© Copyright 2022, T. Stanfill Benns (All emphasis within quotes added by the author)
In previous works, we have explained how Traditionalists and those who work for them or with them, secretly or unwittingly, appeal to those seeking to be truly Catholic by psychologically manipulating their perceived stance as victims. This article will explain why those betrayed by the Church they loved need not view themselves as victims as a result of this betrayal and must not allow themselves to be exploited by others who may appeal to this sometimes unconscious belief. Christ was a true Victim in every sense of the word, and yet he was a willing and obedient victim. Not so many today, but that will be explained in greater detail below.
We may be victims in the sense that we had no control, as children in the 1940s-1960s, over what happened to our Church. But we must not behave as victims, a fatal flaw that could apply to all of us and probably does in certain ways. Victims suffer from guilt, and in our case that amounts to the many regrets we have for accepting the lies of the Novus Ordo and Traditionalists. This results in self-blame, which cannot be something unresolved but must be purged by confessing our sins to Christ and making reparation for them. Victims want to be rescued, which is why so many of us wound up seeking out Traditionalists in the first place. But when we realized that what the Novus Ordo and Traditionalists were doing was not Catholic, we ceased being victims and became true to Christ, choosing Him over what we felt we needed and deserved. We accepted our role as victims with Christ in His Passion.
Victims wishing to climb down from their cross
But hard-core Traditionalists in true Modernist fashion continue to choose feelings and wants over faith. They still rely on the unCatholic and illogical explanations provided by their keepers. Having readily played into the pre-planned rescue by the new Old Catholics calling themselves Traditionalists, they refuse to face the fact they were wrong because this shames them. They resent anyone who tries to free them from these hirelings and angrily denounce them. They don’t take responsibility for researching and documenting the situation or saving their own souls. They blame the Jews and government corruption for their plight. They constantly agitate for and ruminate about a return to the Church of the 1950s which they believe would solve their dilemma and feel deprived of their right to live a fully Catholic life.
They shun even the mention of praying at home as a way to keep the faith whole and entire, because they fear any prospect of isolation or possible abandonment by family and friends. All these are signs of victimization, often attributed to those abused by their partners and unable to break free. They are also indications that the indispensable sacrifice aspect of Catholic spirituality is either entirely misunderstood or has been abandoned. They shrink from any prospect of suffering with Christ and for Him. They see no spiritual value in strict adherence to the laws and teachings of the Church. They cannot admit they are enslaved by the sects they are involved in and have convinced themselves they are doing all they can to lead a Catholic life. And yet the Catholic life they long for and believe they live as Traditionalists is far from being Catholic.
Symptoms associated with victimhood
In other words, this free-floating rescue existence is precisely what contributes to the dereliction of responsibility in determining the true status of these men and what they are doing and teaching. Agitation and rumination in Traditionalist sects have been legion since they were first established; the drama helps perpetuate the cycle. If victims leave one sect, they blame the “priest” or certain cliques within the sect, righty or wrongly, for their exit, and head into the ether to find yet another more suitable Traditionalist sect. The prospect of figuring things out for themselves in isolation is unbearable. Without realizing it their vulnerability as victims and failure to address and correct this stance sets them up for the very thing they dread the most: being used, abused, discarded and branded as a waste of time. Those who are most likely to become involved in destructive religious sects (cults) are already victims by definition. Various sites list these predispositions as:
- great dependence on others
- lack of assertiveness
- uncritical trust of other people and groups
- wants simple “right” or “wrong” answers to complex questions
- unfulfilled desire for spiritual meaning
- cultural and religious disillusionment.
In other words, these religious organizations are looking for victims to fill their own personal needs and their respective coffers. It is a racket, not a religion. And those seeking Catholic truth are willingly obliging them by being and remaining victims, not to mention cooperating in sin.
Christ was a willing victim; He died a horrendous death for our sins as an act of perfect love. He was Truth itself nailed to a Cross. Those not wishing to discover truth because they fear what it might cost them do not wish to know Christ or suffer with Him in His Passion. In their minds they believe that as victims they have already suffered enough and that Our Lord would never be so cruel as to ask any more of them, and this comprises the majority. Yet there are some Catholics who are truly incapable of sorting things out and need to be guided by others. Sadly, there are few able to properly recognize their plight and help them make at least some simple sense out of the destruction that has obscured the Church from plain view. Our Lord will enclose these simple souls in His merciful Heart, but He expects far more of those able to rightly use their intellect to sort things out. These Catholics will not be so fortunate if they fail to take the measures needed to correct their course and save their souls.
Remedies for victims
There are cures for victimhood. They involve spiritual honesty and courage and a willingness to be a true victim by engaging in self-sacrifice. It requires focusing on the love, obedience and gratitude we owe our Creator rather than sentiments of self-entitlement, self-indulgence and wants and needs that contradict God’s will in these times. The first step in this process is to make some attempt to step back from whatever Traditionalist group or groups they may be involved in that offer the Latin Mass and administer the Sacraments. It may interest those who find themselves troubled and depressed that mental health professionals with a Christian background trace anxiety and depression to mistaken beliefs lodged in the subconscious. They encourage their patients to take charge of their lives and become fully aware of their beliefs, thoughts and actions. Because at some level, deep in the core of their being, certain Catholics know that something is not right — that either they are fooling themselves or at least are avoiding facing difficult decisions.
Victims must resolve to take responsibility and face their thoughts and fears, for not all their thoughts and beliefs are correct and many of their fears may be justified. Honesty and a willingness to resolve doubts are key and should be a powerful motivator. For being dishonest with oneself is lying; only by facing things head on can adverse situations be avoided, and self-confidence restored. Self-pity is nothing more than a lack of confidence in God, who is the Comforter, the Great Restorer, our Hope and our Refuge in times of sorrow and trial. He alone can offer the balm our souls need to face any tragedy, misery or general inability to cope with life. Rather than wallowing in self-pity, we have an obligation, especially in times such as these, to do all that we can to know the truth, because He is that truth! Then we must defend it — not our version of it, not what we THINK is the truth, not what others tell us is the truth — but what the Church teaches and we have determined to BE that truth.
This website was constructed to help those seeking the truth. It is a lifelong journey that requires constant vigilance and dedication to possess truth at all costs. Those undertaking this journey must refuse to allow others to convince them that they are crazy, a heretic and worse; prideful, disobedient a worthless human being and more. Accepting the challenge of rising from victimization to self-realization and reformation will not only resolve self-pity issues, but it will also firmly place our Lord in His rightful position as the Director of your soul and the only one to whom you owe complete obedience, heartfelt allegiance and undying gratitude. It will also protect you form those who appeal to victimhood and play the part of a victim in order to discredit those who are trying to defend and keep the faith. Here it will be useful to review what it means to have faith and have it perfectly.
Perfect faith defined
The marks of perfect faith, as laid out by Rev. Charles Hugo Doyle in his Guidance in Spiritual Direction, (1956) are: “1) Zeal for the salvation of others; 2) Absolute simplicity and renunciation of all curiosity and inquiry” (obedience without questioning, which is applicable to the obedience owed to legitimate superiors but also obedience to Canon Law and the Decalogue); 3) Readiness to sacrifice everything rather than deny any of the teachings of Holy Scripture, Tradition or the infallible Church is the minimum for the preservation of faith. Our aim should be to practice not only faith but the spirit of faith: ‘The just man liveth by faith.’ 4) Frequent and earnest prayer for increased faith, saying with the apostles: ‘Increase our faith’… Intellectual pride militates against this virtue and should be countered by complete submission to the articles of the faith and the teachings of the Church” (pgs. 172-73).
It is clear that many today do not render this ready and instant obedience to God’s laws or those of His Church, do not accept without question the teachings of Holy Scripture as defined by the Church and dispute and discredit other decisions and teachings of the infallible Church. Moreover, they are eager to destroy anyone demanding such strict obedience, in order to establish their own standard of judgment contrary to that of the Church. There must be a reason for this, and the only standard for measuring such reasons is the Church Herself, who has repeatedly condemned the teachings of those things heretical and approaching heresy, that which is productive of schism and things contrary to Her discipline. But these standards too are dismissed as too harsh, non-applicable in “these times” or to be determined only by pseudo-clergy who have no right to judge anything or anyone.
There is another standard which can be applied, however, and that is one that is fashioned by those possessing degrees of higher learning in certain professions. So for those who are enamored with honors bestowed by degrees, it almost seems a sort of poetic justice to use the standards set by degreed persons in order to determine how their behavior is viewed through the eyes of the very ones they seem to esteem. Unfortunately, this will reveal a rather harsh estimation of some of the behaviors that are modeled by Traditionalists and their apologists, published on Trad forums, in videos, podcasts and on websites and blogs, for all these years. And because certain labels used by these professions to identify these personalities may be seen as pejorative, they are really only useful to those diagnosing and treating them, and should be seen, instead, in a Catholic vs. a scientific light.
For what is described will fall more in the realm of moral disorders and spiritual defects, and while science may pretend to be able to fully treat and rectify these disorders, Catholics know they have their true cure only under the care of an experienced director and in the confessional. And while this study will be construed as an unprovoked and undeserved “personal” attack, even though it applies to a wide range of individuals, we need to look at it carefully. This in order to protect ourselves in the future and hopefully provide others with a way to better judge the merits of what has become a full-fledged psychological war against the truth. This will be seen from what is presented below.
We hear much talk today about the victim mentality and certain personalities who present as “narcissistic.” The two can sometimes go hand in hand. In a survey of Internet sites on this topic, the following information is found on several sites confirming the behavior of those who use the role of victim to operate on a narcissistic level. No specific application to individuals is intended in mentioning these behavior traits; we leave it to the individual reader to decide if and where they may apply.
The operation of error explained
We know the operation of error exists, but how it is practiced and its actual application is not easily recognized or well understood. There are likely better, more detailed explanations of this operation, but what follows is the condensed and secular version. More will be available on this subject eventually. Key to this biblical operation is a strategy directly opposed to that of the Church. It consists of falsehoods, confusion of terms, obfuscation, misdirection, reliance on the ignorance of its hearers, and many other components; Satan is ever the father of lies and deception. It is a process that begins in a seemingly innocent fashion but eventually descends into outright warfare. Here is how this is done.
1. Narcissists first present as sincere and caring persons who offer assistance to their chosen targets, fund their projects, shower them with false flattery, help promote their target’s agenda, support their efforts and attempt to develop a false intimacy with them. They are skilled at projecting goodness and fake virtues. This persona eventually disintegrates and is replaced by increasing criticism, distaste and rejection. Later they prey on personal information gained early on, when they enter their attack mode.
2.The whole thrust of the early days of an acquaintance with a narcissist is to gain the trust of the targeted person and convince them that they are their most devoted fan. Once that trust has been gained, they are then free to calculate what can best be used to destroy their chosen target or the targeted person’s particular ideology.
3.Narcissists create sympathy for themselves as a cover to detract attention from the very smear campaign THEY first initiated against their chosen target. They then use their victim stance as an opportunity to accuse the person first subjected to their abuse of actually abusing and smearing THEM. This is just a sophisticated form of projection. They eventually bring in a ‘supporter or minion’ to back them up to better help destroy the reputation of someone they wish to attack. By nature, narcissists are predators.
4. In the course of their attacks, narcissists
a) distort or falsify the facts;
b)rely on inferior sources and refuse to obey the lawful commands of superiors;
c)deliberately misrepresent and misinterpret statements of their chosen targets;
d) quote targeted material entirely out of context;
e) express faux horror and incredulity at the statements voiced by their chosen targets;
f) resort to personal attacks and
g)employ coercive techniques to persuade their readers, such as undermining one’s confidence in their intellectual abilities or in being able to properly evaluate data or situations.
5. The narcissist projects him or herself into the lives of others to live though them vicariously. S/he thrives on admiration and always strives to be in control and to make conquests. These individuals are not content in carving out a niche for themselves and quietly resting there but must constantly be seen as the sole driving force behind any given group or operation.
6. A Facebook study shows that narcissists are quite active on social media and are very familiar with the Internet.
Of course, the Church would characterize all the above as violations of the seven deadly sins, particularly intellectual pride, but the narcissist sees it only as a means to an end, the end being the destruction of the person or thing targeted in order to achieve dominance and adulation. Narcissism is defined as compensatory egomania fueled by low self-esteem. But regardless of its origins it has been a useful tool wielded for many years by various Traditionalists and others to try and overturn the efforts of those sincerely attempting to expose their errors. In his Purgatory Surveyed, Rev. Stephen Binet warns that in trusting the living, we “…are often deceived, and think you do a good turn for an Apostle, and he is an apostate, or another Judas. You take him for a great servant of God; and he often proves to be a most wicked fellow: a ravenous wolf in a lamb’s skin. And this is seen daily, and everywhere: not but that you ought to do it, and shall never want your reward.” So while the secular experts admit that no one is immune from being deceived by narcissists, it seems that those of good will unfortunate enough to encounter them will be credited for at least trying to perform a good work.
St. Thomas of Aquinas writes: “There are two mystical bodies in this world: The Mystical Body of Christ and the mystical body of the Devil or of the Antichrist. To one or another every man belongs. The Mystical Body of Christ is the Holy Church, His pure and faithful Spouse …. The mystical body of the Devil is the ensemble of impious men. Like an adulterous wet nurse, it nourishes this ensemble. The Devil is its head, and the evil persons are its members …. “The body of the Devil,” says St. Gregory, “is composed by all the impious men… Just as Christ, in Himself and through His disciples, always seeks to cut off the members of the Devil and incorporate them to Himself .… so also does the Devil. By his efforts and those of his cohorts, the Devil aims to amputate the members of Christ to unite them to the sordid members of his prostitute…” And this is what they are really trying to do: divide, in order to conquer.
Many using the tactics enumerated above have attempted to destroy the work being done here. While I have the right to defend myself it is really the sources I use that are being attacked, not me. And they need no defense because they are out of the reach of those who try to tear them down. No one can question papal or ecumenical decrees; no one has the right to challenge the meaning and application of Canon Law, which in many cases issues at least partly from Divine Law. During an interregnum NO ONE may attenuate these laws and yet this is something that has been done for decades! If there are those who wish to believe that what is taken from these sources is something that is represented as opinion on this site when this is clearly not the case, I cannot help them. The Holy Ghost alone can impart understanding. It is called a gift of the Holy Ghost for a reason: it must be prayed for and earned. Acceptance of God’s signified will, the Decalogue and the laws of the Church, are key to this understanding as we read in Psalm 117: “Give me understanding and I will learn Thy commandments.”
Not every attack on the truth is launched by those with narcissistic character traits or someone caught up in the victim stance. But when such attacks persist, then more likely than not they are staged and intended to damage the one first attacked. And in case someone believes that the continued renunciation of Traditionalists on this site amounts to an in initial attack, it needs to be pointed out that Traditionalists and their “bishops” were the ones who first set themselves up as (un)lawful authorities long before these attacks began, not this author. Since Traditionalists do not follow the teachings of the true Church, it would be a mortal sin not to rebuke them and point out their many errors. They are the ones who misrepresented the truth from the beginning.
The best description yet of these false shepherds is found in The New Catholic Dictionary (1929), which defines a hireling as “…a contemptuous name for one who works for wages only and makes the reward his only motive. Through Our Lord’s use of this word, it has come to express one who has no interest in his work and is unfaithful in performing it — the difference between the true and the mercenary shepherd of souls.” And Pope Pius XII, quoting the Council of Trent, clearly refers to unlawful pastors who lack jurisdiction as hirelings. Regarding wolves in sheep’s clothing, Rev. Leo Haydock tells us in his commentary on Matt. 7:15: “Beware of hypocrites with their outward appearance of sanctity and sound doctrine; by their fruits you shall know them. Such hypocrites can scarcely ever continue constant in the practice of what is good. Heretics usually affect an extraordinary appearance of zeal and holiness…” And so they attempt to deceive others.
But this does not necessarily mean that all those behaving in narcissistic fashion are malicious by nature. Some truly believe they are serving a greater purpose in defending Traditionalists, who they mistakenly think have actually furthered understanding of the Novus Ordo church as an enemy. This even though they blindly ignore the fact that Traditionalist pseudo-clergy have involved their followers in schism and communicatio in sacris. Others sincerely believe they are assisting in unifying Catholics by eliminating any perceived opposition to such unity. But they fail to understand the true nature of such a unity, as explained by Henry Cardinal Manning in his The True Story of the Vatican Council: “Unity of faith generates unity of mind, unity of heart, unity of will. Truth goes before unity. Where truth is divided, unity cannot be. Unity before truth is deception. Unity without truth is indifference or unbelief. Truth before unity is the law and principle and safeguard of unity. Unity of communion is the effect of unity of faith.”
We have defined perfect faith above and noted that its components are sadly lacking in most of those presenting as Catholic today. There is no respect for the laws of the Church, no such thing as complete submission to Her infallible teachings or even those things expressed as opinions by the popes, which we are bound to accept as superior to our own. For as Pope Leo XIII teaches: “The teachings of the Popes, as found in their Encyclical Letters, can by NO MEANS be considered as expressing MERE OPINIONS which ANYONE is FREE to hold or to reject at will. There is ALWAYS GRAVE TEMERITY IN NOT ACCEPTING THE TEACHING OF AN ENCYCLICAL ON ANY ONE OF THE POINTS IT TOUCHES.”
Whenever one is evaluating the arguments of those presenting as victims and exhibiting narcissistic tendencies, it is necessary to apply to them the tests of unity and faith above, of the need to firmly accept even the opinions of the Roman Pontiffs. These enemies of the faith will fail these tests every time, and therefore by their fruits shall they be known.