Amoris Laetitia and the Coming Schism:
Retrospect and Prospect
Shortly before the Synod on the Family of 2014 — the first of the two mini-councils, whose final result was the toxic exhortation Amoris Laetitia — we put the question before our readers: How long until schism?
After this initial post, we followed up now and again to report on various happenings that indicated that indeed a serious rupture within the Vatican II Sect was beginning to take shape:
- The Schism Begins: Burke, Lenga, Schneider
- Prelude to Schism: Anti-Synod Video Appears
- Revolt against Bergoglio: Anti-Francis Dossier circulating inside Vatican
On April 8, 2016, the very day the Vatican released Francis’ post-synodal exhortation that has effectively permitted public sinners to approach the Novus Ordo sacraments without requiring conversion first, the reputable German Vaticanist Andreas Englisch warned that a schism with Benedict XVI as Antipope, although he believed it to be unlikely, could not be ruled out:
Earlier in 2014, and even as early as December of 2013, we had already detected the beginnings of a schism in a phenomenon we decided to label “Resignationism”, a position taken by a number of Novus Ordos and Semi-Traditionalists who believe that Benedict XVI’s resignation on February 11, 2013, was made under duress and was therefore, per Novus Ordo Church law, invalid. In other words, so-called “Resignationists” believe that Benedict XVI is still the validly reigning Pope, not Francis:
In conjunction with the Resignationist thesis, and adding another twist to the whole thing, claims then appeared that in any case it was “Cardinal” Angelo Scola, the “Archbishop” of Milan, who was elected “Pope” in the 2013 conclave, before Jorge Bergoglio:
While many may have thought at the time we published these posts that the possibility of a schism was an absurd and silly thought, things are looking quite a bit more serious today. Since the publication of Francis’ lengthy and verbose post-synodal document Amoris Laetitia, great turmoil has befallen the Novus Ordo world, something we’ve been chronicling at our special Chaos Watch page here. Our own commentary on the document and our analysis of various reactions to it can be found in our special-edition podcast: TRADCAST 013.
Against all this background, Inside the Vatican has now published in its entirety an English translation of an interview with the 89-year-old conservative German Novus Ordo philosopher Robert Spaemann, a personal friend of Benedict XVI’s, whose words certainly add some real fuel to the fire:
Every priest who holds to the sacramental order hitherto in force may undergo forms of bullying from their faithful and be put under pressure by their bishop. Rome can now impose the directive that from now on only “merciful” bishops will be appointed, bishops who are willing to soften the existing order.
Chaos has been erected as a principle with the stroke of a pen.
The Pope should have known that with such a step he splits the Church and leads her toward a schism.
This schism would not reside at the periphery, but in the very heart of the Church. God forbid.
One thing, however, seems certain: what seemed to be the aspiration of this pontificate — that the Church would transcend her “self-referentialness” in order to go out to meet persons with an open heart — with this papal document has been destroyed for an unforeseeable length of time.
One must now expect a secularizing boost and a further decline in the number of priests in large parts of the world. One can easily verify that, for some time, the bishops and dioceses with a clear attitude regarding faith and morals have the highest number of priestly vocations. It must be borne in mind here what St. Paul writes in his letter to the Corinthians: “If the trumpet gives an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself for the battle?” (1 Cor 14: 8).
You know things are serious when reputable people like Englisch, Spaemann, and Robert Moynihan, editor-in-chief of Inside the Vatican, start talking about schism. These are people who have no interest in making fools out of themselves or in needlessly putting their credibility on the line.
Another journalist who has contributed an interesting revelation to the current discussion is the Italian columnist Giuseppe Reguzzoni. On Maurizio Blondet’s blog Blondet & Friends, Reguzzoni writes:
A distinguished voice in the Roman Curia associated with one of today’s most important Catholic periodicals did not hide the anger of Cardinal Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith: The text of Amoris Laetitia that was put before him [to review] was much more innocuous than the one that was actually published.
(Giuseppe Reguzzoni, “Nella sua Chiesa, Kasper impone il Terrore giacobino. Per ‘misericordia’”, Blondet & Friends, Apr. 29, 2016; our translation.)
To those who object that we sedevacantists are trying to “talk a schism into existence”, so to speak, because we think this will help our cause, we would like to clarify that it is not so: We do not — or at least not necessarily — think that a schism inside the Vatican II Sect would be a good thing, and here’s why: Although a Novus Ordo schism would be a positive occurrence insofar as it would make plainly visible to all that the supposed “unity” in the Vatican II Church is illusory and thus get a lot of people to re-evaluate if they should perhaps look into Sedevacantism after all, there would also be a very grave danger that could allow people to continue to be blinded for decades to come: Those who, in the event of a schism in which Benedict XVI plays Francis’ “conservative” counterpart, flock to the “Pope Emeritus”, would be under the serious but emotionally satisfying illusion of having escaped the Modernist deception, which they would see only in Francis’ sect, whereas the truth is, of course, that it began long before Francis, namely, in 1958 with the election of Cardinal Angelo Roncalli as the first false pope (“John XXIII”).
Thus a Ratzinger-vs.-Bergoglio schism could actually prevent a number of conversions to Sedevacantism because the Ratzinger adherents would with great satisfaction believe themselves to have eluded the false Modernist Church, when the truth is that they would only have adjusted rooming arrangements within the the same deadly anti-Catholic sect. The Ratzinger sect and the Bergoglio sect would be but two wings of the same bird.
At this point it could be a good idea to revisit something that can perhaps shed more light on the truly bizarre events we have witnessed since Benedict XVI’s resignation in February 2013: During a secret 5-day trip to Peking, China, in mid-November 2011, “Cardinal” Paolo Romeo, “Archbishop” of Palermo (see photo on left), met with Italian businessmen and local church officials and announced to them with great assurance that Benedict XVI would be dead within 12 months. The listeners were so aghast at the confidence with which Romeo made the prediction that they understood him to be hinting at an assassination plot against the “Pope”.
This startling news was reported in a two-page, highly-confidential internal Vatican document allegedly written by “Cardinal” Dario Castrillon Hoyos to brief Benedict and perhaps also other high-ranking Vatican officials on Romeo’s assertions made in Peking. The report was leaked to the left-leaning Italian newspaper Il Fatto Quotidiano, which published a front-page article entitled, Complotto Contro Il Papa: Entro 12 Mesi Morirà (“Plot against the Pope: Within 12 Months He will Die”) on February 10, 2012 — exactly 1 year and 1 day before Benedict XVI announced his resignation. The online versions of the article can still be accessed:
- “Complotto contro Benedetto XVI: entro 12 mesi morirà” (Italian original)
- “Plot against Benedict XVI: He will die in 12 months” (English translation)
- Video showing the print edition of the Feb. 10, 2012 issue of Il Fatto Quotidiano
Dated December 30, 2011, the classified paper was written in German, Benedict’s native language, allegedly to ensure that as few people as possible would be able to read it in case it got into the wrong hands. Il Fatto released only one page of the document, which we have translated into English. You can download a PDF file of the translation with the original appended, here:
When the Vatican press office was asked to comment on the matter, the spokesman, “Fr.” Federico Lombardi confirmed the authenticity of the document but, not surprisingly, downplayed the whole matter as “nonsense not to be taken seriously”, on which grounds he then refused to give any further comment.
According to the leaked paper, “Cardinal” Romeo also predicted the election of Angelo Scola as Benedict XVI’s successor. Despite the fact that this didn’t happen, one ought not to dismiss it lightly, especially inasmuch as Scola is rumored to have indeed been elected at the conclave that followed but before Bergoglio, as mentioned earlier. Besides, the document relates the following: “Romeo prophesied just as self-confidently that even now it had already been secretly determined that in any event the successor to Benedict XVI would be a candidate with Italian roots.” In other words, even if Scola would not be elected, it would definitely be someone “with Italian roots.” Notice that the report does not say “an Italian” but someone with “Italian roots” — someone like… Jorge Mario Bergoglio:
Born in a typical Italian immigrant family, where the Piedmontese dialect is still spoken and where he considers it a duty to improve himself, Jorge Mario has a very special relationship with his grandmother Rosa.
(Elisabetta Piqué, Pope Francis: Life and Revolution: A Biography of Jorge Bergoglio [Chicago, IL: Loyola Press], p. 39; underlining added.)
“Pope” Francis, although himself born in Argentina, has Italian roots. In 1927, his grandparents moved from Italy to Argentina, directly to Buenos Aires (see Austen Ivereigh, The Great Reformer: Francis and the Making of a Radical Pope [New York, NY: Henry Holt & Co.], pp. 4-5). His last name — Bergoglio — is “an Italian surname” (Piqué, p. 54).
Thus, no matter what one may think of the other predictions allegedly made by “Cardinal” Romeo, he definitely hit a home run on this point. Not an Italian but someone with “Italian roots” indeed became the de facto successor to Benedict XVI. When Romeo himself was asked about the allegations made against him in the explosive paper, he denied having said that Benedict would only live for another year, and claimed that what the newspaper had published was incoherent and all made up.
But, as Il Fatto Quotidiano speculated after Benedict announced his resignation on Feb. 11, 2013, perhaps Romeo did indeed predict the end of Benedict’s “pontificate” but was speaking figuratively, having instead his resignation in mind rather than an assassination attempt, and was misunderstood by his audience. This too cannot be ruled out, especially considering that Italian journalist Antonio Socci had already gone on the record on Sep. 25, 2011, to predict that it was conceivable that Benedict XVI would resign.
The following links corroborate our summary:
- Ratzinger-Castrillón summit: The Vatican confirms: the papal note exists (Il Fatto Quotidiano)
- Il documento: “Strettamente confidenziale per il Santo Padre” (Il Fatto Quotidiano)
- Vatican: “Confidential” documents and that non-existent conspiracy (Vatican Insider)
- The Pope will die within a year: Vatican ‘Assassination Fears’ revealed (The Telegraph)
- Assassination Plot against Benedict XVI to make Angelo Scola next Pope (Daily Mail – caution! immodesty)
- “Plot to kill Pope” sparks Italian media storm (The Guardian)
- Terremoto Vaticano (Libero / Antonio Socci)
- Dimissioni Papa, le ‘profezie’. L’Osservatore: ‘Già decise da molti mesi’ (Il Fatto Quotidiano)
- Dimissioni del Papa… Preghiamo che Dio ce lo conservi a lungo (Libero / Antonio Socci)
Adding to the bizarreness of it all is the fact that the aforementioned German Vaticanist, Andreas Englisch, also predicted the resignation of Benedict XVI, in an interview given on April 16, 2012, the day Benedict celebrated his 85th birthday. True, Englisch like Socci based his prediction on the claim that during the waning days of the John Paul II “pontificate”, the then-“Cardinal” Ratzinger had verbalized his conviction that a Pope who is as ill as John Paul II then was, should resign, and it is for this reason that he (Englisch) thought Benedict would eventually throw in the towel. However, given that at the time of the Englisch interview there was no serious indication that Benedict XVI was suffering from any gravely distressing physical limitations, and given that two months prior to the interview, “Cardinal” Romeo’s alleged prediction about Benedict’s impending death had been exposed by Il Fatto Quotidiano, one may wonder whether Englisch’s daring and potentially embarrassing prognostication about “Pope” Ratzinger’s eventual resignation might not have been based on some other inside information as well.
Englisch’s concluding words lend further credence to the legitimacy of such speculation:
…During the Renaissance and also the Middle Ages, the Catholic Church had extremely bad experience with Antipopes, that is, with several Popes [reigning] at the same time, even though paragraph 22 of Canon Law expressly provides for a papal resignation. The problem that presents itself is simple: Let us assume a Pope resigns. Then a successor is elected who makes some sort of decision that does not sit well with the retired Pope. Then, in theory, he [the retired Pope] could say: I’m changing my mind. I am the Pope! And then we have a huge problem.
(Andreas Englisch, “Dieser Papst wird zurücktreten” [“This Pope will resign”], n-tv.de, April 16, 2012; our translation.)
According to the scenario described by Englisch, (1) a Pope resigns; (2) the new Pope does something the old Pope does not like; (3) the old Pope starts a schism. Even though most people back in 2012 thought they would never see (1) happen, it did; as far as (2) goes, it either has already happened or could be very close to happening; the question is probably only whether (3) might also come true. Now don’t say, “There’s no way that will ever happen.” Haven’t enough things happened in the last three years you once would have sworn up and down would never take place?
Every effect must have a proportionate cause. We have witnessed bizarre events and may very well see stranger things still. The underlying causes to what has transpired since Benedict’s resignation could be much deeper and complex than many have imagined.
Did Benedict XVI ultimately resign in order to ward off an attempt on his life? Was indeed “Cardinal” Scola elected first and only then “Cardinal” Bergoglio in the follow-up conclave? We may never know the answer. But thankfully, we do not need to know in order to know that all of these men — their occasional outward appearances to the contrary notwithstanding — are Modernists and not Catholics, and hence all of them are ineligible to be the head of the Catholic Church.
What this ongoing drama does allow us to see, in any case, is that to say that a real schism is brewing in the Modernist sect is quite justified indeed, and that “Pope” Bergoglio seems determined to bring everything now to a head. However, we suspect that a formal rupture will not take place until the moment that key figures in the Vatican come to the conclusion that an actual schism could only make things better, that it would be the lesser evil compared to letting things continue to go their way. Once this “nothing more to lose” situation has been reached, we will see the fit hitting the shan.
The Novus Ordo Sect seems to be finally destroying itself. Let us try to save as many souls from that sinking ship as possible. The tragic truth is that it is easier to deceive people than to convince them that they’ve been deceived.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, we entrust all souls of good will to thee. Obtain for them the grace of conversion and then of final perseverance. Amen.