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 False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law? 
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New post False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
I am not sure how to respond to the argument of Gerry Matatics on since the traditional clergy do not have a mission from the apostolic see administering the sacraments defies divine law. Now on the face this seems to be a pretty extraordinary claim as going to mass on Sunday is a Church law which is based on divine law i.e. The Third Commandment and yet if one is unable because of matters out of their control it is not a sin. However, this is not a perhaps a good analogy because administering the sacraments is doing an action while missing mass is not. Perhaps someone could help me understand in simple terms or point me to a good source. Gerry has put his argument recently on a CD which I am afraid could mislead my own family if I fail to understand how to respond to it. I haven't listen to the CD myself, but have had a debate going with a cousin of mine who has taken the same position. Here is a segment from Gerry's website describing his position and the CD.

"During the crisis and confusion of these prophesied last days true Catholics must avoid, not only the counterfeit Catholicism of the "left" (the new religion of Vatican II) but also the equally counterfeit Catholicism of the "right," represented by those who believe the current situation in the Church gives them carte blanche to become, by hook or by crook, priests and bishops -- in defiance, not only of Church law, but even immutable divine law, which neither "epikeia," a "state of emergency," or "supplied jurisdiction" can successfully dispense the would-be priest or bishop from.

Sacred Scripture, Sacred Tradition, the Doctors of the Church, and the Magisterium all consistently teach that the Church's clergy must always and necessarily possess a divine mission and authorization in order to legitimate, validate, and make salvifically efficacious their priestly activities.

Since the clergy of such unauthorized groups as the SSPX, SSPV, CMRI et al, lack such a mission, these men are therefore NOT priests of the Christ's one, holy, Catholic, and apostolic Church, but merely the priests of various man-made traditionalist sects. As such, they are off-limits to true Catholics, upon peril of our eternal salvation. Our most controversial CD ever!"

I would really appreciate some help!

James


Wed Jan 22, 2014 2:47 pm
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New post Re: Flase Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Here's an article that might help:

http://www.cmri.org/02-tradpriests.html


Wed Jan 22, 2014 7:36 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
James Schroepfer wrote:
"During the crisis and confusion of these prophesied last days true Catholics must avoid, not only the counterfeit Catholicism of the "left" (the new religion of Vatican II) but also the equally counterfeit Catholicism of the "right," represented by those who believe the current situation in the Church gives them carte blanche to become, by hook or by crook, priests and bishops...


James, see if Gerry wants to answer this: "During the crisis and confusion of these prophesied last days true Catholics must avoid, not only the counterfeit Catholicism of the "left" (the new religion of Vatican II) but also the equally counterfeit Catholicism of the "right," represented by those who believe the current situation in the Church gives them carte blanche to become, by hook or by crook, self-appointed prophets such as Gerry."

Half joking and all serious, of course.

James Schroepfer wrote:
-- in defiance, not only of Church law, but even immutable divine law, which neither "epikeia," a "state of emergency," or "supplied jurisdiction" can successfully dispense the would-be priest or bishop from.


Except that Gerry hasn't clearly stated his major premise, nor proved it. He just asserts that it is so.

James Schroepfer wrote:
Sacred Scripture, Sacred Tradition, the Doctors of the Church, and the Magisterium all consistently teach that the Church's clergy must always and necessarily possess a divine mission and authorization in order to legitimate, validate, and make salvifically efficacious their priestly activities.


That's the major premise. It's ambiguous. I think he means to assert that there is a thing called "a divine mission and authorization" which the theology books tell us about, and that it is obtained in specific ways that the Code tells us about, and that any priest or bishop who lacks this thing must be avoided in all circumstances, something which is also clearly stated in the Code.

So there are three parts to the assertion (if I have guessed accurately what it is - why can't these intelligent people write English???).

1. The theology manuals don't generally say much at all about the concept "mission" and consequently it is very difficult to get clear theological ideas about it. I suggest that you demand to see the texts from "the Doctors of the Church, and the Magisterium" which Gerry asserts blankly to teach about "mission." I'll wager that his theological proofs look a great deal like Feeneyite ones - that is, they'll consist of quotes from Holy Scripture (without ecclesiastical interpretation), vague quotes from the Fathers, and a snippet or two from Gueranger and the Breviary. Nothing from St. Thomas and not much from any other scholastic theologian. Why? More importantly, is it possible to support the assertion that "Sacred Scripture, Sacred Tradition, the Doctors of the Church, and the Magisterium all consistently teach... X" in this case? No.

2. The Code certainly doesn't speak of "mission." And it certainly authorises us to approach priests who it would otherwise be unlawful to approach under condition of danger of death. So the Code appears to my mind to be on our side, and clearly so. What does Gerry have? Or does he avoid proving his position on the law? If so, he has no case at all. If you can't cite the law, there is no law.

3. Thirdly, even if all that preceded it were proved (which I do not concede), it has to be proved that "any priest or bishop who lacks this thing must be avoided in all circumstances," something which none of these people ever prove. It appears to me to be directly contradicted by the Code, and it certainly isn't supported by Tradition, so what proofs have they got?

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Thu Jan 23, 2014 2:58 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
James, consider these texts carefully. Note the following. In the Middle Ages it was the law of the Church that one was strictly bound only to confess to one's own parish priest (or, if one chose, to one's bishop). This is no longer the law, of course. Also, when the translator of St. Thomas renders, "by the ordination of the Church," he means "by the ordinance of the Church" (i.e. by the law of the Church). This is not a reference to Ordination to the priesthood as such, but to the fact that the Church restricts what a priest can do, by ecclesiastical law.

Firstly, why jurisdiction is essential to the sacrament of Penance.

Quote:
Summa Theologica, Supplement, Question 8, Article 5.

I answer that, The other sacraments do not consist in an action of the recipient, but only in his receiving something, as is evident with regard to Baptism and so forth, though the action of the recipient is required as removing an obstacle, i.e. insincerity, in order that he may receive the benefit of the sacrament, if he has come to the use of his free-will. On the other hand, the action of the man who approaches the sacrament of Penance is essential to the sacrament, since contrition, confession, and satisfaction, which are acts of the penitent, are parts of Penance. Now our actions, since they have their origin in us, cannot be dispensed by others, except through their command. Hence whoever is appointed a dispenser of this sacrament, must be such as to be able to command something to be done. Now a man is not competent to command another unless he have jurisdiction over him. Consequently it is essential to this sacrament, not only for the minister to be in orders, as in the case of the other sacraments, but also for him to have jurisdiction: wherefore he that has no jurisdiction cannot administer this sacrament any more than one who is not a priest. Therefore confession should be made not only to a priest, but to one's own priest; for since a priest does not absolve a man except by binding him to do something, he alone can absolve, who, by his command, can bind the penitent to do something.


Gravy for home-aloners, right?

Now consider this (two articles later):

Quote:
Summa Theologica, Supplement, Question 8, Article 6.

Whether a penitent, at the point of death, can be absolved by any priest?

Objection 1. It would seem that a penitent, at the point of death, cannot be absolved by any priest. For absolution requires jurisdiction, as stated above (Article 5). Now a priest does not acquire jurisdiction over a man who repents at the point of death. Therefore he cannot absolve him.

Objection 2. Further, he that receives the sacrament of Baptism, when in danger of death, from another than his own priest, does not need to be baptized again by the latter. If, therefore, any priest can absolve, from any sin, a man who is in danger of death, the penitent, if he survive the danger, need not go to his own priest; which is false, since otherwise the priest would not "know the countenance of his cattle."

Objection 3. Further, when there is danger of death, Baptism can be conferred not only by a strange priest, but also by one who is not a priest. But one who is not a priest can never absolve in the tribunal of Penance. Therefore neither can a priest absolve a man who is not his subject, when he is in danger of death.

On the contrary, Spiritual necessity is greater than bodily necessity. But it is lawful in a case of extreme necessity, for a man to make use of another's property, even against the owner's will, in order to supply a bodily need. Therefore in danger of death, a man may be absolved by another than his own priest, in order to supply his spiritual need.

Further, the authorities quoted in the text prove the same (Sent. iv, D, 20, Cap. Non Habet).

I answer that, If we consider the power of the keys, every priest has power over all men equally and over all sins: and it is due to the fact that by the ordination of the Church, he has a limited jurisdiction or none at all, that he cannot absolve all men from all sins. But since "necessity knows no law" [Cap. Consilium, De observ. jejun.; De reg. jur. (v, Decretal)] in cases of necessity the ordination of the Church does not hinder him from being able to absolve, since he has the keys sacramentally: and the penitent will receive as much benefit from the absolution of this other priest as if he had been absolved by his own. Moreover a man can then be absolved by any priest not only from his sins, but also from excommunication, by whomsoever pronounced, because such absolution is also a matter of that jurisdiction which by the ordination of the Church is confined within certain limits.

Reply to Objection 1. One person may act on the jurisdiction of another according to the latter's will, since matters of jurisdiction can be deputed. Since, therefore, the Church recognizes absolution granted by any priest at the hour of death, from this very fact a priest has the use of jurisdiction though he lack the power of jurisdiction.

Reply to Objection 2. He needs to go to his own priest, not that he may be absolved again from the sins, from which he was absolved when in danger of death, but that his own priest may know that he is absolved. In like manner, he who has been absolved from excommunication needs to go to the judge, who in other circumstances could have absolved him, not in order to seek absolution, but in order to offer satisfaction.

Reply to Objection 3. Baptism derives its efficacy from the sanctification of the matter itself, so that a man receives the sacrament whosoever baptizes him: whereas the sacramental power of Penance consists in a sanctification pronounced by the minister, so that if a man confess to a layman, although he fulfills his own part of the sacramental confession, he does not receive sacramental absolution. Wherefore his confession avails him somewhat, as to the lessening of his punishment, owing to the merit derived from his confession and to his repentance, but he does not receive that diminution of his punishment which results from the power of the keys; and consequently he must confess again to a priest; and one who has confessed thus, is more punished hereafter than if he had confessed to a priest.


See if you can get a home-aloner (including Gerry) to admit that all priests, by virtue of ordination, have "the power of the keys." :)

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Thu Jan 23, 2014 3:37 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Dorothy thanks for the article. I have read it before, but it was good to reread it.

John. Thanks as always for taking the time to address the topic and the other ones I have posted. What you posted from St. Thomas is most helpful. Gerry linking the situation of today of the clergy with that of England under Henry VIII or Elizabeth seems to be a unfair comparison. I have been fortunate to never have met a priest who sought his ordination by hook or by crook, but rather the ones I have been blessed with went to fulfill their vocation so they could provide spiritual care for us the lay people. Although there have perhaps been exceptions to this as there was in all ages of the Church and not all priest walk on water, it is not that these clergy are trying to steal something from us (as crooks), but rather give us spiritual graces which otherwise we could not acquire.

This seems to surround the whole principle of epikiea. It seems that Catholic today who feel they must stay at home to avoid breaking the law seem to forget the purpose of the law. It seems like what the Pharisees at the time of Jesus were doing. And I am not calling home-aloner Pharisees only the way they apply the law seems the same. Or it reminds me of Les Miserables with Javert saying "the law is the law whether good, bad, or indifferent."


Thu Jan 23, 2014 2:45 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
James, someone I know was given this recent CD of Gerry Matatics and they asked me if I could help them respond to the person who gave it to them. So, I'm in a similar situation as you.

John, thank you for your responses on this issue. They are very insightful and helpful. Many of your guesses on what Gerry might have said in this CD seem to have been pretty accurate. Gerry's argument is vague, and filled with a lot of scripture quotes. The scripture references obviously aren't a bad thing, but it seems like a lot of unecessary filler, instead of actually making an argument. Most of his scriptural quotes revolve around the idea of Christ being sent and having a Divine mission, along with the Apostles.

Though I've only listened to it once so far, I'll try my best to give a brief summary of his CD. Gerry starts this CD by telling us that what's he's about to show us is "exciting". I think it's a little odd for him to call his conclusions exciting. The only thing someone might find exciting about sharing his conclusions is the amount of money they would save on gas on Sundays.

The first major point he states is that "mission" is a much broader concept than "jurisdiction", and that if we're focussing on jurisdiction issues, we've already gone to far and skipped a step. He then says that "mission" is of Divine law, not just ecclesiastical law. His point here is obviously to show that there are no exceptions and epikeia can't be applied. He spends the next big portion of the CD giving quotes about mission and being sent, mostly from scripture. However, I don't think he ever really explains much more about "mission" being of Divine law, other than the fact that it's of Divine law that the Church possesses a Divine mission.

The next portion consists of him referencing Part I of St. Francis De Sales' "The Catholic Controversy", https://archive.org/stream/catholiccontrove00sain#page/n35/mode/2up. He compares the tradional priests of today to the protestants St. Francis is writing about, in that they can't claim to have been sent, possessing mission in an ordinary way; nor can the claim to possess an extraordinary mission since they aren't working miracles.

He also references Patrick Henry's "Petition for Spiritual Help", and basically says all the quotes to support his [Gerry's] conclusion can be found there. I'm drawing a blank right now on anything else he might have said that is of any significance.

I have a friend who says that the traditional Catholic priests today have a mediate mission from God. He points out that in Chapter 2 of "The Catholic Controversy", St. Francis makes the point that the reformers lacked a mission because they had not received it from God through His Church (or through an immediate command from Him). My friend then says all ordained Catholic clergy have received this mission as the very purpose of their life, quoting St. Francis: "In good sooth it is to speak frankly and plainly indeed, thus to confess that mission can only have passed to their ministers from the Apostles by the succession of our bishops and the imposition of their hands."

I'm not a Home-Aloner, but I'm not quite convinced that a priest necessarily possesses a mission simply because they are ordained. Can anyone add some clarity on whether that's possible?


Tue Mar 18, 2014 3:18 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
James Schroepfer wrote:
Gerry linking the situation of today of the clergy with that of England under Henry VIII or Elizabeth seems to be a unfair comparison.


There's a specific difference that these people always ignore or dismiss, which is that the Protestant/schismatic clergy were openly disobeying the Church. They were acting against the orders of the authorised representatives of the Catholic Church. Our clergy are not.

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Tue Mar 18, 2014 10:43 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Joe Cupertino wrote:
I'm not a Home-Aloner, but I'm not quite convinced that a priest necessarily possesses a mission simply because they are ordained.


This concept of "mission" is not something developed to any degree in theology manuals. The notion is simply that Christ sent the Apostles, charged them with certain responsibilities and gave them the authority to fulfil those responsibilities, and that "sending" is passed on to the successors of the Apostles. The obvious corollary is that one who is not recognised/authorised by the Church is not "sent" and ought to be rejected. If anybody can find any more than that in a manual, I'd be most interested. Note that the Home Aloners generally make their case on direct quotations of Scripture, like Protestants, precisely because they lack the texts of scientific theology one would normally rely upon.

Properly speaking, the "mission" really only belongs to bishops, Successors of the Apostles. Priests are bishops' assistants; they do not have a mission as such, but rather they are given a mandate by the bishop to aid him in fulfilling his mission.

Anybody interested in this subject should also read this thread: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1426&view=next

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Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:09 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
John, thanks for the response.

I found an interesting point made on p.584 of "A Catholic Dictionary" by William E. Addis and Thomas Arnold, M.A. (1884):


Mission. Mission is inseparably connected with jurisdiction, so that he who is validly "sent" exercises a lawful jurisdiction in the place to which, and over the persons to whom, he is sent; and, e converso, any person exercising a lawful jurisdiction must be held to have received true mission. Mission precedes jurisdiction in the order of thought, but is coincident with it in practice.”


According to this, it seems that if it can be said that jurisdiction is supplied in a certain case, then "mission" is also supplied with it.


Thu Mar 20, 2014 9:59 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Joe Cupertino wrote:
Mission. Mission is inseparably connected with jurisdiction, so that he who is validly "sent" exercises a lawful jurisdiction in the place to which, and over the persons to whom, he is sent; and, e converso, any person exercising a lawful jurisdiction must be held to have received true mission. Mission precedes jurisdiction in the order of thought, but is coincident with it in practice.”


This is a common view, quite precise and accurate, yet as you can see, undeveloped. For example, a diocesan bishop, an ordinary, participates in the mission of the Church in one very definite way, whereas a missionary sent to a pagan area by the pope has a mission in really quite a different mode. He is a delegate of the Holy Father himself. It is also true that he possesses jurisdiction in the external forum (by virtue of being an apostolic delegate or something similar). Yet until he makes some converts and baptises them, he actually has no jurisdiction over any actual persons. More importantly, he isn't a successor of the Apostles. Parish priests, again, are really instruments of their ordinary, and any understanding of "mission" in connection with them needs careful qualification to ensure that their proper state is not confused. Priests are not successors of the Apostles, obviously.

Joe Cupertino wrote:
According to this, it seems that if it can be said that jurisdiction is supplied in a certain case, then "mission" is also supplied with it.


Well, I'm not sure about that. It's important to have clear ideas about what is called "supplied jurisdiction." Really, in the case of the Sacrament of Penance, it is the supply of "faculties," and faculties for confession are in the nature of permission and a limited jurisdiction for the internal forum only. However, "mission" is broader and encompasses all jurisdiction, including (and I suggest especially) jurisdiction in the external forum. And more importantly, mission is not jurisdiction. As Addis and Arnold say, it is connected with jurisdiction.

The problem (purely an abstract one at this stage, I think) for our own clergy is preciely that they cannot show that they are "sent" in any traditional manner. The concept of "mission" is chiefly about apostolicity of government. That is, the apostolic succession. We have no successors of the Apostles. We have no diocesan bishops, no men with territorial jurisdiction. Ours are emergency clergy aiding the faithful whilst we await the restoration of the Church.

(Btw, to illustrate the difficulty in researching this subject, neither Parente's Dictionary of Dogmatic Theology nor Attwater's Catholic Dictionary, has an entry for "mission" in the sense we are discussing. Van Noort touches on it in his manual, but only negatively, by addressing and refuting the heretical concept of an extraordinary mission postulated by the Protestant heresiarchs. Tanquerey doesn't mention it at all.)

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Fri Mar 21, 2014 12:20 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
I was scanning some files I saved in the past on this issue, and came across this gem of an essay. This is a very good response to Patrick Henry's writings, and as the author says, by extension, Gerry Matatics. It actually seems to echo many of the points you've been making, John.

Beyond what's pointed out in this essay, I've come across many other things that show Patrick Henry's writings to have significant errors. I'll have to dig those up when I find some more time.

When I filed this on my computer at the time, I wrote down that I found it here: http://www.cathinfo.com/index.php?a=printer&t=14088 (doesn't appear to be working). I also wrote down that the author was unknown.

Unknown Author wrote:
I have been asked what I think of the latest from Mr. Patrick Henry and by extension, Gerry Matatics. Please feel free to use this as you like.

It seems to me that the counter-argument to the lawfulness of approaching traditional clergy lacks essential elements. For example, does a priest or a bishop really have to possess a valid mission for it to be lawful to approach him for sacraments? Where is the proof of this major? Until this point is demonstrated there is no substance at all to the case of our opponents, it seems to me. That is, we don’t need to justify anything. All of the quotes I have seen in support of this claim are addressing a quite distinct point, which is that one who claims an office in the Church – that is, a right to rule the faithful – must be properly appointed (i.e. “sent”). It is perfectly true that we ought to flee usurpers as dangerous criminals. But what about those who are not usurpers of authority, who have valid orders and who are good Catholics willing to assist us with the sacraments? On what grounds must we flee them? This has never been addressed by any of these home-alone proponents, as far as I have seen.

Secondly, what are the precise processes by which the Church gives a mission?

We know that the Church has a mission from Jesus Christ, and that she employs individuals as her instruments in executing it. The question is, what are the mechanics of this? Our opponents seem merely to presume that the mechanics are solely the standard diocesan structure or canonical religious institutes, to the exclusion of anything else. This point is very obscure. And in any case the Code permits us to approach priests who are excommunicates, if necessary. These are men whose mission has been definitely withdrawn, it would seem.

It may be objected that the law has in view only those excommunicates who possessed a mission prior to their excommunication, so that our priests and bishops don’t qualify. This is an unproved argument and would need to be proved before it could move us from complete security to any lesser position. In any case, either the mission of an excommunicate is supplied by the law, or it comes from a source other than the law. On the first alternative our position is secure – the mission is supplied by the law which authorises the faithful to approach suspended and excommunicated priests (not that we grant that our priests are under any censures). On the second alternative our opponents would be arguing that suspension and even excommunication does not constitute the withdrawal of the mission, which is a doubtful argument at best. One might argue that suspension is merely the suspension of the mission, however excommunication is a much more severe penalty.

At any rate, our opponents have two essential points to prove before we could be put on the defensive: – a) that a priest or a bishop must possess a valid mission (defined precisely, with supporting texts from authority) for it to be lawful to approach him for sacraments, and b) that a priest or bishop who is ordained/consecrated irregularly cannot have this necessary mission. It would also be incumbent on our opponents to explain satisfactorily the working of the law so as to demonstrate that it is consistent with the principles they claim to be true.

It seems further that all of this would require explicit authorities (i.e. approved canonists and theologians) addressing the precise points at issue, not interpolation from general principles. I say this because we have on our side the explicit letter of the law – we may approach even a suspended and excommunicated priest for sacraments. The mind of the Church seems clearly to be that all of these goods established by Our Lord Jesus Christ are hers and hers alone, for the good of souls. That is, the salvation of souls is the supreme law. That these goods are possessed unlawfully by some men is something which weighs against those men, but not against the Church or the souls in her care. She will provide her goods even through broken and otherwise unlawful instruments if she must. This view is supported by a general reading of Church history and by ecclesiology, and it seems to me to be crystal clear from a consideration of the wording of the section of the Code on penalties, in which she makes the lawfulness of the administration of the sacraments by priests under censure dependent upon the request of the faithful.

I read through Patrick Henry’s material and he doesn’t present his case at all clearly, so that at the key junctures it is not clear what he is actually claiming. For example, he seems to assume that jurisdiction and “mission” are identical, when this is not true and he provides zero evidence for it – it is a hidden assumption in his presentation. He refers on page 6 to “mission” as “proofs of confirmation in office” which seems clearly to be too narrow a definition of “mission” and in any case unsupported by any authority quoted. This kind of imprecision is deadly for his case. Further, he seems to think that we rely upon epikeia as some kind of source of jurisdiction, which is absurdly untrue and therefore irrelevant. Towards the bottom of his page 3, Mr. Henry quotes Miaskiewicz to the effect that without jurisdiction one simply cannot act, as if the Church never supplies jurisdiction in an extraordinary manner. Yet the same Miaskiewicz states in one of his conclusions (p.311) that “the suppletory principle [i.e. the automatic supply of jurisdiction by the Church] is for emergency situations. Canon 209 is not intended as an ubiquitous law nullifying the force of all invalidating laws.” Which if it means anything, means that the suppletory principle does indeed nullify the effect of some invalidating laws in some circumstances – which is all that we claim, and which is the precise meaning of Canon 209. Mr. Henry quotes Canon 203 as though the general principle established by it nullifies the cases envisaged by Canon 209 – a mere six canons subsequent in the Code. This is a nonsensical approach. A claim to supplied jurisdiction is precisely an admission that ordinary jurisdiction is lacking and that the Church supplies it via Canon 209. This is the claim which must be met, not evaded.

On page 6 Mr. Henry quotes Canon 19 concerning the necessity of a strict interpretation of certain laws. This canon is irrelevant to the question, and is not referred to by Miaskiewicz as a general principle of interpretation relevant to supplied jurisdiction. Its introduction into the consideration of this question can only serve to create a false impression that the Church is reluctant to supply jurisdiction or that she makes it somehow technically very difficult or rare. These impressions even if true would not be supported by Canon 19, which does not apply. But in any case I emphasise that these impressions are false. Canon 209 is not only a very general canon making very broad concessions under relatively loose conditions (common error, or positive and probable doubt of fact or of law), but in fact is employed frequently as a reflex principle by which numerous cases can be decided in favour of validity for the good of souls. I accept that it can be over-stretched, but it can also be excessively narrowed, as Mr. Henry appears to do.

Really mischievous is the quote from H. Davis concerning the unlawfulness of following a merely probable course in the case of administering the sacraments. Jurisdiction is supplied in cases of common error or positive and probable doubt of fact or of law. That is the law of the Church. This law resolves certain doubts so as to clear the way for the administration of the sacraments. To argue against its application one must accept it and show how it does not apply to a given case. It is completely incorrect and mischievous to introduce the general principle that a probable case is insufficient. The whole point of Canon 209 is to make a case which would otherwise perhaps be merely probable – or indeed even definitely contra – a certain and secure case.

In relation to Mr. Henry’s Summary points on page 7, therefore, in order:

1. This assertion is unclear and on the face of it, definitely incorrect.
2. This claim confuses doubt about the meaning of a law in general with the specific doubt about whether a law differs from the old law. But in any case it is misapplied by Mr. Henry, as follows.
a) The necessity for a coloured title is not contained in the new law (i.e. the 1917 Code) and Miaskiewicz himself is crystal clear upon it. He writes, (p. 311) “The Code has abolished the need of a colored title.” Mr. Henry seems to like Miaskiewicz only on some points.
b) This rests on a) above, and therefore falls with it.
c) This is untrue and in fact nothing more than an ipse dixit. Mr. Henry has claimed there is doubt and then he has sought to rely upon his claim as a “demonstration.”
d) I deny. I remind you that Miaskiewicz does not invoke Canon 19. He invokes Canon 6, 2-5. And Miaskiewicz favours a stricter interpretation of Canon 209 than some other authors, so he would surely have invoked Canon 19 if he thought it relevant!
3. Refuted above.
4. I deny, see 2. d) above.
5. These assertions are completely unclear and therefore impossible to accept or reject without ambiguity.

Mr. Henry asserts, “we must note that Can. 209 presumes that clerics invoking this canon are validly and licitly ordained and do not labor under any censure or suspension that would prohibit the use of jurisdiction.” This is directly contrary to the law of the Church, which explicitly authorises the faithful to approach excommunicated clerics. Excommunicated clerics are certainly prohibited from exercising jurisdiction otherwise. It is difficult to imagine how Mr. Henry could be unclear about so fundamental a point of law.

Mr. Henry’s claims on page 9 are really alarming. I suggest close to heretical. He asserts, “nearly all Traditionalists believe there is no valid Roman Pontiff. Therefore the foundation of Can. 209 is entirely swept away and the law is no longer in effect; all its purposes have ceased.” This is tantamount to claiming that in the absence of a Roman Pontiff the laws promulgated by earlier Popes lose their force, an assertion which is not only clearly wrong (in fact, insane) but which is destructive of all order and corrosive of the very foundations of law, attacking as it does the stability of law at its very root. Nothing could be more revolutionary.

The summary points on page 10 are in many cases wrong, but to save effort in refuting each one let this suffice: If these prove anything, they prove that the Church cannot exist in the absence of the Roman Pontiff. “The Church cannot be, cannot exist, without Her visible head.” Such a claim is certainly erroneous – the Church persists during every interregnum, obviously – and I think actually heretical in that it is opposed to the perpetuity of the Church. A corollary is that the sedevacantist position must be wrong, which surely Mr. Henry does not mean to imply!

This claim is a revolting slur, a rash judgement, and manifestly false. “Traditionalist clergy … ooze affected charity.” Mr. Henry should have learned from Fr. Hunolt and the other excellent spiritual writers he has been scanning and distributing for many years that he has a strict obligation to interpret the motives of others in the best possible manner, and that he is strictly obliged therefore to avoid all negative judgements unless and until they become inescapably clear. But it is helpful that he has added this nasty insult, because it enables objective readers to assess the spirit of the work with greater ease. It smells of sulphur.

Finally, I note with interest that Mr. Henry appears to have become a disciple of that interesting mischief-maker and promoter of home papal elections, Mrs. Benns. Most are probably aware that Mrs. Benns made “Michael I” into a pope many years ago, something for which I do not believe she has apologised to him. She has, interestingly, re-published an essay entitled “Chiefly Among Women” on her site: http://www.betrayedcatholics.com/pdf/Ch ... _women.pdf I note the following text from it, which Mr. Henry (and Gerry Matatics) might ponder to good effect. “We must remember the almost invincible weapon which nature has placed in the hands of the weaker sex for approaching and controlling men; the beautiful weapon, affection, which mother, sister, daughter, wield, and for which very few men know of any foil, or against which they would raise one if they did.”

Mrs. Benns thinks that she has some special role to play in this crisis in the Church, despite her obvious mistakes and missteps in the past, and she thinks it lawful to deploy her womanly charms in order to “approach and control men,” leading them to her own views. Surely she would do more good if she ceased all of this and instead made biscuits for local children.


Sat Mar 22, 2014 4:24 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Good stuff, Joe. I started to think that perhaps I had written it, and completely forgotten (!), then I was wondering if perhaps JS Daly might have done so (seemed too mild!), then got to this: "This claim is a revolting slur, a rash judgement, and manifestly false." Ah, that's got to be our old JSD! And then the clincher: "Most are probably aware that Mrs. Benns made 'Michael I' into a pope many years ago, something for which I do not believe she has apologised to him." LOL!

It's got to be pretty recent (last few years), and for private consumption (not that he'd have a problem with it appearing in public). John?

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Sat Mar 22, 2014 10:06 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
I plead not guilty - moreover I do not in fact agree with a significant part of the position being argued. Are you sure it's not you JFL ?


Sun Mar 23, 2014 1:32 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Dear John,

I had no recollection of this piece, but now that you have denied what I thought was obvious (!) I've searched my computer files and it's an email I wrote to a group of people, including Patrick Henry and Gerry Matatics, in January 2009.

For the record, it seems that the text to which I was replying was written by Mrs. Benns. At any rate, Patrick Henry didn't write it, as he replied and said as much. However he didn't reply to any of my points, preferring to refer me to some other document he had written.

With what do you disagree, John?

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Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:16 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
"In like manner, a parish priest may have curates who attend to the wants of a particular portion of the parish, subordinate to himself. The object of the cure of souls is the salvation of men, and hence it is a continuation of Christ's mission on earth. As the Reedeemer established a church which was to govern, teach, and sanctify the world, it necessarily follows that those who are to assist in the work of the Church must obtain their mission from her alone. "How shall they preach, unless they be sent?" (Romans 10:15).

The canonical mission of a priest is derived from the Apostolic succession in the Church. This succession is twofold: Holy orders and authority. The first is perpetuated by means of bishops; the latter by the living magistracy of the Church, of which the head is the pope, who is the source of jurisdiction. Both elements enter into the mission of him who has cure of souls: Holy orders, that he may offer sacrifice and administer the sacraments, which are the ordinary channels of sanctification employed by the Holy Ghost; and jurisdiction, that he may teach correct doctrine, free his subjects from sins and censures, and govern them in accordance with the canons of the Church. The power of Holy orders is radically common to all priests by virtue of the invalid ordination, but the power of jurisdiction is ordinary only in pope, bishops, and parish priests, and extraordinary or delegated in others. It is plain, then, that while valid orders may exist outside the Catholic Church, jurisdiction cannot, as its source is the Vicar of Christ and it is possessed only so far as he confers it or does not limit it. The duties of those who have cure of souls are all carefully defined in the sacred cannons." Fanning, W. (1908). Cure of Souls. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved March 23, 2014 from New Advent: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04572a.htm

"Since, however, the teaching of the Church is authoritative, the teaching authority is traditionally included in the ruling authority; regularly, therefore, only the ministerial authority and the ruling authority are distinguished. By ministerial authority, which is conferred by an act of consecration, is meant the inward, and, because of its indelible character, permanent capacity to perform acts by which Divine grace is transmitted. By ruling authority, which is conferred by the Church (missio canonica, canonical mission), is understood the authority to guide and rule the Church of God." Sägmüller, J.B. (1910). Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved March 23, 2014 from New Advent: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08567a.htm

My question for those who think that the institutional Church is formally an heretical sect, objectively speaking, is simply where is jurisdiction, and thus "mission" to be found today within the true Catholic Church? If ordinary jurisdiction and thus "mission" has ceased, then the Church that Christ founded has ceased to exist. No wonder they stay home.


Mon Mar 24, 2014 12:18 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
“The power of Holy orders is radically common to all priests by virtue of the invalid ordination”

Should be “valid ordination” surely!

And “cannons” in the same article should be “canons”.

Quote:
My question for those who think that the institutional Church is formally an heretical sect, objectively speaking,


This is the problem with all such ill-thought sloganeering. The situation is indeed very obscure.

However, the problems on this score disappear when the vacancy of the Holy See is recognised. The Church is not, ultimately, responsible for any of the aberrations of Vatican II etc., and they are all instead reduced to errors by multiple individuals, many of whom are members of the hierarchy and many of them ex-members refusing to admit their defection. This picture of the Church doesn't require any dogmatism about how the entire institutional church has ceased being the true Church, precisely because in the absence of the Roman Pontiff there really aren't any limits to error (except that some Catholics must still exist, of course!). The Roman Pontiff is the keystone of infallibility. The Church is not infallible without him.

Quote:
where is jurisdiction, and thus "mission" to be found today within the true Catholic Church? If ordinary jurisdiction and thus "mission" has ceased, then the Church that Christ founded has ceased to exist. No wonder they stay home.


Yes.

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Mon Mar 24, 2014 12:57 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Caminus wrote:
My question for those who think that the institutional Church is formally an heretical sect, objectively speaking, is simply where is jurisdiction, and thus "mission" to be found today within the true Catholic Church? If ordinary jurisdiction and thus "mission" has ceased, then the Church that Christ founded has ceased to exist. No wonder they stay home.


To be fair to Mr. Matatics, he makes it a point to state in the beginning of his latest CD that he believes there necessarily must be a bishop or two remaining in the Church who possess Mission.


Mon Mar 24, 2014 6:43 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
John, despite your invitation I don't think it would be prudent for me to state my position here at present as I simply haven't the time to get in a debate about it. I'd very much like to debate it properly when I have the time to do so.


Mon Mar 24, 2014 8:41 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Question on mission?

Power is the ability to act.
Jurisdiction is the authority to act.
I need to read much more on the subject of mission, but could it not be considered the obligation to act. It is the will of the Church or ultimately the will of God, Himself.

If mission is the obligation to act, would it not then tie closely with jurisdiction while remaining essentially different. If one has the authority to act (ordinary or delegated jurisdiction), do they not have the obligation to act? For example, if a priest is set over a parish, does he not have the obligation to hear confessions. The power of orders does not give him this obligation per say, but the jurisdiction would. And this obligation would be delegated to the priest from the hierarchy of the Church.

Also, in the case of a priest without jurisdiction and even more specifically a excommunicated priest, normally he would have no jurisdiction to hear confessions and hence no obligation (mission). But if a need were to arise from the parish priest being absent/ill or a lay person in danger of death, jurisdiction would be supplied to hear the confession. In this case, could not one argue that the obligation (mission) arises not from having been delegated by the authority of the Church, but the obligation (mission) is imposed by the virtue of charity, or God, Himself.

Probably way off base, but had to ask anyway.


Tue Mar 25, 2014 2:10 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Joe Cupertino wrote:
Caminus wrote:
My question for those who think that the institutional Church is formally an heretical sect, objectively speaking, is simply where is jurisdiction, and thus "mission" to be found today within the true Catholic Church? If ordinary jurisdiction and thus "mission" has ceased, then the Church that Christ founded has ceased to exist. No wonder they stay home.


To be fair to Mr. Matatics, he makes it a point to state in the beginning of his latest CD that he believes there necessarily must be a bishop or two remaining in the Church who possess Mission.


Hedging his bets I see. So according to him (and others) there is certainly found within a false sect men who possess not only valid orders, but jurisdiction and a canonical mission? This is nothing less than the obective maintenance of Apostolic Succession within a formally heretical sect, something which Benedict and JPII believe as well.


Wed Mar 26, 2014 1:33 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Caminus wrote:

Hedging his bets I see. So according to him (and others) there is certainly found within a false sect men who possess not only valid orders, but jurisdiction and a canonical mission? This is nothing less than the obective maintenance of Apostolic Succession within a formally heretical sect, something which Benedict and JPII believe as well.


His position seems to be the "bishop-in-the-woods" (is that the phrase?) type of position. He mentions possibilities that the bishop, or bishops, with mission are imprisoned, or something like that. From some of the things he says to support his Home-Alone stance, I'm relatively certain he doesn't believe anyone in the Novus Ordo has a canonical mission.


Wed Mar 26, 2014 2:09 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Caminus wrote:
Joe Cupertino wrote:
Caminus wrote:
My question for those who think that the institutional Church is formally an heretical sect, objectively speaking, is simply where is jurisdiction, and thus "mission" to be found today within the true Catholic Church? If ordinary jurisdiction and thus "mission" has ceased, then the Church that Christ founded has ceased to exist. No wonder they stay home.


To be fair to Mr. Matatics, he makes it a point to state in the beginning of his latest CD that he believes there necessarily must be a bishop or two remaining in the Church who possess Mission.


Hedging his bets I see. So according to him (and others) there is certainly found within a false sect men who possess not only valid orders, but jurisdiction and a canonical mission? This is nothing less than the obective maintenance of Apostolic Succession within a formally heretical sect, something which Benedict and JPII believe as well.


This is a sloppy way of writing. While the Conciliar church is a sect, it is not a condemned sect, therefore it remains possible, and history has shown that Catholics remain in it, and are not guilty of heresy or schism.

The bishops that we are discussing are those who have not fallen into heresy and have not identified the Conciliar church as a sect. They are only accidentally affiliated with the sect, while remaining substantially united to the Catholic Church.

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Wed Mar 26, 2014 3:59 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Taken from commentary on Canon 2314:

Quote:
A sect means a religious society established in opposition to the Church whether it consist of infidels, pagans, Jews, Muslims, non-Catholics, or schismatics. To become a member of such a society (nomen dare) means to inscribe one's name on its roster. Of course it is presumed that the new member knows it is a non-Catholic society, otherwise he would not incur the censure. If he hears of the censure after he has become a member, and promptly severs his connection, the penalty is not incurred.

Rev. Charles Augustine, O.S.B, D.D., A Commentary On The New Code Of Canon Law, Vol. VIII, pg. 279-280, 1922.


(Emphasis added)

https://archive.org/details/1917CodeOfC ... Commentary

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Wed Mar 26, 2014 4:40 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
John Daly wrote:
John, despite your invitation I don't think it would be prudent for me to state my position here at present as I simply haven't the time to get in a debate about it. I'd very much like to debate it properly when I have the time to do so.


Dear John, I am sure I am not only speaking for myself when saying that I am looking forward greatly to hearing your opinion on the matter!


Wed Mar 26, 2014 6:06 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Quote:
This is a sloppy way of writing. While the Conciliar church is a sect, it is not a condemned sect, therefore it remains possible, and history has shown that Catholics remain in it, and are not guilty of heresy or schism.

The bishops that we are discussing are those who have not fallen into heresy and have not identified the Conciliar church as a sect. They are only accidentally affiliated with the sect, while remaining substantially united to the Catholic Church.


My sincerest apologies for such sloppy writing. But your desired precision leaves something to be desired. Tell me, by what criterion have you determined that all but "two or three" bishops remain true Catholics with ordinary jurisdiction, or "canonical mission" if you please, within a formally heretical and schismatic sect? At what point in time did the Catholic Church, that is, the identifable juridical body, transform itself into such a sect? Is it the over abundance of errant people that caused you to judge such is a fact? Is it the liturgy? After all, they do claim to possess the same faith, sacraments and government that we recognize as forming the Catholic Church -- nothing has been defined as contrary to that same faith, the theological errors of Popes and others nothwithstanding. I suppose you are one who confidently asserts that certain new rites are intrinsically invalid further strengthening your previous opinion, or rather simply validating that which you hoped to find.

Can you identify these few bishops as representing the dying breath of the Church in the form of absolutely necessary lawful authority? If not, how can you be certain they exist or that the Church that once existed still exists to this day. The totality of traditional Catholic bishops do not claim ordinary jurisdiction, so where is it; where is the Church from whence it comes?


Thu Mar 27, 2014 1:57 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Mike wrote:
Taken from commentary on Canon 2314:

Quote:
A sect means a religious society established in opposition to the Church whether it consist of infidels, pagans, Jews, Muslims, non-Catholics, or schismatics. To become a member of such a society (nomen dare) means to inscribe one's name on its roster. Of course it is presumed that the new member knows it is a non-Catholic society, otherwise he would not incur the censure. If he hears of the censure after he has become a member, and promptly severs his connection, the penalty is not incurred.

Rev. Charles Augustine, O.S.B, D.D., A Commentary On The New Code Of Canon Law, Vol. VIII, pg. 279-280, 1922.


(Emphasis added)

https://archive.org/details/1917CodeOfC ... Commentary


The penalty is incurred after one beocmes aware that one belongs to a non-Catholic sect, that is "a religious society established in opposition to the Church whether it consists of infidels, pagans, Jews, Muslims, non-Catholics, or schismatics." Thus, the distinction is not whether the society is condemned, but rests upon subjective knowledge of the errant soul. One would have to be pretty dumb not to realize they've joined up with Muslims or Jews. But I digress. Now, tell me, at what point in time did a religious society establish itself in opposition to the Catholic Church, that is, the sect to which you refer? Not merely from without, but literally from within where an essential identity ceased to exist?


Thu Mar 27, 2014 2:11 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Caminus wrote:
My sincerest apologies for such sloppy writing. But your desired precision leaves something to be desired.


Preserve the sarcasm for people like me who deserve it. Mike's a gentle soul.

Caminus wrote:
Tell me, by what criterion have you determined that all but "two or three" bishops remain true Catholics with ordinary jurisdiction, or "canonical mission" if you please, within a formally heretical and schismatic sect?


What Mike is addressing is the plain fact that this sect - i.e. the sect of those who have freely chosen the heretical New Religion, whoever they are - is canonically not a sect yet. That is, it has not been (judicially or equivalently) condemned by the Church, and therefore there is no universal presumption of guilt affecting all of those who are adult adherents to it. But leaving aside that precision for the moment (it is a vital precision, for several reasons), it is the conviction of traditional Catholics (i.e. not neo-Cats or "conservatives") that the religion of which the chief features are the New Mass, the new ecclesiology, ecumenism, religious liberty, etc., is not the Catholic Religion. Further, traditional Catholics are convinced that this new religion is not the responsibility of the Catholic Church; the key elements of it were not truly promulgated by the Catholic Church (i.e. either they were not promulgated at all, in the true legal sense, or the "authority" pretending to promulgate them was not really the authority of the Catholic Church). If they held different views on these points, they'd not openly reject this new religion, as they do.

Now, if there's a new religion, there's a sect. Some of those who have adopted it have done so voluntarily, and thereby left the Church. Those "some" constitute the sect. It's as real as any body of men can be. Identifiable, open, with characteristic features which are unmistakeable.

Caminus wrote:
At what point in time did the Catholic Church, that is, the identifable juridical body, transform itself into such a sect?


It didn't. The sect is an imposter, and as Our Lady is reported to have said at La Salette, like the moon interposing itself in front of the sun, this sect eclipses the Church (partially or fully, as you prefer, it doesn't affect the point).

Now, even if, ex hypothesi, nearly every bishop is not truly a bishop, we maintain that somewhere, some, must remain bishops of the Catholic Church (whether imprisoned, "retired", or otherwise not immediately obvious).

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Thu Mar 27, 2014 11:24 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Caminus wrote:
Tell me, by what criterion have you determined that all but "two or three" bishops remain true Catholics with ordinary jurisdiction, or "canonical mission" if you please, within a formally heretical and schismatic sect?


Quote:
What Mike is addressing is the plain fact that this sect - i.e. the sect of those who have freely chosen the heretical New Religion, whoever they are - is canonically not a sect yet. That is, it has not been (judicially or equivalently) condemned by the Church, and therefore there is no universal presumption of guilt affecting all of those who are adult adherents to it. But leaving aside that precision for the moment (it is a vital precision, for several reasons), it is the conviction of traditional Catholics (i.e. not neo-Cats or "conservatives") that the religion of which the chief features are the New Mass, the new ecclesiology, ecumenism, religious liberty, etc., is not the Catholic Religion. Further, traditional Catholics are convinced that this new religion is not the responsibility of the Catholic Church; the key elements of it were not truly promulgated by the Catholic Church (i.e. either they were not promulgated at all, in the true legal sense, or the "authority" pretending to promulgate them was not really the authority of the Catholic Church). If they held different views on these points, they'd not openly reject this new religion, as they do.

Now, if there's a new religion, there's a sect. Some of those who have adopted it have done so voluntarily, and thereby left the Church. Those "some" constitute the sect. It's as real as any body of men can be. Identifiable, open, with characteristic features which are unmistakeable.


Some observations. A "sect" is a distinct body set up in opposition to the Church. Yet, if on the one hand, the Conciliar Church constitutes an entirely distinct body which formally teaches heretical doctine and is in schism from the true Catholic Church, where is the distinct and at least equally recognizeable true Catholic Church? It's easy to dismiss the entire body as a "sect" but I don't think it does justice to the delicacy of the problem. For example, suppose one were to happen upon a diocese where the Bishop has adopted several errors condemned in Pope Pius XII's Syllabus and his priests were equally intellectually deformed while profaning the liturgy would those facts alone lead to the conclusion that they diocese is formally a sect absolutely distinct from the Church? I think not. One can throw heresy into the mix and still not necessarily come to such a conclusion precisely because the Church is a visible society or kindgom and not a purely spiritual organization. Consequently, when those societal bonds are not formally severed, they remain, though the Mystical Body of Christ is consequently defaced. This explains the historical and traditional attitudes and actions of the Popes with regard to Catholics who err or who have corrupted the faith and discipline of the Church in ages past. To claim with a wave of the hand that what is recognized as the Catholic Church today is in fact a sect betrays a rather simplistic and uncritical approach to the problem.

I find it interesting that the question: Where is the Church today? went unanswered as well as explicating the criterion by which one judges which bishops retain jurisdiction while others do not. It seems to me that there isn't a universal criterion equally applied because one soon realizes that the sweeping statement literally invalidates the entire hierarchy. Thus the perfunctory reply that a "few" must remain in order to retain some semblence of orthodox ecclesiology. Where is the true Church today? It must be the totality of traditional Catholics including a "few" novus ordo bishops serving an heretical sect while the very existence of the true Church relies perilously on the astounding ignorance of those few unrecognized, unknown, but surely true bishops who cling to authority. Little do they know that they alone prop up the true Church while adhering, not to the Catholic Church, but rather to a new sect.

Why you have chosen the notion of "sect" versus viewing the Church as an injured, diseased or disfigured body is also an interesting question. If we are in the midst of the Passion of the Church it seems that what was observed of Her Founder's body can be certainly applied to His Body the Church. Remember the prophecies which spoke of the mutilation of the Christ? He was unsound from head to toe. The Church is not above or more perfect that Her Head and King.

Quote:
It didn't. The sect is an imposter, and as Our Lady is reported to have said at La Salette, like the moon interposing itself in front of the sun, this sect eclipses the Church (partially or fully, as you prefer, it doesn't affect the point).


It could be equally asserted, with even greater reasonableness, that the sins and errors of Catholics have "eclisped" or obscured the Church. In fact, St. Thomas mentions just such a possibility in his Commentary on the Psalms.


Sun Mar 30, 2014 10:31 pm
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Caminus,

It seems to me that you are arguing against a straw man. I don't say that the entire body of those who claim to be Catholics is actually a sect. I merely say what all traditional Catholics say, which is that there is a new religion masquerading as the Catholic religion, and those who adhere to it knowing it to be incompatible with the true religion have left the Church by their own act and formed a sect.

You speak of the delicacy of the problem, yet it is you who appears to take a black-or-white view. For you, there cannot be a sect at all, if it isn't constituted of all of those who are not traditional Catholics. I don't know why you think that. Let us perhaps find at least one major piece of common ground. Do you see any ex-Catholics (i.e. open heretics) amongst the hierarchy? Or are they all still Catholics?

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Mon Mar 31, 2014 6:19 am
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New post Re: False Shepards: Trad Clergy acting against Divine Law?
Dear Caminus,

Of course John’s question drives right to the heart of the matter so that is the question at hand. However, you seem to be struggling with something that recently caused me quite a bit of confusion. You can follow my line of thought and where I went wrong in the thread Sedevacantism, Safety, and Peace. I, like you seem to be doing, was trying to oversimplify these complex matters which led me to being an absolutist in things which are not faith and morals and rely upon a human judgment; human knowledge which can be very limited. There are some things which we can know for certain like the world is going to end, and there are others which we cannot like when the world is going to end. I will try to illustrate my point by responding to a few of your comments.

Caminus
“My question for those who think that the institutional Church is formally an heretical sect, objectively speaking, is simply where is jurisdiction, and thus "mission" to be found today within the true Catholic Church? If ordinary jurisdiction and thus "mission" has ceased, then the Church that Christ founded has ceased to exist. No wonder they stay home.”

We who hold that the institutional Conciliar Church is a manifest heretical sect objectively, still believe the Church has and must retain, by her very nature, ordinary jurisdiction and mission otherwise the Catholic Church would cease to exist. Christ did not lie so the Church must have retained both. Where they are exactly, as it has been said before, is a mystery. But it being a mystery does not prove Christ a liar or the Church to have failed, it simple proves we do not know.
Now this is completely different than saying that the Novus Ordo Church is still the Catholic Church and how it is, is also just a mystery. The reason is because it can be objectively proven that the teachings of the Novus Ordo on faith and morals are a direct contradiction to the teachings of the Catholic Church. They are incompatible in their essence with the basic teaching of the Catholic Church, natural law, and divine law. This is no mystery, only a cold hard fact. One, once realized, forces the human mind to accept either the Catholic or Novus Ordo teaching and reject the other.

Caminus
“My sincerest apologies for such sloppy writing. But your desired precision leaves something to be desired. Tell me, by what criterion have you determined that all but "two or three" bishops remain true Catholics with ordinary jurisdiction, or "canonical mission" if you please, within a formally heretical and schismatic sect?”

The criterion, by which all true Catholics determine who is in the Church and who is not, is the same the Church has used since her very beginning and laid out clearly in her teaching. If someone pertinaciously publicly contradicts the Catholic Church’s teaching in the external forum either through his words or his actions, he is to be viewed as a manifest heretic and outside the Church.

Father Berry, The Church of Christ, pg 128
“Manifest heretics and schismatics are excluded from membership in the Church. Heretics separate themselves from the unity of faith and worship; schismatics from the unity of government, and both reject the authority of the Church.”

Rejecting his membership, a clergy would automatically forfeit his office:

“Canon 188/4
Any office becomes vacant upon the fact and without any declaration by tacit resignation recognized by the law itself if a cleric:
4. Publicly defects from the Catholic faith.”

The Novus Ordo bishops who publicly promote the heresies of the new religion, knowing they differ from Catholic teaching, have therefore lost their office. If bishops have not done so and since the Novus Ordo is not formally/having been declared by Church Authority a sect, these bishops possible could still be members of the Church and still be holding their offices.

Caminus
“At what point in time did the Catholic Church, that is, the identifable juridical body, transform itself into such a sect? Is it the liturgy?”

The new sect split off from the Catholic Church at Vatican II, for the Catholic Church can never transform, where new teachings were formulated and promulgated publicly under the guise of Catholic teaching. This is nothing new as almost all heretics try to promote their teachings as Christ authentic teachings and the Catholic teaching as a novel one. Another way to say this is heretics pretend and claim to teach orthodoxy. Vatican II is where clearly a new society was created with new teachings. The new liturgical practices were officially initiated in 1968, and new laws for this society were promulgated in 1983 with the New Code of Canon Law which codified the errors of the Vatican II Council.

Caminus
“Is it the over abundance of errant people that caused you to judge such is a fact?”

This has nothing to do with erring people regardless of their number. The new Code of Canon Law issued in 1983 are laws for the society called the Novus Ordo Church. Now the laws of the Catholic Church cannot contain errors/must be infallible in faith and morals for the Catholic Church is holy as the spotless bride of Christ. If a society abides by laws which contain errors in faith and morals as the Conciliar Church does with the New Code, it cannot be the Catholic Church period; it must be a new sect. “A sect means a religious society established in opposition to the Church whether it consist of infidels, pagans, Jews, Muslims, non-Catholics, or schismatics. (Rev. Charles Augustine, O.S.B, D.D., A Commentary On The New Code Of Canon Law, Vol. VIII, pg. 279-280, 1922.)”

Caminus
“After all, they do claim to possess the same faith, sacraments and government that we recognize as forming the Catholic Church -- nothing has been defined as contrary to that same faith, the theological errors of Popes and others nothwithstanding.”

Luther made the same claim, that he was teaching the same faith as given by Christ through the Apostles. Was he? Just because someone makes an assertion does not mean he is right. We must base our conclusions on objective criterion. The Catholic teaching is X (1917 Code of Canon Law, Canon 731: Teaches non-Catholics cannot receive communion), the Conciliar teaching is Y (1983 Code of Canon Law, Canon 844: Teaches non-Catholics can receive communion) therefore they are not the same regardless of someone’s claim. 2 is not 1; a triangle does not have three sides; they are metaphysically impossible to be the same just as it is for the teaching of the Conciliar Church to be the same as the Catholic Church.

Caminus
“Can you identify these few bishops as representing the dying breath of the Church in the form of absolutely necessary lawful authority? If not, how can you be certain they exist or that the Church that once existed still exists to this day.”

We are certain the true hierarchy of the Catholic Church exist by virtue of Faith despite the fact we ourselves may not see it or know for certain who is still the lawful authority.

Caminus
“The totality of traditional Catholic bishops do not claim ordinary jurisdiction, so where is it; where is the Church from whence it comes?”

We do not know that the totality of traditional Catholic bishops have rejected the claim of ordinary jurisdiction. It is quite possible traditional Catholic bishops sent into the communist countries have successors who have ordinary jurisdiction for instance which we do not know about.

Caminus
“The power of Holy orders is radically common to all priests by virtue of the invalid ordination, but the power of jurisdiction is ordinary only in pope, bishops, and parish priests, and extraordinary or delegated in others. It is plain, then, that while valid orders may exist outside the Catholic Church, jurisdiction cannot, as its source is the Vicar of Christ and it is possessed only so far as he confers it or does not limit it. The duties of those who have cure of souls are all carefully defined in the sacred cannons." Fanning, W. (1908). Cure of Souls. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved March 23, 2014 from New Advent: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04572a.htm

This is an essential point which I tried to make in another thread. While the right of the Roman Pontiff is Divine, how he regulates or if he regulate is tied to the human ecclesiastical law he enacts. If Papal mandates and the Creation of Diocese were required having been of Divine origin, it would have had to be the practice of the Church from her beginning. This is not the case as the creation of a diocese was not limited to the Roman Pontiff until after the fourth century and Papal Mandates originated in 6th Century. Before this the creation of Diocese and the consecration of bishops for a see was left to the neighboring bishops or clergy of the diocese as John Lane has pointed out. In so far as these are human ecclesiastical laws, the principle of epekiea can be applied to them in the absence of a true Roman Pontiff could legitimizing other methods to obtain ordinary jurisdiction.

John Lane
” If there is a fault in the general view of the traditional clergy, it is in not claiming habitual jurisdiction. That is, it would be immeasurably better if Bishop Rangel had declared the see of Campos vacant in 1991 and assumed the office himself, on the basis of the election of the remaining Catholic clergy of the diocese. This would have been a classical and perfectly defensible act, with precedent in the history of the Church and no great difficulty even with the text of canon law (and certainly none with the intention of the lawgiver). This would have been done with the explicit statement that the approval of the Roman Pontiff is presumed until he appears and gives his actual decision.

Likewise the clergy in other places could make the case against their local modernist prelate, ideally by issuing a canonical admonition first, then proceed to elect a bishop, and have the SSPX or other bishops consecrate him, and thus begin the restoration of the hierarchy.”

Caminus
“Some observations. A "sect" is a distinct body set up in opposition to the Church. Yet, if on the one hand, the Conciliar Church constitutes an entirely distinct body which formally teaches heretical doctine and is in schism from the true Catholic Church, where is the distinct and at least equally recognizeable true Catholic Church?
For example, suppose one were to happen upon a diocese where the Bishop has adopted several errors condemned in Pope Pius XII's Syllabus and his priests were equally intellectually deformed while profaning the liturgy would those facts alone lead to the conclusion that they diocese is formally a sect absolutely distinct from the Church?”

The Diocese would not be viewed as a sect but the bishop and the members of his clergy/laity who went along with his heretical teachings. Those clergy and laity who held to the faith would be recognized as the members of the Mystical Body of Christ.

Caminus
“Consequently, when those societal bonds are not formally severed, they remain, though the Mystical Body of Christ is consequently defaced.”

The whole point is the societal bonds of unity do not remain for there is no unity of doctrine, laws, or liturgy between the Catholic and Conciliar Church. And unlike other sins, heresy, schism, and apostasy severe one from the Mystical Body of Christ before and without any declaration by Holy Mother the Church.

Caminus
“To claim with a wave of the hand that what is recognized as the Catholic Church today is in fact a sect betrays a rather simplistic and uncritical approach to the problem.”

To claim what calls itself the Catholic Church today, this Conciliar Church, is in fact the Catholic Church is to ignore the inconvenient truth and past teachings of the Catholic Church and to blindly stumble down this road of error.

Caminus
“It seems to me that there isn't a universal criterion equally applied because one soon realizes that the sweeping statement literally invalidates the entire hierarchy.”

So we need to hold this heretical Conciliar hierarchy is our true hierarchy and it could still be our valid hierarchy. It would be like the Catholics in England claiming the protestant bishops for their hierarchy because well they needed one. What is the point of setting up a hierarchy which leads the Church into error. To claim as much is to destroy the whole purpose of the Catholic hierarchy and the Church which is to teach unadulterated infallible doctrines of Christ. To claim this heretical hierarchy is the true hierarchy is the same as saying the gates of hell have prevailed, for then there is no Church left. Men sin and error is true, but the Catholic Church cannot.

If this Novus Ordo hierarchy is the Catholic hierarchy, then the Church has erred in her laws, liturgy, and teaching.
The Catholic Church cannot err in her laws, liturgy, and teaching, so therefore this Novus Ordo hierarchy cannot be the true hierarchy.

In All Respect and Charity,
James


Thu Apr 03, 2014 12:49 am
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