, because they are not ours, but Christs, and our Church, the Catholic Church is not ours, but Christ’s.  The Catholic Church, therefore, being the one of which Christ said:  And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against her. (Matthew 16:18), knows that this Faith which Christ gave her is her victory over the world, the flesh and Satan; to alter that Faith therefore, would be to succumb to the world, the flesh and Satan. This is what we have always believed, this is what Christ and the Apostles have taught, and not only to us, but to all the world.

A HOMILY WHICH CONVICTS THE POPE OF OPEN SCHISM WITH CHRIST

Thus, it was an incredible and shameless act of defiance to Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, when Pope Francis preached this blasphemous sermon, this morning, at Mass.  Here is the Italian text of that sermon from Radio Vaticana:

“Un uomo – una donna – che si sente malato nell’anima, triste, che ha fatto tanti sbagli nella vita, a un certo momento sente che le acque si muovono, c’è lo Spirito Santo che muove qualcosa, o sente una parola o… ‘Ah, io vorrei andare!’… E prende coraggio e va. E quante volte oggi nelle comunità cristiane trova le porte chiuse: ‘Ma tu non puoi, no, tu non puoi. Tu hai sbagliato qui e non puoi. Se vuoi venire, vieni alla Messa domenica, ma rimani lì, ma non fare di più’. E quello che fa lo Spirito Santo nel cuore delle persone, i cristiani con psicologia di dottori della legge distruggono”.

La Chiesa è casa di Gesù
“A me fa dispiacere questo”, afferma subito dopo Francesco. Che ribadisce: la Chiesa ha sempre le porte aperte:

“E’ la casa di Gesù e Gesù accoglie. Ma non solo accoglie, va a trovare la gente come è andato a trovare questo. E se la gente è ferita, cosa fa Gesù? La rimprovera perché è ferita? No, viene e la porta sulle spalle. E questa si chiama misericordia. E quando Dio rimprovera il suo popolo – ‘Misericordia voglio, non sacrificio!’ – parla di questo”.

The link above contains the full audio of the homily.

Here is our unofficial English translation, of the citation we just made:

“A man, a woman, who feels bad at heart, sad, who has made so many mistakes in life, at a certain moment feels the waters move, it is the Holy Spirit who moves something, or he hears a word, o, “Ah, I would want to go!” … and he gets the courage and goes.  And how many times, today, in the christian community he finds the doors shut:  “But you cannot, no, you cannot.  You have made a mistake here and you cannot.  If you want to come, come to Mass on Sunday, but remain there, don’t do anything else.”  And that which the Holy Spirit is working in the heart of these persons, Christians with the mentality of doctors of the law, destroy”.

The Church is the House of Jesus
“This displeases me,” Francis affirms immediately afterwards.  He repeats:  the Church always has her doors open:

“She is the house of Jesus and Jesus is there welcoming.  But not only welcoming, he goes to find the people just as he went and found this one.  And if the people are wounded, what does Jesus do? Does he reprove them because they are wounded? No, he comes and carries them on his shoulders.  And this is called, “mercy”. And when God reproves His people — “I want mercy, not sacrifice!” — He is speaking of this”.

Analysis

The context of the Pope’s talk is about receiving communion. And anyone with the simplest Catholic education can understand that what the pope is doing is denouncing the discipline of reserving the Eucharist for those not in mortal sin, which discipline comes from the Apostles and is universal in all the local Churches which they founded (Jerusalem, Rome, Antioch, Alexandria, etc.).

Notice, that there is not 1 word about how the sinner is guilty of a moral offense:  in the pope’s mind, the sinner is just 1 who made “mistakes”, and thus has no need to repent, to change his life, and to remove scandal, or to go to confession, before receiving the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Altar.  NO! Its the faithful Catholics, who remind him that unless he do this, he cannot receive the Eucharist, but can attend Mass, to pray for the grace of conversion: it is they who have the “mentality” of the pharisees, it is they who destroy the working of the Holy Spirit in these sinners — a most blasphemous and unjust assertion!

Not to mention, an interpretation contrary to 2000 years of faith.

But no, Francis will have none of this!  He wants the “doors open” to all, without regard to the necessity of first believing (faith) and converting (penance).

In a word, the Pope just attacked Apostolic Tradition as it regards the discipline of refusing Communion to those in grave sin.  That is heresy!  And such a sin is condemned by the Second Ecumenical Council of Nicea, held in 787 A. D., in its 4th anathema:

If anyone should despise any written or unwritten ecclesiastical tradition, let him be anathema!

The Pope’s homily is also a formal violation of the teaching of the Council of Trent, Session 13, canon XI (bold facing added):

CANON XI: If any one saith, that faith alone is a sufficient preparation for receiving the sacrament of the most holy Eucharist; let him be anathema. And for fear lest so great a sacrament may be received unworthily, and so unto death and condemnation, this holy Synod ordains and declares, that sacramental confession, when a confessor may be had, is of necessity to be made beforehand, by those whose conscience is burdened with mortal sin, howsoever contrite they may think themselves. But if any one shall presume to teach, preach, or obstinately to assert, or even in public disputation to defend the contrary, he shall be thereupon excommunicated.

Thus, this homily of the Pope can serve as formal, canonical evidence of his heresy.  If the College of Cardinals, whose duty now is to rebuke him, remain silent and allow him to issue no retraction, they are also guilty of a grave sin against fraternal and filial charity. If he persists, after 2 or 3 corrections, then they are obliged gravely before God to depose him from the papacy, as a heretic and schismatic.

The pope’s reinterpretation of Scripture, this morning, is nothing short of a sacrilege: the imputation to a text from Scripture which is entirely at odds with its signification and proper meaning, and this, to foster the approval of sin, the condoning of sin by false mercy.

For it is mercy to preach repentance to sinners, as Our Lord commanded St. Peter and the Apostles, when He ascended into Heaven.  It is false mercy to preach acceptance of sinners without repentance and faith, since that leaves them in the state of sin in which they merit eternal damnation and temporal punishments.

Pope Francis evidently thinks that he is God

And that the infallible and indefectible Church of God, which is the Catholic Church alone, is wrong. And that she has been wrong for 2000 years,* to require both faith and penance of any sinner, before allowing them to receive Jesus Christ in the Sacrament.

What the pope is doing is committing the sins of heresy, blasphemy and sacrilege of scripture all at once.

This is NOT HUMILITY, this is DIABOLIC PRIDE.  It is also an act of schism with Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.

To say that what God said in the Old Testament, “It is mercy I desire and not sacrifice” (Hosea 6:6; cf. Mt. 9:16), applies to abandoning the requirements of faith and penance, which God’s Only Begotten Son established as the prerequisites of Christian worship, when He said, The time is accomplished, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent, and believe the gospel. (Mk 1:15),° is a plain and simple and direct denial of the authority of God the Son, and a usurpation by himself of the prerogatives of the Messiah, the Christ, to establish the limits of the faith!

Such a sin is a work of the Antichrist.

____________________

+ The original article did not contain these first 4 paragraphs, since those who read this blog are devout Catholics. But due to the publicity this article has drawn, the editor has added them to explain the context of what follows even to non-Catholics and show why what the Pope did at mass, on Tuesday, was and is such a scandal.

* For citations from the new Catechism, see the comments below.

°  St. Peter the Apostle, shows that this is to be understood of the Sacraments, when he preached on Pentecost day, saying:  But “Do penance, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of your sins: and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” (Acts 2:38), where he shows the necessity of penance and faith prior to receiving the Sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation.  Since, the Christian Faith, is not a Pharisaical religion of external observances, but a spiritual one, the spiritual requirements for 1 sacrament are the spiritual requirements for all the sacraments. Thus faith and penance (repentance) is required most of all for the Eucharist, which is the supreme Sacrament of communion with God.