Several readers report that by way of reply to their inquiry about CMTV’s failure ever to mention the Pope they have received convoluted screeds [Most recent HERE, claims The Remnant is 'evil' and SSPX is 'Halloween Catholics'] from a Mr. Carroll, who is evidently the “brains” of the operation. It appears that Carroll’s replies run to thousands of words, including a daunting collection of quotations and Internet links whose point is far from clear. For the convenience of Remnant readers, therefore, I have digested CMTV’s position as follows:
Many Catholics are disturbed by events at the recent Synod, including Pope Francis's approval of a midterm report that states the Church should “accept and value” the “homosexual orientation” and admit certain divorced Catholics in “second marriages” to Holy Communion without a commitment to chastity, as well as the Pope's decision not to accept the Synod’s total rejection of that document because it contradicts Church teaching, ordering that the rejected document be distributed to the world's bishops anyway for use at the next Synod in 2015.
In the face of such seemingly troublesome developments, CMTV reaffirms its position that any PUBLIC criticism of the Pope whatsoever is a sin, but not PRIVATE criticism of the Pope, which is not a sin. Catholics are free to engage in PRIVATE criticism of the Pope, but not PUBLIC criticism. PRIVATE criticism of the Pope does no harm, but PUBLIC criticism is VERY bad. That is why CMTV will never engage in PUBLIC criticism of the Pope, even though in PRIVATE it may share its criticisms of the Pope with its supporters.
The Remnant newspaper is evil because, unlike CMTV, it refuses to keep its criticism of the Pope PRIVATE but instead makes that criticism PUBLIC, which of course is a big difference: PUBLIC means out in the open, but PRIVATE means not out in the open.
CMTV stands by the Church's longstanding teaching that the Pope may be criticized only in PRIVATE, not in PUBLIC. This teaching may be found throughout the Magisterium in the decrees and anathemas of many Councils and in the teaching of many Popes. CMTV rejects such frivolous challenges as “Name one!” and simply refers Catholics to the constant and infallible teaching of the Church: “The Pope may not be criticized in PUBLIC, but only in PRIVATE.”
Meanwhile, CMTV will continue its PUBLIC criticism of every member of the hierarchy that does anything wrong, EXCEPT the Pope, who, as we have noted, may not be criticized in PUBLIC, but only in PRIVATE. Accordingly, CMTV will heap massive criticism on the heads of all the Synod participants who failed to reject the Pope’s document, because the Synod participants, being only bishops and cardinals, can be criticized in PUBLIC, while the Pope, being the Pope, can only be criticized in PRIVATE regarding the same document.
Having said this, CMTV also hastens to add that not to criticize priests, bishops, and cardinals in PUBLIC for their misdeeds, but instead criticizing them only in PRIVATE, would be to fail in one’s duty as a Catholic. By the same token, however, not to criticize the Pope for his misdeeds only in PRIVATE, but instead making those criticisms in PUBLIC, would be to fail in one’s duty as a Catholic.
It makes no difference that the priests, bishops, cardinals CMTV constantly attacks are only following the Pope’s example or even the Pope’s will—as was the case with the document the Synod majority rejected with our hearty approval—because, for the reasons already stated, what the Pope does or wills may only be criticized in PRIVATE, but not in PUBLIC, whereas what priests, bishops and cardinals do or will must be criticized in PUBLIC, not in PRIVATE. This is because priests, bishops and cardinals are not the Pope, whereas the Pope is the Pope.
These distinctions are very clear, and we fail to see how any Catholic can ignore them.
By the way, the Society of Saint Pius X is definitely outside the Church, even if its priests, bishops and laity are not excommunicated and are free to receive the Sacraments in any Catholic parish in the world. Thus, whoever receives any Sacrament from an SSPX priest or bishop is excommunicated, even though the SSPX priest or bishop administering the Sacrament is not excommunicated. This too is perfectly clear and beyond all reasonable dispute.