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'Not a crisis of Faith?' You've got to be kidding!
The Daily Catholic ^ | April 24, 2002 | Michael Cain

Posted on 04/24/2002 9:49:53 AM PDT by NYer

April 24, 2002
volume 13, no. 78

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'Not a crisis of Faith?' You've got to be kidding!

While few expect a miracle from Rome, we can always pray for a miracle from God!

by Michael Cain , editor, The DAILY CATHOLIC
    "While many posture that getting rid of the cardinals who have covered-up is not the answer, I ask what is? Do you expect them to be true to their word that they have reformed? Their track record shows this is a lie. It won't happen. Old habits die hard and these die hards are not going to yield their cush positions of power for doctrine. That would be showing a tendency towards holiness and we can see that is foreign to so many in power today. Yes, yes, they'll talk about it, they'll make platitudes that we all must strive for holiness, but they do not show it, and, more importantly, they do not show the faithful the way to it!!!"

    They say 'no news is good news,' but in the dire circumstances Modern Rome and the American Catholic establishment find themselves with klieglights and cameras buzzing, every word recorded, every step shadowed by the international mainstream media during these last few days in Rome where the sexual abuse scandals vie for the headlines with the critical Mid East powderkeg and the superfluous Robert Blake murder fiasco, not to mention good ol' bad guy Osama bin Laden.

    And speaking of evil men, what is the difference between one who would mastermind the destruction of 3,000 innocent people or one who would be party to the destruction of that many souls ten-fold and more? Both are terrorists and both must be identified and removed. The cells of terrorism must be rooted out whether they are in the caves of Afghanistan or the dorm rooms of seminaries. Either way its terrorism and the terrorism of sin is ravaging the faithful today.

    Therefore, in a dry run for an inevitable coming Conclave, the media has set up shot in and around St. Peter's, focusing the world's attention on Rome this week. Yesterday was the first day of two-day talks. One day down, one day to go and no progress in the talks between Rome's heavyweights from the Pope to Cardinal Angelo Sodano to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger to Cardinal Darios Castrillon Hoyos and Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re. John Paul II's statement released yesterday and provided by Inside The Vatican Magazine, shows a mollification of the problem and a slight slap on the collective wrists of the limp-wrist hierarchy that has allowed homosodomy to spread its deadly cancer of the soul beneath the surface.

    Something will come out of these meetings, but will it be strong enough? Not on your life. As I've said often, they've created their own monster and the Pope does not have the courage to quell the appetites of these misguided prelates who have so ravaged the faithful by their inattention and cover-ups. No quid pro quo will exonerate these men in scarlet and purple and black. They have placed more attention on diversity and inclusiveness rather than on the welfare of souls. The Pope, were he truly the shepherd everyone expects him to be, would send a solid message by removing every last one of these men who failed miserably in their appointed roles as shepherds - men who betrayed the trust of their flocks. Words mean nothing. Action must be taken. Yet the cardinals jockey for the best position to spin their ambiguity further. Anyone tuning in to the news for interview snippets from any of the principals of these meetings on the sexual abuse problem, will see these men who are supposed to 'get it' don't. Every time they open their mouths, that's evident. And everytime they do, they lose more respect.

    No one can tally the number of Catholics who have lost their faith because of this crisis of trust. No one can gauge the numbers except through the collection plate. Sad isn't it? Do you think the Cure d'Ars kept track that way? No, he knew every soul and they were countless who waited in line for hours for the blessing of confessing their sins to this holy French Saint. Any you can think of today who would do that? Heavens, it might conflict with their golf schedule or aennegram study or lodge meeting with the local Shriners, all in the spirit of ecumenism. Don't they know that's anathema?!?

    The truth is they really don't know their faith that well and have deceived so many through this spiritual 'Peter Principle' club of pompous men who are afraid to speak the truth, afraid to stand up and be counted, afraid to offend their 'good ol' boys' clan of cardinals and bishops. And these are men we are to listen to for spiritual guidance? Believe me, folks, we are in the greatest crisis the Church has ever faced and leadership is the reason. Or should I say lack of leadership?! I return to what I emphasized in past editorials. As in any organization, the buck stops at the top. So also in the Church. Despite the hierarchical nature, the man who sits on the throne in Rome must be held accountable. It's insanity not to. But his response is a weak reply to these prelates who have so betrayed Christ and His Church.

    Platitudes ooze from the Vatican this week as, on cue, the cardinals put on their 'humble' hats when the cameras start rolling. In the meantime, what are they saying? The same ol', same ol'! Going back to medieval times the Church has had disciplinary measures in place for such abuses, definitely not of the perverse nature that visits us today in our deplorable society, but nevertheless, it wasn't something that 'caught the church by surprise.' That 'we didn't realize' line is a lot of bunk. As late as 1961 specific directives were released by the Vatican on how exactly to deal with those who preyed on the innocent. But to enforce those directives would have curtailed the progressivists' agenda for 'modernizing the Church' - for ransacking holy Mother Church - the spotless Bride. The Bride is still spotless, yet hidden. As we noted in our editorial Monday, she is exiled, unable to show her boundless beauty to the world for she has been stowed away. In her stead, the charlatan courtesan has usurped her place. That, and that alone, is the chief cause that has produced the disastrous effects we face today both in society and the church of Modern Rome.

    Wouldn't you love to be a fly on the wall this week at the Vatican? Wouldn't you love to be a fly on the wall anytime inside those hallowed halls? If you were you'd probably be shocked and dismayed, disillusioned enough to even lose your faith. If not totally anchored in the True Faith, that would be easy and it sadly is happening today. The answer, then, is to make the Faith more widely known - its simplistic, beautiful tenets. Do not coat them with relativism, ambiguity and complications. That only makes one's understanding murkier and bogged down in the mud of Modernism - a heresy that is widely spread today from Modern Rome to the local pulpits and back.

    The problem is that Catholics, for the most part, are no longer truly Catholic. Oh, in name, yes, but in their practice and beliefs they more closely resemble a Protestant or Agnostic than a Roman Catholic. Probably even sadder is that they don't have a clue how far they have veered from Catholicism. That's how thorough the indoctrination of aggiorniamento, a "New Springtime" and "Civilization of Love" and "Globalization of the People of God" have permeated and given so many amnesia when it comes to Catholic Truth. This can be seen in the teachings that have been emitted and omitted from Rome since John XXIII to today, from the deliberate dumbing down of the faithful to the outright embrace of the world, the flesh and the devil. How then, can these bad trees and its branches that most of the prelates and clergy have sprouted from, possibly produce good fruit? Impossible if you subscribe to all Jesus taught, especially His words in Chapter Seven from Saint Matthew.

    Therefore, a radical about face can be the only course in order to return to the good tree if these leaders have any hope of yielding good fruits. While many posture that getting rid of the cardinals who have covered-up is not the answer, I ask what is? Do you expect them to be true to their word that they have reformed? Their track record shows this is a lie. It won't happen. Old habits die hard and these die hards are not going to yield their cush positions of power for doctrine. That would be showing a tendency towards holiness and we can see that is foreign to so many in power today. Yes, yes, they'll talk about it, they'll make platitudes that we all must strive for holiness, but they do not show it, and, more importantly, they do not show the faithful the way to it!!!

    In a story that broke as we're writing this, the New York Archdiocese is now in damage control, trying to apologize for the honest remarks from the pulpit by Monsignor Eugene Clark, acting rector of St. Patrick's Cathedral during Cardinal Edward Egan's absence this week in Rome. Msgr. Clark told it like it is when he identified the problem as homosodomy in the clergy. Pedophilia is the myth. It is priests who have practiced sodomy in seminaries as liberally as a spring break college student on a binge, and who have hidden this unforgivable sin beneath the cover of the priesthood.

    These are not good men gone bad, these are bad men trying to lure others into sin. Cardinal Francis George, OMI turned heads yesterday when he called men like that, priests, no less - "moral monsters." Why do you think he waited until now to admit that? Because now it is politically correct to fess up, to be righteously indignant. Why? Because the media has latched on like leeches and won't let go until they taste blood. It's the way of the world today. And what happens when they trip on their tongues? Or don't trip on their tongues, but trip on their denials? Msgr. Clark is an example of this. Evidently afraid of the power-brokers, he now is trying to retract what he boldly said, claiming he was "misconstrued and misinterpreted." Why did you say it, Msgr. if you didn't mean it? I, for one, am tired of priests and bishops afraid to stand up for the truths, more afraid they will offend man than God. The Bride of Christ has no room for these tainted, compromising would-be grooms who couldn't even be considered for the role of Best Man. No, they need to be put out into the alley ways as Christ said about the Wedding Feast. In their place? As Our Lord said, go out into the hiways and biways and invite those in who would follow Him uncompromisingly.

    Where then to begin? First, Cardinal Bernard Law must go. No excuses despite the Cardinal Law Fan Club led by a contingent of one in Ray Flynn, former ambassador to the Vatican and mayor of Boston. He chooses to protect the man who allowed the scandal and boldly, flatly has the gall to say, "there is no crisis of Faith." What does he think the Faith is? And don't give me this rationalization which he constantly offers on the talking heads programs on cable news that the Catholic Church is no worse than other religions. There is only one true religion and to compare yourself to false standards is to sell out. For 40 years we've been sold out. No more. No more protecting the guilty. Therefore Cardinal Roger Mahony must go as well. If you wonder why, just read Wolves in Shepherd's Clothing. Want more? If we're talking zero tolerance then Egan and Keeler can say sayonarra. So who to replace them?

    Not a lot out there to choose from is there, folks? The best potential shepherds are already shepherding, striving to be orthodox and weed out abuses, trying to protect the faithful and instruct them in the true tenets of the Faith. But you most likely haven't heard of them because the current crop of 'sheep herders' have banished these good priests to obsolete areas hoping they will fade away into the oblivion of the hinterlands of each diocese. It happens in practically every see from sea to shining sea. It's the modus operandi of the 'Peter Principaled' who are impaled on the shards of political correctness, flailing about in their own ineptitude. Therefore, those who are the bishops of today are, for the most part, the movers and shakers of Modernism. There are a few who strive for orthodoxy, but even they have compromised somewhat in their waffling on certain issues. That would be Archbishop Charles Chaput, O.F.M Cap. of Denver and Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz of Lincoln, Nebraska. Bruskewitz would fit nicely in Bean Town for who better to lay the law (no pun intended) down on progressive 'Catholics' and their idols Ted Kennedy and John Kerry than this fiery prelate who took on Call To Action and We Are Church and never blinked? Yes, it would be interesting who would convert who when it came to the stubborn, liberal-minded Massachusetts 'Catholic' Democrats. I'd be willing to bet on Bruskewitz!

    Then you have New York. Yes, Egan is less than two years in that position, but face it, has he made a difference? Is not the stench of the cover-ups he left in Bridgeport, Connecticut making New York smell even worse? An ideal replacement would be Bishop John J. Myers, recently of Newark; before that Peoria, Illinois. They've often said if it'll play in Peoria, it could play on Broadway. He could definitely navigate that jump. Newark has softened the shock for the big Apple. He's ready.

    That leaves, for now, one of the largest Archdioceses in the land - the vast Los Angeles See. Talk about walking into a hornet's nest. And speaking of nests, what do you do with that gigantic, hideous mausoleum Mahony is building for himself on Temple in downtown LA? I'm sure it is not something that would thrill Archbishop Chaput - soon to be Cardinal Chaput - if the Pope has an ounce of common sense left. But Chaput's appointment as the new shepherd would truly put him and his flock to the test. Can't you just see him trashing the heretical Gather Faithfully Together? Can't you just see Hollywood Dems scrambling to explain their pro-abort stance and tripping all over their collective lying tongues? Can you say "Latae Sententiae"? and say it loudly and publicly! St. John's Seminary in Camarillo would get a whole new makeover. Gone would be the pink, in place would be orthodoxy. What a concept!

    Those are a few measures that would help in stemming the abuses and curbing the runaway Modernism that even Rome has embraced. Now they are feeling the effects of being used by the charlatan courtesan. Like so many johnny's - use 'em and lose 'em. But that is the fate of those who give credence to the world, the flesh and the devil. The garlic of resistance can only be found in the virtues, only in the unadulterated Truths and Traditions of Holy Mother Church, not in the adulterous anathemas of ecumenism, humanism and Modernism. Until Modern Rome realizes that and gives way to Eternal Rome, the church of today will continue to be considered the brothel of the sodomites. Sad. Tragic. But, then, don't worry, according to Ray Flynn and several cardinals, this is not a crisis of Faith. I wonder what kind of crisis it is. 'Not a crisis of Faith?' You've got to be kidding!

TOPICS: Activism/Chapters; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: cardinal; catholic; catholiclist; egan; law; mahony; pope; scandal; vatican
Another Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz BUMP!!
1 posted on 04/24/2002 9:49:54 AM PDT by NYer
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To: Catholic_List, Dr. Brian Kopp,
Sounds like a plan.
2 posted on 04/24/2002 9:50:57 AM PDT by NYer
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To: NYer
Mike at Daily Catholic is a good man, I have talked to him via phone several times, and he has posted some of my writings on his site. But there is a line between traditional Catholic and schismatic traditionalist Catholic that must not be crossed in the current crisis, and lately unfortunately Mike has been crossing that line.

Otherwise this article is sound advice.

3 posted on 04/24/2002 10:31:29 AM PDT by Brian Kopp DPM
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To: NYer;history_matters
In a story that broke as we're writing this, the New York Archdiocese is now in damage control, trying to apologize for the honest remarks from the pulpit by Monsignor Eugene Clark, acting rector of St. Patrick's Cathedral during Cardinal Edward Egan's absence this week in Rome. Msgr. Clark told it like it is...

A bump for Monsignor Clark!

4 posted on 04/24/2002 10:47:04 AM PDT by ELS
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A BUMP for Msgr. Clark, and a caution with regard to the Daily Catholic ...
5 posted on 04/24/2002 10:57:29 AM PDT by history_matters
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To: Dr. Brian Kopp
I agree with you.
6 posted on 04/24/2002 12:14:14 PM PDT by Cicero
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To: Dr. Brian Kopp
For us protestants out here, could you explain the difference between traditional Catholics and schismatic traditional Catholics?

Other than the fact this fellow called my faith "false," I think he's made many salient points.

7 posted on 04/24/2002 6:26:26 PM PDT by Endeavor
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To: Endeavor
For us protestants out here, could you explain the difference between traditional Catholics and schismatic traditional Catholics?

Traditional Catholics are those that adhere to the centuries-old practices of the Roman Catholic Church that were in effect until the disastrous Vatican II liberalizations of the 1960s. Sedevacantists are traditional Catholics who have declared that the Pope's chair is vacant and no longer consider him head of the Church - they are viewed as schismatics. Some may consider other traditional Catholics who feel that the Pope has been wrong about the changes he has allowed, but still consider him head of the Church, are viewed as schismatics by some out of ignorance and false information, but they are dead wrong.

8 posted on 04/24/2002 6:35:38 PM PDT by Orual
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To: Orual
So, are the schism Catholics pro-life? And are they loyal to the Church teachings on birth control?
9 posted on 04/24/2002 7:05:44 PM PDT by Endeavor
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To: Endeavor
Sorry, make that schismatic Catholics - wasn't trying to offend, and I do appreciate your taking time to explain.
10 posted on 04/24/2002 7:12:30 PM PDT by Endeavor
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To: Endeavor


Traditionalism: True and False

To be a Catholic is to accept Tradition, both Divine and ecclesiastical. Divine or Sacred Tradition comes to us from the apostles and is built up, by way of dogmatic development, by the Magisterium (teaching office) of the Church, exercised by the Apostolic College (the bishops in union with the Pope) or the Pope personally. Sacred Tradition requires the adherence of divine and Catholic faith and only the Magisterium has the supernatural charism to authentically interpret its content.

Ecclesiastical traditions, on the other hand, are not part of the Catholic faith but of the way of life of the Church, as determined by legitimate authority, in various ages and places. There is an ecclesiastical tradition for each of the over 20 Rites and Churches which make up the communion of the Catholic Church (Roman, Byzantine, Maronite, Ruthenian etc.). The ecclesiastical tradition of the Roman Church (the Latin Rite) encompasses such matters as the ceremonies and prayers of the Mass and sacraments (in those things not determined by Sacred Tradition), the Liturgy of the Hours, penitential discipline (laws of fast and abstinence), forms of sacred art and sacred music, clerical discipline (such as celibacy) and many other matters and practices that are mutable and which can thus be changed by the supreme ecclesiastical authority.

We can also speak of pious traditions which arise from the popular piety of the People of God. They often have some foundation in Sacred Tradition or ecclesiastical tradition, without having the authority of the Church behind them. An example might be the practice of sprinkling some holy water when taking it from a font as an act of suffrage for the Poor Souls. As expressions of the personal faith of the believer they have great value.

So being traditional in any of these senses is good not bad, as long as our practices are rightly ordered. Pious traditions must be subject to ecclesiastical tradition, which in turn must be subject to Sacred Tradition. It all cases it is the Magisterium of the Church which decides what kind of tradition it is and what the implications for Catholic faith and practice are. Today there are many who describe themselves as traditional Catholics in that they adhere to the Magisterium, as well as to ecclesiastical and pious traditions which many others seem to be abandoning. Such piety is the piety of the saints and doctors of the Church.

False or exaggerated traditionalism. Unfortunately, some today arrogate judgement in these matters to themselves. This can be out of ignorance, certainly. Taught a certain way as a child it seems to such persons that ALL the practices of the faith are of equal gravity. No distinction is made between teachings and practices based in Sacred Tradition and those of ecclesiastical origin or from popular piety. Any change, no matter how minor, in the familiar practices from before Vatican II is seen as a mortal wound in the fabric of Catholicism. Generally all that is required is education in the true theological and historical facts of the case.

A spiritually more dangerous variety is the intellectualized traditionalism of those who have rejected Vatican II, or some portion of it (such as liturgical renewal or ecumenism). This rejection is rationalized as obedience to "Tradition" as they understand it. The bishops and even the Pope are seen as being unfaithful to the deposit of the faith (at least in practical matters), with only the traditionalist remnant upholding to true Catholicism. Pope John Paul II has referred to this error as Integralism. This name was first used earlier in the century by the popes to describe  certain super-orthodox persons who rejected any accommodation with intellectual movements outside the Church and who took it upon themselves to ferret out heresy and  heretics within it. Such traditionalism, however, is really a distrust of the Magisterium and its ability to authentically deal with, and occasionally incorporate, new intellectual currents and movements  into the Church's life. Only by guarding and holding fast to the Integral Faith is one safe, rather than by holding fast to the living Magisterium. Had this been the attitude of the Church through the centuries we would not have the neo-Platonism of Church Fathers such as St. Augustine or the Aristotelian approach of Doctors such as St. Thomas Aquinas, among others. Both these "views" belonged "to the world" before they belonged to the Church. But under the guidance of the Magisterium they were "baptized" and have been of great value to the Church.

It should be noted that in the area of liturgy the Holy See has recognized the legitimate aspirations of those who love the Rites of the Roman Church as they existed before the Second Vatican Council. This was manifested by the apostolic letter Ecclesia Dei granting the privilege of using the Missal of 1962 to those who desired it and who accepted the Vatican Council and the authority of the Holy See over the Liturgy. The Pontiff encouraged the bishops of the world to be generous in granting this privilege in their dioceses to those who wish it.

There is, however, a false traditionalism which does not remain in communion with the Magisterium. Divine Revelation and the documents of the Church make it clear that only the Magisterium can ultimately judge these matters and that the salvation of the faithful does not depend on having to privately interpret the Sacred Tradition or govern oneself in ecclesiastical affairs.

Mt. 16:18
And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.

Lk. 10:16
Whoever listens to you listens to me. Whoever rejects you rejects me. And whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me."

First Vatican Council on Papal Primacy
We renew the definition of the Ecumenical Council of Florence, by which all the faithful of Christ must believe "that the Apostolic See and the Roman Pontiff hold primacy over the whole world, and that the Pontiff of Rome himself is the successor of the blessed Peter, the chief of the apostles, and is the true vicar of Christ and head of the whole Church and faith, and teacher of all Christians; and that to him was handed down in blessed Peter, by our Lord Jesus Christ, full power to feed, rule, and guide the universal Church, just as is also contained in the records of the ecumenical Councils and in the sacred canons.

... the faithful of whatever rite and dignity, both as separate individuals and all together, are bound by a duty of hierarchical submission and true obedience, not only in things pertaining to faith and morals, but also in those which pertain to the discipline and government of the Church spread over the whole world, so that the Church of Christ, protected not only by the Roman Pontiff, but by the unity of communion as well as of the profession of the same faith is one flock under the one highest shepherd. This is the doctrine of Catholic truth from which no one can deviate and keep his faith and salvation." [Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Vatican Council I, DB1826-1827/DS3059-3060]

First Vatican Council on Papal Magisterium
To satisfy this pastoral duty [primacy], our predecessors always gave tireless attention that the saving doctrine of Christ be spread among all the peoples of the earth, and with equal care they watched that, wherever it was received, it was preserved sound and pure. Therefore, the bishops of the whole world, now individually, now gathered in Synods, following a long custom of the churches and the formula of the ancient rule, referred to this Holy See those dangers particularly which emerged in the affairs of faith, that there especially the damages to faith might be repaired where faith cannot experience a failure. The Roman Pontiffs, moreover, according as the condition of the times and affairs advised, sometimes by calling ecumenical Councils or by examining the opinion of the Church spread throughout the world; sometimes by particular synods, sometimes by employing other helps which divine Providence supplied, have defined that those matters must be held which with God's help they have recognized as in agreement with Sacred Scripture and apostolic tradition. For, the Holy Spirit was not promised to the successors of Peter that by His revelation they might disclose new doctrine, but that by His help they might guard sacredly the revelation transmitted through the apostles and the deposit of faith, and might faithfully set it forth. Indeed, all the venerable fathers have embraced their apostolic doctrine, and the holy orthodox Doctors have venerated and followed it, knowing full well that the See of St. Peter always remains unimpaired by any error, according to the divine promise of our Lord the Savior made to the chief of His disciples: "I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and thou, being once converted, confirm thy brethren" [Luke 22:32]. [my emphasis]
So, this gift of truth and a never failing faith was divinely conferred upon Peter and his successors in this chair, that they might administer their high duty for the salvation of all; that the entire flock of Christ, turned away by them from the poisonous food of error, might be nourished on the sustenance of heavenly doctrine, that with the occasion of schism removed the whole Church might be saved as one, and relying on her foundation might stay firm against the gates of hell. [my emphasis, DB1836-1837/DS3069-3070]

1983 Code of Canon Law
Can. 331 The bishop of the Church of Rome, in whom resides the office given in a special way by the Lord to Peter, first of the Apostles and to be transmitted to his successors, is head of the college of bishops, the Vicar of Christ and Pastor of the entire Church on earth; therefore, in virtue of his office he enjoys supreme, full, immediate and universal ordinary power in the Church, which he can always freely exercise. [canon 218 of the 1917 Code of Canon Law]

Can. 333
1. The Roman Pontiff, by virtue of his office, not only has power in the entire Church but also possesses a primacy of ordinary power over all particular churches and groupings of churches by which the proper, ordinary and immediate power which bishops possess in the particular churches entrusted to their care is both strengthened and safeguarded.
2. The Roman Pontiff, in fulfilling the office of the supreme pastor of the Church is always united in communion with the other bishops and with the universal Church; however, he has the right, according to the needs of the Church, to determine the manner, either personal or collegial, of exercising this function.
3. There is neither appeal nor recourse against a decision or decree of the Roman Pontiff. [canons 218, 228 of the 1917 Code]

Whatever good, therefore, false traditionalism might seem to do in preserving the faith is undone by the attitude toward papal authority that it engenders by its overt and sometimes bitter criticism. This "fidelity" then becomes a "trap," one which seems to offer security but instead offers only the security of one's own judgment and one's own will. Instead Catholics are willed by Christ the security of a living connection with Him through His Vicar. The texts of Vatican I cited above show that the purpose of the Petrine office is precisely to maintain a unity of faith, discipline and hierarchical communion that reflects in the world the unity of the Kingdom founded by Christ. Those who misinterpret the faith as presented by the Second Vatican Council and the recent Popes, or who through a spirit of disobedience violate the liturgical or others norms of the Holy See, distance themselves from Peter (in some degree). This is true for those who "hold the faith" in their own way on the right, as well as for those who "progress" in their own way on the left.

On the other hand, as St. Thomas teaches concerning scandal, those who adhere to the good do not falter, nor are they scandalized into rebellion themselves by those who do stumble [ST q43, a5]. This good of the unity of faith, of the discipline of the sacraments and of hierarchical communion, is obtained by adhering steadfastly to the Pope and thus to remain "one flock under one highest shepherd" (Vatican I).

Unfortunately, we see that while in Christ's time Jesus Himself was the skandalon or stumbling stone upon which Israel was broken, today in the New Israel of the Church that "scandal" is given by Peter. We must therefore ask ourselves which character in the drama of the Passion are we: Judas (who betrayed our Lord), Peter (who relied on his own strength), John (who remained close out of love), Thomas (whose faith was shaken by doubts), Mary (whose total faithfulness and love merited her the highest participation in the mission of Her Son), the women (who sought to comfort the Shepherd), the priests and lawyers-theologians (who thought only of their own prerogatives), the soldiers (who were "only following orders"), or Pilate (whose human respect exceeded his respect for the truth). Something can be learned from all of them, but the principal lesson, I believe, is to have more loving adherence (piety),  rather than less (impiety), to the teaching, sanctifying and governing decisions of Christ's Vicar.

Finally, recalling the dream of St. John Bosco who foresaw our times, we know that those who remain in the barque of Peter with the Eucharistic and Marian Pope will be secure, whereas as those who act independently, even if on the winning side, risk being swamped. This may apply to men of good will in other religions, but it probably also applies to those in the Church who do not fully embrace the teaching and discipline of the Roman Pontiff, but want instead to decide for themselves the direction of the Church (i.e. be their own pilot). They do so at their own risk.

Answered by Colin B. Donovan, STL

Back to Expert FAQ


11 posted on 04/24/2002 8:29:29 PM PDT by Brian Kopp DPM
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To: Endeavor
So, are the schism Catholics pro-life? And are they loyal to the Church teachings on birth control?

Yes, the Sedevacantists that I mentioned are loyal to all the teachings of the Church. There are some groups such as married Catholic priests (they have a web site) who are proscribed from performing any ministerial duties, but for a price will marry couples - either of which have been divorced or married two or three times. They also will perform the ceremony in any place the couple wishes, such as on the beach. These ceremonies are not recognized by the Church as valid, neither are the priests.

12 posted on 04/25/2002 5:05:18 AM PDT by Orual
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