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 Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome? 
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New post Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
DICI: http://www.dici.org/en/documents/sermon ... rd-fellay/

On November 1, 2012, on the feast of All Saints, Bishop Bernard Fellay celebrated Mass at the seminary in Ecône. During his sermon, after recalling the spiritual meaning of this feast, he explained the status of the relations of the Society of Saint Pius X with Rome. – The title and subtitles are by the editors of DICI.


… Why is there a Society of Saint Pius X? Why do we become priests? It is not just for the pleasure of celebrating the old Mass. It is in order to go to Heaven; it is in order to save souls! Certainly, while preserving the treasures of the Church, but with the purpose of saving souls, of sanctifying them by snatching them away from sin, by leading them to Heaven, by leading them to Our Lord.

Where do we stand with Rome? Allow me to explain two points. First, a look at what has happened. Then, a look at the present and perhaps at the future.

First: at what has happened. One trial, perhaps the greatest that we have ever had, was due to a conjunction of several factors that occurred at the same time and created a state of confusion, of rather profound doubt that leaves injuries—and of the more serious wounds, indeed, the one that causes us enormous pain: the loss of one of our bishops. This is not a trifle! This is not due solely to the current crisis. This is a long story, but it finds its conclusion here.

Two contrary messages from Rome

Well, what happened? I think that the first factor is a problem that has been around for several years and that I have mentioned at least since 2009. I said that we find ourselves confronting the contradiction in Rome. And there has been a manifestation of this contradiction in our relations with the Holy See for about a year, since September, inasmuch as I received through official channels some documents that clearly expressed the willingness on the part of Rome to recognize the Society, but it was necessary to sign a document that we could not sign. And at the same time there was another line of information that I received, and it was impossible for me to doubt its authenticity. This line of information really said something different.

This started in mid-August, whereas I did not receive the official document until September 14, 2011. Since mid-August, a person at the Vatican has been telling us: “The Pope will recognize the Society and it will be as it was with the excommunications, in other words, without anything [required] in return.” So it was in this frame of mind that I got ready for the September 14 meeting by preparing arguments, by saying: “But have you carefully reflected on what you are doing? What are you trying to do? That won’t work.” And in fact, the document that was presented to us was completely different from what was announced to us.

But I didn’t have just one source, I had several notifications that said the same thing. One cardinal declared: “Yes, it is true, there are differences, but it is the pope who wants it.” This same person who had given us this information told us, after we received the official document: “This is not what the pope wants.” Contradiction!

What were we to do? Given the seriousness of the information indicating to us that the pope wanted to do something—but to what extent?—I was obliged to verify it. But it was impossible to communicate that to the faithful. This came through channels that were informal but very close to the Pope. I will quote to you some of the statements that were conveyed to me. First this one: “I know very well that it would be easier both for me and for the Society for things to remain as they are.” Which clearly shows that he knows that he himself will have problems, and we will too. But how far does he want to go?

Other statements by the Pope: “Let the Society know that resolving the problem of the Society is at the heart of the priorities of my pontificate.” Or this: “There are men at the Vatican who are doing everything they can to put down the Pope’s projects.” And this one: “Do not fear; afterward you will be able to continue to attack as much as you want, just like now.” And this other statement: “The Pope is above the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith; even if the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith makes an unfavorable decision in your regard, the Pope will overturn it.”

This is the sort of information that reached me. Obviously it is not clear, when on the one hand you have official documents to which you have to say no, because they are asking us to accept the Council and that is not possible, and when on the other hand such reports are communicated to you. Nevertheless I made an initial response in which I said no. Someone telephoned me to tell me: “Could you not be a little more precise?” I wrote a second time. They were no more content than the first time. And so we come to March 16, when they presented to me a letter, saying, “This letter comes from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, but it is approved by the Pope.” If I had in my hands nothing but this letter, our relations with Rome would be finished, because this letter said that no one has the right to set the past Magisterium against the Magisterium of today. Therefore no one has the right to say that today the Roman authorities are in contradiction with those of yesterday. It also said that rejecting the September 14 document which was explicitly approved by the Pope was tantamount in fact to rejecting the authority of the Pope. There was even a reference to the canons that talk about schism and about excommunication for schism. The letter continued: “The Pope, in his kindness, is allowing you another month to reflect; if you wish to change your decision, tell the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith about it.” Then it’s clear! There is nothing left to do. This letter that came to me by the official channel concludes the debate. It is over. But at the same time, I received informal advice that told me: “Yes, you will receive a harsh letter, but remain calm,” or actually: “don’t panic.”

The letter to the pope and his reply

Because there were interventions of this sort, I made so bold as to bypass the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and to write directly to the Pope. And also because I realized that the most delicate point in our relations was the following: the Roman authorities were persuaded that we were saying in theory that we recognized the pope but in practice we were rejecting everything. They are persuaded that for us, since 1962, there is nothing left: no more Pope, no more Magisterium. I thought that I should correct that, because it is not true. We reject many things, we are not in agreement with many things, but when we say that we recognize him as pope, that is the truth, we truly recognize him as pope. We recognize that he is quite capable of performing papal acts.

And so I made so bold as to write. It was obviously a delicate matter, because it was necessary to say at the same time that we are in agreement and that we are not in agreement. This extremely delicate letter seems to have been approved by the pope and even to have been approved afterwards by the cardinals. But in the text that was presented to me in June, everything that I had removed because it could not be accepted had been put back.

When this document was delivered to me, I said: “No, I am not signing this; the Society is not going to sign.” I wrote to the Pope: “We cannot sign that,” explaining: “Until now—since we are not in agreement about the Council and since you wish, it seems, to recognize us—I had thought that you were ready to set aside the Council.” I gave an historical example, the one of the union with the Greeks at the Council of Florence, where they did not reach an agreement on the question of marriage annulment by reason of infidelity. The Orthodox think that this is a reason that can annul a marriage, the Catholic Church does not. They reached no agreement. What did they do? They left the problem to one side. One can see very clearly the difference between the Decree to the Armenians, where the question of marriage is mentioned, and the case of the Greek, where it is omitted. I made this reference while saying: “Perhaps you may do the same thing; perhaps you think it is more important to recognize us as Catholics than to insist on the Council. But now with the text that you are delivering to us, I think that I was mistaken. Tell us, then, really what you want. For among us these questions sow confusion.”

The Pope replied to me in a letter dated June 30 in which he sets three conditions:

    The first is that we must recognize that the Magisterium is the authentic judge of Apostolic Tradition—this means that the Magisterium is the one to tell us what belongs to Tradition. That is true. But obviously the Roman authorities want to utilize that to say: you recognize that, and therefore now we decide that the Council is traditional, and you have to accept it. And that, incidentally, is the second condition.

    It is necessary for us to accept the fact that the Council is an integral part of Tradition, of Apostolic Tradition. But here we say that everyday observation proves to us the contrary. How could one say all at once that this Council is traditional? To be able to say such a thing, it is necessary to have completely changed the meaning of the term “Tradition”. And in fact we realize clearly that they have changed the meaning of the word “Tradition”; for it is not insignificant that at the Second Vatican Council they rejected the definition by Saint Vincent of Lérins, which is the altogether traditional definition: “That which was believed by all, everywhere, and always.”

    “That which was believed” is an object. Now, for them, Tradition is something living, it is no longer an object, it is what they call the “subject Church”, it is the Church which grows. That is Tradition, which from age to age makes new things and accumulates; and this accumulation is a Tradition that develops, that increases. This sense is true also but it is secondary.

    As a third point, it is necessary to accept the validity and the liceity of the New Mass.

I had sent to Rome the documents of the General Chapter, our final Declaration which is clear, and our conditions for eventually, when the time comes, reaching an agreement about a possible canonical recognition. These are conditions without which it is impossible [for the Society] to live; that would quite simply be self-destruction. For to accept everything that is being done today in the Church is to destroy ourselves. It is to abandon all the treasures of Tradition.

Why are there these contradictions in Rome?

The proposed reconciliation, in fact, amounts to reconciling us with Vatican II. Not with the Church, not with the Church of all ages. Besides, we do not need to be reconciled with the Church of all ages; we’re there. And Rome says: “We have not yet received your official response.” But three times I replied that we could not, that we were not going down that path.

Not long ago, we had a position statement from the President of Ecclesia Dei, who is at the same time the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, asserting that the discussions with the Society were over. And last Saturday, a new declaration from the Ecclesia Dei says: “No, we must allow them some time; it is understandable that after thirty years of debate they should need a certain amount of time; we do see that they have an ardent desire to be reconciled.” I have the impression that they have it more than we do. And we wonder: what is happening?

Obviously this is once again sowing confusion, but we must not allow ourselves to be troubled. We continue on our path. Quite simply. You have here, once again, a manifestation of the contradiction that is found in Rome. Why is there contradiction? Of course, because there are people who want to continue along the modern way, down the path of destruction, of demolition, and then you have others who are beginning to realize that that is not working and who wish us well. But can we put our trust in them? That depends on the circumstances; it is not enough to wish us well.

In all these discussions, I have arrived at the conclusion—and I think that this explains what is happening now—that the pope really, very seriously would like to recognize the Society. However the conditions that he sets are impossible for us. The conditions that are found in his letter are for us quite simply impossible.

To say that the Council is traditional! Whereas everything tells us the contrary! Fifty years of Church history say the contrary! To say that the new Mass is good! Here too one only has to open one’s eyes to see the disaster. The experience that we have had in recent years with priests who come to see us is instructive. I again had one of these encounters, quite recently. I was in Argentina, where I made the acquaintance of a relatively young priest who knew absolutely nothing about Tradition, who was discovering the Mass. This was the first time that he saw a Traditional Mass: until a short time ago he did not even know that it existed. What was his reaction? He said that he was terribly frustrated, angry at those who had hidden this treasure from him! Here is his reaction: “This is the Mass? And they never told us that!”

Tradition is a treasure, not an anachronism

The path leading out of this crisis is quite simple. If we want to talk about a new evangelization—the terms we use are unimportant—the only way to get out of the crisis is to return to what the Church has always done. That is very simple, that is not complicated. And it is not being anachronistic or archaic. I know very well that we are living in today’s world. We are not experiencing yesterday or the day before yesterday; there is—it is true—new problems, but the Good Lord’s solutions are there! These solutions are eternal. We know that at no moment is there a situation in our life when we would be deprived of grace. Every time there is a choice, every time there is a temptation, the Good Lord gives us the grace proportioned to the situation so as to overcome it. God’s commandments are valid today as yesterday. God remains God, you see!

Therefore when they tell us that it is necessary to adapt to the world, to adopt its language… or whatever, it is necessary to try to explain things. Yes, that is true, but we don’t need to change the Truth. The road to Heaven still remains a road of renouncing sin, Satan and the world. This is the first condition that we find in the baptismal promises: “Do you renounce Satan? Do you renounce his works?” This is still the way; there is no other. People make speeches today about the divorced and remarried. Last year the German bishops said that one of their goals was to arrive at communion for the divorced and remarried. Well! The Church, and not only the Church but the good Lord tells us: no, it is necessary first to regularize this situation. The good Lord gives grace to those who are in a difficult situation. No one says that it is easy! When a marriage is broken, it is a tragedy, but the good Lord gives grace. Those who are in that state must be strong, and the Cross of Our Lord helps them, but we will not ratify [second marriages] or do as they do here in the Diocese of Sion, where they have a ritual to bless these unions. People don’t say it too loud, but it is a reality. Now to do that is to bless sin; and that cannot come from the good Lord! The priests or the bishops who do that are leading souls into hell. They are doing exactly the opposite of what they were called to do when they became priests or bishops.

This is the reality of the Church that we are facing! And how could anyone say yes to all that? This is the tragedy of the Church that we are confronting.

Now, to speak about the future, what we will try to do with the Roman authorities is to tell them that it does no good to pretend, for the sake of the faith, that the Church cannot be mistaken. Because, at the level of faith, we are entirely in agreement about the assistance of the Holy Ghost, but you have to open your eyes to what is happening in the Church! It is necessary to stop saying: the Church can do nothing bad, therefore the new Mass is good. It is necessary to stop saying: the Church cannot err, and therefore there is no error in the Council. But look at reality then! There can be no contradiction between the reality that we apprehend and the faith. It is the same good God who made both. Therefore if there is an apparent contradiction, there is certainly a solution. Perhaps we don’t have it yet, but we are not going to deny reality for the sake of the faith! Now this is truly the impression that one has with regard to what Rome is trying to impose on us today. And here we reply: we cannot. That is all.

And therefore we continue, come what may! We know very well that one day this trial—a trial that affects the whole Church—will end, but we do not know how. We try to do everything that we can. Don’t be afraid. The good Lord is above all that; He is still the boss. That is the extraordinary thing. And the Church, even in this state, is still holy, is still capable of sanctifying. If today, my very dear brothers, we receive the sacraments, grace, the faith, it is through this Roman Catholic Church, not through her faults but certainly through this real, concrete Church. It is not an image, it is not an idea, it is a reality, the most beautiful aspect of which we are celebrating today: Heaven. Well! Heaven is prepared here below. That is the beauty of the Church, this terrifying, extraordinary combat with the forces of evil in which the Church finds herself, and even in this state of terrible suffering in which she is today, she is still capable of transmitting the faith, of transmitting grace, the sacraments. And if we give them—these sacraments and this faith—it is through this Church, it is in the name of this Church, it is as instruments and members of the Catholic Church that we do so.

May the saints in Heaven, may the angels come to our aid and support us! Obviously it is not easy, obviously we are fearful. This is what today’s Gradual says. It is necessary to have fear of God. To those who fear Him, the good Lord gives everything. Let us not be afraid of having fear of the Lord. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. May it lead us through the labyrinths of life here below toward Heaven, where the Blessed Virgin Mary, Queen of all saints, Queen of angels, is really our protectress, truly our Mother. If we say about Our Lord that He wants to be all in all, we must say almost the same thing about the Blessed Virgin. We have a mother in Heaven who has received from God an extraordinary power, the power to crush Satan’s head, to crush all heresies. Therefore we can also say that she is the mother of faith, the mother of grace. Let us go to her. Let us consecrate to her our lives, our families, our joys, our sufferings, our plans, our desires. May she lead us to that eternal haven so that we might always enjoy eternal happiness with all the saints, that vision of God which is the beatific vision. So be it. Amen.

In order to preserve the character of this sermon, the oral style has been retained.

(Source: FSSPX/MG – Pictures : Seminary of Ecône – Transcription and translation by DICI no. 264 dated November 9, 2012)

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Fri Nov 09, 2012 10:15 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Bishop Fellay wrote:
Now, to speak about the future, what we will try to do with the Roman authorities is to tell them that it does no good to pretend, for the sake of the faith, that the Church cannot be mistaken. Because, at the level of faith, we are entirely in agreement about the assistance of the Holy Ghost, but you have to open your eyes to what is happening in the Church! It is necessary to stop saying: the Church can do nothing bad, therefore the new Mass is good. It is necessary to stop saying: the Church cannot err, and therefore there is no error in the Council. But look at reality then! There can be no contradiction between the reality that we apprehend and the faith. It is the same good God who made both. Therefore if there is an apparent contradiction, there is certainly a solution. Perhaps we don’t have it yet, but we are not going to deny reality for the sake of the faith! Now this is truly the impression that one has with regard to what Rome is trying to impose on us today. And here we reply: we cannot. That is all.


What are we to make of this statement? Even in context it doesn't look good.


Mon Nov 12, 2012 3:45 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
I agree, however he isn't saying that the Church can err, he is speaking of a particular argument, viz, that which asserts that because the Church cannot err, Vatican II must be OK. Consider the last part of your excerpt:

Quote:
Therefore if there is an apparent contradiction, there is certainly a solution. Perhaps we don’t have it yet, but we are not going to deny reality for the sake of the faith! Now this is truly the impression that one has with regard to what Rome is trying to impose on us today. And here we reply: we cannot. That is all.


This is very clear, very concise, and really encapsulates the spirit of Archbishop Lefebvre in an extraordinarily effective manner.

"That is all" is their position. We refuse the reforms; we don't have the answer to the conundrum the crisis presents.

All of their problems have arisen from departing from this modest position in one direction or the other. The articles and sermons and speeches in which various SSPX figures have sought to "solve" the crisis by proving that the Church is not really the pillar and ground of truth (and especially those which attack sedevacantism), are examples. These articles undermine sound doctrine. Likewise, the periodic attempts to gain the approval of the Modernists for their activities, result in grave dangers for the Fraternity and create conditions in which the defence of the faith is watered down.

I have never had a problem with a modest sedeplenist, but an aggressive one (and there are many, Conservative, Indult, and Traditionalist) is another category of being, dangerous to the faith and to the faithful.

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Mon Nov 12, 2012 11:14 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
I do not see how doubt about the validity of the Pope is the sure and safe way. For doubt can err either way. But if you claim certitude regarding papal claims, then this violates the principle of doubt which is to keep us safe. Why not simply doubt the validity or rectitude of his acts rather than his claims to the Chair of Peter? Have they not essentially renounced Papal authority and instead continually act as private theologians or simply as the Bishop of Rome? If the Pope can err outside of the exercise of infallibility, then cannot also a Council err in some respect which renounces the very essence of its own nature as an ecumenical Council? In what way did the Council err? It did not teach positive heresy. It merely presented a perverted exposition of Catholic doctrine. A half-truth is a good as a lie, but materially speaking it remains truthful in itself. Can a Council err by omission? In what it fails to say? Indeed, the controversial texts could be easily amended to include the other half of Catholic doctrine. Can an enemy of the Church remain a member of the Church, certainly so, as was said of liberal Catholics a century ago. Modernism also admits of varying degrees and qualities. Differing diseases can manifest similar symptoms. It is not alway easy to to discern causes, much less determine the disposition of an individual. It would seem modesty would at very least include refraining from rendering a public judgment as to the validity of the Pope and for greater reason the entire body of bishops whose crimes far exceed that of the Roman Pontiff. I see no need to render such judgments at all to in order to take the safe and sure path. On the contrary, assuming such positions is directly opposed to the demands of our particular duties.


Tue Nov 13, 2012 7:41 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
I certainly understand your view, Caminus, but perhaps you don't quite grasp ours.

In brief, it is that once the Roman theology regarding infallibility, indefectibility, and other major aspects of ecclesiology, are understood and believed, it becomes imperative to find a solution to the conundrum that these claimants present.

It remains true that good and learned traditionalist theologians in the present era do not recognise the problems with sedeplenism, so we don't condemn the alternative view, but we don't see that we have a choice about forming ours.

Saving better judgement, these men cannot have been popes.

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Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:19 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Caminus wrote:
I do not see how doubt about the validity of the Pope is the sure and safe way. For doubt can err either way. But if you claim certitude regarding papal claims, then this violates the principle of doubt which is to keep us safe. Why not simply doubt the validity or rectitude of his acts rather than his claims to the Chair of Peter? Have they not essentially renounced Papal authority and instead continually act as private theologians or simply as the Bishop of Rome? If the Pope can err outside of the exercise of infallibility, then cannot also a Council err in some respect which renounces the very essence of its own nature as an ecumenical Council? In what way did the Council err? It did not teach positive heresy. It merely presented a perverted exposition of Catholic doctrine. A half-truth is a good as a lie, but materially speaking it remains truthful in itself. Can a Council err by omission? In what it fails to say? Indeed, the controversial texts could be easily amended to include the other half of Catholic doctrine. Can an enemy of the Church remain a member of the Church, certainly so, as was said of liberal Catholics a century ago. Modernism also admits of varying degrees and qualities. Differing diseases can manifest similar symptoms. It is not alway easy to to discern causes, much less determine the disposition of an individual. It would seem modesty would at very least include refraining from rendering a public judgment as to the validity of the Pope and for greater reason the entire body of bishops whose crimes far exceed that of the Roman Pontiff. I see no need to render such judgments at all to in order to take the safe and sure path. On the contrary, assuming such positions is directly opposed to the demands of our particular duties.


I can't say that I know for certain anyone's opinion in the matter other than my own. But for myself, I will say that (barring a new argument that no one has made) I am certain that Benedict 16 is not the pope, though I can understand how people can have doubts.

On the other hand, I am dumbfounded that there can be any Catholic who is absolutely certain that Benedict 16 is the pope. I cannot see how a Catholic can be absolutely certain that Benedict 16 is pope and yet be absolutely certain that he can reject virtually everything this pope commands and teaches. It is like the person who absolutely reject all absolutes. I think, at some level, this is what bothers my about Bishop Fellay (and, indeed, most (if not all) of the SSPX). They simply will not peacefully accept the good will of sedevacantists.

The day I discovered that reasonable and articulate people (Mr. Lane, for example) discussing the sedevacantist theory, I was not shocked in the least. There had been some sort of implicit doubt on the matter nagging at my conscience that I couldn't even articulate--a confusion of mind that I knew was a problem but I could not place. When the idea that, perhaps, the problem was that the Church did not, at this time, have a pope, my doubts gradually changed. I could finally begin to articulate what my doubts were and why they existed. Still, it took a few years to actually come to that conclusion which changed my personal doubts to personal certainty. In fact, for a long time I accepted the good will of sedevacantists even though I simply thought they were wrong.


Tue Nov 13, 2012 4:27 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
John Lane wrote:
I certainly understand your view, Caminus, but perhaps you don't quite grasp ours.

In brief, it is that once the Roman theology regarding infallibility, indefectibility, and other major aspects of ecclesiology, are understood and believed, it becomes imperative to find a solution to the conundrum that these claimants present.

It remains true that good and learned traditionalist theologians in the present era do not recognise the problems with sedeplenism, so we don't condemn the alternative view, but we don't see that we have a choice about forming ours.

Saving better judgement, these men cannot have been popes.



Sedevacantism in all its extension and implications does not touch upon dogmas of ecclesiology? Obviously it does!


Tue Nov 13, 2012 4:47 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Caminus wrote:
Sedevacantism in all its extension and implications does not touch upon dogmas of ecclesiology? Obviously it does!


Touch upon? Yes, but what do you mean? That you believe the old chestnuts like there's no way to get a pope if there are no cardinals left, etc?

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Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:21 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
John Lane wrote:
Caminus wrote:
Sedevacantism in all its extension and implications does not touch upon dogmas of ecclesiology? Obviously it does!


Touch upon? Yes, but what do you mean? That you believe the old chestnuts like there's no way to get a pope if there are no cardinals left, etc?


No, not those old chestnuts; rather that a Church without ordinary jurisdiction has lost an essential element of the Church of Christ and thus forfeit that title. The Church is now utterly impotent to carry it outs mission because authority died with those bishops who retained it legitimately from Pope Pius XII. I concede that the Church can dwindle in size, but I do not admit that in so doing it would lose essential characteristics. No Sedevacantist can seriously claim that their is currently an authoritative hierarchy within the Church. That is a serious problem that touches upon ecclesiological dogma.

May I suggest a different approach? The first principle is that we cannot determine personally who may have lost membership in the Catholic Church when they are visibly united thereto. I concede in certain cases it may be easy to infer such a loss, but such an inference can never attain to anything beyond mere probability. A man who claims certitude in this matter has allowed a foreign motive, I know not what, to supply for a defect. Secondly, it is in no way part of our duty to determine who maintains Church membership. This must be obvious to all. Our only positive duty with regard to the crisis is to find integral Catholicism and avoid perversions of Catholicism. I think we can all agree on this principles.


Wed Nov 14, 2012 1:49 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Caminus,

You appear not to be aware of what many sedevacantists believe. Have you read this?

http://strobertbellarmine.net/viewtopic ... 963#p12963

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Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:37 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
John Lane wrote:
Caminus,

You appear not to be aware of what many sedevacantists believe. Have you read this?

http://strobertbellarmine.net/viewtopic ... 963#p12963


A very eloquent statement of the necessity of ordinary jurisdiction, but it seemed to falter when it was time to assert that it actually exists in the Church. Stating that one "hopes" it is out there somewhere is not the same as saying one knows jurisdiction remains. It's a little like saying one hopes that God exists -- pyrrhonism is at play here. If one knows with absolute certitude, for the essence of the Church demands no less, that such authority exists within the Church, one ought to at very least assert its proximate location.

At bottom the fixation on heresy is paralyzing the thought of the sedevacantist. Since no other possible explanation could suffice (so he supposes) then he must follow the rough road to its end. But what if we are not dealing with heresy, at least in most cases? What if a man can sin against the faith without becoming a pertinacious heretic? How does that affect his membership? Just how much destruction can a liberal or modernist effect within the Church all the while retaining membership? After all, there are degrees of liberalism and modernism. What of a worldly bishop who simply abandons the supernatural and adopts the ethos of masonry? Where is the explicit heresy? Yet, the effects are devastating nonetheless. If it is true that we can separate the man from his office and concede that he can become rotten in a hundred and one ways whilst retaining membership in the Church, then applying that to a body of bishops, even sitting allegedly in council, will not change the matter one iota. It's simply a difference in degree not kind. There is nothing in dogma that states that a Concilium cannot formulate a bad liturgy. What is impossible is that it be binding on Catholics and that has simply not happened nor will it never happen. Have you not read that the conciliar popes have abandoned their divine authority and replaced it with dialogue? It is both a curse and a blessing I suppose.


Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:09 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Caminus wrote:
A very eloquent statement of the necessity of ordinary jurisdiction, but it seemed to falter when it was time to assert that it actually exists in the Church. Stating that one "hopes" it is out there somewhere is not the same as saying one knows jurisdiction remains. It's a little like saying one hopes that God exists -- pyrrhonism is at play here. If one knows with absolute certitude, for the essence of the Church demands no less, that such authority exists within the Church, one ought to at very least assert its proximate location.

Not necessarily... we had Our Lord's assurance that His Church would last to the end of time. I would not liken a personal guarantee from the Son of God to pyrrhonism or mere "hoping". We know Church jurisdiction exists.

It's a bit like the case of Catholic communities, with their own bishops and priests, that had been cut off from Rome for hundreds of years; the Maronites in Lebanon, for example, or the Christians of South India.
Caminus wrote:
At bottom the fixation on heresy is paralyzing the thought of the sedevacantist. Since no other possible explanation could suffice (so he supposes) then he must follow the rough road to its end. But what if we are not dealing with heresy, at least in most cases? What if a man can sin against the faith without becoming a pertinacious heretic? How does that affect his membership? Just how much destruction can a liberal or modernist effect within the Church all the while retaining membership? After all, there are degrees of liberalism and modernism. What of a worldly bishop who simply abandons the supernatural and adopts the ethos of masonry? Where is the explicit heresy? Yet, the effects are devastating nonetheless. If it is true that we can separate the man from his office and concede that he can become rotten in a hundred and one ways whilst retaining membership in the Church, then applying that to a body of bishops, even sitting allegedly in council, will not change the matter one iota. It's simply a difference in degree not kind. There is nothing in dogma that states that a Concilium cannot formulate a bad liturgy. What is impossible is that it be binding on Catholics and that has simply not happened nor will it never happen. Have you not read that the conciliar popes have abandoned their divine authority and replaced it with dialogue? It is both a curse and a blessing I suppose.

The fact of the matter is, we are dealing with heretics, and dyed in the wool heretics of which the popes warned us before. They are not Catholics, and cannot have jurisdiction or hold any office in the Church. Here is a link for you with more details. It's a bit long, but it's well done.
http://www.novusordowatch.org/the_chair ... KXmruTAfoK


Fri Nov 16, 2012 7:11 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Caminus wrote:
John Lane wrote:
Caminus,

You appear not to be aware of what many sedevacantists believe. Have you read this?

http://strobertbellarmine.net/viewtopic ... 963#p12963


A very eloquent statement of the necessity of ordinary jurisdiction, but it seemed to falter when it was time to assert that it actually exists in the Church. Stating that one "hopes" it is out there somewhere


Perhaps you could quote the text which you assert is equivalent to "hope".

Caminus wrote:
At bottom the fixation on heresy is paralyzing the thought of the sedevacantist. Since no other possible explanation could suffice (so he supposes) then he must follow the rough road to its end. But what if we are not dealing with heresy, at least in most cases?


I agree, but we still need to explain the ecclesiological problem, which you do not appear to recognise.


Caminus wrote:
What is impossible is that it be binding on Catholics and that has simply not happened nor will it never happen. Have you not read that the conciliar popes have abandoned their divine authority and replaced it with dialogue? It is both a curse and a blessing I suppose.


So in your theology, the Church can legislate that mortal sin is permissible? In your theology, as long as sin is not compulsory, the Church can permit and even recommend it?

Please, tell us where you got this.

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Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:22 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Quote:
Perhaps you could quote the text which you assert is equivalent to "hope".


Quote:
The visible Church is the only Church. There is no invisible Church. It consists of the faithful, the bishops, and the Roman Pontiff, when there is one. I hope, but I cannot verify, that many of the bishops that are currently enmeshed in the Conciliar church are still Catholics and therefore do really have the office of ordinary of their respective dioceses.



Caminus wrote:
At bottom the fixation on heresy is paralyzing the thought of the sedevacantist. Since no other possible explanation could suffice (so he supposes) then he must follow the rough road to its end. But what if we are not dealing with heresy, at least in most cases?


Quote:
I agree, but we still need to explain the ecclesiological problem, which you do not appear to recognise.


Of course I concede the difficulty, but I think it can be fairly explained by the facts taken as they exist. My primary point was that the SV thesis presents an equally if not more troubling ecclesiological difficulty.

Caminus wrote:
What is impossible is that it be binding on Catholics and that has simply not happened nor will it never happen. Have you not read that the conciliar popes have abandoned their divine authority and replaced it with dialogue? It is both a curse and a blessing I suppose.


Quote:
So in your theology, the Church can legislate that mortal sin is permissible? In your theology, as long as sin is not compulsory, the Church can permit and even recommend it?


Can you clarify what mortal sin the Church recommending? If it is a question of legislating something intrinsically evil, it is an impossibility. Even an intrinsically evil civil law does not possess the character of law. If we consider a law that is deficient in some respect, or evil under a certain aspect, then it is certainly possible for it to be permitted and even recommended, though not compulsory since such a law would not be law at all. Has the Church ever permitted something evil? Yes, it has. Permitting an evil isn't to legislate law. Has the Pope ever issued a bad law? Yes, he has. Consider the suppression of the Jesuits. The fact that current churchmen do not perceive it as such is irrelevant. Furthermore, I seriously doubt it is proper to say that such things come from the Church itself, properly speaking. Rather, we ought to make a distinction between the man and his office. The office is unblemished, but the man can be a devil.


Mon Nov 19, 2012 3:04 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Caminus wrote:
Quote:
Perhaps you could quote the text which you assert is equivalent to "hope".


Quote:
The visible Church is the only Church. There is no invisible Church. It consists of the faithful, the bishops, and the Roman Pontiff, when there is one. I hope, but I cannot verify, that many of the bishops that are currently enmeshed in the Conciliar church are still Catholics and therefore do really have the office of ordinary of their respective dioceses.


This is a misunderstanding. I did not mean that I hope somebody has ordinary jurisdiction. I meant that I hope many of the so-called ordinaries are really our ordinaries. That is, I hope people like you are right, and many of them are not heretics. I certainly have no universal principle upon which I could write them all out of the Church.


Caminus wrote:
Caminus wrote:
At bottom the fixation on heresy is paralyzing the thought of the sedevacantist. Since no other possible explanation could suffice (so he supposes) then he must follow the rough road to its end. But what if we are not dealing with heresy, at least in most cases?


Quote:
I agree, but we still need to explain the ecclesiological problem, which you do not appear to recognise.


Of course I concede the difficulty, but I think it can be fairly explained by the facts taken as they exist. My primary point was that the SV thesis presents an equally if not more troubling ecclesiological difficulty.


It would be good if you could define the difficulty you recognise.

As for the difficulty you perceive with our view, I am still convinced that you misapprehend our view, so that it presents chimerical difficulties to you.

Caminus wrote:
Caminus wrote:
:x What is impossible is that it be binding on Catholics and that has simply not happened nor will it never happen. Have you not read that the conciliar popes have abandoned their divine authority and replaced it with dialogue? It is both a curse and a blessing I suppose.


Quote:
So in your theology, the Church can legislate that mortal sin is permissible? In your theology, as long as sin is not compulsory, the Church can permit and even recommend it?


Can you clarify what mortal sin the Church recommending? If it is a question of legislating something intrinsically evil, it is an impossibility. Even an intrinsically evil civil law does not possess the character of law. If we consider a law that is deficient in some respect, or evil under a certain aspect, then it is certainly possible for it to be permitted and even recommended, though not compulsory since such a law would not be law at all. Has the Church ever permitted something evil? Yes, it has. Permitting an evil isn't to legislate law. Has the Pope ever issued a bad law? Yes, he has. Consider the suppression of the Jesuits. The fact that current churchmen do not perceive it as such is irrelevant. Furthermore, I seriously doubt it is proper to say that such things come from the Church itself, properly speaking. Rather, we ought to make a distinction between the man and his office. The office is unblemished, but the man can be a devil.


Well, the false worship that is the Novus Ordo Missae is an example. It was never promulgated as a law, but it was published as a liturgical text, and tolerated (I use the term in its technical sense) for more than forty years, which in canon law means it gains the status of law.

Likewise the law which authorises giving Holy Communion to non-Catholics. This is directly authorising mortal sin.

Permitting evil by not condemning it is certainly within the power and authority of the Church. Positively authorising it, whether it be faith-destroying worship or a mortal sin of any kind, is impossible for the Church.

Obviously we distinguish between the man and his office, but we must be specific or this becomes just a loose generalisation which would look like it covered a multitude of sins, but in fact doesn't.

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Mon Nov 19, 2012 10:33 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Quote:
The visible Church is the only Church. There is no invisible Church. It consists of the faithful, the bishops, and the Roman Pontiff, when there is one. I hope, but I cannot verify, that many of the bishops that are currently enmeshed in the Conciliar church are still Catholics and therefore do really have the office of ordinary of their respective dioceses.


Quote:
This is a misunderstanding. I did not mean that I hope somebody has ordinary jurisdiction. I meant that I hope many of the so-called ordinaries are really our ordinaries. That is, I hope people like you are right, and many of them are not heretics. I certainly have no universal principle upon which I could write them all out of the Church.


Fair enough, but what universal principle do you proceed upon? Accepting their legal claims as prima facie valid? Is that not the rational starting point? I don't think your explanation clears up the problem. You hope that many of them retain ordinary jurisdiction, yet you are not certain that any of them do. That's another way of saying that you are in a state of doubt as to a practical question which ultimately bears on a theoretical question. At the same time, you hold to the truth that ordinary jurisdiction must exist within the Church. How do you square the two? That is, how do you at once doubt or claim agnosticism while at the same time asserting absolutely it must be true? Would it not be more reasonable to simply accept a legal claim on its face?


Quote:
I agree, but we still need to explain the ecclesiological problem, which you do not appear to recognise.


I recognize difficulties on both sides, but on your side the difficulty lies primarily in both the understanding of the extension of the principles involved and their concrete application in the current situation. It would be nice if you would admit that your position is equally if not moreso pregnant with ecclesiological problems.

Quote:
As for the difficulty you perceive with our view, I am still convinced that you misapprehend our view, so that it presents chimerical difficulties to you.


I understand the aspects of sedevacantism quite well I suppose. The fact that you think these difficulties are 'chimerical' leads me to wonder if you apprehend the implications of your own position.


Quote:
Well, the false worship that is the Novus Ordo Missae is an example. It was never promulgated as a law, but it was published as a liturgical text, and tolerated (I use the term in its technical sense) for more than forty years, which in canon law means it gains the status of law.


A wholesome and good custom attains the force of law, I concede. A perverse and ill-defined custom attains such force I deny. An evil custom can never attain the force of law.

Quote:
Likewise the law which authorises giving Holy Communion to non-Catholics. This is directly authorising mortal sin.


Is it a mortal sin to administer the Sacrament of Penance to dying non-Catholics? The new Code makes certain distinctions, whether these distinctions are proper remains to be seen, but it can hardly be said that it "directly authorizes" mortal sin. On the contrary, in its own convoluted way, it attempts to preserve the dignity of the Sacrament. The question is a practical one, namely if a dying non-Catholic accepts the doctrine of the Holy Eucharist, can they receive it, all else being equal? Does this presuppose the acceptance of the other articles of faith? The law raises more questions than it answers, but this is hardly a cold-blooded acceptance of mortal sin. If we are to understand the nature of the crisis, we ought to truly grasp the problems we face and refuse to rely on even minor distortions considering the weight of the questions.

Quote:
Permitting evil by not condemning it is certainly within the power and authority of the Church. Positively authorising it, whether it be faith-destroying worship or a mortal sin of any kind, is impossible for the Church.


It is impossible for the Church, properly speaking, but it is quite within the realm of possibility for individual churchmen to render perverse judgments, even the near totality of them, all under the color of law.

Quote:
Obviously we distinguish between the man and his office, but we must be specific or this becomes just a loose generalisation which would look like it covered a multitude of sins, but in fact doesn't.


If you accept this general distinction, then it opens the possibility that bishops could destroy the Church whilst retaining their offices, at least for a time. This fact nullfies the unscientific oberversation that many exclaim, "Such could not come from a Catholic bishop, ergo he must not be Catholic!"


Thu Nov 29, 2012 5:42 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Hi Caminus

To respond to you, I would ask for your response to this post. An SSPXer made them on a now defunct trad forum

Quote:
The problem is also the Society's intermediary position of silence.

For if the New Mass is dubious ('can' be valid, but is not ordinarily), heterodox and the new sacraments are of dubious validity and of dubious orthodoxy, then the Church or the Pope could introduce heterodox or dubiously valid (i.e. invalid, a putative sacrament is no sacrament) rites for the sacraments. Then the Church and the Pope are defectible. But Roman Catholic dogma teaches us, that Church and Pope are indefectible and infallible whenever defining Faith and morals, and the Church could never by legitimate authority present poison or simulated 'sacraments'.

I see absolutely no gains for the 'reconciliation' other than more silence and more 'diplomatic' approaches with the false hopes upon a (hardly existing anymore) "conservative faction inside the" Roman Curia and upon a "bound and curtailed, but fully traditonal" pope.

Joseph Ratzinger never was a traditional and orthodox Roman Catholic theologian and participated in the most revolutionary changes (even after May 1968 which made him more 'moderate' and more 'bourgeois' after seeing the violence of the May 1968 Marxist students' revolts in the Western world).

I see no gains made by 'coming in', other than pleasing the cowardous neoconservatives and neotraditionalists who want to 'defend' their positions amidst a mostly totally apostate Modernist hierarchy - with a few exceptions of younger Conciliar 'bishops' who however lead dioceses where communion into the paw, the Neo-Protestant and Neo-Modernist New Mass of compromise, new sacraments are also confected. The 'privileged toleration' status of the Traditional (1962) Missal in such (few) dioceses absolutely does not cure the Church.

Rather it will give the impression of relativism and conciliability of the New Rite and the Conciliar Church with the immemorial Roman Rite and the infallible Roman Catholic Church of all time..... As if the two could 'coexist' peacefully.

The Vatican demands, the insistence on Vatican II and the false Hegelian 'hermeneutics of continuity' alongside the spirit of Assisi I, II, III, the beatification of John Paul II, the non-missionizing of adherents of Judaism or even secularized 'ethnic' Jews, the intercommunion (practiced with Frère Roger by then-cardinal Ratzinger on April 19, 2005 during the Novus Ordo funeral of JP 2 - and elsewhere in Germany by 'conservative' neocon liberal bishop Müller of Regensburg who as a Ratzinger pupil might soon become the new prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith....)

It is absolutely impossible to 'reconcile' now. In the days of Archbishop Lefebvre in 1988, Cardinal Giuseppe Siri and other bishops consecrated in the traditional Roman rite, and local defenders of the Catholic faith (also in the Eastern Rite Catholic churches sui iuris) still existed.... A quick 'turn-back' seemed possible, although miraculous.

Today, the Conciliar church is even more petrified in its own Revolution.

Only social and ecclesiastical-political motivations stand behind the 'reconciliation scheme' of Benedict XVI and a 'neoconservative' moderately progressive (but still at the core neo-Modernist) minority in the Curia.....

Has the Fraternity of Saint Peter been accepted and supported? No.
Have the FSSP ever received the one bishop they were promised? No. Instead dubious Conciliar 'bishops' consecrated in the dubious and controversial new rite for episcopal consecration (of June 18, 1968, introduced after Apr 1, 1969 or a bit later elsewhere) now ordain the FSSP priests - again making their ordinations questionable in the eyes of many 'traditionalist' Roman Catholic theologians and faithful of the resistance from the first hour....

Ecclesiastical union is not a political or power instrument, like Rev. Fr. Schmidberg and His Exc. Bp. Fellay seem to think. It will not ease the 'take-over' or coup by Roman Catholic 'Tradition' (as a movement). On the contrary. L

The Vatican will start a divide-and-conquer-game, demand concelebration with the New Mass in the end, acceptance of Newchurch 'bishops' as ordaining bishops for the SSPX priestly ordinations, acceptance of the new 'sacraments' as unquestionably valid (which they are not, being controversial and dubious as they are and remain)....

A total chaos, mixing will take place. Will the Priests confecting the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass one Sunday, not be followed by Novus Ordo 'priests' coming in to 'help out' at SSPX chapels (and bringing Novus Ordo acceptance slowly as in the FSSP 1988-1999) and consecrating (dubiously or invalidly) sacred hosts (or 'hosts'?) for the tabernacle.....

The Conciliar church is on the verge of internal schisms, total social and financial collapse in secularized Western ex-Catholic countries, and dissent in other countries....

The Society of Saint Pius X must take as its goal to save the drowning passengers of the Conciliar Titanic.... And to keep up good sailorship as a principle.

Nót to try to sail back with all life vessels and to enter the Titanic' captains quarters to 'convince' the insane and fanatical captain and assisting officers who since 30 years to over 50 years have been planned and convinced to go down with their Conciliar Neo-Modernist Neo-Protestant Titanic ship and insisting the life vessels and its saved passengers come back into the 'unity' of the sinking Titanic ship they built for many years. And will go fanatically down into the deep with, no matter what....

Vatican II is the baby, even of the 'moderately' Modernist 'Communio' magazine theologians like Ratzinger. They will impose and try to enforce Vatican II as long as possible and fanatically. They will never give in.

They - in 99 % of cases consciously - abandoned the orthodox Roman Catholic Faith and Roman Catholic dogma very long ago by embracing Neo-Modernist theology and false modern philosophies....


Thu Nov 29, 2012 5:54 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Caminus wrote:
Quote:
The visible Church is the only Church. There is no invisible Church. It consists of the faithful, the bishops, and the Roman Pontiff, when there is one. I hope, but I cannot verify, that many of the bishops that are currently enmeshed in the Conciliar church are still Catholics and therefore do really have the office of ordinary of their respective dioceses.


Quote:
This is a misunderstanding. I did not mean that I hope somebody has ordinary jurisdiction. I meant that I hope many of the so-called ordinaries are really our ordinaries. That is, I hope people like you are right, and many of them are not heretics. I certainly have no universal principle upon which I could write them all out of the Church.


Fair enough, but what universal principle do you proceed upon? Accepting their legal claims as prima facie valid? Is that not the rational starting point? I don't think your explanation clears up the problem. You hope that many of them retain ordinary jurisdiction, yet you are not certain that any of them do. That's another way of saying that you are in a state of doubt as to a practical question which ultimately bears on a theoretical question. At the same time, you hold to the truth that ordinary jurisdiction must exist within the Church. How do you square the two? That is, how do you at once doubt or claim agnosticism while at the same time asserting absolutely it must be true? Would it not be more reasonable to simply accept a legal claim on its face?


Interesting discussion, thanks Caminus.

Yes, I do accept the claims of office of the Novus bishops on their face. The problem is, it is hard to find one who is not evidently a heretic. :) But I know they must exist, because this is of faith. (By the way, I accept that our conviction that this is de fide is not shared by some learned men, one of whom has actually given me arguments which while not convincing to me, at least demonstrate that it is possible for a good Catholic to believe the point to be objectively doubtful. This saves the faith of those who disagree with us on this point.)

To give you an analogy which should clear up the epistemological issue you are driving at, consider a group of Catholics during an even worse apostasy than this, in which there is no priest locally available, and there are no communications with the rest of the world. Perhaps they are in New Caledonia and there is a world war raging. They know that the Catholic Church still has priests, somewhere. Maybe only two remain alive, somewhere, but they must exist. The faith of such people is not defective nor is their thinking irrational.

Caminus wrote:
Quote:
I agree, but we still need to explain the ecclesiological problem, which you do not appear to recognise.


I recognize difficulties on both sides, but on your side the difficulty lies primarily in both the understanding of the extension of the principles involved and their concrete application in the current situation. It would be nice if you would admit that your position is equally if not moreso pregnant with ecclesiological problems.


If I thought that, I'd not hold my views. I'd change them.

Caminus wrote:
Quote:
As for the difficulty you perceive with our view, I am still convinced that you misapprehend our view, so that it presents chimerical difficulties to you.


I understand the aspects of sedevacantism quite well I suppose. The fact that you think these difficulties are 'chimerical' leads me to wonder if you apprehend the implications of your own position.


I think we've just demonstrated that one difficulty is chimerical. I'm happy to address any others you see.


Caminus wrote:
Quote:
Well, the false worship that is the Novus Ordo Missae is an example. It was never promulgated as a law, but it was published as a liturgical text, and tolerated (I use the term in its technical sense) for more than forty years, which in canon law means it gains the status of law.


A wholesome and good custom attains the force of law, I concede. A perverse and ill-defined custom attains such force I deny. An evil custom can never attain the force of law.


Of course, but that's begging the question, and indeed it is implicitly denying the principle we are both supposed to be accepting. The Catholic Church cannot preach error, either, but it's not a complete solution to say that if you hear error, it isn't coming from the Church. While true, this doesn't solve the problem, which is actually that there are objectively verifiable conditions which demonstrate that it is indeed the Church teaching, and if we see those conditions verified and yet the doctrine is unable to be received because it conflicts with what we already believe on the authority of the Church, we have an ecclesiological problem.

There is no qualification in the principle by which custom gains the force of law. If a custom is tolerated for forty years, the necessary conclusion is that the custom is intrinsically good, because the Church approves it, and she cannot approve evil.

Caminus wrote:
Quote:
Likewise the law which authorises giving Holy Communion to non-Catholics. This is directly authorising mortal sin.


Is it a mortal sin to administer the Sacrament of Penance to dying non-Catholics? The new Code makes certain distinctions, whether these distinctions are proper remains to be seen, but it can hardly be said that it "directly authorizes" mortal sin. On the contrary, in its own convoluted way, it attempts to preserve the dignity of the Sacrament. The question is a practical one, namely if a dying non-Catholic accepts the doctrine of the Holy Eucharist, can they receive it, all else being equal? Does this presuppose the acceptance of the other articles of faith? The law raises more questions than it answers, but this is hardly a cold-blooded acceptance of mortal sin. If we are to understand the nature of the crisis, we ought to truly grasp the problems we face and refuse to rely on even minor distortions considering the weight of the questions.


You appear to be confused about what the New Code actually states. Perhaps you could paste the text in here and we can start this question again.

Caminus wrote:
Quote:
Permitting evil by not condemning it is certainly within the power and authority of the Church. Positively authorising it, whether it be faith-destroying worship or a mortal sin of any kind, is impossible for the Church.


It is impossible for the Church, properly speaking, but it is quite within the realm of possibility for individual churchmen to render perverse judgments, even the near totality of them, all under the color of law.


Let's flip this over for a minute. Do you take any such evil laws imposed by "churchmen" as evidence that in fact they are heretics, not Catholics, and therefore have no offices? Are there any manifest heretics posing as Catholic bishops, cardinals, etc?

Caminus wrote:
Quote:
Obviously we distinguish between the man and his office, but we must be specific or this becomes just a loose generalisation which would look like it covered a multitude of sins, but in fact doesn't.


If you accept this general distinction, then it opens the possibility that bishops could destroy the Church whilst retaining their offices, at least for a time. This fact nullfies the unscientific oberversation that many exclaim, "Such could not come from a Catholic bishop, ergo he must not be Catholic!"


What you describe as unscientific is actually simple, direct, and a sound expression of Catholic instinct - i.e. the sensus fidelium. Exceptions are exceptions, not rules. John Daly's essay, Heresy in History, lists a number of such exceptional cases. St. Robert Bellarmine and the Code of Canon Law give us the rules. Your approach appears to be a way of arguing from the exceptions to a set of principles which are in conflict with the law.

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Thu Nov 29, 2012 11:56 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
John Lane wrote:
(By the way, I accept that our conviction that this is de fide is not shared by some learned men, one of whom has actually given me arguments which while not convincing to me, at least demonstrate that it is possible for a good Catholic to believe the point to be objectively doubtful. This saves the faith of those who disagree with us on this point.)


I'd be interested in seeing more about this. As such, do you retract what you said about a certain cleric on another forum?


Fri Nov 30, 2012 3:21 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Phillipus Iacobus wrote:
As such, do you retract what you said about a certain cleric on another forum?


What did I say?

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Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:28 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
I was referring to the exchange you had with Fr. Cekada on Ignis Ardens.


Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:38 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Yes, understood, but I've been told that some people were very upset by what I was reported to have written - specifically that I called Fr. Cekada a heretic, despite the fact that I didn't think it and didn't write it. But that's how it goes. The fact that it's all in writing, on public record, and can be re-read at any time by anybody, wouldn't bear on small matters like factual claims by people who desire to be unhappy with another.

I was and am very disedified by his approach to sacred doctrine on this point, of course. He answers objections about as readily as your typical sedeplenist cleric. I'm completely disabused of even a hint of belief that the reason he is right and others wrong is because his premises and reasoning are sounder. From where I sit it looks like a happy accident that he arrived at some correct conclusions, and it is no surprise at all that he arrived at some catastrophic ones as well.

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Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:13 pm
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
John Lane wrote:
Yes, understood, but I've been told that some people were very upset by what I was reported to have written - specifically that I called Fr. Cekada a heretic, despite the fact that I didn't think it and didn't write it. But that's how it goes. The fact that it's all in writing, on public record, and can be re-read at any time by anybody, wouldn't bear on small matters like factual claims by people who desire to be unhappy with another.


Well, that's just an easy way to attack the messenger while completely distorting the message, which seems to be the preferred method of certain people who see any opposition to Fr. Cekada as a direct attack on the Faith ("If this damages Fr Cekada or SGG, then who will oppose the Novus Ordo? It will be all your fault when the Novus Ordo anti-Church prevails.")

These "pious" individuals are some of the most crafty and vicious people I've ever come across. They seem to hold Fr. Cekada as uniquely identified with an opinion (in their mind a dogmatic fact) they hold, and I believe he's encouraged that type of mindset.


Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:42 am
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New post Re: Bishop Fellay: Where do we stand with Rome?
Robert,

I can't comment on the people you're talking about. The ones to whom I was referring are fine people, but they were lied to and allowed their emotions to govern their reaction. Nobody has asked me what I wrote, or even raised the matter with me.

We seem to be seeing more and more breakdown in unity, but that's what is to be expected in the circumstances. Popes are for unity; without a pope, the unity of the Church must decay.

The point I wanted to focus on here is the approach we take to reasoning about the crisis (or any serious matter). Are we afraid of what conclusions we might come to? Are we able to consider dispassionately the data before us? The evidence from online forums is that we're not able to do either. The evidence off-line is immeasurably better, but still hardly impressive. When faith declines, reason follows down the same slope. St. Paul's comment that in the latter days they will believe in fables is a comment on both aspects, I think. In a faithless era, evolution and other towering nonsense is taken as solidly proven. It's astonishing, really, how completely perverted the modern mind is. Traditional Catholics are a cut above their neighbours, but several cuts below their ancestors. Now I'm rambling, so I'll just leave you with the observation that Fr. Cekada has no answer to what I wrote, and that's why he refused to engage in the debate, but instead took refuge in that flippancy and sarcasm for which he is famous; and when pondering that, consider how seriously those whom he left in 1983 take his reasoning. Their own position may be uncertain - something they cheerfully acknowledge - but they find it inconceivable that Fr. Cekada has the answers.

_________________
In Christ our King.


Mon Dec 03, 2012 10:21 pm
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