+Fourth Sunday in Advent+
In the previous blog, we discussed the inability of Lefebvre, Thuc, Mendez, de Castro-Mayer and others to validly tonsure subjects owing to a lack of jurisdiction. Despite this very clear demonstration, which removes all other arguments such as supplied jurisdiction, common error, a colored title, necessity and epikeia, we are continually referred to dated and even incomplete articles by sedevacantists and others claiming validity for their ordinations and consecrations performed without the papal mandate. If these men were really Catholic clergy, they would present arguments from the continual magisterium, not the opinions of theologians, historical summaries and their own worthless opinions. The Church approves only the use of scholastic argument in presenting Her truths, and this they avoid at all costs, in true Modernist fashion. How dare I call these pretenders Modernists? I don’t; Pope St. Pius X does: “Certain it is that the passion for novelty is always united in them with hatred of scholasticism, and there is no surer sign that a man is tending to Modernism than when he begins to show his dislike for the scholastic method” (Pascendi Dominici Gregis, 1908).
These dishonest men do not and will not address the issue at hand and refute it with arguments taken from the canons and Church teaching because they cannot. If a man is not a cleric, he cannot become a priest; and if he is not a priest, then Divine law forbids him to celebrate the Holy Sacrifice and administer the Sacraments, period (Can. 802). In response to the massive smokescreen erected by deceitful Traditionalist pseudo-clergy on this subject and the absolute refusal of those following them to see the truth, despite the clear teachings of the Church and the percepts of Canon Law, we are obligated to reiterate the following.
The facts about Epikeia
St. Thomas Aquinas tells us: “It is evident that epikeia is a virtue, [however]… epikeia does not set aside that which is just in itself, but that which is just as by law established… It must be noted, that if observance of the law according to the letter does not involve any sudden risk needing immediate remedy, it is not competent for everyone to expound what is useful and what is not useful…Those alone can do this who are in authority and who, on account of such like cases, have the power to dispense from the laws. If however, the peril be so sudden as not to allow of the delay involved by referring the matter to authority, the mere necessity brings with it a dispensation, since necessity knows no law…[But] if it be a matter of doubt, HE MUST ACT ACCORDING TO THE LETTER OF THE LAW, or consult those in power,” (Summa Theologica Pt. II-II, Q. 120, Art. 1; Pt. I-II, Q. 96, Art. 6). And since there is no one to consult, how dare they act outside the letter of the law!
The canonists Abp. Amleto Cicoganni, Revs. Bouscaren-Ellis and Woywod-Smith, Rev. Francis Miaskiewicz, Rev. Raymond Kearney and the moral theologians McHugh and Callan with Rev. H. J. Davis — all these approved authors, following St. Thomas above, warn of the great caution that must be used in applying epikeia, and the many dangers of abuse in attempting this application. So why is no one quoting them? Note the reference by St. Thomas to doubt, and when it arises, the need to act according to the letter of the law. This is not Pharisaical, a horror these cretins have carefully instilled in their ignorant followers. It is rather adherence to scholastic truth and the author thereof. Likewise, they ignore Thomistic teaching regarding the fact that only those in authority can determine what is useful and what is not, i.e., they would need a decision from a valid and licit ordinary, the Sacred Congregations or the Roman Pontiff. Note the use of the words “those alone.” These pseudo-clerics have no powers, no authority and no right to act as valid clerics and lawful pastors, which they are not.
This is further illustrated in Father Lawrence Joseph Riley’s canon law dissertation The History, Nature, and Use of Epikeia in Moral Theology, 1948, (Catholic University of America Press, Inc. Imprimatur: + Richardus Jacobus Cushing. D.D., 7 May, 1948). Rev. Riley observes on pages 344, 347, 387: “At most, epikeia can excuse the individual from the precept, but it can never confer the capacity to act. Epikeia cannot bestow upon him the power which he does not now possess, nor can epikeia restore the power which the law has withdrawn. For such bestowal or restoration of power, a positive act is required… In short, it may be concluded that in regard to matters which touch the essence of the Sacraments, the use of epikeia is always excluded…”
Human law and epikeia
As shown above, it DOES NOT make “perfect sense” to “choose” to obey a human law over a Divine precept in an ongoing (not short-term, as St. Thomas Aquinas anticipated) “emergency,” when someone not even certainly a cleric, far less a priest or bishop, determines that it is somehow detrimental to the Divine Law. It violates instead every rule governing common sense. You keep repeating the mantra “The strict letter of the (human) law does not apply in our situation,” without having the slightest idea of the laws that are being violated or whether or not they are of human or Divine origin. These men are deceivers who are using you to pump up their egos and fund their very comfortable existence. Like the Hare Krishnas and Moonies of yesteryear, Traditionalists faithfully mouth all that they are told and cling to their keepers as the perceived guarantors of the supposed graces they need to reach Heaven; this even though it means stepping over the body of the Divine Deposit of Faith and the Roman Pontiffs who safeguarded it for over 1900 years.
In his Canon Law, 1935 edition, Abp. Amleto Cicognani, a one-time professor of Canon Law at the Pontifical Institute in Rome, provides a few examples of Canons which are dogmatic or doctrinal in character, reminding his readers that all the canons of the Code are “based on doctrine that is immutable and eternal,” reflecting the fact that Canon Law itself is negatively infallible. These canons cannot be considered mere “human law,” as their very wording attests. And they apply to the very issues that we have been addressing over the past several months. Cicognani notes that in the opening pages of the Code appears the Profession of Faith, and all those engaging in an official teaching or governing capacity in the Church are bound to make this profession along with the Oath against Modernism:
“’All power is from God and he that resisteth the power resisteth the ordinance of God.’ (Rom. 13:7). Truly the force of any legislation is to be sought in a higher sphere than that of human power, namely God. If this is to be maintained of any legislation a fortiori, it is true of the Code: for the Code treats of the Church’s hierarchy, of the Sacraments, of divine worship of ecclesiastical discipline and the like; accordingly, the formula which sets forth the changeless constitution of the ecclesiastical society for these is to be considered its firm base [and here he is talking about the profession of faith]. Since moreover in the Catholic Church faith is of all things the beginning and the foundation, the ecclesia doscens as well as the ecclesia discens should begin by faith, continue by faith and do all by faith. By faith first of all do we please God and discipline must rest on faith. They who hold the office of instructing others are especially bound to believe explicitly the truths of faith and their faith must be firm and enlightened since theirs it is to direct themselves and others to the paths of justice” (pgs. 429-431).
First and foremost among the canons on Cicognani’s list is Canon 1322, (all canons below are quoted from A Practical Commentary on the Code of Canon Law by Stanislas Woywod and Callistus Smith):
“Christ our Lord confided to the Church the deposit of faith in order that she, with the perpetual assistance of the Holy Ghost, might faithfully preserve and expound the revealed doctrine. Independently of any civil power whatsoever, the Church has the right and duty to teach all nations the evangelical doctrine and all are bound by the divine law to acquire a proper knowledge of this doctrine and to embrace the true Church of God.”
So, this canon tells us that the divine law binds us to “acquire a proper knowledge of this doctrine and to embrace the true Church of God.” Divine law commands it, but who is obeying this law? What Traditional sect makes the slightest effort to educate the faithful concerning the truths they must know to save their souls, including that very specific truth to obey the Roman Pontiffs (Boniface VIII, Unam Sanctam). Those following these supposed clerics will excuse them for handing them stones rather than bread?! We are to acquire a PROPER knowledge of the faith, not just a vague opinion presented by someone not even certainly a cleric, quoting theologians not even named or known to be approved, who wrote prior to the Codification of Canon Law and the pontificates of the last four popes of the 20thcentury. The specific article we mention here, posted to the CMRI website on consecrations without the papal mandate, was never even completed and has remained incomplete for years. It pretends to interpret and attenuate Canon 329 on the basis of texts written centuries ago, when Canon 329, included in Cicognani’s list, is clearly dogmatic.
“The bishops are the successors of the apostles and are placed by divine institution over the individual churches which they govern with ordinary power under the authority of the Roman Pontiff. They are freely appointed by the Pope…”
Woywod-Smith comment on this Canon: “In this Canon the Church repeats the dogmatic teaching on the nature of the office of bishops. They are the successors of the apostles and as the latter had St. Peter as their head, so have the bishops the Roman Pontiff, the successor of St. Peter, as their head. Thus there is perfect unity of government. There is but one supreme head, the Roman Pontiff, who appoints the bishops to the various places, for to St. Peter and his successors was committed the care of the whole Church. The power, however, which the bishops exercise they have in virtue of their office which was instituted by Christ Himself. The extent of the power which the bishops possess was not defined by Christ; it is left to the supreme head of the Church to determine the government of the Church.”
Does this sound like a description of any Traditional pseudo-bishops pontificating today? Do they possess churches assigned to them by the Roman Pontiff? Have they been assigned an office by the Roman Pontiff? Are they subject to the authority of the Roman Pontiff? No to all of these, and therefore they are in direct violation of the DIVINE LAW! So for those who are saying, “Papal mandate is not a divine law; it’s not dogma, it’s a disciplinary law,” start believing what your CHURCH teaches and has ALWAYS taught and not what these shysters are peddling to keep you in the closet with your fellow mushrooms. This Canon lists as its sources the Council of Trent, the Vatican Council, Pope Pius VI’s Auctorem Fidei, Leo XIII’s Satis Cognitum and Pope St. Pius X’s Lamentabili, to name only a few.This, then, is not a human law but one described by The Catholic Encyclopedia as follows:
“…A distinction is made between Divine and human laws according as they are issued directly by God Himself or by men in virtue of the power granted them by God. If man in issuing a law is simply the herald or messenger of God, the law is not human but Divine. Thus the laws which Moses received from God on Mount Sinai and proclaimed to the people of Israel were not human but Divine laws” (see the article on the law). The popes describe themselves as Christ on earth; Christ gave them all power to bind and loose. If anyone in the Traditionalist camp truly believes they can accept the explanation of the above law as a human law and thus deny the teachings of two ecumenical councils and several popes, they were never Catholic in the first place, only members of a non-Catholic sect.
Canon 22 teaches: “A more recent law given by competent authority abrogates a former law if it expressly orders abrogation or if it is directly contrary to the former law.” The laws and circumstances Traditionalists cite in support of violating the laws governing the papal mandate were long ago superseded by subsequent papal teaching. Cicognani comments: “Revocation is tacit when a new law is issued directly contrary to the former law, or when a new law takes up and readjusts the entire subject matter of the former law. The laws Traditionalists so desperately attempt to escape are those that have been tacitly revoked, such as the one regarding the consecration of bishops. As Revs. Pohle-Preuss write in The Sacraments, Vol. IV: “It matters not what the private opinions of…theologians [are]. It is not the private opinions of theologians but the official decisions of the Church by which we must be guided.” For those claiming there are precedents in church history of consecrations performed without papal mandate during an interregnum, and this because they are only disciplinary laws, we have this quote from Pope Pius XII’s Ad Apostolorum Principis, entered into the Acta Apostolica Sedis and therefore, as Pope Pius XII’s Humani Generis teaches, it is binding on all Catholics:
“We are aware that those who belittle obedience in order to justify themselves with regard to those functions which they have unrighteously assumed defend their position by recalling a usage which prevailed in ages past. Yet everyone sees that all ecclesiastical discipline is overthrown if it is in any way lawful for one to restore arrangements which are no longer valid because the supreme authority of the Church long ago decreed otherwise. In no sense do they excuse their way of acting by appealing to another custom, and they indisputably prove that they follow this line deliberately in order to escape from the discipline which now prevails and which they ought to be obeying… The faithful are bound by the duty of hierarchical subordination and true obedience not only in matters which pertain to faith and morals, BUT ALSO IN THOSE WHICH CONCERN THE DISCIPLINE AND GOVERNMENT OF THE CHURCH.”
This excerpt from Pope Pius XII’s constitution does not apply just to China, but the the entire universal Church; otherwise it would not be binding on all Catholics. That its application is limited is merely a pretext these Traditionalist devils use to do precisely what Pope Pius XII is describing above. it was already condemned by Pope Pius IX in Quartus Supra in 1873:
“Nor can the Eastern Churches preserve communion and unity of faith with Us without being subject to the Apostolic power in matters of discipline. Now such teaching is not only heretical after the definitions and declarations of the Ecumenical Council of the Vatican on the nature and reasons for the primacy of the Sovereign Pontiff, but it has always been considered to be such and has been abhorred by the Catholic Church. It is for this reason that the bishops of the Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon, openly declared the supreme authority of the Apostolic See in their proceedings; then they humbly requested Our predecessor, St. Leo, to sanction and confirm their decrees, even those which concerned discipline.”
And in this same pope’s Quae in patriarchatu, September 1, 1876 we read:
“In fact, Venerable Brothers and beloved Sons, it is a question of recognizing the power (of this See), even over your churches, not merely in what pertains to faith, but also in what concerns discipline. He who would deny this is a heretic; he who recognizes this and obstinately refuses to obey is worthy of anathema,” (to the clergy and faithful of the Chaldean Rite).
And then we also have this from Pope Pius XII:
“Clearly no sincere Catholic can refuse to accept the formulation of Christian doctrine more recently elaborated and proclaimed as DOGMAS by the Church, under the inspiration and guidance of the Holy Spirit with abundant fruit for souls, because it pleases him to hark back to the old formulas. NO MORE CAN ANY CATHOLIC IN HIS RIGHT SENSES REPUDIATE EXISTING LEGISLATION OF THE CHURCH TO REVERT TO PRESCRIPTIONS BASED ON THE EARLIEST SOURCES OF CANON LAW” (Mediator Dei, Nov. 9, 1947; also entered into the Acta Apostolicae Sedis and therefore blinding).
And lo and behold, we find this same teaching on discipline and human authority expressed in one of the canons listed as dogmatic by Abp. Cicognani:
“As the successor to the primacy of St. Peter, the Roman Pontiff has not only the primacy of honor but also supreme and full power of jurisdiction over the universal Church in matters of faith and morals as well as in those pertaining to the discipline and government of the Church throughout the whole world. This power is episcopal, ordinary and immediate and extends over each and every church and over each and every pastor as well as over the faithful and is independent of all human authority.”
This is taken directly from the Vatican Council. The Pope is supreme in jurisdiction in matters concerning the discipline and government of the Church. If we fail to believe the ecumenical councils and their thundering anathemas; if we refuse obedience to the Roman Pontiffs necessary to our salvation to believe the hirelings entered in by the door, who have no claim to our allegiance, how can we save our souls? They lie when they say they exist to assure the salus animarum, suprema lex — the supreme law; the eternal salvation of those who follow them, for they refuse to obey the popes and demand obedience to them. Those woefully ignorant of their own faith in violation of Divine law not only have the duty to rightly inform themselves, the have the obligation to eject these imposters from their midst for the sake of their own souls and the souls of these pseudo-clerics as well. This in accordance with Canons 2259, 2294 and other canons.
Can they invoke epikeia in light of the above as they so basely claim? Rev. Lawrence Joseph Riley, quoted above on epikeia, writes in his dissertation: “The Church as it was constituted by Christ (Pope, bishops, priests) “was established forever as a hierarchico-monarchical society… to remain unchanged until the end of time… Nowhere in revelation is there any evidence of any intention to permit exceptions to — or changes in — this constitution in future history by the use of epikeia or on any other basis. Men are free of course to found other churches, differing in constitution and nature… but such churches are not Christ’s… To maintain that Christ had some intention for the future, contrary to that made manifest in the actual establishment of His Church, is a refusal to believe in the efficacy of the divine promise that Christ would be with the Church unto the consummation of the world; it is a denial of the [four marks] and indefectibility of this divinely established institution” (p. 330-31).
And that Traditionalists have definitely founded their own Church outside the one, true Church of Christ cannot be denied. So if there are those who still believe that they are not committing HERESY by denying that they must obey papal disciplinary laws, or that epikeia can excuse them from obedience to the binding decrees of the Roman Pontiff, given the above, they had better think again.
I am sure there are those who will accuse me of acting as Scrooge and destroying the ChristMass spirit by posting this blog. Let them think what they will. But whatever they may think, let them also remember that Truth was born on ChristMass Day, and as we kneel at the manger offering our gifts we lie to Jesus and to ourselves if we pretend to adore Him while honoring and “obeying” those who do not and could never speak in His name. Truth is one, error is many and it can be found only by the same arduous journey the Wise Men undertook to bring their gifts to Him. This ChristMass, promise our Lord you will make that journey. That is all I ask; truth is the only gift worth giving. It is my gift to you, if you have ears to hear and love Christ Himself enough to seek it.