We often hear defenders of the Council asserting that it must be wholesome because its documents include many passages that are consistent with what the Church has always taught — this represents the good vegetables, good stock, and good water. But of course Traditional Catholics oppose the Council because of the subtle poisons contained in certain documents, rather than any truths it may include.
These poisons have been exposed and analyzed for over sixty years: liberal and conservative Council Fathers alike described how the Council deviated from Catholic Tradition; we have seen the disastrous fruits; and the Church’s enemies have used the Council’s ambiguous passages to justify their continual attacks on the Faith. Still, some otherwise faithful Catholics do all they can to defend Vatican II, which means that generations of Catholics have consumed the Council’s “poisoned soup” without suspecting any danger. However, the direct damage has been mitigated by the reality that relatively few Catholics actually read the Council’s documents, and even fewer detect errors that would scandalize them.
For almost two thousand years leading up to Vatican II, the Holy Ghost guided His Church to carefully develop clear and accurate formulations of its teachings, all for the purpose of honoring God and leading souls to heaven. By replacing these clear teachings with ambiguous formulations tending to errors, Vatican II constitutes a profound offense against God.
But, whereas the direct harm on individual souls caused by Vatican II’s documents may be limited, we must acknowledge two far more problematic aspects of the Council’s documents. First, the liberals have exploited the Council’s errors to produce widespread damage throughout the Church. We saw this in a recent article:
- Karol Wojtyla (the future John Paul II) was responsible for the following passage from the Council’s Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, Gaudium et Spes: “By His incarnation the Son of God has united Himself in some fashion with every man.”
- Years later, as John Paul II, he interpreted this passage in ways that promoted the grievous error of universal salvation.
- Once one accepts the idea of universal salvation, the entire Catholic Faith becomes nonsensical.
For those who were fortunate enough to avoid this message from John Paul II’s words, he drove home the point by such spectacles as the Prayer Meeting at Assisi and kissing the Koran.
The second harm (beyond the direct harm to individual souls) relates to God, Whom many people tend to ignore when thinking about the evil of Vatican II. For almost two thousand years leading up to Vatican II, the Holy Ghost guided His Church to carefully develop clear and accurate formulations of its teachings, all for the purpose of honoring God and leading souls to heaven. By replacing these clear teachings with ambiguous formulations tending to errors, Vatican II constitutes a profound offense against God. It is a mockery of God to suggest that the Holy Ghost guided the Council Fathers to craft documents with errors that would lead so many souls to hell. This offense against God persists until the Church finally corrects or (better yet) entirely repudiates the Council.
Thus, Vatican II is indeed like the otherwise good soup with a few drops of cyanide. Because it looks appetizing, some people insist that it is wholesome, despite the fact that many people die (spiritually) after consuming it.
What can we say about the “religious soup” of Paul VI, whom Francis “canonized” in 2018? Fr. Luigi Villa temporarily halted the beatification process of Paul VI with his 1998 book, Paul VI Beatified?, which includes many quotations and details that have become somewhat difficult to find, such as Paul VI’s July 2, 1969 General Audience:
"Two terms characterize [Vatican II]: “RENOVATION” and “REVISION”. We are particularly keen that this ‘spirit of renovation’ – according to the expression of the Council – be understood and experienced by everyone. It responds to the characteristic of our time, wholly engaged in an enormous and rapid transformation, and generating novelties in every sector of modern life. In fact, one cannot shy away from this spontaneous reflection: if the whole world is changing, will not religion change as well? . . . And it is for this reason that the Church has undertaken some reforms, especially after the Council. The Episcopate is about to promote the ‘renovation’ that corresponds to our present needs; Religious Orders are reforming their Statutes; Catholic laity is qualified and found its role within the life of the Church; Liturgy is proceeding with a reform in which anyone knows the extension and importance; Christian education reviews the methods of its pedagogy; all the canonical legislations are about to be revised. . . The development of ecumenism, guided by Faith and Charity, itself says what progress, almost unforeseeable, has been achieved during the course and life of the Church.”
So Paul VI took Vatican II and used it to launch a massive “renovation” and “revision” of the Faith. Before and after this exuberant praise of renovation and revision, Paul VI observed the disastrous effects of these renovations:
“The Church, today, is going through a moment of disquiet. Some indulge in self-criticism, one would say even self-destruction. It is like an acute and complex inner upheaval, which no one would have expected after the Council. One thought of a flourishing, a serene expansion of the concepts matured in the great conciliar assembly. There is also this aspect in the Church, there is the flourishing, but . . . for the most part one comes to notice the painful aspect. The Church is hit also by he who is part of it” (December 7, 1968)
The opening speech of Vatican II (delivered by John XXIII but written by Paul VI) was already a profound offense against God, and matters became progressively worse over the next six decades. God, as a Loving Father, let matters get worse so that we would repudiate the errors of Vatican II; but, collectively, we never have.
On June 29, 1972, Paul VI painted an even worse picture of the renovations he was overseeing:
“Through some cracks the smoke of Satan has entered the temple of God: there is doubt, uncertainty, problematic, anxiety, confrontation. One does not trust the Church anymore; one trusts the first prophet that comes to talk to us from some newspapers or some social movement, and then rush after him and ask him if he held the formula of real life. And we fail to perceive, instead, that we are the masters of life already. . . We preach ecumenism and drift farther and farther from the others.”
In hindsight, we can see these two statements as progress reports rather than lamentations — we know he was not distraught because he never did anything other than attempt to destroy the Church. This becomes evident when we consider some “highlights” of his anti-Catholic career, many of which are quoted from Fr. Luigi Villa’s book on Paul VI (online):
- He drafted the opening speech of Vatican II (delivered by John XXIII), which effectively repudiated Pius XII’s Humani Generis.
- He promulgated the Novus Ordo Missae.
- “[H]e allowed (nay, he wanted!) that the habit be replaced with civilian clothing, with all the consequences that this has brought about (and it is still bringing about).” (Fr. Villa, p. 100)
- “[H]e allowed co-celebrations of ‘Anglican Pastors’ at the Vatican.” (Fr. Villa, p. 100)
- “[H]e allowed Holy Communion to be distributed into the hands and that the ‘Holy Species’ could be placed in breadbaskets and even distributed by girls in miniskirts.” (Fr. Villa, pp. 100-101)
- “[H]e let pass and authorized ‘open Communions,’ that is, that Protestants could participate in the Communion during Catholic Mass, and that Catholics could participate in the Protestant ‘Supper.’” (Fr. Villa, p. 101)
- “[H]e diminished ‘ministerial Catholic priesthood,’ bringing it closer to the ministry of the ‘Protestant Pastors.’” (Fr. Villa, p. 100)
- “[H]e eliminated the Tonsure, the Ostiariate, the Exorcistate, and the Subdiaconate (September 15, 1972), that is to say, all of the Minor Orders.” (Fr. Villa, p. 100)
- "[H]e let the psychosis of the 'woman-priest' spread, although he later had to say that it could not have been (as of yet), letting cardinals and bishops, however, continue to publi- cize, that idea undisturbed." (Fr. Villa, p. 100)
- “He wore, on his chest, the ‘Ephod’ of Hebrew High Priest.” (Fr. Villa, p. 102)
- “He always received Freemasons, Communists, Modernists, protesters and leftists of any kind.” (Fr. Villa, p. 102)
- “He always refused to receive groups of seculars and priests that were faithful to Tradition (thus creating, himself, new forms of schism), whereas he always sent out his ‘Blessings’ to all the others, non-traditionalists.” (Fr. Villa, p. 102)
- “He issued a ‘Decree’ for ‘mixed marriages,’ without mandating Catholic Baptism of their offspring!” (Fr. Villa, p. 103)
- “He eliminated major figures in the Church, placing in many posts of command progressive and liberal-Freemasonic figures.” (Fr. Villa, p. 103)
- “He wrote off abstinence from meat on Fridays.” (Fr. Villa, p. 103)
- He abolished St. Pius X’s Oath Against Modernism.
From all of this, we can see that Paul VI’s “poisonous soup” is much different than that of Vatican II. On the one hand, he took all of Vatican II’s errors, added a tremendous amount of poison, and removed much of what was wholesome and appetizing. On the other hand, what was subtle with Vatican II’s documents became unmistakably nauseating with Paul VI. This caused many people to leave the Church, but it also led some Catholics to recognize the lethality of the Council’s reforms. Thus, the soup was more lethal, but also far less appetizing to most Catholics.
It appears that He is allowing matters to get so bad with Francis that all faithful Catholics grasp the extreme nature of the crisis. If so, surely that is so that we will return completely to His truth and make reparation for the evils that have prevailed since Vatican II.
What can we say about Francis’s poisonous soup? First of all, it must be recalled that even Benedict XVI did relatively little to reverse the most lethal evils described above. So Francis inherited all the poisons of Vatican II as well as those added by Paul VI and John Paul II (such as universal salvation described above). However, as we all know, Francis is far more loathsome and openly heretical than even Paul VI. Substantively, his greatest additions of new poison appear to be in the following categories:
- Promotion of the LGBTQ agenda;
- Partnership with the globalists;
- Further corruption of the Church’s teaching on the reception of Communion;
- Creation of a “different church,” the Synodal “Ape” Church; and
- Open hostility for Traditional Catholics.
These are all awful, and the crisis in the Church has never been worse than it is at this moment.
Here, though, we have what is arguably the greatest paradox of the Francis occupation of the papacy: he is so openly wicked and heretical that he poses less risk than his predecessors because no serious Catholic will consume what he offers. John Paul II could dupe some sincere Catholics into thinking that all baptized souls were “saved"; but are there any sincere Catholics accepting Francis’s blasphemies today? He has made the soup so repulsive that every rational Catholic avoids it: he has removed everything good, and nothing remains but poison and filth. And because we all see it, many people are experiencing a new problem: how can such a man be pope?
At this point in the analysis we should pause to consider God’s Providence. The opening speech of Vatican II (delivered by John XXIII but written by Paul VI) was already a profound offense against God, and matters became progressively worse over the next six decades. God, as a Loving Father, let matters get worse so that we would repudiate the errors of Vatican II; but, collectively, we never have. Sure, many Traditional Catholics now eschew the entire Vatican II milieu, but most Catholics do not. As such, a large portion of the Mystical Body of Christ is relatively comfortable with the disastrous reforms that offend God and lead souls to hell.
By all means, once we resolve to combat all of the Conciliar errors and strive to be saints, then we should encourage our bishops to do everything in their power to address the crisis.
That being the case, how does God, our Loving Father, bring us back to His unadulterated Faith? How does He lead us to make reparation for all the sickening evil that has proliferated freely since the Council? It appears that He is allowing matters to get so bad with Francis that all faithful Catholics grasp the extreme nature of the crisis. If so, surely that is so that we will return completely to His truth and make reparation for the evils that have prevailed since Vatican II.
Is this how we are approaching the “Francis crisis?” Are we trying to root out all of the errors — especially false ecumenism and the belief that Catholic truth can “evolve” over time — that have led to this moment, and make serious reparation for the decades of scandals? God is permitting the disastrous situation we see today for a reason — is it simply so that we will clamor for Francis’s removal and then hope that someone “holy” like John Paul II will continue promoting the errors that have led so many souls to hell?
At this point — with anxieties so high — it is necessary to put first things first. Yes, we should implore God’s mercy, petitioning him to liberate us from Francis and all the wickedness associated with him. But we need to seriously consider how to repair the offenses committed against Our Lord for the past sixty years. We have no right to demand a solution from God without first doing all we can to reject the errors of Vatican II, make reparation for its evils, and try to become saints. God alone can solve this crisis, but He can make better use of His poor instruments (us) if we seek above all else to do His will.
To that end, we can consider the 1974 Declaration of Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, the saintly man God sent us to guide us in the post-Conciliar crisis:
“We hold fast, with all our heart and with all our soul, to Catholic Rome, Guardian of the Catholic Faith and of the traditions necessary to preserve this faith, to Eternal Rome, Mistress of wisdom and truth. We refuse, on the other hand, and have always refused to follow the Rome of neo-Modernist and neo-Protestant tendencies which were clearly evident in the Second Vatican Council and, after the Council, in all the reforms which issued from it. . . . No authority, not even the highest in the hierarchy, can force us to abandon or diminish our Catholic Faith, so clearly expressed and professed by the Church’s Magisterium for nineteen centuries. . . The only attitude of faithfulness to the Church and Catholic doctrine, in view of our salvation, is a categorical refusal to accept this Reformation. . . That is why we hold fast to all that has been believed and practiced in the faith, morals, liturgy, teaching of the catechism, formation of the priest and institution of the Church, by the Church of all time; to all these things as codified in those books which saw day before the Modernist influence of the Council. This we shall do until such time that the true light of Tradition dissipates the darkness obscuring the sky of Eternal Rome. . . . By doing this, with the grace of God and the help of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and that of St. Joseph and St. Pius X, we are assured of remaining faithful to the Roman Catholic Church and to all the successors of Peter, and of being the fideles dispensatores mysteriorum Domini Nostri Jesu Christi in Spiritu Sancto. Amen.”
Because he saw the crisis more clearly than we do, he was already feeling in 1974 the pain we feel today. Despite seeing the crisis so clearly even in 1974, Archbishop Lefebvre did not despair because He trusted Divine Providence; and he would not despair today. He did so much for the Church — and indeed preserved the priesthood and Traditional Latin Mass — because he wanted to be a saint, docile to God’s inspirations. This is how we should respond to God, our Loving Father.
By all means, once we resolve to combat all of the Conciliar errors and strive to be saints, then we should encourage our bishops to do everything in their power to address the crisis. Whatever happens, though, we should try to attain that same trustful reliance on God’s Providence that Archbishop Lefebvre showed us. God wins in the end and will not try us beyond our limits so long as we remain always faithful to Him. Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us!
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