Tag: Truth

Resistance Policy – I

Resistance Policy – I posted in Eleison Comments on March 15, 2014

In today’s disastrous state of Church and world there are, amongst others, two central principles in play, the one permanent and primary, the other temporary and secondary, but both are central. Their interplay should be decisive to guide our actions.

The permanent principle is that “Without faith it is impossible to please God” (Heb. XI, 6). This is because all men come from God endowed with a free-will which they are meant so to use as to be able to go to God when they die, and enjoy the beatific vision of God for eternity. These obligatory terms of our earthly existence constitute an extremely generous offer on God’s part, given how relatively little is required on our part (Is. LXIV, 4), but the very least that we can do, a bare beginning, is to recognize his existence. Given the goodness of his Creation all around us, it is “inexcusable” not to recognize it (Rom. I, 20), and therefore without the most elementary faith in him it is impossible to please him.

The temporary principle is that the Shepherd is struck and the sheep are scattered (Zach.XIII, 7), text quoted by Our Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane (Mt. XXVI, 31). After 4,000 years of man’s repeated decadence, God took a human nature to found a Church to enable men to save their souls for the last 2,000 years of men’s existence on this earth. For the first thousand of those years the decadence was seriously interrupted, but after a few more centuries it picked up again to the point that with Vatican II the very leaders of God’s own Church, the Popes on whom it was designed to depend, became seriously infected by the decadence. Thereupon it became much more difficult for men to see how God meant them to save their souls.

Therefore on the one hand, objectively speaking, the permanent truths of salvation have not been changed one little bit by the fall of the Conciliar Popes, and these truths must be maintained if any souls at all are still to be saved. It was Archbishop Lefebvre’s glory to uphold those truths against the fallen churchmen and world, while it is his successors’ disgrace to be compromising them for the sake of rejoining those churchmen and their world.

On the other hand, subjectively speaking, that disgrace is mitigated by the temporary eclipse of those great truths, due to the fall of the Popes. It is not easy even for bishops to see straight when the Bishop of Rome is seeing crooked. It follows that those who by the grace of God – and by nothing else – see straight, must have a 360-degree compassion for souls caught in a confusion not entirely their own fault. Therefore, it seems to me, if James is convinced that to save his soul he must stay in the Newchurch, I need not hammer him to get out of it. If Clare is persuaded that there is no grave problem within the Society of St Pius X, I need not ram down her throat why there is. And if John can see no way to keep the Faith without believing that the See of Rome is vacant, I need urge upon him no more than that that belief is not obligatory.

Yet in all this scattering of the sheep, somebody must maintain and make available to them the objective Truth if the poor stones are not to have to do it (Lk. XIX, 40), because upon at least the seeking of that Truth depends the saving of our souls. However, let Catholics seek it with all due regard for the blindness of their fellow-sheep, for at least as long as the Shepherd remains struck.

Kyrie eleison.

Truth First

Truth First posted in Eleison Comments on March 1, 2014

There must be many objections to the argument of recent issues of these “Comments” that, divine truth being prior to human teachers, then the fallibility of Popes need not concern us all that much because the true Faith is behind, beyond and above them. But here is a classic objection: the Truth in itself may be above them, but to us human beings it only comes through them – “faith is by hearing” (Rom.X, 17). Thus Our Lord entrusted to Peter (i.e. the Popes) the task of confirming his brethren in the faith (Lk.XXII, 31–32). So to us Catholics the teachers are prior to the Truth which we cannot receive without them. Moreover the Holy Ghost guides them (Jn.XVI, 13), so how can I possibly tell if or when he is not doing so?

Also in Scripture lies the answer. St. Paul writes to a flock which he has instructed in the Faith: “Though we, or an angel from heaven, preach a gospel to you besides that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema.” And the point is so important that St Paul immediately repeats it: “As we said before, so now I say again: If anyone preach to you a gospel, besides that which you have received, let him be anathema” (Gal.I, 8–9)

But, a Galatian might have objected, why should we believe your gospel on your first visit to Galatia and not an eventually different one on your second? St. Paul immediately gives a first reason: “ The gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. For neither did I receive it of man, nor did I learn it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ” (Gal.I, 11–12). And St Paul confirms this by narrating how little contact he had with those who might have taught him, the other Apostles, before he began preaching (I, 15–19), a fact obviously verifiable by them, and he swears to the Galatians that he is not lying (I, 20). A second reason he gives a little later, which is the miracles and experience of the Holy Spirit (III, 2–5) that the Galatians themselves had witnessed as the direct result of the preaching of Paul’s first visit.

Thus Paul proves that God both taught him, and confirmed for the Galatians, the gospel of that first visit, and the contradiction between it and any different gospel the Galatians would be not only able but also obliged to discern for themselves, if they wished to save their souls. And no matter if (I,8) the preacher of the different gospel were an angel or Paul himself – or a Pope! – the Galatians would still have the absolute duty to stay with Paul’s first gospel. The truth that had been set before them (III,1) the Galatians had recognized and accepted it (III, 3), just as one recognizes that 2 and 2 are 4, so it would have priority over any teacher eventually contradicting it, whatever authority to teach he might appear to have (I,9).

Thus Archbishop Lefebvre used to say that for the 19 centuries between St Paul and Vatican II the Church had preached exactly the same gospel, coming from God and ever and again confirmed by him. That gospel is, as revealed by God, Revelation; as handed down by churchmen, Tradition; as taught with authority by the Church, its Ordinary and Extraordinary Magisterium. Between that gospel and Vatican II the contradiction is obvious, so we must accept and believe Tradition, if we wish to save our souls, whatever the apparent authorities of the Church may say to the contrary. So help us God. How then can the Archbishop’s own Society of St Pius X be officially seeking reconciliation with the authorities of Vatican II?

Kyrie eleison.

Church’s Infallibility – II

Church’s Infallibility – II posted in Eleison Comments on February 15, 2014

Much needs to be said about the Church’s infallibility, especially to correct illusions arising (by mistake) from the Definition of Papal infallibility in 1870. Today for instance sedevacantists and liberals think that their positions are wholly opposed, but do they stop for a moment to see how similarly they think?—Major: Popes are infallible. Minor: Conciliar Popes are liberal. Liberal Conclusion: we must become liberal. Sedevacantist Conclusion: they cannot be Popes. The error is neither in the logic, nor in the Minor. It can only be in a misunderstanding on both their parts of infallibility in the Major. Once again, modern men put authority above truth.

Eternal God is Truth itself, absolutely infallible. In created time, through his Incarnate Son, he instituted his Church with a doctrine for the salvation of human souls. Coming from him that doctrine could only be inerrant, but to keep it free from the errors of the human churchmen to whom he would entrust it, his Son promised them the “spirit of truth” to guide them “for ever” (Jn. XIV, 16). For indeed without some such guarantee, how could God require of men, on pain of eternal damnation, to believe in his Son, in his doctrine and in his Church (Mk.XVI, 16)?

Yet even from churchmen God will not take away that free-will to err which he gave them. And he will allow that freedom to go as far as they wish, short of their making his Truth inaccessible to men. That reaches far, and it includes a number of highly defective Popes, but God’s reach is still farther than the wickedness of men (Isaiah LIX, 1,2). At Vatican II for instance, Church error went a long way, without however God’s allowing his Church to be wholly defectible in its presentation to men of the inerrant Truth coming from his own infallibility. Even the Conciliar Popes have told many Catholic truths alongside their Conciliar errors.

But how then can I, a simple soul, tell the difference between their truths and their errors? Firstly, if I am truly looking for God with an upright heart, he will guide me to him, as the Bible says in many places. And secondly, God’s doctrine being as unchangeable as God, it must be the doctrine that I find (nearly) all his churchmen to have taught and handed down in (nearly) all places and at (nearly) all times, best known as Tradition. From the beginning of the Church, that handing down has been the surest test of what Our Lord himself taught. Down the ages inerrant Tradition has been the work of millions of churchmen. It has been that for which God endowed his Church as a whole, and not just the Popes, with the guidance of the infallible Holy Ghost.

Here is, so to speak, the cake of Church infallibility upon which the Popes’ solemn Definitions are merely the icing, precious and necessary, the peak of the Church’s infallibility, but not its mountain bulk. Notice firstly that Definitions by the Popes’ Extraordinary Magisterium existed not only from 1870 but from the beginning of the Church, and they existed not to make Tradition true but merely to make certain what belonged to Tradition and what did not, whenever the erring of men had made that uncertain. Sensing truth, Archbishop Lefebvre rightly preferred inerrant Tradition to gravely erring Popes. Never having understood him, like all modern liberals not sensing truth, his successors are in the process of preferring erring Popes to inerrant Tradition. Underestimating truth and overestimating the Popes, sedevacantists wholly repudiate the erring Popes and can be tempted to quit the Church altogether. Lord, have mercy!

Kyrie eleison.

GREC – II

GREC – II posted in Eleison Comments on March 9, 2013

Before we continue with the story of GREC, namely the Parisian group of laity and clergy meeting from the late 1990’s onwards in pursuit of reconciliation between Vatican II and Catholic Tradition, we must consider the basic attitude of GREC participants. The Church’s future depends on those Catholics who will understand GREC’s error, i.e. how modern minds lose their grip on truth. To illustrate that attitude let us take at random four quotes, typical of dozens and dozens in the book For the Necessary Reconciliationby the Newchurch priest, Fr Michel Lelong, one of the founders of GREC. In a letter he wrote to the Pope in July of 2008 are to be found the first two quotes:—

“We also wish that the excommunications(of the four SSPX bishops in 1988) be lifted and that the SSPX recover its place within the Church to which it has so much to give. That is why we ask the authorities of the SSPX to put an end to the polemical statements and articles criticizing the Holy See.”Comment: (Has that not happened over the last 10 years?) But if polemics are so bad, why were a number of Church Fathers – and Archbishop Lefebvre – so polemical? Polemics are only that bad if unity is that good. But unity is only as good as that around which it unites.

“In our society so tempted by materialism, indifferentism and sectarisms, we think that in response to your request, Holy Father, all Catholics must strive together to be faithful to Christ’s recommendation, ‘Be united so that the whole world may believe’.”Comment: “United” around what? Around Catholic truth, or around the lie that Catholic truth is reconcilable with Vatican II? Then the primary and crucial question for Catholic unity is where Catholic truth is to be found. But GREC leaves questions of truth to the “theologians.” So non-theologians can be saved by lies!?

This letter of Fr Lelong was so well received by Benedict XVI that GREC leaders and sympathisers wrote again a few months later. Here are two more quotes from the second letter to the Pope:—

“For sure we were saddened that the Holy See’s recent proposals were not accepted by the SSPX authorities, but we know that to heal wounds amongst Catholics always requires generosity and patience to restore confidence on both sides and to make reconciliation possible.”Comment: Are wounds only ever to be healed, and never inflicted? Did Our Lord not twice use a lash across the backs of the money-lenders in the Temple? There is a God, his honour is to be defended above all things, and men can be wicked enough to understand nothing but the lash, be it physical or verbal.

“We think that lifting the excommunications would set in motion an irresistible process of drawing closer, with a view to an agreement between the Holy See and the SSPX, or at least an agreement with a large part of the SSPX priests and faithful.”Comment: indeed the friendly contacts between Rome and the SSPX were setting such a motion in process in January of 2009, and only an outburst from within the SSPX of the most horrible heresy of modern times – “anti-semitism” – stopped that process. But either Catholic reconciliation with Vatican II is no problem, or one has to say that that outburst was providential, because it also stopped, at least for a while, the false reconciliation.

In conclusion, GREC, like millions of modern Catholics, above all else seeks unity, non-polemics, reconciliation, agreement, etc. But where does the God of truth figure amongst all these sweet sentiments? Is he a sugar-daddy who blesses all men’s lies, just so long as they lie in unison?

Kyrie eleison.

Fourth Trial

Fourth Trial posted in Eleison Comments on February 9, 2013

A reader asks about my latest trial and condemnation for “Holocaust denial” by the Regional Court of Regensburg in South Germany on January 16. Readers will remember that my original offence was on November 1, 2008, to have told a Swedish interviewer for Swedish TV in the privacy of the sacristy of the German Seminary of the Society of St Pius X, but on German soil, that I believed neither that “Six Million Jews” died under Hitler’s rule in the Second World War, nor that one single Jew died in a “gas-chamber.”

For expressing these beliefs in Germany, where “holocaust denial” is a statutory crime, I was tried and condemned by the Regensburg Regional Court in 2010, and the punishment was to be a fine of

Dictatorship Imminent

Dictatorship Imminent posted in Eleison Comments on November 24, 2012

A remarkable portrait of our contemporary world appeared two months ago on the Internet website, 321gold. The title is daunting: “Decline, Decay, Denial, Delusion and Despair,” but the content is surely true to life. Starting from a street scene to be found no doubt all over the eastern United States, the author concludes that within 15 years an Orwellian dictatorship will descend upon his country as the unwanted effect of wanted causes. But the USA is not typical of the whole world? The whole world is buying into the American way of life. “Let the buyer beware”!

This autumn in the streets of Wildwood, New Jersey, the author observed pavements encumbered with a host of heavily overweight men and women under 50 years of age rolling around town on government-subsidized mobility scooters to visit one fast-food joint after another in order to gorge on sugar-laden goodies which would give their latest model scooters more work than ever. His amusing name for them? – “The weight-challenged disabled on their powered mobility enhancement vehicles.” Such is the flight from reality of “political correctness” and its language.

The author seeks causes for this tragic-comic effect: how can the American people that once saved 12% of their income have been persuaded to frighten the obesity statistics off the end of the charts with a debt-laden, sugar-sodden way of life, with no more savings for themselves and with an unbearable burden of debt being bequeathed to their children and grand-children? Of course there is a lack of self-control on their part, he says, but there must be something more sinister, some mind behind such a mindless scene. He says the mass of citizens are being manipulated by an invisible government that has mastered the modern techniques of mass manipulation.

He quotes a pioneer of these masters from the 1920’s, Edward Bernays: “The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the masses is an important element in democratic society . . . Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society . . . Whether in politics, business, social conduct or ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons . . .who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses.” They are “the true ruling power of the country,” and they “pull the wires which control the public mind.” For what purpose? For their own wealth and power.

It is they who have organized today’s financial and economic crisis for their own benefit. They have “wrecked the world economy . . .shifted their worthless debt onto the backs of taxpayers and unborn generations, thrown senior citizens and savers under the bus by stealing 400 billion per year of interest from them, and enriched themselves with bubble-level profits and bonus payments.” And when the plug has to be pulled on this unsustainable way of life, then our invisible masters have prepared for us a 1984 “dictatorship of tears” with militarized police with millions of bullets, surveillance cameras and drones everywhere, imprisonment without charges and so on and so on. Yet, says the author, it is the citizens’ own fault who have preferred ignorance to truth, sickness to health, media lies to critical thinking, security to liberty.

There is only one thing lacking to this admirable analysis: could our governing elite have run so wild, or our masses have turned so dumb, if either had retained the least sense of a God who judges us all at death, according to Ten Commandments? Of course not. Catholics, wake up!

Kyrie eleison.