© Copyright 2009, T. Stanfill Benns (This text may be downloaded or printed out for private reading, but it may not be uploaded to another Internet site or published, electronically or otherwise, without express written permission from the author.)
Certain Traditionalists appear to be mesmerized by intrigue and suspense. For over two decades they have been following the perpetually evolving tale of “Cardinal Giuseppe Siri, pope in bondage and exile.” This fiction unfolds very much like any other soap opera and also like these serial tales, it keeps its followers coming back for more. In fact the very same story was circulated about Paul 6 in the 1970s, serving as a prelude to the “mystical appointment” of the Palmerian pretender pope, Clemente Dominguez-Gomez. (This is something that the younger crowd, still children in those days, may not even know.) Sadly, the Siri fiction trades on the hope of those following this fairy tale that there indeed is a painless and thought-free solution to the crisis in the Church and all they must do is accept it, without looking too closely at the facts. The privileged members of this “hidden” Church, dependent on the news of its actual workings from those “in the know,” must find the truth quite boring by comparison.
For those who do choose to check out the facts in this case, it soon becomes apparent that the “evidence” Siri promoters present as positive proof is fatally flawed. The “Siri facts” they expect inquirers to believe — inquirers referred to as “lunkheads” by one Siri researcher — somehow keep changing. Independent fact-finding easily confirms that Siri promoters did not even know the true identity of the senior conclave official on which their entire premise is based. That premise is: a) that Siri was elected, not Roncalli; b) that “white smoke,” (initially white streaked with grey, which later turned black, indicating that the necessary 2/3rds plus one majority had not been achieved) was sent up as a “sign” that Siri was elected; c) that Siri was prevented from accepting and threatened with death and the death of innocent Catholics if he made his election known and d) that the official who relayed this information to one “Prince Chigi” was none other than a “Msgr. Santoro,” who Siri chroniclers report told Chigi he must get the “white smoke” information to Vatican Radio immediately. Really?
The problem is, Msgr. Santoro was the chief conclave official at the 1939 election of Pope Pius XII; Msgr. Alberto Di Jurio was the senior conclave person officiating at Roncalli’s “election.” This is a matter of historical fact, documented in the Acta Apostolica Sedis and reported in newspapers written at the time of the 1958 election. So how could Santoro be said to have told Chigi any such thing? Chigi himself explained the problem with the smoke, a malfunction accredited to the stove used to send up the signal, at the time of the election. This malfunction was mentioned in later works on Roncalli, but is dismissed by Siri supporters as part of the “conspiracy” to hide the fact that Siri was actually elected. And once the conspiracy card is played, all bets are off and anything goes. Everything contrary to the “facts” of the case as stated, whether these facts are true or not, is dismissed as the work of enemies, and an enemy is anyone who dares to prove they have erred. This is true not only of the Siri bunch but of Conclavists and Traditionalists generally. Much like republicans and democrats, the various Trad groups forever butt heads in true partisan style. Discover an error and it is seldom addressed, far less corrected. And this is true regardless of whether the hole in the boat sinks their arguments or not. They proceed full steam ahead and even step up their pace with every error discovered and every point made by the opposing side. They bank on the fact that they have spun an appealing and even irresistible tale, one that those buying into their nonsense will be loathe to abandon. And amazingly many remain enthralled even in the face of compelling evidence to the contrary. But this cannot make Siri pope, and it does not satisfy the rules laid down for presenting evidence that will allow those truly searching for the truth to arrive at the necessary certainty.
Although the philosophical system of St. Thomas Aquinas has been recklessly redefined by those outside the Church, Scholastic theology remains the same today as it was at the close of Pope Pius XII’s reign. It is a system of deductive reasoning from the truths of faith as defined by the continual magisterium and the various discussions of scholastic theologians. Much space has been dedicated on this board to the necessity of proceeding from scholastic principles, so there is no need to belabor this point. Needless to say, those promoting Siri as pope have not proceeded from scholastic principles. Private prophecy, media hype and other secular proofs do not appeal to the authority of the Church teaching throughout the ages, (unless one wishes to include the testimony of heretical NO “authorities” as Catholic). The determination of who is the true Pope lies demonstrably in the realm of dogmatic facts. It therefore clearly lies outside the matter of merely circumstantial evidence, since it must be determined by and be in agreement with dogma. While circumstantial evidence is always an adjunct to such inquiries, it can scarcely be used as the basis to determine the value of doctrinal matters themselves.
St. Thomas clearly taught that theology and philosophy are two separate sciences, “yet…they agree. They are distinct because…philosophy relies on reason alone [while] theology uses the truths derived from revelation, and also because there are some truths, the mysteries of Faith which belong [only] to theology. They must agree because God is the author of all truth, and it is impossible to think that He would teach in the natural order anything that would contradict what He teaches in the supernatural order. The recognition of these principles is the crowning achievement of Scholasticism,” (Catholic Encyclopedia, Vol. XIII). The two elements must be joined, then, in order to make sense out of any situation, They must be joined using the reasoning process — logic and common sense — where the actual circumstances of the matter are concerned. But the final determination can only rest on that evidence required and mandated by the Church Herself. If we apply logic to the Siri situation, things simply do not compute. That Siri was Pope for 30 years, and never made this known, all the time publicly appearing as a functioning and faithful member of the Novus Ordo church, is absurd. It is theologically impossible and reason immediately detects this.
When a few true priests yet existed to opine on the Siri matter, they were all in favor of investigating the “possibility” that “recent papal conclaves involved irregularities.” (Ya think?!) They lambasted all others trying to do responsible research, and threw their weight behind Gary Giuffre and those funding him. One priest even warned against following “gurus” possessing Gnosis-like “secret knowledge,” or those who “take their cues from dubious apparitions and revelations…false mysticism in general.” And yet these are the very things that have emerged from what this priest described as the “responsible and serious scholarly study” of Mr. Giuffre. If priests themselves could not even manage to judge these things from the Church’s own teachings and practices, and themselves erred in a conspicuous way by supporting those who ignore these very teachings, why hasn’t anyone questioned this? The errors in Giuffre’s study make it incumbent on those wishing to sort this out to not only ask questions but to demand answers based solely on Church teaching. After examining what constitutes evidence, discrepancies existing in Giuffre’s arguments and those of others, from the beginning, will be examined.
Evidence and its worth
Giuffre says he possesses declassified U.S. government documents proving conclusively that Siri was elected in 1958. But others have been unable to locate these same documents. It hardly needs saying that the collusion of various British and U.S. government agencies with the NO church and especially with Giovanni Montini (Paul 6) — during and shortly after World War II and up to the present, as demonstrated in various modern historical works — place these declassified documents in serious doubt. While Can. 1814 states that civil documents are to be presumed genuine unless the contrary is proven by evident arguments, it would seem that the basis of such an argument can be found in the proofs of Montini’s covert operations, unknown to Pope Pius XII; also his suspected collusion in poisoning the pope in 1953. It also should be noted that the Freedom of Information Act did not come into existence until after Vatican 2. Therefore it seems highly improbable that the true Church would willingly accept as solid evidence documents proceeding from espionage and intrigue, especially when such documents can easily be the product of falsehood, forgery and elicitation by force or sheer chicanery.
So obviously such documents cannot be used as canonical proof, especially when they are questionable from the outset. Can. 1813 §1 lists as principle ecclesiastical documents those acts of the Supreme Pontiffs, Roman Curia and Ordinaries. The judge in an ecclesiastical court must pronounce in favor of the party whose contention is proved by these first-class public documents, upheld by the court. While reliable public documents may be admitted into evidence as stated in Canon Law, (Can. 1813, #2), documents of this nature are admissible only in the proper forum, i.e., in ecclesiastical courts over which the Roman Pontiff ultimately presides. The judge must pronounce in favor of the party whose contention is proved by papal and Curial documents verified by the court. Moreover, as in any civil court, wherever there exists considerable lag time between the crime and the presentation of the evidence and/or testimony of the witnesses, the evidence loses much of its value. Nearly all if not indeed all the principals in Siri’s purported election and the subsequent issue of these civil documents are now deceased and any remaining evidence is merely secondhand or amounts to hearsay. And in reality, only a general or at the very least an imperfect council could decide the true status of a serious claimant to the papacy. Such a claimant would need to be at least a priest who has not compromised the faith, elected by eligible cardinals or remaining faithful bishops. A general appeal to “Catholics,” who are not competent judges in such matters, or to the civil courts will not suffice.
Cases are thrown out of civil courts on a daily basis for lack of sufficient evidence and general councils often have deposed papal claimants as antipopes. Even the aspiring politician and Siri supporter Jim Condit has admitted that the evidence for Siri as Pope would not withstand the scrutiny of a judge and jury. So it scarcely would fare any better in an ecclesiastical court. Another problem Siri supporters ignore is the trustworthiness of their sources of information, (Giuffre, the U.S. government, Peter Tran Van Khoat, now a proven con-man who was never even a priest; certain dignitaries in Rome). As a schismatic, the supporter of a Church not in communion with the Roman Pontiff, and someone who has taken funds he did not use for the purpose intended, Giuffre’s testimony would be useless in an ecclesiastical court. Even Hutton Gibson, who funded Giuffre’s book presenting the case for Siri’s election, could not vouch for Giuffre. The July, 2005 issue of Gibson’s The War is Now describes an unfinished book (14 years in progress) and clearly registers Gibson’s misgivings about the Siri “papacy” and Giuffre’s recourse to questionable priests, even those ordained in the new rite, at St. Jude’s Shrine. But here even Gibson does not go far enough.
Gibson does not accept the Church’s teaching on jurisdiction, which would forbid even those ordained in the old rite functioning after the death of Pope Pius XII from ministering to the faithful. Peter Tran Van Khoat was one of those “priests” who once said Mass at St. Jude’s. Heir apparent to the Siri “legacy,” Khoat claimed he was ordained in 1967 by a bishop who could not grant him jurisdiction, since the usurper Paul 6 could not transfer such jurisdiction to the bishops. Later it was discovered he ran a secret business empire and was married with children (see here). Therefore Khoat was incapable of administering the sacraments because he was a lay person. And he was one of Giuffre’s major “go to” authorities.
To summarize this section, do those researching Siri’s “election” really think that the conspiracy they claim prevented him from reigning openly as pope simply blew up overnight? Do they not realize that for years this conspiracy had operated covertly within Rome itself and was poised to seize power the minute Pius XII breathed his last? So how do they think that “declassified documents” would ever be the equivalent of those documents issuing from the Holy Office, (when it really was the Holy Office), since these documents carry the greatest weight?
Which conclave: 1958 or 1963?
The major mix-up mentioned earlier concerning who was truly the senior conclave official at the 1958 election is enough to place the entire Siri affair in question. But even before this grave error was revealed, Siri supporters changed their minds on dates. And before one can even begin to make an analysis of the situation, it would need to be known which conclave allegedly elected Siri, and what circumstances during this conclave point to his supposed election.
1.) The original date for Siri’s election, provided by Giuffre, was the 1963 conclave. Abbe Henri Moreaux of France first suggested the 1963 date in an article published in the April, 1989 edition of Dan Jones’ Sangre de Cristo Newsnotes, Moreaux’s original article having appeared in 1984. In his “Keys of This Blood,” Malachi Martin also gives Siri’s election date as June of 1963. If 1963 is the correct date, Siri already had participated in the election of antipope Roncalli. The cardinals that participated in this election according to “Cum ex” could not have validly designated him. The smoke incident places Siri at the 1958 election, or rather is used to claim he was elected in 1958. Ugo Groppi and Julius S. Lombardi provided an alternative explanation for the white smoke that issued in the 1958 conclave without the usual announcement a pope had been elected. These authors state that an individual phoned Osservatore Romano from the “the Loggia delle Dame above the entrance of the bronze portal leading into Vatican City…From this vantage point it would not have been impossible to hear, if the voices were loud enough, something being confidentially discussed behind the windows of the conclave enclosure. The news of Cardinal Ottaviani’s “election” was sent out by the press agencies but then prudently stopped,” (“Above All A Shepherd”). It appears that this episode may have been “borrowed” by Siri proponents and used as the basis for the Siri theory, Siri’s name being substituted for Ottaviani’s. So why was no one investigating the election of Ottaviani? Why Siri? All this proves is that election irregularities probably existed in 1958 and that whatever the nature of these irregularities were, they did not point to Siri.
The 1963 date, however, magically changed to 1958 after “Will the Catholic Church Survive…?” proved that John 23 was a heretic in March, 1990, and it became apparent to Siri supporters that those promoting a “papal election” would see it through. It is not inappropriate to comment here that several Traditionalists at that time themselves suggested that the sudden push to prove Siri was pope, despite his demise in May of 1989, was adversely impacted by the approaching “election.” Not that it was not proper and necessary for Traditionalists to oppose this false election, for it certainly was. But in dismissing it out of hand, they jumped from the frying pan into the fire. The resultant haste that subsequently fueled the gathering of the documentation necessary to prove Siri was a possible pope-elect may account for many mistakes that were made in its collection, including the melodramatic ad in the Houston paper summoning Siri’s “cardinals and Cardinal Camerlengo.”
If “Cum ex…” had been used as a standard for determining Siri’s orthodoxy (and it was readily available); if all the same criteria used to declare the V2 usurpers as antipopes had been used to determine Siri’s status and eligibility, even after his alleged 1958 “election,” wouldn’t this alone have disqualified him? Of course it would have; for both the 1958 election (after the fact) and the1963 election. And now we have discovered a second reason why the Siri crowd, after running a series of articles in Sangre de Cristo Newsnotes for over a year claiming Siri was elected in 1963, suddenly did an about face and changed that date to 1958. It then was necessary for them to backtrack and re-confabulate. For with the 1958 date, there was no question of Siri’s acceptance of John XXIII as a valid pontiff, no signing of documents at the first session of the false V2 council to deal with; Siri’s “line” could be said to continue untainted directly from Pope Pius XII. Siri supporters even admit Roncalli was a false pope, as they would need to do once the date was changed, to prove their man “pope.” No, there was something else at work here, something not yet understood.
2) There can be no doubt that Siri participated in the election of the proven heretics, John 23 through JP2, AS A CARDINAL. He thereby disqualified himself from voting in any subsequent elections or presenting as papabile at said elections, (Can. 2391 #1). It was no secret that Pope Pius XII labeled Roncalli ‘s Vatican file with the tag “Suspected Modernist,” as reported in “Pope John XXIII,” by Paul Johnson and elsewhere. And Siri could have separated himself easily from Roncalli without fear of censure, since “Cum ex…” states that those who separate from the obedience of such heretics will not be penalized and may even call upon the secular authorities to unseat the usurper. So why did Siri not cite this document and proceed to inveigh upon any sympathetic civil authority? It is reported that he had at his beck and call a potent coterie of “wealthy industrialists and…powerful right-wing elements,” which he mysteriously failed to mobilize in defense of his supposed papacy and to publicly condemn the false VII doctrines he at first protested, (“Vatican II,” Xavier Rynne, pg. 571). Why would a Cardinal not know of “Cum ex’s” existence, when it is the basis for some of the most important legislation in the Code? And if the document was not known to exist in 1958, why did Siri not jump at the chance to use “Cum ex…” once it was discovered in the early 1970s?
Gary Giuffre’s bosom buddy, Dan Jones knew it existed in the late 1970s and Giuffre’s boss, Hutton Gibson, also knew the bull existed in the early 1980s. So since this is the case, why wasn’t Siri familiar with this document? Is it possible that, as Veritas stated in its Feb.-March 1977 “A Packet from Mexico” issue, Rev. Saenz already had spoken with Siri? “We did hear that Fr. Saenz went several times to Rome to talk with the older Cardinals familiar with Montini’s…background and who are in the sensitive position to legally assemble a conclave to depose the usurper Paul 6,” Veritas staff wrote on page eight of this issue. “But Fr. Saenz was not successful in his effort.” In a flyer issued by “Catholics Forever” to promote Rev. Saenz’ book “The New Montinian Church,” the editor also verified Saenz’ contact with these “older cardinals.” If Siri truly had been chosen in any of the elections that followed the death of Pope Pius XII, wouldn’t Rev. Saenz have relayed this somehow? Would it not have prevented him from writing his “Sede Vacante”? Or was there some reason that certain Traditionalists wished to distance themselves from Rev. Saenz-Arriaga?
Which Khoat story: 1988 or 1989?
Peter Tran Van Khoat initially told Gary Giuffre and certain clerics at St. Jude’s Shrine that Siri denied three times that he was pope during a visit to Rome Khoat made in the spring of 1988, where he met with Siri. Yet in a conversation with Jim Condit a year later, at one time published online, Khoat told Condit that not only was Siri elected, but that he had been elected in 1958. How convenient that these claims are made after Siri’s death, and also after the publication and circulation of “Will the Catholic Church Survive…?” Khoat also apparently made claims of some sort that the Church either would soon have or already had a true pope issuing from Siri’s “line.” This claim insinuated, as evidenced by the advertisement placed in the Houston Post in the summer of 1990, that Khoat was the “Cardinal Camerlengo” or in charge of a new election (or was at least a cardinal), and was summoning and did summon other “Cardinals” for a supposed “election.” This is verified by the publication and circulation of Khoat’s “New Event of Man’s History” In Dan Jones Sangre de Cristo Newsnotes, July 1990 issue. So even though Siri’s “line” had not been officially established as valid, according to the teachings of the Church, and the details not even released that would establish it, the “Siri fact” was “proven.”
One witness priest overseas, pointed to by the Siri camp itself, said that Siri declined his election because he did not feel worthy to follow in Pope Pius XII’s footsteps. This strengthens the evidence that Siri declined and did NOT ever accept the election. But Khoat later denies this, and based entirely on his say-so, without any signed and witnessed documents from Siri, on the strength, instead, of hearsay testimony and rumor, the Siri theory became what it is today. In 20 years it has remained only an unsubstantiated theory simply because the many contradictions surrounding its major premise cannot be explained: that Siri’s confirmed election and his resultant acceptance of that election, which alone could make him pope, actually occurred and can be proven to have occurred. Also, that he was able to accept such an election as an indisputable member of the Church. His supporters adamantly refuse to consider Siri’s orthodoxy in relation to his “election,” even in light of irrefutable proofs. The very criteria which allowed Traditionalists to clear the field for Siri — the arguments used initially to prove the V2 popes invalid — were never applied to Siri himself. Siri’s denials of the faith are easily accessible via the Internet, for those who really seek the truth. The fact that he signed V2 documents alone, the factor used in judging the orthodoxy of every other V2 cardinal or bishop, is proof enough. In fact far from being orthodox, Siri was definitely a cardinal of the Novus Ordo church, not the Catholic Church. Siri’s “supporters,” (or at least those who support his shadowy and equally dubious “successor”), are truly chasing phantoms, and to prove this, the following is provided.
Siri and the Nazi “ratlines”
It was well known in Roman circles that Siri hated Communism. But did this hatred propel him in directions that placed him in collusion with Giovanni Montini?
In the last days of WWII, Cardinal Maglione, in charge of Pontifical assistance to refugees died and was replaced by Montini. Montini then entered into cooperation with one Bishop Alois Hudal, of Austria, a Nazi sympathizer stationed in Rome. In his 1976 book Romanische Tagebucher, Hudal admits that he helped war criminals, but never claims he did so with Pius XII’s knowledge or encouragement. While, many writers have alleged that Hudal and Pius XII were close, Hudal complains about Vatican officials in his book, Pius XII included, accusing them of favoring the Allies. According to the blog Commonwealth, the Vatican has always acknowledged that “Bishop Alois Hudal of Austria, a Nazi sympathizer stationed in Rome, and a Croatian priest named Krunoslav Draganovic, helped some war criminals.” But there is no evidence that Pius XII knew about or cooperated with these activities. “It is this Austrian bishop who, more than any other figure, did so much to give the Catholic Church its reputation as a Nazi conduit,” (“Hunting Evil,” by Guy Walters). “The good news for Catholics,” Walters said on his website in August 2009, “is that Pius XII must be treated as innocent.” Walters makes it clear, however, that he personally believes the Pope knew the ratlines existed.
The Croatian, Mgr. Krunoslav Draganovic and Hudal were the main players in the rat line operation, a series of tunnels that reportedly ran right up to the vicinity of the Vatican. Draganovic was a chaplain at the Jasenovac concentration camps in Croatia, where many atrocities took place during the war. According to John and Mark Aarons in their work “Unholy Trinity,” where they quote the Nazi Ladislaus Farago, “It was Montini who allowed Hudal access to Vatican passports and other identity and travel documents, which he then used to aid his Nazi friends…There is some circumstantial evidence in the American diplomatic records to support the claim that Montini was deliberately aiding Hudal’s Nazi-smuggling…” (Ibid.; pp. 34-35.)” Nazi war criminal Walter Rauff was a close friend of Hudal’s. The Aarons report that writers for the French magazine “Cercle Noir” (with ties to the Priory of Zion, according to authors Lincoln, Leigh and Baigent) link Rauff to “Archbishop Giuseppe Siri of Genoa…a key player in the Nazi smuggling operation.”
Rauff was probably the moneyman behind the smuggling endeavor, which was directed by British Intelligence operatives James Angleton and John Dulles. One of Siri’s secretaries is said to have helped fund the smuggling operation. But the Aarons’ speculate that this only augmented the funds Rauff already had in his possession from various money laundering and counterfeiting operations. The Aarons write: “Some of the most wanted Nazi war criminals passed from Rauff in Milan, to Bishop Hudal at the Anima in Rome and then on to Archbishop Siri in Genoa. Here they boarded ships and left for new lives in South America…” (Ibid.; pp. 39-40.) Clearly the operation was one arranged by Montini with the help of British Intelligence, who he worked for throughout WWII according to many different sources. This operation later resulted in a suit against the Vatican by Holocaust survivors to recover money made on properties owned by Croation Jews, sold for profit by the Nazis, with the profits then deposited in the Vatican Bank.
The publicity about the ratlines and this lawsuit is what fueled the accusations against Pope Pius XII concerning collaboration with the Nazis. And yet the blame for this cooperation with Hitler’s former SS rested instead on Montini, Hudal, Siri, and a pack of criminals, surprising bedfellows to say the least. Is it possible that Siri’s powerful right-wing industrial friends were Nazi sympathizers, that their friendships were forged, perhaps, during and after the war? Why would Siri have agreed to become involved in such an enterprise? And why was he involved with Montini on any level if he was a true “Traditionalist”? It should be duly noted here that if Siri researchers use declassified and like documents to support his election, they also must consider equally these documents on the existence of the ratlines, a fact NO officials have already confirmed.
Siri was deposed for heresy “pre-election”
At the beginning of the false Vatican II council, Siri and 18 others addressed a letter to John 23 “expressing their ‘disquietude over false doctrines’ being aired at the council,” (Vatican Council II, Xavier Rynne, pg. 125). Eventually five bishops withdrew their signatures from the letter and Siri was among the 14 who remained. Nothing, however — no standing protest, no withdrawal from participation in the council, no public outcry by this group — ever marked Siri and his conservative faction as truly orthodox and willing to defend the Faith at all costs. In fact, at the council’s conclusion, despite Siri’s known old-school stance, Siri and his friend, fellow conservative Ruffini sat quietly and submissively at the right hand of Paul 6 as the antipope spoke to the Italian bishops during a semi-private audience. “His talk…dealt principally with the attitude [the bishops] would be expected to adopt after the council was over…It was obvious from the Pope’s tone that he expected compliance also from [Siri and Ruffini]…” (Rynne, pg. 571). Another Italian bishop (Carli), an aide to Card. Ottaviani, had threatened mutiny at one of the closing sessions, but was silenced by the soothing words accredited to Siri in an earlier conference a week prior to the bishop’s meeting. Siri reportedly told a priest at this conference that the council decisions “are not definitions; they will never bind us.” According to Rynne, even after the council closed Carli remained distressed, threatening to light himself on fire Buddhist-style in protest to all that the council destroyed.
But Siri remained silent. As mentioned above, friends in high places would have supported him had he really wished to challenge the powers that be. And his stated assumption that the faithful would not be bound by Vatican II decrees later was exploded by Paul 6. In a general audience Jan.12, 1966 Montini announced that the Council’s teachings always enjoy at least “the authority of the supreme ordinary Magisterium. This ordinary Magisterium, which is so obviously official, has to be accepted with docility and sincerity by all the faithful, in accordance with the mind of the Council on the nature and aims of the individual documents.” Siri had to be aware that a group of bishops had rejected Paul 6’s interdenominational prayer service with all council attendees at the end of the council as heresy and communicatio in sacris. He was most likely aware of the comment made during the council by Msgr. Antonio Piolanti, Rector Magnificus at the Lateran University, that “there are rationalist theologians going about Rome seducing innocent foreign bishops,” or the comment Piolanti made to one of his classes: “Remember, the pope can be deposed if he falls into heresy,” but Rynne dismisses this remark as a joke. Time magazine’s “Man of the Year” article for Jan. 4, 1963 reported both these comments, so they were widely read.
Siri had support; he had allies to rely upon both before and after the council. Siri knew, but he failed to deliver; and so did his constituents. And finally there is the matter of Pope Pius XII’s failure to name a Cardinal Camerlengo, the head cardinal who, after the death of the pope organizes and calls the next papal election. Siri supporters have seized upon this fact as an indication that Pius XII, whose last appointed cardinal just happened to be Siri was signaling the world that Siri was his choice as a successor. But this does not follow. The best indication of who will succeed the Pope is whoever reigns as Vatican (Pro-) Secretary of State. Rampolla was Leo XIII’s secretary, and was very nearly elected. Pacelli served in this position under Pope Pius XI. Montini was Pope Pius XII’s secretary until his dismissal in 1953, and there have been other instances of this throughout history. None of the biographies written on Pope Pius XII name Siri as his successor-in-grooming, or for that matter mention Siri at all. Paul Murphy, who wrote the biography of Pope Pius XII’s dear friend and assistant, Sr. Pascalina, relates that the nun discussed potential successors of Pius with Cardinal Spellman the day of Pius’ death. Siri was never mentioned as a possible successor, nor Ottaviani, although Ruffini, Siri’s friend, was mentioned as a possibility. Sr. Pascalina had no use for Ruffini, who was known to be the intimate friend of Don Calgaro Vizzini, head of the Sicilian Mafia and one of the most powerful men in Italy, (Murphy, pg. 233).
Siri’s name is nowhere to be found in the book. Sr. Pascalina did not feel that anyone could replace Pacelli. Murphy himself noted that certainly no successor could “be trusted to carry on the strictly doctrinaire ecclesiastical policies of Pius XII,” (pg. 283). A generation raised on fairy tales with happy-ever-after endings would understandably hope that despite all indications to the contrary, the knight in shining armor soon will arrive to rescue them from the dungeon and restore the kingdom. Siri’s “successor” is either waiting in the wings, prepared to appear on cue, or Siri theorists will revert to Bd. Anna Maria Taigi’s revelation that Sts. Peter and Paul will appoint the true Pope following the three days darkness. It is even possible that Bp. Pintonello, who some maintain participated in the election of Victor von Pentz, (Linus II) will be identified as the man appointed “pope” by Siri before his death. Siri supporters will sweetly explain that Pintonello resigned as “pope” in favor of Linus’ 1994 election and then consecrated Linus bishop following his election. The clue to the solution of this puzzle lies in Hutton Gibson’s comment concerning Giuffre’s refusal to consult Countess Elizabeth Gerstner concerning the likelihood of Siri’s election in 1958. Gerstner worked in the Vatican prior to Pope Pius XII’s death, founded the Una Voce movement in Europe and later orchestrated Linus’ election, (after requesting a copy of the book “Will the Catholic Church Survive the 20th Century?”)
Canon 1325, 1917 Code: “The faithful are bound to profess their faith publicly, whenever silence, subterfuge or their manner of acting would otherwise entail an implicit denial of faith, a contempt of religion an insult to God, or scandal to their neighbor.”
Cum ex Apostolatus Officio, para. 6: “If ever at any time it becomes clear that any…Cardinal, or likewise any Roman Pontiff…before their promotion or elevation…has strayed from the faith or fallen into heresy…his promotion or elevation shall be null, valid and void.”
It is clear from what is presented below that Joseph Siri publicly accepted John 23 and all the other antipopes as true popes, thereby committing public heresy and incurring deposition from his office as cardinal, (Can. 188§4). Therefore he was never “pope” himself, nor could he even have been considered papabile. Remember that one instance of heresy is enough to incur deposition and ipso facto excommunication.
“Holy Ideals and Celestial Presence,” by Card. Joseph Siri, Rome 1965: “The great mission assigned by Providence to John XXIII of holy memory…was that of bringing back among men a more comprehensive, brotherly and trustful opening in their relationships with each other…He, the Pope, always spoke of faith, hope, humility, obedience…He put up with honors, but only in as far as they were attributed to Christ’s Vicar…”
“In God’s Name,” by David Yallop: “It is a matter of record that Siri presided over the nine-day funeral observances or “Novemdiales” for antipopes Roncalli, Montini and Luciani. Yallop notes in his work: “During the series of nine memorial masses [for Paul 6]…homilies were delivered by, among others, Cardinal Siri. The man who had blocked and obstructed Pope Paul at every turn pledged himself to the aims of the late pontiff.”
“The Catholic Counter-Reformation in the 20th Century,” No. 304, December 1997:”If one were to identify in the early ’60s one event – and one only! – that marked the approach of the spiritual chastisement predicted in the third Secret, it would clearly have to be the opening speech of Vatican II, which assigned the Council as its programme the Reform of the Church herself, rather than the correction of the errors and faults of her members. The reaction of the renowned Cardinal Siri – or, to be more exact, the absence of his reaction on this occasion – clearly illustrates the failure of the hierarchy predicted in the third Secret. On the following day in fact he wrote in his private diary, “I did not understand very much in the Pope’s speech. In the little I did understand I found an excellent opportunity of making a great act of mental obedience… This evening I carefully analyzed the Pope’s speech so that I might align [sic] my way of thinking with that of the Vicar of Christ.”
“The Church, the Council and the Unconscious: How Hidden Forces Shaped the Catholic Church,” by James Arraj: “Cardinal Giuseppe Siri wrote in his diary of the need to study the ‘historical propaedeutics’ of the errors that are resurfacing. He suggests not only looking at what Benigni had to say about them, but adding reflections on ‘the pathology that affects theological studies when various methodologies derived from idealism, historicism, rationalism are introduced. For modernism is creeping in and is supported by historical criticism.’” And when, we would like to know, did Siri ever stand up and denounce this “modernism”?!
“Twelve Council Fathers,” by Walter Abbot, S.J., (quoting Siri):
“It may take 50 years before the full achievements of the Council are discerned.” (Is this the true but falsely re-written statement made by Siri and generally circulated by his supporters that it would take 50 years to undo the work of the council?!) “But certain fruits are evident already, and they are important. First, the Church sees more clearly now the work that is cut out for it for the next 100 years. And, as the Holy Father himself has indicated, the approach is a pastoral one…It was a wise and provident thing that we began the work of the Council with the liturgy. It struck a very positive note. It went to the heart of things.”
Whether Siri was elected or not, he violated his sworn oath to Pope Pius XII who made him a cardinal. The oath reads: “For the praise of Almighty God and the honor of the Apostolic See, receive the red hat…By this you are to understand that you must show yourself fearless, even to the shedding of blood, in making our holy Faith respected, in securing peace for the Christian people and in promoting the welfare of the Roman Church. In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.” Whether during or after the Conclave, Siri showed himself unworthy of the cardinalate he received. He also, then, would be a candidate considered unworthy for election to the papacy. In his 1939 work “Canonical Elections,” Rev. Anscar Parsons described as unworthy for election those whose lives are “sinful or scandalous.” Violating a solemn oath dependent upon receiving a particular office is definitely scandalous, and is a mortal sin according to Rev. McHugh and Callan’s two-volume work on moral theology. “There is no doubt that a mortal sin is committed when one…unjustly refuses to live up to a sworn engagement made under oath, for this is irreligion and injustice in a serious matter.” This is true especially when it entails the welfare of the entire Church of Christ and the expulsion of a proven heretic.
Cardinal Siri’s non accepto of the papacy, if indeed it ever occurred, may have been the result of force and/or fear. But Siri had sworn to divest himself of this fear and be injured or die rather than damage the reverence owed to Holy Faith and the welfare of the Church. Canon 1317 (1917 Code) states: “The person who has freely sworn to do something is bound by a special obligation of religion to accomplish what he has promised under oath…An oath, taken without violence and deceit, by which a person renounces some private good or favor given him by law itself, must be observed whenever it does not involve the ruin of the soul,” and obviously holding to his oath would have been the only way to prevent the ruin of Siri’s soul. Siri may well have denied his loyalty to the Church of Pope Pius XII and declared his allegiance to the anti- Church in violating his oath. Canon 1321 declares that: “An oath must be strictly interpreted according to law and according to the intention of the person taking the oath — or, if the latter should act deceitfully, according to the intention of him to whom the oath was made.”
There can be no doubt that Pope Pius XII wished to bind Siri absolutely by this oath. Neither, then is there any doubt that if he indeed was elected and chose to remain “hidden” in violating his oath, Siri grossly insulted and denied the “praise of Almighty God and the honor of the Apostolic See.” This being the case, it would seem that he may have committed the most grievous act of treason possible against his own Church, and thereby forfeited his status as a member of that Church. Siri was a Cardinal, and in “Cum ex,” Pope Paul IV holds Cardinals, bishops and priests to a far higher standard than the laity in matters of faith. He cannot be accorded diminished capacity, because in freely surrendering his right to be intimidated by force or fear in his oath to Pope Pius XII, he voluntarily removed this factor mitigating his guilt, (Can. 2199). Canon 2200 states that “Given the external violation of a law, the evil will is presumed in the internal forum.”
Siri was required by Canon Law to establish juridical documentation of his election prior to his death. Such documentation cannot of its nature be kept a secret. According to Giuffre, Siri said he could not discuss the papal elections in question because “I am bound by the secret.” This comment was a veiled indication of the answer to all Giuffre’s research, but it was an answer he did not understand. This is an admission that Siri had participated in the elections only as a cardinal and considered himself still a cardinal, under the obedience of the NO church. All the cardinals participating in the election are bound by the secret save the one elected. Siri was never elected; either that or he declined election and never accepted within the specified time period. Had he indeed accepted, official notice of this would have been made. Woywod-Smith write: “The acceptance of the office and the choice of a name are then certified by document,” (commentary on Pope Pius XII’s “Vacantis Apostolica Sedis”). The pope-elect receives universal jurisdiction upon acceptance of his election and may immediately exercise it. The Church must always establish the personal identity of the new Pontiff and his chosen name, as these constitute dogmatic facts. To date, no pope ever has reigned in secret, unknown to the majority of his subjects, and the history of the papacy is one of persecutions, invasions, captivity, imprisonment and martyrdom.
Something also should be said here concerning the numerous revelations used to support Siri’s putative “election.” Rev. Adolphe Tanquerey writes that the assent given to private revelations is “not an act of Catholic faith but one of human faith, based upon the fact that these revelations are probable and worthy of credence,” (“The Spiritual Life”). Pope Benedict XIV states in his teaching governing beatification that such an assent is to be made “according to the rules of prudence,” for these rules dictate that such revelations are “probable and worthy of pious belief.” These teachings say nothing concerning the actual application of various prophecies to a certain event or individual. Such an application would be prudent only if the individual in question was unquestionably Catholic. If not such application is impossible. To employ the extensive use of prophecy to “document” anything dependent on the laws and teachings of the Church for belief is to circumvent those laws and teachings and make an appeal to the imagination and emotions rather than the intellect. The Church does not condemn the use of intuition in certain matters provided that such a use is secondary to the application of Catholic teachings concerning the faith. But when those norms determining what is to be believed concerning faith have excluded such an application, it is contrary to faith itself to apply them to those who lack it.
Any researcher can make mistakes, even in matters concerning faith. In these times the confusion surrounding the crisis in the Church, the absence of reliable instruction in the faith, differences in language and culture and the false teachings that abound all work against the efforts of anyone seeking the truth. The problem doesn’t lie in making the mistake; the problem lies in admitting and correcting it. Anyone can fall, but not all rise after falling. It is never too late to dust oneself off and stand up, but few choose to do so. Fear of being discredited and losing face are usually the reasons they don’t. They are not valid reasons. We all have an obligation to make the truth known no matter the cost. And we are bound to save others from any errors we may have spread, even if we had no intention to deliberately deceive them. Siri supporters can scarcely condemn the NO on one hand and endorse Siri on the other. Siri was undeniably a part of the V2 church. He had less excuse than even Lefebvre, Thuc or other “bishops” by far for his actions, exceeding them in dignity. Siri’s case was worth investigating, but that investigation has only produced more questions and precious few answers. Pope St. Pius X taught that the assent of Faith cannot rest ultimately on “an aggregation of probabilities,” (DZ 2025). One must be able to arrive at certitude in such a serious matter as whether a man is truly pope. Sadly, the Siri affair has succeeded only in proving that certitude can be reached — certitude that Siri abandoned the Catholic faith long ago.
In unquestionably recognizing Roncalli as pope in his public writings; in delivering Paul 6’s funeral oration and pledging himself to fulfill this antipope’s agenda, long after the destruction in the Church was painfully clear, Siri left no doubt that he embraced the heretical teachings of the false Vatican II Council, the institution of the Novus Ordo Missae and the heretical changes in the rites of the Sacraments instituted by Christ. Roncalli’s insertion of St. Joseph in the Canon violated the Divine Traditions of the Church. The insertion of “for all” into the Canon likewise violated these Traditions, contradicted the Council of Trent and falsified the very words found in Divine revelation as defined by a Council of the Church. That a true Pope, bound to guard the flock against the very wolves that consumed it, could somehow consider his own life more precious than his lambs’ is not only preposterous — it is contrary to Divine revelation. Was it not Christ Himself who told us: “The good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep,” later fulfilling this prophecy with His Passion and death? And did He not also predict that once the pastor has been stuck the sheep would be scattered? We will know the voice of the Good Shepherd when he comes. Until then, we can only pray and watch.