Tag Archives: Pope Boniface VIII

Re-Elect Pope Benedict!

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

On March 13, 2013 a Schism was consummated in the Church by the College of Cardinals, who dared to convene a Conclave during the life of a Pope who had not resigned in accord with Canon 332 §2.  Nearly everyone was drawn into this schism due to the rash and false announcement put out by Father Lombardi on Feb. 11, 2013, when he gave Giovanna Chirri the via libera to publish a tweet at 11:58 AM that morning, just minutes after the end of the Consistory for the Martyrs of Otranto, claiming that Benedict had resigned and would give up the Pontificate on February 28.

During the last 7 years, the Holy Spirit has been stirring up Catholics to re-examine the Renunciation and realize in accord with the right granted them in canon 41 that the Renunciation was never valid, because it never named the thing a Pope must renounce to renounce the Papacy: the petrine munus.

For Catholics loyal to Christ, our duty now is to convince the Cardinals and Bishops to stop adhering to this Schism. Bergoglio never was the Successor of Saint Peter and is not the Pope: Benedict XVI is.

However, I am willing to admit that the Cardinals might not have the intellectual capacity or the moral ability to recognize the truth of what they did (schism and usurpation) and of what the Renunciation really meant: nothing at all but the uncanonical expression of an old man who was tired of governing those who did not obey him.

So I am willing to propose a solution for the Church, which does not require the Cardinals to have any virtue other than pragmatic prudence. And in this post, I will discuss that which regards the possibility that Bergoglio leaves office before Benedict.*

The Solution

The solution would be, that after the resignation of Bergoglio (may God hasten the day!) or after the death of Bergoglio (may he repent before it comes upon him), the Cardinals decide to re-elect Pope Benedict as the pope.

In this way they return to loyalty to the Pope without having to admit their error or sin. In this way they get a superior who probably wont ever correct them in anything, being so old and weak.

While one can argue that the Cardinals cannot validly or legitimately elect anyone during the life time of Pope Benedict, nevertheless, such a post-Bergoglian faux Conclave would serve as a cover for their return to communion with him.

So materially it would be a papal conclave and election, but formally it would me an act of re-submission to the Roman Pontiff. And Benedict does not even have to agree or be informed, because he is already pope and has already accepted his canonical election in 2005!

So I say this publicly now, so that if the occasion presents itself, Catholic bloggers and Clergy might take swift action to persuade the better Cardinals to propose this path of action in the future.  I myself will make it a point to discuss it with every Cardinal I get the chance to speak with, and I encourage all to write every Cardinal and suggest it.

Because, we must keep ever in mind, that what matters most of all is the salvation of souls. And this objective requires that first the College of Cardinals and the College of Bishops and the Clergy return to communion with Pope Benedict XVI, the true and only Vicar of Jesus Christ on Earth.

After that, the Church can get to business condemning the individual heresies of Cardinal Bergoglio.

Appendix

For many, however, this controversy has caused them to forget how necessary submission to the true Roman Pontiff is for society and their own personal salvation, so I will reprint here in full the English translation** of the Bull of Boniface VIII, Unam Sanctam, which is a must read for all Catholics right now in the Church.

Unam Sanctam

One God, One Faith, One Spiritual Authority

Bull of Pope Boniface VIII promulgated November 18, 1302

Urged by faith, we are obliged to believe and to maintain that the Church is one, holy, catholic, and also apostolic. We believe in Her firmly and We confess with simplicity that outside of Her there is neither salvation nor the remission of sins, as the Spouse in the Canticles [Sgs 6:8] proclaims: ‘One is my dove, my perfect one. She is the only one, the chosen of her who bore her,‘ and She represents one sole mystical body whose Head is Christ and the head of Christ is God [1 Cor 11:3]. In Her then is one Lord, one faith, one baptism [Eph 4:5]. There had been at the time of the deluge only one ark of Noah, prefiguring the one Church, which ark, having been finished to a single cubit, had only one pilot and guide, i.e., Noah, and We read that, outside of this ark, all that subsisted on the earth was destroyed.

We venerate this Church as one, the Lord having said by the mouth of the prophet: ‘Deliver, O God, my soul from the sword and my only one from the hand of the dog.’ [Ps 21:20] He has prayed for his soul, that is for himself, heart and body; and this body, that is to say, the Church, He has called one because of the unity of the Spouse, of the faith, of the sacraments, and of the charity of the Church. This is the tunic of the Lord, the seamless tunic, which was not rent but which was cast by lot [Jn 19:23- 24]. Therefore, of the one and only Church there is one body and one head, not two heads like a monster; that is, Christ and the Vicar of Christ, Peter and the successor of Peter, since the Lord speaking to Peter Himself said: ‘Feed my sheep‘ [Jn 21:17], meaning, my sheep in general, not these, nor those in particular, whence we understand that He entrusted all to him [Peter]. Therefore, if the Greeks or others should say that they are not confided to Peter and to his successors, they must confess not being the sheep of Christ, since Our Lord says in John ‘there is one sheepfold and one shepherd.’ We are informed by the texts of the gospels that in this Church and in its power are two swords; namely, the spiritual and the temporal. For when the Apostles say: ‘Behold, here are two swords‘ [Lk 22:38] that is to say, in the Church, since the Apostles were speaking, the Lord did not reply that there were too many, but sufficient. Certainly the one who denies that the temporal sword is in the power of Peter has not listened well to the word of the Lord commanding: ‘Put up thy sword into thy scabbard‘ [Mt 26:52]. Both, therefore, are in the power of the Church, that is to say, the spiritual and the material sword, but the former is to be administered for the Church but the latter by the Church; the former in the hands of the priest; the latter by the hands of kings and soldiers, but at the will and sufferance of the priest.

However, one sword ought to be subordinated to the other and temporal authority, subjected to spiritual power. For since the Apostle said: ‘There is no power except from God and the things that are, are ordained of God‘ [Rom 13:1-2], but they would not be ordained if one sword were not subordinated to the other and if the inferior one, as it were, were not led upwards by the other.

For, according to the Blessed Dionysius, it is a law of the divinity that the lowest things reach the highest place by intermediaries. Then, according to the order of the universe, all things are not led back to order equally and immediately, but the lowest by the intermediary, and the inferior by the superior. Hence we must recognize the more clearly that spiritual power surpasses in dignity and in nobility any temporal power whatever, as spiritual things surpass the temporal. This we see very clearly also by the payment, benediction, and consecration of the tithes, but the acceptance of power itself and by the government even of things. For with truth as Our witness, it belongs to spiritual power to establish the terrestrial power and to pass judgement if it has not been good. Thus is accomplished the prophecy of Jeremias concerning the Church and the ecclesiastical power: ‘Behold to-day I have placed you over nations, and over kingdoms‘ and the rest. Therefore, if the terrestrial power err, it will be judged by the spiritual power; but if a minor spiritual power err, it will be judged by a superior spiritual power; but if the highest power of all err, it can be judged only by God, and not by man, according to the testimony of the Apostle: ‘The spiritual man judgeth of all things and he himself is judged by no man‘ [1 Cor 2:15]. This authority, however, (though it has been given to man and is exercised by man), is not human but rather divine, granted to Peter by a divine word and reaffirmed to him (Peter) and his successors by the One Whom Peter confessed, the Lord saying to Peter himself, ‘Whatsoever you shall bind on earth, shall be bound also in Heaven‘ etc., [Mt 16:19]. Therefore whoever resists this power thus ordained by God, resists the ordinance of God [Rom 13:2], unless he invent like Manicheus two beginnings, which is false and judged by Us heretical, since according to the testimony of Moses, it is not in the beginnings but in the beginning that God created heaven and earth [Gen 1:1]. Furthermore, We declare, We proclaim, We define that it is absolutely necessary for salvation that every human creature be subject to the Roman Pontiff.

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* In my post tomorrow, I will discuss the opposite case, and what the solution there might be.

** Source, with a few corrections, regarding honorific capitalizations, added by myself here on the pronouns referring to the Roman Pontiff and to Holy Mother Church.

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

Boniface VIII’s Magisterial Teaching on Papal Renunciations

Translation and Commentary by Br. Alexis Bugnolo¹

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The election of Pope Boniface VIII

Pope Boniface VIII, Quoniam (Sexti Decretalium Liber. I, Tit. VII, chapter 1):

Quoniam aliqui curiosi disceptatores de his, quae non multum expediunt, et plura sapere, quam oporteat, contra doctrinam Apostoli, temere appetentes, in dubitationem sollicitam, an Romanus Pontifex (maxime cum se insufficientem agnoscit ad regendam universalem Ecclesiam, et summi Pontificatus onera supportanda) renunciare valeat Papatui, eiusque oneri, et honori, deducere minus provide videbantur:  Celestinus Papa quintus praedecessor noster, dum eiusdem ecclesiae regimini praesidebat, volens super hoc haestitationis cuiuslibet materiam amputare, deliberatione habita cum suis fratribus Ecclesiae Romanae Cardinalibus (de quorum numero tunc eramus) de nostro, et ipsorum omnium concordi consilio et assensu, auctoritate Apostolica statuit, et decrevit:  Romanum Pontificem posse libere resignare.

Nos igitur ne statutum huiusmodi per ipsis cursum oblivioni dari aut dubitationem eandem in recidivam disceptionem ulterius deduci contingat:  ipsum inter constitutiones alias, ad perpetuam rei memoriam, de fratrum nostrorum consilio duximus redigendum.

My Translation:

Since some debaters curious about those things, which are not very expedient, and desiring rashly to know more than is opportune, against the teaching of the Apostle (1 Tim. 6:4), have seemed to draw forth less cautiously a solicitous doubt, whether the Roman Pontiff (most of all when he acknowledges himself (to be) insufficient to rule the universal Church, and to support the burdens (onera) of the Supreme Pontificate) be able [valeat] to renounce the Papacy [Papatui], and its charge [oneri], and honor [honori]:  Pope Celestine V, Our predecessor, when he presided over the government of the same Church, willing to cut off the matter of any hesitation over this, having held a deliberation with His brothers, the Cardinals of the Roman Church (of whose number We were at that time), established and decreed by (his) Apostolic Authority, from the concordant counsel and assent of Ourselves, and of the same: that the Roman Pontiff can freely resign.

We, therefore, lest a statute of this kind, enacted through the same, be given up to oblivion or the same doubt be drawn forth furthermore in a repeated debate: judge that the same is to be registered among the other constitutions, ad perpetuam rei memoriam, (drawn) from the council of our brother (Cardinals).

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FOOTNOTES

  1. Many thanks to Dr. Cyrille Dounot, Professor of Law in the Faculté de Droit et de Science Politique, at the Université d’Auvergne, France, for making the Latin text of Boniface’s decree, Quoniam (VI, 1, 7, 1), available to me, from the Corpus Iuris Canonici, Vol II, Liber Sextus, Clementinae and Extravagantes, cum glossis, Lyons, France, 1584, cols. 197-199.

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MY COMMENTARY

Benedetto Caetani, the future Pope Boniface VIII, was born around 1235 A. D., of an ancient Roman family. He studied jurisprudence at the University of Bologna and served in the papal government during his long career. Pope Martin IV made him Cardinal Deacon of Saint Nicholas in Carcere, in 1281 A. D., and Pope Nicholas IV, Cardinal Priest of St. Martin in Montibus ten years later. He succeeded Pope Celestine V in 1294, after the former renounced the papacy.

Pope Boniface studied canon law in an age in which its study was confined to gathering the canons of the ancient Church and those decreed in historic synods and commenting on them to deduce the fundamental principles of law by which the Church would be rightly governed. His decree, Quoniam, must be seen in this light, as we can see from the text.

There are two motives for Pope Boniface in writing Quoniam. The historical and the ecclesiological. Historically, inasmuch as he was elected following the resignation of Pope Celestine V, and on account of his untimely demise shortly after being sequestered by Boniface to the Castle of Fumone, Italy, Boniface had good reason to enshrine in Church Law the affirmation that a pope can freely resign. Second, ecclesiologically, Boniface wanted to put to rest doubts that swirled around the nature of the papal office, whether it was a vocation which could only be accepted, and never rejected, or whether it was an office, in the sense of a duty or charge, which could be lain down just as much as taken up.

In its form, Quoniam, is a memorial rescript, that is, its a written document which records what was said and decided in consistory by his predecessor, Pope Celestine V, with the Cardinals. Pope Boniface’s authority to issue the rescript, therefore, is twofold: he was both an eye witness participant in the discussions and as Roman Pontiff he had the authority to determinatively decide upon questions of canon law.

While Boniface’s central purpose was merely to affirm a point of papal power, the matter of his rescript touches upon the nature of the papal office as it was conceived in the minds of Pope Celestine V and his cardinals:  as an office, as a duty, as a dignity.  The office is that of the papacy (papatus), a Late Medieval term derived from the popular address of the Roman Pontiff, pope, in Greek (papas).  The duty is a charge or burden (onus), not only a sober term for the magnitude and importance of the affairs it must conduct, but also a term which implies that this duty is bestowed from on high, a reference to Our Lord’s creation of the office in Matthew 16:18. Finally, the papal office is a dignity (honor), which distinguishes and elevates the one who accepts his canonical election above all others in the Church.

From Boniface’s rescript, by which he establishes Quoniam among the perpetual constitutions of the Church, we can see a direct and faithful reflection in the present Code of Canon Law, in Canon 332 §2, which terms the papal office a munus, affirms that a renunciation of munus is validly effected when the Pope acts freely, and requires a public act. In its final clause, Canon 332 §2 reaffirms that the power of renunciation lies solely in the papal office by denying that its validity arises from the act of renunciation being accepted by anyone at all.

Its clear, then, from the magisterial teaching of Pope Boniface VIII, that the papal office is not a ministry, but rather a unique dignity, office and duty, which in being renounced, must be renounced in its own nature according to what it is. That even those who doubted that a pope had such power, in Boniface’s day, affirmed these things are contained in the context of the doubt they raised, namely, whether a pope could renounce the papacy, its charge, and its honor.

Contrariwise, inasmuch as Pope Boniface affirms that a pope can renounce these things, he affirms that all three must be renounced to effect a papal renunciation, on this account, that in affirming the papal power extends over these, he implicitly asserts that if the papal power does NOT extend over each of these, then the renunciation has not taken place.

This follows from the rules of the science of Logic, which teaches that every negation must be understood strictly. Thus, since a renunciation is a form of negation, a renunciation of the papacy must renounce the office, the charge and the dignity. If one renounced only the exercise of the office and continued to exercise the passive ministry, retain the dignity of being called Your Holiness, giving the Apostolic Blessing, wearing the clothing which only the Pope can wear, it would be clear that one’s resignation had not occurred, because there is no renunciation of all right, unless all right be renounced.

Pope Boniface VIII, eminent legal scholar that he was, obviates these problems which arise from renunciation-law by using the intransitive form of the verb to resign [resignare] in his final affirmation of papal power. This is because, unlike “to renounce” [renuntiare], to resign implies of itself the renunciation of office and all its right, on account of its original meaning to re-signare, or undo the seal which enacted or approved a thing. In Latin, resignare, thus, has the meaning of annul or cancel, as well as resign, and recalls the powers invested in the office of Saint Peter, when Our Lord said: whatsoever you loose ….

The present Code of Canon Law by employing the verb to renounce [renunciare], thus requires that the object of the act munus, be a word which is full of meaning, rich in meaning, and encompassing all that is essential to an act of renunciation of papal office: the office, the charge and the dignity. The brilliance of the Latinity of those who prepared the New Code under Pope John Paul II is seen in this one word, munus, which means both gift [munus in Latin means gift, its used in the Liturgy for the gifts of the Magi], and office [canon 145 terms every ecclesiastical office a munus], charge [munus and onus in Latin share this meaning] and that which up-builds a person [munire in Latin means to build up, or fortify]. In English we see this in the words ammunition and munificence. On this account, if one were to renounce the papal office with any term which is not co-extensive with all three aspects of the Papal office, its clear that the renunciation would be incomplete, and therefore of no effect in law. Nay, since we men are creatures whose understanding is bound up with the words we use to express ourselves, its clear that if one were to use another term with deliberation, his consequent actions would reflect that partial renunciation and incomplete resignation. This should be now obvious to all, who have eyes to see.