“Time To Be Done With Vatican II…”?

“Time To Be Done With Vatican II…”?


The headline is taken from the closing words in the above video talk: “Time to be done with Vatican II. Time for the Catholic Church to become Catholic again.”

And so say all of us… unless you wish to disagree?

Comments (126)

  • John Kearney


    Here is my problem. I know couples who practice NFP, but I do not know any who use it as an alternative to contraception. They do not use contraception because they accept the teaching of the Church that it is WRONG. There is an awful lot of judgementalism going on here. In having sex they do nothing that is sinful and I am afraid you are judging them as sinful. May I also say that the couple I know who practice NFP already have an average of four children. Turning to Salvation outside of the Church I was not brought up to believe this. At school in the forties I was taught about the Baptism of Desire. I believe that the pushing of this by the SSPX is a reaction to the Modernists in the Ecumenical Movement who certainly accept there is no need for the Catholic Church to get to heaven. When Popes have uttered this in the past it was usually against groups of people who had fallen into heresy and were leaving the Church. Certainly to abandon the Church is a grave step for they will have chosen of their free will to do so but they will not find salvation in any other Church but the Catholic Church. A narrow interpretation of Outside of the Church there is no Salvation would lead us to say that only Catholics can go to Heaven. I believe God is a just God so this is not acceptable. It would mean a sort of predestination. So Protestants can get to Heaven but…and I repeat….but only through the Graces bestowed on Mankind by the Catholic Church. Every Mass pours grace into the world, every sacrifice we make pours grace into the world and the Holy Spirit bestows this grace where someone outside the church is worthy. This saving Grace cannot be found in Protestant Churches or any other Church so everyone outside of the Church who is saved is saved by the Church. This surely is ib accordance with the justice of God. And to deny this is to say “NO, God is not interested in the Salvation of anyone else.

    August 11, 2015 at 3:53 pm
    • Petrus

      John Kearney This has been covered hundreds of times on the blog.  It is no one’s business to judge individual cases.  However, to use NFP for an extended period, without grave reasons, is not part of Catholic teaching.  

      Sent from my Samsung device

      August 11, 2015 at 4:58 pm
    • Fidelis

      1) you have not quoted from any Church Father who says the words “responsible parenthood” or anything supportive of NFP. There is, however, infallible magisterial teaching about procreation.

      2) Baptism of desire applies to those who were going to be baptised but died before that could happen.

      3) You seem to be in agreement with Catholic teaching that nobody is saved apart from Christ’s Church even if they do not realise it. That only applies to those who do not know about Christ and his Church, not to those who don’t bother or just want to belong to another religion or denomination anyway. The SSPX didn’t make up the teaching extra ecclesia – that’s infallible dogma.

      August 11, 2015 at 6:01 pm
      • Petrus

        Fidelis  Correct.  

        Sent from my Samsung device

        August 11, 2015 at 6:03 pm
  • John Kearney


    That is your teaching and it is not found in any Catholic document. And it does not matter how many times it is said

    August 11, 2015 at 5:21 pm
    • Petrus

      John Kearney.  You are wrong:

      “If there are serious reasons to space out births, reasons which derive from the physical or psychological conditions of husband and wife, or from external conditions, the Church teaches that it is morally permissible to take into account the natural rhythms of human fertility and to have coitus only during the infertile times in order to regulate conception without offending the moral principles which have been recalled earlier” (Humanae Vitae, 16).

      Thus, the same teaching of the Church which condemns the use of the unnatural methods of birth control explicitly approves of the use of Natural Family Planning when there is a sufficient reason to avoid or postpone pregnancy. With its emphasis on the necessity of a serious reason to use even the natural methods, the Church is warning against selfishness in family planning. Sent from my Samsung device

      August 11, 2015 at 5:55 pm
    • Petrus

      John This may also help you to understand this more clearly.

      What is Natural Family Planning (or NFP)?

      This refers to the practice of achieving or avoiding pregnancies according to an informed awareness of a woman’s fertility.

      Is NFP morally acceptable for Catholics?

      NFP is only permitted under certain conditions. In addition, if it is used to avoid children, there must be a serious reason for not wanting to have a child. Without these conditions, it is gravely sinful, as Pope Pius XII said.

      Can you explain this a little more?

      Any act or thing which directly frustrates or stops conception is a serious sin in the eyes of God. This includes all artificial birth control. NFP is not directly sinful because it does not directly frustrate conception. It is not any action or thing. It is simply periodic abstinence; meaning that the married couple refrains from the marital act at certain times. Because of this, NFP must be judged in the same way as abstinence itself.

      How does the Catholic Church judge abstinence?

      When a man and woman marry, they give over to their spouse the rights over their own body to perform the marital act. In a sense, their body no longer belongs to them but to their spouse. Because of this, it is a grave sin for one spouse to deny the other the marital act when it is requested in a reasonable way. This is a grave responsibility for married couples. Abstinence from the marital act then, including periodic abstinence, can only be permitted in certain conditions for serious reasons.

      What are these conditions and reasons which are necessary for a married couple to practice periodic abstinence (or NFP?)

      The first condition is that there must be a mutual agreement to abstain from the marital act. If either spouse is unwilling, the abstinence would be forced. This means that one spouse would deny the other the right which properly belongs to him or her. It would be gravely sinful for the person who denies this right to his or her spouse.

      The second condition is that there must be no danger of either spouse sinning against chastity, either on his or her own, or with someone else. Any serious danger in this regard is enough to prohibit abstinence, whether periodic or complete. God can never justify sin, even to bring about a good effect.

      The simple fact that the two conditions related above do not pose a problem is not reason enough for a married couple to use NFP. There must also be a real and serious reason for doing so. After all, abstinence, whether periodic or complete, is not normal marital life.

      The reasons serious enough to allow the practice of periodic abstinence (or NFP) were given by Pope Pius XII. These reasons do not change with time. They are the following: serious danger of health to the mother, serious problems in the child to be conceived, very serious financial or social condition

      Sent from my Samsung device

      August 11, 2015 at 5:58 pm
  • John Kearney


    Very serious financial or social condition. At the time of Pius XII this presented little difficulty for Catholic couples who were in rented of social housing. With the attack on the family and the attack on living at home mothers through housing shortage and two wages being asked for a mortgage looking after children has become a real problem for parents. Any additional child can put a strain on the family. I think that many famous find themselves in serious financial and social conditions and an extra child can be a threat. Yet I still go back to where the Pope is infallible, I go back to the teachings of the early Church. Certainly obstructing conception was always condemned but there were no mention of planning families. You could say Pius XII has a right to his opinion but in todays world perhaps his opinion would have been different. I certainly do not believe that a family should decide on how many children they will have, but as pregnancies go on they have to be responsible not just for themselves but for the rest of the children.

    August 11, 2015 at 6:33 pm
    • Michaela

      John Kearney,

      So does that mean those who really can’t “afford” more children but accept them in a spirit of reliance on Divine Providence, are “irresponsible”?

      I can never quite follow the logic of the “planned parenthood” mindset especially when those in favour of planned parenthood are Catholics.

      August 11, 2015 at 6:47 pm
      • Petrus

        Well said. 

        Sent from my Samsung device

        August 11, 2015 at 6:51 pm
    • Petrus

      An incredibly crazy post!  After all this time, John, you are still a Modernist. 

      Sent from my Samsung device

      August 11, 2015 at 6:51 pm
  • Muffin Man Returns

    Why is the post-conciliar Church so obsessed with sex?

    They even convened as synod over it. Weird.

    Andy Burnham even says he left the Church over it. Sex sex sex. How facile.

    August 11, 2015 at 6:34 pm
    • Michaela

      Muffin Man Returns,

      Personally, I think the obsession with sex comes from the devil who is trying to destroy the Church.

      August 11, 2015 at 6:48 pm
  • Therese

    While I agree that bishops should be continually reminded of their duty, in all honesty I don’t think it will do a particle of good (except to the faithful who write). If they can tolerate (and by their silence one must assume, condone) a pagan goddess being serenaded in a Catholic church in front of the Blessed Sacrament, they have lost all understanding of the Catholic Faith and have abrogated all responsibility to be faithful shepherds of Christ’s Church. I’m afraid that it is abundantly evident that many of the hierarchy are traitors to the Faith, so it’s no surprise that priests and laymen follow suit. I can understand ignorance; if one hasn’t been taught the Faith there is an excuse; but once clarification and true teaching has been given, for those Catholics – in whatever state of life they are – to ignore the truth, is a sure sign of bad will.

    I am wondering where the usual naysayers are on this thread. Semper Fidelis has appeared but made no comment about the atrocity perpetrated in the video. I would like to know his/her opinion of the blasphemy captured in that “Catholic” church? I’d also like the others who often pop in to argue their own version of the Faith to tell us how they feel about it. What a hope, eh?

    August 11, 2015 at 7:26 pm
    • Nicky

      Hear hear, Therese. Were are all the “faithful” Catholics who attack us and call us all schismatics for defending the old Mass and for sometimes criticising the pope. It’s very interesting that they don’t have a problem with a priest who allows a “hymn” to a pagan earth goddess to be sung in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. I am making the assumption that he did confect the Eucharist, so the Blessed Sacrament really and truly was present, but I don’t know and if he really thinks there’s a goddess out there, maybe I’m wrong to make the assumption.

      August 11, 2015 at 7:56 pm
  • editor

    I thought about launching another thread entitled something like “Time to be done with environmentalism?” But then I thought, what the heck, it’s all tied up with the problem of Vatican II and the “new springtime” sweeping through the Church. If ever a pun came out of nowhere, that’s it! So I decided to post the latest incredible news from the Papa Francis camp here…

    Vatican City, Aug 10, 2015 / 11:37 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis has instituted a new day of prayer and celebration for the Church entitled the “World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation,” to be celebrated on September 1 each year.

    The day of prayer is in keeping with the theme of the Holy Father’s newest environmental encyclical “Laudato Si.” It is also seen as a sign of unity with the Orthodox Church, which established September 1 as a day to celebrate creation in 1989.

    “The celebration of this Day, on the same date as the Orthodox Church, will be a valuable opportunity to bear witness to our growing communion with our Orthodox brothers and sisters,” Pope Francis said.

    He expressed hope that the day could highlight the need for all Christians to work together toward common goals.

    “We live at a time when all Christians are faced with the same decisive challenges, to which we must respond together, in order to be more credible and effective,” he said. “It is my hope that this Day will in some way also involve other Churches and ecclesial Communities, and be celebrated in union with similar initiatives of the World Council of Churches.”

    The day will be an opportunity to reaffirm in Christians their vocation as stewards of God’s creation, to recognize their gratitude for God’s earthly gifts, and to pray for the protection of the environment and pardon from sins against it, the pontiff said.

    The Pope’s environmental encyclical “Laudato Si,” meaning “Praise be to You,” was published in June and took its name from St. Francis of Assisi’s medieval Italian prayer “Canticle of the Sun.” In it, Pope Francis emphasized the need for a human ecology, which emphasizes the human person as the root motivation for care of the environment.

    It is inconsistent, the Pope said in his encyclical, to be concerned about nature without also showing concern for people, especially the poorest and most vulnerable among us, including unborn children.

    “Since everything is interrelated, concern for the protection of nature is also incompatible with the justification of abortion. How can we genuinely teach the importance of concern for other vulnerable beings, however troublesome or inconvenient they may be, if we fail to protect a human embryo, even when its presence is uncomfortable and creates difficulties?” (Laudato Si, 120).

    On the other hand, Pope Francis reiterated in his institution of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation that the care of the environment needs to be a priority for Christians because of their care for the human person.

    “Living our vocation to be protectors of God’s handiwork is essential to a life of virtue; it is not an optional or a secondary aspect of our Christian experience,” he said, referring to Laudato Si 216.

    The Pope expressed his hope that the new day will serve as a call to the faithful to an “ecological conversion” whereby their encounter with the Risen Lord is evident in their care for the world around them.

    “We need always to keep in mind that, for believers in Jesus Christ, the Word of God who became man for our sake, ‘the life of the spirit is not dissociated from the body or from nature or from worldly realities, but lived in and with them, in communion with all that surrounds us.’” (Laudato Si, 216)

    The World Day of Prayer for the Care for Creation is meant to be celebrated “with the participation of the entire People of God: priests, men and women religious and the lay faithful,” Pope Francis said, and should “become a significant occasion for prayer, reflection, conversion and the adoption of appropriate lifestyles.” In ecumenical move, Pope Francis establishes World Day of Prayer for Creation.

    I mean, I ask you, seriously: could anyone, but anyone, make up this stuff?

    August 12, 2015 at 10:41 am
    • westminsterfly

      In response to your comment about the Pope establishing a World Day of Prayer for Creation, if he doesn’t get a move on and perform the Collegial Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, there won’t be a lot of creation left – or many of us alive to pray about it. The writing is very clearly on the wall:- http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3194745/Is-Putin-plotting-war-Europe-Experts-warn-Russia-actively-preparing-conflict-NATO-announcing-plans-4-000-military-exercises-year.html Sister Lucia of Fatima said to Father Fuentes in 1957:- “Tell them, Father, that many times the Most Holy Virgin told my cousins as well as myself, that many nations will disappear from the face of the earth, that Russia will be the instrument of chastisement chosen by Heaven to punish the whole world if we do not beforehand obtain the conversion of that poor nation . . .” All this ‘earth worship’ is a diabolical distraction, an inversion of priorities, and utter insanity. “Those whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad . . .”

      August 12, 2015 at 11:17 am
      • editor


        Agreed. The Pope is focusing on all the wrong “solutions” to world problems right now. Thanks for posting that link – it should push us all to every increased prayer and other efforts to get this pontiff to obey Our Lady.

        I meant to post my comment about the daft world day of prayer for creation at the end of this thread, so am puzzled that i posted it above. Anyway, now that you have responded to it, will have to leave it. I hope my memory’s not about to go the way of my good looks… 😀

        August 12, 2015 at 11:26 am
  • crofterlady


    I hope this hasn’t already been posted!

    August 12, 2015 at 11:15 am
    • editor

      Don’t think so, Crofterlady – looks very interesting. I will watch it later.

      Just thinking, you may not realise it but if you click on “YOUTUBE” on the video, it takes you through to – er – YOUTUBE and if you copy and then paste that link from your browser, the actual video appears here…


      One lives and one learns, Crofterlady. One lives and one learns… 😀

      August 12, 2015 at 11:27 am
      • Neil

        Editor – heads up alert – get ready for another display of ” Cardinal against Cardinal, Bishop against Bishop.


        Rev. E Sylvester Berry (1879-1954) explained in his “Apocalypse Of St. John” that the Church is the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth…….”Now war arose in Heaven, Michael and his angels fought against the dragon and the dragon fought…but he was defeated.” i.e. chucked out of Holy Mother Church and since he can’t defeat the Church from within, off he goes to activate the Antichrist.

        I wonder if the forthcoming synod part 2 could be indicated here. Thoughts

        August 12, 2015 at 5:24 pm
      • editor


        As you say, this is the prophesy of Akita (1973) coming true before our very eyes. This synod in the autumn is going to be a turning point, one way or another. Let’s hope the fact that it is being held in the season which our friends in the USA call “The Fall” isn’t of any real symbolic significance!

        August 12, 2015 at 6:36 pm
      • Fidelis

        That’s a really good conversation – I like those short chats which give a lot of facts. They really do expose the truth about Cardinal Kasper and Pope Francis and the synod.

        August 13, 2015 at 7:31 pm
  • rescuedbymary

    The Trembling Bride

    By insisting that unrepentant adulterers be received into Christian fellowship within the Church, Pope Francis has become a partaker in another man’s sin. Pity. He is doing no favor to the adulterer by patting him on the back on his way to hell. This is not compassion. It’s a damnable lie. And every Catholic knows it. The Church has always taught what our Adorable Saviour taught, that divorce was an adulterous thing to do, and to marry another was a mortal crime that kills all sanctifying grace in the soul from Baptism – A Catholic excommunicates himself from Christ when he marries outside the Church. This is the reality of the situation, I’m afraid: Mark 10:11 – Read it and weep.

    Holy Matrimony is a Sacrament of the Holy Catholic Church as instituted by Christ Himself. The Catholic cleric has no authority over this Mystery. He is merely a witness to what the two say there before him that day, and the witness there to behold it – The two become One-Flesh. The Marriage vow creates a bond that is closer than blood relations…

    Saint Paul follows his Saviour’s example when he hearkens back to the Genesis account to describe the relationship between Christ and His Church; for, “this cause” he says. What cause? For the establishment of the Sacrament of holy marriage, for without it there is no Catholic Religion!

    Genesis 3:15 is often referred to as, “THE PROTOEVANGELIUM OR FIRST GOSPEL.” I’m convinced that Genesis 2:24 is a foreshadowing of the marriage between Saint Mary and Her Joseph, just as sure as Genesis 3:15 is where we see Christ and His Mary.

    From henceforth, Genesis 2:24 will be referred to as, “THE ‘PROTOMARITO’ OR ‘FIRST MARRIAGE.”

    Hail! Full of Grace! Saint Mary was overshadowed by the Holy Ghost to Conceive Her own Saviour, only after She was given to Saint Joseph in marriage. Mary gave Her Immaculate Heart to Her Saviour, only after She had given it in marriage to Saint Joseph. Her first Love was and always will be Saint Joseph!

    There is a dead corpse in the Church, and it stinketh; an adulterous body of death, seated right there before us. Beware. It’s got the Church by the neck, and seeks to suffocate Her to death. And how does the enemy plan to do this? By corrupting the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony and causing the Church to eat damnation to Herself! The Church of God is under an attack the likes of which the world has never seen. Satan would seek to thrust a dagger forthright into the Heart of the Church, in the Sacrament of Her Matrimony, as the knight falls on his own sword. The Father has chosen to use the Bonds of Holy Matrimony as an analogy of His relationship with His Church, and right now, there are few things as important as protecting the integrity of this analogy. What we are seeing the Pope doing, on the other hand, is tearing asunder the Marriage between the Son of God and His bride. If successful, this would be a death blow to the Catholic Faith, for without Holy Matrimony, there is no Marriage Supper of the Lamb!

    The Church, Pope Francis has been quoted as having said, looks upon those in such situations with a maternal heart and, “always looks for the good and the salvation of persons,” in reference to Catholics in adulterous marriages. Really? How can there be any good in an adulterous relationship? What virtue is there in having a commitment to doing something that is wrong even if you do it with another exclusively? Can it really be a good thing to do this forever, to pray while doing it and to do it publicly? What is it that we have here? A commitment to live in gross sin exclusively with another, to do it till death, and pray while doing it. But the Church’s maternal heart can be found in the loving embrace of the tender and desirable arms of the Mother of God – The Holy, Spotless and Lovely Mary. She must be so very beautiful! Oh, if we only knew the love that my Mary has for our fallen hearts, we could not contain it. True devotion to Mary can drive heresy out of the heart of the obstinate Professed Religious heretic, by a recognition of Her Majestic authority to reveal that the Catholic Church is the True Church, and the realization that without Mary the Gospels would have never been written.

    Speaking on behalf of the young children of these adulterous unions, Pope Francis insists that there is an, “urgency of developing in our community a real welcome toward the persons who are living in such situations.” Our, “language and attitudes,” must change with the times as well it seems, as Pope Francis struggles to reconcile the Church’s responsibility to influence parents to raise their children in the faith, while they continue to live in sin, with the clear teaching of the Church that what they are doing is morally repugnant. How can these people ever hope to raise any children in the Catholic Faith if they are committing adultery right in front of their faces every day?

    Their children are illegitimate quite frankly, and he knows this right well. To, “hold them at a distance from the life of the community, as if they were excommunicated,” Pope Francis opines concerning the adulterous couple, will somehow prevent the Church from catechizing the next generation of children of these adulterous relationships which seem to be so prevalent in the Church today. This is a real dilemma for those in the Vatican who have created all these societal anomalies over the last fifty years with their Vatican 2 theology for which they now pretend to offer remedy.

    Pope Francis refers to Pope John Paul II’s, Familiaris Consortio, and demands that we must distinguish between those who caused the breakup of the initial marriage and those who endured it. This sounds so very familiar to the protestant ideology of the “innocent spouse” in such situations. The Pope is here representing Christ as replacing death with divorce, in a roundabout way. But is this not who our Jesus died for? The guilty party? This is nonsense to say that there is an innocent spouse in a divorce who is somehow thereby justified in contracting a subsequent marriage while their true spouse is still alive.

    This is not Catholicism. It is Calvinism, of the worst kind. We don’t execute the adulterer, no, we simply divorce the offending party and then go on to marry another, while the guilty spouse must eek out an existence, void of any hope as one who is “spiritually” dead. After all, we’re Catholics, and would never advocate that mortal sins in God’s Moral Government, should also be capital crimes in the civil law as well! Ladies and gentlemen, what the Pope is doing here is rotten at the foundation. It’s disgusting. No wonder he nearly got a standing ovation, “tell us what we want to hear! Or else!” the crowd jeers…

    Editor: this had to be fairly heavily edited to remove judgments about the pontiff that none of us is permitted to make. Please stick to the issues and ignore any temptation to say more. In fact, it’s always good to keep comments as concise as possible if you want to be sure of others reading what you write. In any case, I won’t be spending time editing future posts. Your posts will be deleted without reading beyond the first offensive remark. The points you make above are, frankly, all the stronger because the personal remarks have been removed. If you want to hurl personal insults at the Pope, go and join the Orange Order. They’re – ironically – in great ecumenical friendship with the hierarchy, at least in Ireland and Scotland, at the moment 😀

    August 12, 2015 at 11:41 am
  • morgana

    As the above comment states the picture of our holy Father the pope is displayed in every sspx church

    August 12, 2015 at 2:55 pm
  • rescuedbymary


    Traditional Alter Boy

    Was the post on the LMS an “over reaction”?

    Recently a couple of priests upon Facebook and their supporters stated that my post was “an over reaction”. My only question is this, how do they defend the Latin Mass society’s 20th commandment?

    It states the following:

    “Thou Shalt Obey and Honor All Superiors Even If the Head is Lucifer”

    This is Satanic, idolatrous, and blasphemous. If my previous post was – as they stated – “An overreaction” then they must explain that very quote. Is it because these people – in whom are probably modernists themselves – do not believe in the devil themselves? God forbid.

    A fellow brother in Christ has also pointed out that the courting video that I will share below has actually played music from the artist, Janis Joplin, the same artist in whom stated

    “On stage, I make love to 25,000 different people, then I go home alone.”

    Is this a good example of chastity and purity as LMS has tried to display within their video? I don’t think so.

    Please say a rosary, a Saint Michael’s Chaplet, and 3 Hail Mary’s for this dear brother and those who work with him. Unfortunately, those within this group are deceived.

    Source: http://blog.lmsociety.com/how-to-counter-the-revolution-part-iii/



    No good deed goes unpunished…

    Editor: would you like to explain this saying because I hear it a lot, from Americans, and it doesn’t make sense – certainly not to a Catholic who knows that NO good deed goes unrewarded. So would you explain it please and thank you…

    August 13, 2015 at 11:56 am
    • rescuedbymary

      I referenced this colloquialism on behalf of Christian Rosario since it was obvious that he, “fit the bill.” Oh, I’m sorry. I don’t want to have to explain myself again…

      Superman is an American Iconic figure that represents all that is good and Chivalrous in the psyche of the American man. This is Christian Rosario. A man’s man…

      The Waiting of Superman video from Chris Daughtry helped me to illustrate my point. The fella going about doing good deeds is met with utter contempt by the very people that he is trying to help, but he goes right on doing the honorable thing anyway, for the greater good. Again – Rosario…


      Christian is being punished for attempting to influence his fellow compatriots to shun evil and seek the good. No good deed goes unpunished, in that it will inevitable be the one who tries to do the right thing that will be demonized by the guilty ones, and the recipients of the heroic acts will feel compelled and obliged to ostracize the good Samaritan in order to, “avoid a black eye”. Ahhhh!, sorry again….

      I better stop..

      August 13, 2015 at 11:21 pm
  • editor

    The following “exclusive memorandum” is from Rorate Caeli – the original written around 40 years ago, would you believe:

    Memo to:
    Fr. Berbusse
    Fr. Bradley
    Fr. Miceli
    Dr. and Mrs. von Hildebrand
    Dr. and Mrs. Marra

    Neil McCaffrey

    Bill asked us to contribute a memo about our discussion. I’d like to offer mine on the subject on which we seemed to show the least consensus, criticism of the papacy.

    1. Scripture makes no bones about the weaknesses of the Apostles and especially of Peter; which in any case were well known to the early Christians, whose faith survived the knowledge. Catholic history, from the age of the Fathers on down, provides us with the model. It was only in the 19th century that some Catholics found it necessary to refine the policies of the Holy Spirit.

    2. The papacy is given primacy from the earliest years, yet there is little evidence of papolatry until we get to the last century. The papolaters of our day would have been regarded with astonishment by the Fathers, by Dante, by St. Catherine, by Bellarmine, by Suarez, by just about anyone you can name.

    3. We can see papolatry in perspective when we put it beside its kin; and we can do that with a flying visit to Moscow or Peking. There too we are allowed to criticize underlings. Pravda does it every day. But the Leader, never.

    4. Those orthodox Catholics who feel most comfortable with the spirit of Vatican II are least comfortable with its encouragement of free speech. John [XXIII] and Paul [VI] told us to relax and speak our minds. Perhaps they meant us to make an exception about speaking of themselves, but in fact they didn’t say so. So their admirers hasten to protect the Popes from themselves. (It seems, then, that popes can make mistakes; but only a privileged few are allowed to notice them.)

    5. In this connection, the favored few allow themselves, and even an occasional unwashed Catholic, one indulgence. We are permitted to disagree with Paul’s Ostpolitik. I haven’t yet been able to divine why the Pope can be criticized about this but not about Church discipline or the liturgy or ecumania. So paradox piles upon paradox. It is possible to make a plausible (though far from compelling) case for papal policy toward Communism. We might argue that the Church expects to outline today’s tyrants; that she is trying to make life a bit easier for Catholics behind the Curtain; that she no longer has any confidence that the West will defend itself; even that life in Eastern Europe is less lethal to souls than life in the West. Whereas I have never heard a good argument for the new liturgy or for the new laxity in discipline. Even the papal cheerleaders can’t muster an argument, for the excellent reason that there is no argument that would commend itself to the orthodox. All the arguments, such as they are, come from the infidels. The papal cheerleaders can only repeat their incantation: obedience, obedience, obedience. By which, ironically, they don’t really mean obedience. They mean something else. They mean: shut up. Is it necessary, in this circle, to spell out the distinction between obedience and calling black white? (By way of underscoring the bankruptcy of papal policy, have you remarked that nobody ever talks these days about devotion to the Mass? There are no more courses on the Mass, no more books, no more private studies so that we might assist more knowledgeably and devoutly. In fact, if you so much as call it the Mass, you are a reactionary. There is a message here for the apologists of the new liturgy. But they don’t want to hear it. That would be “disloyal”. As long as we polish up the reputation of the present Pope, it would seem, we can forget about what happens to the Mass.)

    6. Which leads us ineluctably to the question of charity. I suggest that the papal cheerleaders are pursuing a policy that has the effect of destroying souls, but that masquerades as charity. They want to deny this Pope, or any living pope, the blessing of constructive criticism; and never mind what its absence may do to his soul. Never mind what the spiritual writers tell us about the duty of fraternal correction. Above all, never mind what its absence will do to the Church, and to the souls of the faithful. The caricatures that pass for charity in the Church today may be Satan’s most spectacular recent victory.

    7. We heard a lot of talk Sunday about the importance of faith when authority misbehaves, all of it sound. I think faith involves a corresponding devotion to truth, even unpalatable truth. What does a Catholic have to fear from truth? Shrinking from the truth is an indecent posture for a Catholic. Granted, tender souls need not concern themselves with high policy, and with the blunders of those in authority. That does not exonerate the mature Catholic. Moreover, if nobody concerns himself with these blunders, nobody will criticize them; and evil will flourish, unopposed.

    Not only that, but the papal cheerleaders are naïve if they suppose they can silence criticism. All they succeed in doing is suppressing it among the orthodox. So the only criticism the Pope hears (except for coarse abuse from the unbalanced Right) is from the enemies of the papacy. When we reflect that this Pope is obsessed with public opinion (‘‘human respect,” the spiritual writers used to call it), it becomes double folly to choke off constructive criticism from the loyal orthodox.

    What makes the papal cheerleaders that way? Partly, as we have seen, a counterfeit charity. Partly, I think, an unappetizing elitism that makes them think even mature Catholics can be affected in their faith if they admit to themselves that popes can suffer from the worst human weaknesses. And partly, it is fair to suspect, their own faith may not be seasoned enough to cope with this.

    Neurotics make lousy parents. Sometimes they try to make their child healthy by giving him a germ-free environment. Which only makes him prey to the first disease he encounters. Do the papal cheerleaders really suppose that stomping out every whisper of criticism is going to fortify the faith of the people they presume to speak for? It only leaves them vulnerable. They have built up no antibodies. The intelligent and charitable policy is to show innocent souls that true devotion to the Church, and to the papacy, is not incompatible with constructive criticism; indeed, demands it.

    The answer to immaturity is not perpetual childhood. A better cure is to grow up.

    P.S. What the cheerleaders are really telling us is that this Pope (any Pope?) is too vain, too irascible to accept even constructive criticism; that he is incapable of growth; that he is a crippled human being; and that he must be treated not like a father but like an Oriental despot. Q.E.D. Source

    August 14, 2015 at 11:16 am

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