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Monday, November 21, 2022

“Pope Francis” is Our Reward for Tolerating the Errors of Vatican II

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“Pope Francis” is Our Reward for Tolerating the Errors of Vatican II

As we end the liturgical year, and begin another Advent with Francis still occupying the papacy, we cannot escape the reality that the Church’s crisis has grown significantly worse over the past year. All but the most obstinate self-deceivers recognize that Rome has not only lost the Faith but has also become the loudest voice against the true Faith. It appears that we now hear Satan’s unfiltered voice through these false shepherds.

 

We naturally look back to Benedict XVI’s abdication with more dismay as the Francis crisis deepens — how could he have abandoned the Church when known wolves stood ready to devour? How many souls have been lost due to that decision? Would we have ever heard of the Great Reset if Benedict XVI had stood firm?

Even though we may legitimately ask these questions, we know that this crisis did not begin with Francis. And if we study two aspects of Benedict XVI’s February 14, 2013 address to the clergy of Rome before “leaving the Petrine ministry,” we can better appreciate why Francis is a fitting reward for our toleration of the errors that had thrived in the Church following Vatican II.

As with many other writings throughout his career, Benedict XVI’s farewell address to the clergy of Rome also illustrates the Modernist propensity to put truth and error side by side.

The first aspect of Benedict XVI’s speech to consider is a statement with which many Traditional Catholics generally agree:

“We know that this Council of the media was accessible to everyone. Therefore, this was the dominant one, the more effective one, and it created so many disasters, so many problems, so much suffering: seminaries closed, convents closed, banal liturgy . . .”

Although we may dispute the extent to which the media played a role, surely he is correct in tracing “so many disasters” to the Council. Statements such as these from Benedict XVI (even during the decades before his election to the papacy) have convinced many Traditional Catholics that he was orthodox despite numerous indications to the contrary.

But as with many other writings throughout his career, Benedict XVI’s farewell address to the clergy of Rome also illustrates the Modernist propensity to put truth and error side by side. As we can see with each of the following excerpts from his address, Benedict XVI was an eloquent proponent of several of the anti-Catholic errors we find so repulsive when delivered by Francis:

Seeking to Update the Church with Worldly Progress. “So off we went to the Council not just with joy but with enthusiasm. There was an incredible sense of expectation. We were hoping that all would be renewed, that there would truly be a new Pentecost, a new era of the Church, because the Church was still fairly robust at that time – Sunday Mass attendance was still good, vocations to the priesthood and to religious life were already slightly reduced, but still sufficient. However, there was a feeling that the Church was not moving forward, that it was declining, that it seemed more a thing of the past and not the herald of the future. And at that moment, we were hoping that this relation would be renewed, that it would change; that the Church might once again be a force for tomorrow and a force for today. And we knew that the relationship between the Church and the modern period, right from the outset, had been slightly fraught, beginning with the Church’s error in the case of Galileo Galilei; we were looking to correct this mistaken start and to rediscover the union between the Church and the best forces of the world, so as to open up humanity’s future, to open up true progress.” (Benedict XVI, February 14, 2013)

This sense of continuously renewing the Church to keep up with the modern world has animated almost all of the disastrous changes since Vatican II. Benedict XVI’s notion that the Church must “move forward” and unite with the world is the same spirit that leads Francis to denounce the “backward” Traditional Catholics as he promotes the Great Reset.

Benedict XVI and the “great figures” he praised knew how to carry out reform within a framework of apparent orthodoxy, which allowed them to inflict more damage than if they had been more overtly heretical.

Praise for the Conciliar Villains. “I remember meetings with Cardinals, and so on. And this continued throughout the Council: small-scale meetings with peers from other countries. Thus I came to know great figures like Father de Lubac, Daniélou, Congar, and so on.” (Benedict XVI, February 14, 2013)

These “great figures” were instrumental in advancing the Council’s most anti-Catholic novelties. Significantly, it was Congar who provided Francis with inspiration for the Synod on Synodality, as he announced in his opening address on October 9, 2021:

“Father Congar, of blessed memory, once said: ‘There is no need to create another Church, but to create a different Church.’”

Benedict XVI and the “great figures” he praised knew how to carry out reform within a framework of apparent orthodoxy, which allowed them to inflict more damage than if they had been more overtly heretical. Thanks to their efforts in this regard, Francis and his Synod can now trample the Faith without even pretending to be Catholic.

Advancing the “People of God" Concept. “In the quest for a complete theological vision of ecclesiology, a certain amount of criticism arose after the 1940’s, in the 1950’s, concerning the concept of the Body of Christ: the word ‘mystical’ was thought to be too spiritual, too exclusive; the concept ‘People of God’ then began to come into play. The Council rightly accepted this element, which in the Fathers is regarded as an expression of the continuity between the Old and the New Testaments. . . . Yet only after the Council did an element come to light – which can also be found, albeit in a hidden way, in the Council itself – namely this: the link between People of God and Body of Christ is precisely communion with Christ in Eucharistic fellowship. . . . I would say that, philologically, it is not yet fully developed in the Council, yet it is as a result of the Council that the concept of communion came more and more to be the expression of the Church’s essence, communion in its different dimensions: communion with the Trinitarian God – who is himself communion between Father, Son and Holy Spirit – sacramental communion, and concrete communion in the episcopate and in the life of the Church.” (Benedict XVI, February 14, 2013)

The innovators have used this concept of the “People of God” to embrace non-Catholics at the same time that they have excluded those who adhere to what the Church has always taught.

However erudite and impressive these words may sound, they are not Catholic, which is why we may struggle to grasp their meaning if we try to interpret them in light of the Faith. Thankfully, Fr. Dominique Bourmaud elucidated the meaning and importance of these ideas in his One Hundred Years of Modernism (published several years before Benedict XVI’s farewell address):

“Where the magisterium once spoke of the nature of the Church, Congar alluded rather to her mystery; where Pius XII had consecrated the notion of member of the Mystical Body of Christ, Congar introduced the marvelously vague notion of communion of the People of God. Why? Because one is or is not a member of a body, whereas one can be more or less in communion.”

The innovators have used this concept of the “People of God” to embrace non-Catholics at the same time that they have excluded those who adhere to what the Church has always taught. We see this even more clearly with the ecumenism and interreligious dialogue movements discussed below.

False Ecumenism. “Finally, ecumenism. I do not want to enter now into these problems, but it was obvious – especially after the ‘passions’ suffered by Christians in the Nazi era – that Christians could find unity, or at least seek unity, yet it was also clear that God alone can bestow unity. And we are still following this path.” (Benedict XVI, February 14, 2013)

The only basis for unity among Christian religions is for non-Catholics to accept the truths of the Catholic Church. Those who waiver on this point do not encourage non-Catholics to convert, but they do convince Catholics that the Church cannot possibly be essential for salvation. Any Catholic who accepts the false ecumenism preached by John XXIII and his successors is ripe for apostasy.

Interreligious Dialogue. “When we began to work also on Islam, we were told that there were also other world religions: the whole of Asia! Think of Buddhism, Hinduism…. And so, instead of a declaration as initially conceived, concerning only the People of God in the Old Testament, a text was created on interreligious dialogue, anticipating what only 30 years later would be demonstrated in all its intensity and importance.” (Benedict XVI, February 14, 2013)

We cannot overstate how wicked and ridiculous this interreligous dialogue is. Our Lord Jesus Christ established the Holy Catholic Church for the honor of God and salvation of souls. Satan uses these false religions to keep souls away from God, and any praise of them is offensive to God and dangerous not only to those in the false religions but also to Catholics. Once a pope honors Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism with “interreligious dialogue,” is there any logical basis for saying that it is “too far” for a pope to honor the Pachamama as Francis did?

This raises the question of how much error is too much error within the Church.

If we honestly consider these statements from Benedict XVI, we have to acknowledge that they go against what the Church has always taught. Moreover, they contain the “theological” underpinnings of many of the anti-Catholic abuses we see from Francis. And yet most faithful Catholics grew complacent with Benedict XVI because his Modernist theology allowed him to add in enough orthodox-sounding statements to balance those which were clearly heterodox.

This raises the question of how much error is too much error within the Church. In his 1896 encyclical Satis Cognitum, Leo XIII explained the simple basis for understanding that even a minor error is incompatible with Catholic teaching:

“The practice of the Church has always been the same, as is shown by the unanimous teaching of the Fathers, who were wont to hold as outside Catholic communion, and alien to the Church, whoever would recede in the least degree from any point of doctrine proposed by her authoritative Magisterium.”

This follows naturally from the idea that the Church’s role is to faithfully transmit the truths which Jesus Christ has entrusted to it. This is what we pray in our Act of Faith:

“O my God! I firmly believe that Thou art one God in three Divine Persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost; I believe that Thy Divine Son became man, and died for our sins, and that He will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe these and all the truths which the Holy Catholic Church teaches, because Thou has revealed them, Who canst neither deceive nor be deceived.”

Thus, we believe what the Church teaches because God has revealed it. As Leo XIII described, if the Church were to teach something today that contradicts what it has always taught, then either the Church would be false or God would be a deceiver:

“As often, therefore, as it is declared on the authority of this teaching that this or that is contained in the deposit of divine revelation, it must be believed by every one as true. If it could in any way be false, an evident contradiction follows; for then God Himself would be the author of error in man.”

No reasonable Catholic can doubt Leo XIII’s wisdom on this point. And yet those who accept the novelties of Vatican II promoted by Benedict XVI effectively place truth and error side by side in a way that makes God a deceiver. Once we do that, the entire religion becomes absurd.

Whereas Benedict XVI disguised the Vatican II absurdities with an air of doctrinally sound authority, Francis has exposed the Vatican II religion for what it really is.

Whereas Benedict XVI disguised the Vatican II absurdities with an air of doctrinally sound authority, Francis has exposed the Vatican II religion for what it really is. By shamelessly embracing and parading the anti-Catholic absurdity of the Conciliar religion, Francis has done tremendous damage; but he has also allowed many souls to open their eyes to the reality which The Remnant and others have described for decades. Francis deserves no accolades for this — but he is the fitting reward for our collective toleration of the errors of Vatican II promoted by Benedict XVI and his predecessors.

God is permitting this growing crisis for a reason. Undoubtedly it is a call for us to turn to Him as saints. But this crisis also demands that we honor Him by refusing to accept anti-Catholic errors, no matter who espouses them. Until we do that, we deserve as much toxic absurdity as Satan and the globalists prompt Francis to spew. Our Lady, destroyer of all heresies, pray for us!

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Last modified on Monday, November 21, 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.