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Tuesday, January 25, 2022

We Have to Choose Between the Prince of Peace and the Prince of Darkness

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Temptation of Christ by Georg Cornicelius Temptation of Christ by Georg Cornicelius

Within the span of four decades, the leadership of the Catholic Church set forth two radically different views on the path for world peace. In the first, Pope Pius XI began his 1925 encyclical about the Feast of Christ the King, Quas Primas, with an emphasis on the role of Jesus Christ:

“In the first Encyclical Letter which We addressed at the beginning of Our Pontificate to the Bishops of the universal Church, We referred to the chief causes of the difficulties under which mankind was laboring. And We remember saying that these manifold evils in the world were due to the fact that the majority of men had thrust Jesus Christ and his holy law out of their lives; that these had no place either in private affairs or in politics: and we said further, that as long as individuals and states refused to submit to the rule of our Savior, there would be no really hopeful prospect of a lasting peace among nations. Men must look for the peace of Christ in the Kingdom of Christ; and that We promised to do as far as lay in Our power. In the Kingdom of Christ, that is, it seemed to Us that peace could not be more effectually restored nor fixed upon a firmer basis than through the restoration of the Empire of Our Lord.”

 

As we would expect from the Vicar of Christ, he wrote that the “manifold evils in the world were due to the fact that the majority of men had thrust Jesus Christ and his holy law out of their lives.” If we were created to know, love, and serve God, then it makes sense that our peace and happiness will depend on the extent to which individuals and societies make Christ the King and center of their lives. Certainly non-Christians believe otherwise, but this is the logical perspective for those who take the Catholic Faith seriously.

So the Catholic religion is “entirely on the side of man and in his service” — so much for Pius XI’s efforts to establish the reign of Christ the King!

Forty years later, the Second Vatican Council’s Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, Gaudium et Spes, emphasized the role of “some universal public authority” in achieving peace:

“It is our clear duty, therefore, to strain every muscle in working for the time when all war can be completely outlawed by international consent. This goal undoubtedly requires the establishment of some universal public authority acknowledged as such by all and endowed with the power to safeguard on the behalf of all, security, regard for justice, and respect for rights. But before this hoped for authority can be set up, the highest existing international centers must devote themselves vigorously to the pursuit of better means for obtaining common security.”

According to the Council, the world could no longer look to Christ for peace and must instead search for it from an international secular collaboration.

Fr. Alvaro Calderon commented on this change of perspective at Vatican II in his Prometheus: The Religion of Man:

“After two World Wars, the Council did not stop talking about peace among nations. Would the pope, Vicar of the Prince of Peace, offer himself as God’s instrument to establish the peace of Christ in the World? Such was the function of the Roman Pontiff in medieval Christendom, but now it was judged impossible, because ecclesiastical power must not interfere directly in the world order.”

The Council placed its bet on the Prince of darkness, even though the vast majority of Council Fathers had no idea they were guiding the Church to that choice.

This belief that the Church could no longer perform the same function it did in fostering peace in the past reflects a tragically false modesty that ultimately denies the power of God. We see this even more prominently in the embrace of humanism which shifted the focus from God to man, as we see in Paul VI’s 1965 address to close Vatican II:

“The modern mind, accustomed to assess everything in terms of usefulness, will readily admit that the council's value is great if only because everything has been referred to human usefulness. Hence no one should ever say that a religion like the Catholic religion is without use, seeing that when it has its greatest self-awareness and effectiveness, as it has in council, it declares itself entirely on the side of man and in his service. In this way the Catholic religion and human life reaffirm their alliance with one another, the fact that they converge on one single human reality: the Catholic religion is for mankind.”

So the Catholic religion is “entirely on the side of man and in his service” — so much for Pius XI’s efforts to establish the reign of Christ the King! In hindsight, we can see that most of the substantial innovations of the Council — including religious liberty, false ecumenism, liturgical reforms, and an embrace of humanism — implemented this new belief that Christ the King must diminish in importance and influence so that His Church could be “useful” to mankind.

But, as Fr. Calderon explains, there is a problem with jettisoning Christ the King in favor of serving mankind:

“If it is not the Prince of Peace who establishes the order of justice among the nations by means of the powers He has communicated to His Vicar, it shall be the Prince of darkness who does so by means of the powers he grants to his firstborn, the Antichrist. These are the powers in play, and nothing else is possible. Which kingdom is it, then, whose establishment the Second Vatican Council is aiming to prepare with all its might?”

Either Jesus, the Prince of Peace, will establish order, or the Prince of darkness and his minions will. When the Church withdraws from the field of battle, there is little mystery who will gain the advantage.

We may find it astonishing that so many cardinals and bishops went along with changes they knew to be departures from Catholic tradition, but they “simply followed the pope.”

So the Council placed its bet on the Prince of darkness, even though the vast majority of Council Fathers had no idea they were guiding the Church to that choice. As Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre related in his Spiritual Journey, most cardinals and bishops simply followed the pope:

“All could see the triumph, within the Church, of new ideas, born of the Revolution and in Lodges: 250 cardinals and bishops rejoiced at their victory, 250 were horror-stricken, 1,750 tried not to ask questions, but simply followed the Pope: ‘. . . we shall see to it later!’ The Council proceeds and the reforms multiply as quickly as possible. The persecution of traditional cardinals and bishops begins, and soon after of priests and religious everywhere who attempt to preserve Tradition.”

We may find it astonishing that so many cardinals and bishops went along with changes they knew to be departures from Catholic tradition, but they “simply followed the pope.”

And the overwhelming majority of Catholics continued to believe that Vatican II was in perfect continuity with Catholic tradition — despite every indication to the contrary — until Francis helpfully removed all possible doubt last year with his Traditiones Custodes: now only the willfully blind can deny that Vatican II’s innovations constitute a radical departure from Catholic tradition (i.e., Catholicism).

It is now evident that there could be no Great Reset if Vatican II had not done so much to thwart the reign of Christ the King.

At this point, we can only speculate on why Francis is forcing the issue now, when some degree of deniability and obfuscation had served the innovators’ cause so well for over six decades. But surely it is no mere coincidence that he has done so as the secular villains have initiated a diabolical Great Reset to enthrone the New World Order, which ominously portends the “establishment of some universal public authority,” heralded by Gaudium et Spes. After all, it is now evident that there could be no Great Reset if Vatican II had not done so much to thwart the reign of Christ the King. Could it be that God permits (or requires) man to make a clear and sufficiently informed choice about whether he will be enslaved by those who serve the Prince of darkness? Why else would the architects of both the Great Reset and the demolition of the Church have made it so abundantly clear that they are acting fiendishly? And why have they allowed it to be so obvious, as Michael Matt demonstrates in his recent Remnant TV video, that they are all working together?

Regardless of our answers to these questions, we know that God will not be mocked and is allowing us to see that the Vatican II wager to serve mankind rather than Him was breathtakingly foolish. It took nearly six decades, but today we see the horrifying fruits of betraying God. Now we have an undeserved second chance, which could expire at any moment, to reverse the Vatican II wager as much as possible and fight for the reign of Christ the King. As Archbishop Lefebvre wrote in his They Have Uncrowned Him, “we have to build while others are demolishing”:

“If this is how things are, you will understand that, in spite of everything, I am not a pessimist. The Holy Virgin will have the victory. She will triumph over the great apostasy, the fruit of Liberalism. . . . We have to fight more than ever for the social Reign of Our Lord Jesus Christ. In this battle, we are not alone: we have with us all the Popes until Pius XII inclusively. All of them fought Liberalism in order to deliver the Church from it. God did not grant that they succeed, but this is no reason to lay down our weapons! We have to hold on. We have to build, while the others are demolishing. The crumbled citadels have to be rebuilt, the bastions of the faith to be reconstructed: firstly the holy sacrifice of the Mass of all times, which forms saints; then our chapels, which are our true parishes; our monasteries; our large families; our enterprises faithful to the social doctrine of the Church; our politicians determined to pursue the Politics of Jesus Christ—this is the whole tissue of Christian social life, Christian customs, Christian reflexes. All this must be restored on the scale that God wants and at the time that God wills. All I know - the faith teaches us - is that Our Lord Jesus Christ must reign here below, now, and not only at the end of the world, as the Liberals would have it!”

We have everything to gain from fighting valiantly in God’s service; and the only things we stand to lose will be taken anyway if we foolishly decide to stay on the sidelines.

As individuals, families and communities we must do all in our power to fight for the reign of Christ the King. In more peaceful times, we may have thought that we had little to gain and much to lose from giving everything we have in the service of God. But today, Deo Gratias, we have been given the great blessing to see that we have everything to gain from fighting valiantly in God’s service; and the only things we stand to lose will be taken anyway if we foolishly decide to stay on the sidelines. We need heroes who will fight for Christ the King with charity and fervor, we need saints.

Even if we reach a point at which everything seems lost, we know with certainty that God wins and will reward all of our efforts to fight for Him. As we know from the prayer given to the children of Fatima by the Angel of Peace in 1916, we must always believe, adore, trust, and love God, no matter how dark the world seems:

"My God, I believe; I adore; I trust, and I love Thee. I beg pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not trust, and do not love Thee.”

May the Blessed Virgin Mary, who never left the service of God, obtain for us the grace to always fight valiantly for her Son, Christ the King. Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us!

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Last modified on Tuesday, January 25, 2022
Robert Morrison | Remnant Columnist

Robert Morrison is a Catholic, husband and father. He is the author of A Tale Told Softly: Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale and Hidden Catholic England.