Luke 6:41 Alert…

The Importance of Not Being… Sedevacantist?
Chris Ferrara’s Double Standard

On Dec. 31, 2017, The Remnant‘s senior polemicist Christopher Ferrara published an interesting blog post entitled “The Importance of Not Being Us”. In it, he takes to task the two Novus Ordo apologists Karl Keating and Dave Armstrong for a recent public exchange they had over a new book by Catholic Culture‘s Philip Lawler, bearing the title Lost Shepherd: How Pope Francis is Misleading His Flock.

Keating, Armstrong, and Lawler all fall into the “conservative” or “Neo-Catholic” camp of the Novus Ordo Sect, the difference being that Lawler is no longer willing to deny what is in front of his very eyes with regard to “Pope” Francis’ teachings and actions. Keating and Armstrong’s exchange is about whether or not this makes Lawler now a “traditionalist”, or “radical Catholic reactionary”, to use Armstrong’s preferred lingo.

The Blind blasting the Blind

In his blog post on the three Neo-Catholic pundits, Ferrara rightly criticizes them for the unreasonable lengths to which they go in order not to be associated with those evil “traditionalists” who dare point out that Francis’s ideas and actions are simply not in conformity with Catholicism. Here are some highlights from Ferrara’s post:

What Keating and Armstrong think about Lawler’s exposition of what has long been obvious to traditionalists is uninteresting in itself. Worth noting, however­—if only as a kind of sociological observation of our troubled ecclesial commonwealth­­—is that here we have two “conservative” Catholics bickering over how to approach a book that essentially echoes the traditionalist view of what Lawler himself calls “this disastrous papacy.”

For Armstrong, it is a matter of maintaining the neo-Catholic polemic of “radical traditionalists” as objects of fear and loathing, even though Lawler, a decidedly non-traditionalist commentator, agrees with them regarding Francis. For Keating, it is [a] question of how Lawler can be defended without also conceding that the traditionalists who preceded him by years in reaching the same conclusion were right from the beginning. Both agree, therefore, on the same implicit premise: under no circumstances can the traditionalist assessment of Francis be credited at all, much less acknowledged as prescient, for this would mean that the neo-Catholic commentariat has been wrong and wholly lacking in prescience. Wrong not only about Francis, but the entire course of the post-conciliar crisis in the Church whose roots in unprecedented and manifestly destructive ecclesial novelties they, being neo-Catholics, refuse to acknowledge. While Francis has made that refusal untenable as to his own novelties, the neo-Catholic polemic nonetheless precludes any admission that traditionalists had a point concerning him.

…Just as [American political theorist Russell] Kirk accepted the fatal principles of political modernity while arguing for their compatibility with traditional values via a “conservative” application, so does the neo-Catholic accept the officially approved novelties of the past fifty years, despite their manifest incompatibility with the traditional teachings he would defend. …Francis, however, has made that exercise impossible. Hence Lawler’s book and the ensuing sociological disturbance it has caused in a neo-Catholic cohort that did not even exist before Vatican II.

Finally, Lawler has entered the fray personally to assure Armstrong that he has not become a radical Catholic reactionary: “If you give me your email address, I can send you a copy of the proofs, and you can make your judgment on the full book. I don’t doubt that you’ll still have problems with it, but I hope you won’t conclude that I have become a reactionary.” Perish the thought that any Catholic would react radically against a radical Pope bent on changing Church teaching! Catholics must always remain inert in the face of radical attacks on the Faith, especially when the radical is a Pope. Lawler thus hastens to give assurances of his continued inertness, despite his book.

So, Armstrong, Keating and Lawler himself are all essentially agreed: one must never allow oneself to become a radical reactionary Catholic, even if what those unclean ones at The Remnant and elsewhere are saying happens to be perfectly true. The neo-Catholic narrative of passive acceptance of the post-conciliar regime of novelty qua superior fidelity to the Church remains intact, even if Lawler has unsettled the quiescent status quo by observing that Francis has gone too far down the road to officially approved disaster they have all been following for decades without protest. Despite this lapse of protocol, Lawler is still not one of them. He has not sullied himself by joining the untouchable caste. And isn’t that what matters before all else?

Such is the profound sociological disease of the human element of the Church in the midst of the worst crisis in her long history.

(Christopher A. Ferrara, “The Importance of Not Being Us”, The Remnant, Dec. 31, 2017)

Ferrara’s critique of the silly and reality-denying Neo-Catholic position that closes its eyes before the Vatican II apostasy is right on the money. However, what has apparently escaped Ferrara entirely is the ironic fact that the criticism he levels at Keating, Armstrong, and in part also at Lawler is in essence just as applicable to himself when it comes to the issue of Sedevacantism. For just as the conservative Novus Ordos refuse to acknowledge the apostasy in Rome, so Ferrara and his ilk, though they recognize that apostasy, distort its true nature and/or refuse to draw the necessary conclusions that follow from it, even at the expense of traditional Catholic teaching on the Church, the Papacy, and the Magisterium. This is something we have demonstrated time and again:

Just as Keating and Armstrong are guilty of filtering the evidence in front of them to ensure it conforms to their a priori rejection of (what Ferrara would call) traditionalism, so Ferrara is guilty of filtering, distorting, or rejecting the evidence in front of him to ensure it conforms to his a priori rejection of Sedevacantism. In both cases it can be said that the individuals in question have made up their minds that certain things must not be true and therefore will not be admitted into evidence. While Ferrara’s criticism of Keating and Armstrong is sound, it is entirely hypocritical of him to accuse them of acting the way they do while, mutatis mutandis, he himself acts no differently in essence.

While sedevacantists acknowledge both the observable facts about Jorge Bergoglio and his apostate Vatican establishment and the Catholic teaching on the Church, the Magisterium, and the Papacy, conservative Novus Ordos and semi-traditionalists deny one or the other, and sometimes even both:

  • Keating & Co. retain the traditional teachings on the authority of the Pope and the Church in teaching and governing but deny the empirically verifiable fact that the Novus Ordo Sect promotes a new religion that is incompatible with Catholicism prior to Vatican II
  • Ferrara & Co. basically admit the apostasy of the Novus Ordo Sect and its chief leader but deny the traditional teachings on the authority of the Pope and the Church in teaching and governing

Both positions have one thing in common: They each allow their respective proponents to hold on to the belief that Francis is Pope and therefore Sedevacantism is false. But both positions are wrong because both deny something that it is necessary to affirm.

A Mirror for Mr. Ferrara

How much Ferrara’s criticism of the three Novus Ordo pundits is just as applicable to himself, can be seen in the following illustration, where we adapt his very own words against Keating, Armstrong, and Lawler to his own behavior with regard to Sedevacantism. Here’s what that looks like:

…under no circumstances can the sedevacantist assessment of Francis be credited at all, much less acknowledged as prescient, for this would mean that the semi-traditionalist commentariat has been wrong and wholly lacking in prescience. Wrong not only about Francis, but about the nature of the entire Vatican II Church and all of its false popes as well, whose claim to being the Catholic Church and the Vicars of Christ is incompatible with traditional Catholic teaching on the Church and the Papacy; something which they, being semi-traditionalists, refuse to acknowledge. While Francis has made that refusal completely untenable, the semi-traditionalist polemic nonetheless precludes any admission that sedevacantists have a point concerning him.

Perish the thought that any Catholic would react radically against a radical apostate trying to change Church teaching! Catholics are never allowed to draw necessary conclusions in the face of radical attacks on the Faith, especially when the radical claims to be Pope.

So, Ferrara, Michael Matt, and [the now deceased] John Vennari are all essentially agreed: one must never allow oneself to become a sedevacantist, even if what those unclean ones at Novus Ordo Watch and elsewhere are saying happens to be perfectly true and sensible. The semi-traditionalist narrative of passive acceptance of the Novus Ordo “popes” qua superior fidelity to the Church remains intact, even if Ferrara has unsettled the anti-sedevacantist status quo by observing that Francis is an “anti-Catholic Pope”. Despite this manifest contradiction in terms, Ferrara is still not one of them. He has not sullied himself by joining the untouchable caste. And isn’t that what matters before all else?

Is this not a pretty accurate description, overall, of the Ferrara/Remnant/semi-trad attitude towards Sedevacantism? Why, then, the double standard?

Chris Ferrara

Ferrara says Keating, Armstrong, and Lawler don’t want to admit that traditionalists had it right about Francis and the Novus Ordo Church from the beginning? Fine, but neither does Ferrara want to admit that sedevacantists had it right about Francis from the beginning. An assessment, we might add, that was not based on rash judgment, as “Fr.” Nicholas Gruner and Ferrara claimed in spring of 2013, but that was based on what was known about Jorge Bergoglio, the Novus Ordo Sect, and Catholic teaching on the Papacy and the Church at the time.

We recall that it wasn’t until early October 2013 or so that The Remnant publicly turned against Francis. For the first six months of his “pontificate”, they were trying their darndest to spin Bergoglio into a Catholic, just as they had done for years with Benedict XVI, routinely ignoring, downplaying, or otherwise dismissing Ratzinger’s Modernism (see here for an example and here for our criticism). When it became evident that this approach was not going to work in the long term with regard to Francis, The Remnant changed its stance.

Let’s be clear: The idea is not to criticize anyone for being a “Johnny come lately”. This would not be a Catholic attitude: “And many that are first, shall be last: and the last shall be first” (Mt 19:30). It does not matter who is first in recognizing the truth; what matters is that we all do. No, the criticism here is directed at Ferrara’s double standard, criticizing others for that which, in essence, he does himself: “And why seest thou the mote in thy brother’s eye: but the beam that is in thy own eye thou considerest not?” (Lk 6:41).

That “Human Element” of the Church again

Alas, Ferrara does not conclude his post on Keating, Armstrong, and Lawler without blaming everything on the Church’s supposed “human element”, which he leaves conveniently undefined: “Such is the profound sociological disease of the human element of the Church in the midst of the worst crisis in her long history,” he writes. Since Ferrara in his post lambasts Armstrong for using “undefined terms”, surely he could humor us and provide a well-sourced Catholic definition of “human element of the Church”… couldn’t he?

No, Mr. Ferrara: False teachings, false theology, false sacraments, false saints, sacrilegious-heretical liturgical rites, and universal disciplinary laws and pastoral practices that deny the Faith or are otherwise detrimental to souls, such are not the human element of the Church. If they are, please tell us what is left to constitute the divine element!

Speaking of the latter, we would do well to recall the words of Church historian Fr. Fernand Mourret, who said the following about the gravely immoral but true Pope John XII:

Divine providence, watching over the Church, miraculously preserved the deposit of faith, of which this young voluptuary [John XII] was the guardian. This Pope’s life was a monstrous scandal, but his bullarium is faultless. We cannot sufficiently admire this prodigy. There is not a heretic or a schismatic who has not endeavored to legitimate his own conduct dogmatically: Photius tried to justify his pride, Luther his sensual passions, Calvin his cold cruelty. Neither Sergius III nor John XII nor Benedict IX nor Alexander VI, supreme pontiffs, definers of the faith, certain of being heard and obeyed by the whole Church, uttered, from the height of their apostolic pulpit, a single word that could be an approval of their disorders.

At times John XII even became the defender of the threatened social order, of offended canon law, and of the religious life exposed to danger.

(Rev. Fernand Mourret, A History of the Catholic Church, Vol. 3 [St. Louis, MO: Herder Book Co., 1946], pp. 510-511; underlining added.)

The Catholic Church is divine, not human. This is why Pope Leo XIII taught:

…the Church has received from on high a promise which guarantees her against every human weakness. What does it matter that the helm of the symbolic barque has been entrusted to feeble hands, when the Divine Pilot stands on the bridge, where, though invisible, He is watching and ruling? Blessed be the strength of his arm and the multitude of his mercies!

(Pope Leo XIII, Allocution to Cardinals, March 20, 1900; excerpted in Papal Teachings: The Church, p. 349.)

Pope Pius XII echoed the same thing in an address he gave to the people of Rome:

The Pope has the divine promises; even in his human weaknesses, he is invincible and unshakable; he is the messenger of truth and justice, the principle of the unity of the Church; his voice denounces errors, idolatries, superstitions; he condemns iniquities; he makes charity and virtue loved.

(Pope Pius XII, Address Ancora Una Volta, Feb. 20, 1949)

Whatever definition of “human element” Ferrara may be using, it’s certainly not the correct one. We suspect, in fact, that Ferrara is not using a definition at all — he is simply taking whatever is wrong with the Vatican II Sect and declaring it to be ipso facto the human element, a posteriori. As long as no one challenges him on it, he may be able to get away with it. (We are reminded here of Ferrara’s 2016 debate with Mark Shea.)

Again and again we notice that the supposed “traditional Catholics” of our day stray rather far from the traditional teaching of the Church, whenever that traditional teaching threatens to overturn the anti-sedevacantist world they have made for themselves and have led their followers to embrace.

Anything but Sedevacantism

At a time when such high-profile individuals as “Fr.” Paul Kramer, “Fr.” Nicholas Gruner, Louie Verrecchio, and possibly also Dr. Peter Chojnowski have realized there is no way Francis could be the Pope of the Catholic Church (although they all accept Benedict XVI as the currently-reigning Pontiff), the semi-traditionalists at The Remnant, Rorate Caeli, Catholic Family News, The Fatima Center, etc., would have some credibility if they at least admitted Sedevacantism as a possibility — but they will not deign to concede even that much. No, Sedevacantism is excluded dogmatically as the first premise in every argument. Hence they end up in the most absurd doctrinal contortions, matched in their folly only by the persistent refusal of reality entertained by Neo-Catholics like Keating, Armstrong, and — everybody’s favorite — Jimmy Akin!

At the same time, Ferrara’s unshakable refusal to countenance Sedevacantism even as a possibility runs afoul of some other recent oral utterances he’s made, to the effect that it doesn’t matter if Francis is Pope or not (see here, beginning at 6:46 and 15:24 min marks). If it truly doesn’t matter, then why not bring it up at least as a possible option that would explain, well, a lot? This would be a testimony at least to consistency and sincerity, although, as we have pointed out in one of our podcasts before, the one thing worse than saying that Francis is a true Pope is saying that it doesn’t matter if he’s a true Pope.

Tragically, we must conclude once more that what seems to be driving Ferrara’s prolific commentaries is not the desire to present a sober analysis of the facts enlightened by a strict adherence to traditional Catholic doctrine, but the desire to continue to push the semi-traditionalist and decidedly anti-sedevacantist “traditionalist” party line, no matter the evidence or the consequences.

To sum up: Ferrara rightly points the finger at conservative Novus Ordos for their senseless, reality-denying position, satirically labeling it “The Importance of Not Being Us.” At the same time, he acts no differently from the very people he criticizes, as he himself continues to pull out all the stops to maintain the importance of not being sedevacantist.

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79 Responses to “The Importance of Not Being… Sedevacantist? Chris Ferrara’s Double Standard”

  1. Jeremias

    “The Pope has the divine promises; even in his human weaknesses, he is invincible and unshakable; he is the messenger of truth and justice, the principle of the unity of the Church; his voice denounces errors, idolatries, superstitions; he condemns iniquities; he makes charity and virtue loved.” (Pope Pius XII, Address Ancora Una Volta, Feb. 20, 1949)
    Yep … insert Bergoglio’s name in lieu of “Pope” here, and see how well the tiara (oh yeah, Montini gave that away) fits: “he [Bergoglio] is the messenger of truth and justice, the principle of unity of the Church; his voice denounces errors, idolatries, superstitions; he condemns iniquities; he makes charity and virtue loved.”
    Yeah, right … or rather: He is the messenger of heresy, the principle of division of the Church; his (flinty) voice affirms errors, idolatries, superstitions; he promotes iniquities; he makes heresy and evil loved.” Yeah … that’s better.
    Sorry if this offends you Messrs. Ferrara, Keating, Armstrong & Lawler.

    • PESh

      The Conciliar Popes (except perhaps Montini’s successor) all have tiaras, typically gifts, which they do not wear as it doesn’t suit to sublimate the man into the office in the Religion of Man.

  2. Teuton1981

    At this point, I think Frankie could go in scene and declare himself a satanist and R&R folks would just say “well, he’s a satanist but still pope…”

  3. Sede for Christ

    Hi, I’d like to answer your questions if I can. About the Thuc consecrations, the Catholic Church has always considered consecrations done by a validly ordained bishop to be valid. This is true of the Orthodox Schismatics. There was a bishop in France I believe couple hundred years ago who was a very evil man and very immoral. He consecrated many bishops and I believe most French Bishops pre-V2 derived their succession from him. But never did the Church consider those men invalidly ordained. Also, during the French revolution, you had the schism of the Constitutionalist clergy, and many bishops and priests were ordained and consecrated, many unworthy. But when the schism was ended, never was there a call to have them conditionally ordained nor was their validity ever contested. Many of the French clergy pre-V2 derived their succession from these men, most likely Arch. Lefebvre as well. In a nutshell, if a Bishop consecrates or ordains, the assumption is in favor of validity and the burden of positive proof is on the doubter. Here are some resources for understanding Sacramental Theology from pre-V2 sources:
    All of Fr. Cekada’s articles on this issue w/documentation can be found here, also on the canonical issues:

    About Cum Ex, the 1917 code abrogated all prior legislation. The code itself said this, and so do many canonists in commentaries. It is true that the code references Cum Ex in support of canon 188.4 but only as a source, and the bull has no effect anymore. A similar argument is used with Quo Primum, but the argument is fallacious, because Quo Primum insofar as it legislated the Tridentine reforms with regard to the Roman Missal, it could be overturned, but of course, it doesn’t therefore follow that the New Mass is legitimate. It simply means that in principle a future pope could legislate a different missal to be used and could change a great many of the contents of the missal entirely, but not essentially. Such was done with the Holy Week rites by Pius XII, which is the oldest part of the Missal, and so obviously it therefore proves the point. And even if Cum Ex was still in force, it only applies to ecclesiastical law, not to divine law, which is what the impossibility of having a heretical pope is based on. And what has to be remembered is these are canonical arguments, which while valid, should not be used as primary sources for arguments, because it is very difficult to follow. The easier argument is one based on Dogmatic theology, that heretics aren’t Church members and therefore can’t hold valid office. Fr. Cekada’s article on quo primum:

    • Pascendi

      Another thing to consider is that Archbishop Thuc was led to believe that the non-Catholics had repented and converted. He was also among the very earliest to conclude that Paul VI was not a valid pope and that virtually the entire hierarchy had apostacized. Since such a thing had never occurred in the history of the Church, it was an extremely unsettling and confusing time. There was no map that had been laid out for how to deal with such a circumstance.

  4. Thrillah

    Hello. I have recently become interested in Novus Ordo Watch. I am not entirely committed to the Sedevacantist position yet, but I do believe that it is the most tenable. (My avatar is supposed to be satirical, fyi.) At the moment, my main question is this: How would we respond to those who say that the Modernist revolution began not with John XXIII but actually with Pius XII? I’ve been studying up on Pius XII’s pontificate and, from what I gather, he was somewhat of a liberal. I actually have a devotion to this pope, I have always been captivated by him, but I am forced to conclude that his liturgical program laid the groundwork for the new mass. He may have been well-intentioned but simply misguided. That is a possibility. Also, did he not encourage theologians to consider less literalistic interpretations of scripture, and was he not open to Darwinism, etc? I also find it troubling that he began the internationalization of the Curia and made several questionable appointments. Am I way off here? Thank you, and God bless you.

    • Sede for Christ

      The revolution began with the Protestant Revolution most remotely and the French Revolution remotely. But as far as modernism considered, there were already ecumenical “masses” being conducted in Germany as early as the 1920s. A little bit of research confirms this. Obviously, the bigger the revolution, the more preparation it takes, so it would be an obvious fallacy and intrinsically contestable based on history and human psychology to consider Vatican II a mere Big Bang without a gradual leading up to it’s eruption. Bp. Sanborn has an excellent article on the topic.
      Please read the article, Bp. makes the necessary distinctions for why, yes, Pius XII did allow the revolution to gain headway, but only in a omissive way, by what he failed to do. Similar to Pope Honorius: It could be conceivable that the future immediate successor to Pius XII could actually condemn the three immediate successors of St. Pius X for failing to suppress modernism. But that is my thought and certainly debatable in principle and will only be seen in time. Articles on the Pius XII liturgical reforms can be found here:

      Pius XII did approve some less than literal scripture translations (e.g. Bea psalter) and failed to condemn some biblical modernists even at the request of Card. Ottaviani (?). He allowed scientists and theologians to dispute the evolutionary theories of Darwan, but absolute conditions were set, in that it was permissible to believe that higher species could have evolved from lower species, but that one had to believe that this in no way involved an evolution of the soul, that the souls of animals and men being essentially different, that the soul must have been infused by God directly at the moment in which the species would go from animal to man. Essentially, he didn’t pronounce on the issue as a matter of science, but reined in the theologically elements to keep theology pure, although one could certainly with reason criticize him for not outright condemning evolution even with the conditions. But that remains for a future pope, hope this helps.

    • 2c3n1 .

      Thrillah, would you say Jesus made a questionable appointment with Judas as His disciple?

      As for the liturgy, would you say Pope Pius XII’s reform missal leads to the new mass even though the same pope declared a year after his reform that the liturgy is an untainted source with Scripture and Tradition?

      Can the Catholic Church be holy while giving us the groundwork for the new mass of the counterfeit religion?

        • 2c3n1 .

          Sede for Christ I didn’t say it was. I’m pointing out to Catholic truth that is denied by many who call themselves Catholic sedevacantists.

      • Timotheos

        Consider that, if Pius XII excommunicated himself in 1953 by going along with the Freemasons and attempting to use the Magisterium to condemn Fr Leonard Feeney SJ for teaching that membership of the Church through baptism in water is essential for salvation, then …

        – he publicly defied the very ‘dogma of the faith’ referred to by Our Lady of Fatima;
        – his sin of heresy automatically expelled him from Catholic Church (by Divine Law);
        – the papal throne was immediately vacated;
        – all the post-1953 ‘papal acts’, including the ostensible changes to the liturgy in 1955, are null and void.

        • 2c3n1 .

          Timotheos Fr Feeney erroneously taught that man can be justified without baptism but such a person wouldn’t go to heaven or hell. He simply said he didn’t know where such a person would go.

          Pope Pius XII didn’t reject any dogma. That is a total lie to say that he did!

          If you’re willing to say Pius XII was a heretic for teaching baptism of desire (baptism is not a necessity of means) (which even Fr. Feeney agreed with to a certain extent), then you have to reject as heretics all the popes back to Trent because Pope St. Pius V promulgated that adults “are not baptized at once…The delay is not attended the same danger as in the case of infants, which we have already mentioned; should any foreseen accident make it impossible for adults to be washed in the salutary waters, their intention and determination to receive Baptism and their repentance for past sins, will avail them to grace and righteousness.”

          Pope after pope endorsed this Catechism promulgated by Pope St. Pius V.

          Pope St. Pius X taught: 29 Q: But if a man through no fault of his own is outside the Church, can he be saved?

          A: If he is outside the Church through no fault of his, that is, if he is in good faith, and if he has received Baptism, or at least has the implicit desire of Baptism; and if, moreover, he sincerely seeks the truth and does God’s will as best he can such a man is indeed separated from the body of the Church, but is united to the
          soul of the Church and consequently is on the way of salvation.

          • Timotheos

            Yes, Fr Feeney was in error about the absolute necessity of water baptism. I’d forgotten that. But you yourself are misled on a number of points.

            [REMAINDER OF POST SUPPRESSED BY N.O.W. MODERATOR – Folks, we are NOT debating Feeneyism here. It will never end and I have other things to do besides moderate comments. Use a trad forum if you want to.]

          • Timotheos

            To the N.O.W. moderator:

            Why suppress my comment?! What did I say that is untrue? This has nothing to do with ‘Feeneyism’. Fr Feeney is completely irrelevant to what I just wrote. Both 2c3n1 and I were in full agreement that Fr Feeney was mistaken on the subject of water baptism.

            No, this has nothing to do with ‘Feeneyism’. It has to do with the absolute necessity of water baptism for Salvation. If you wish, for reasons of your own, to suppress all discussion of this matter, why permit 2c3n1’s quotations from two catechisms to be publicized and yet mine to be discarded? That surely exhibits extremely one-sided and partial moderation.

            Please ensure at the very least that 2c3n1 receives my reply. It was addressed to him personally and you were entrusted with its conveyance. He needs to be aware of this information.

          • Sede for Christ

            Provide proof that explicitly states that “water baptism” not just baptism, is absolutely necessary for salvation, and then prove that sanctifying grace can’t exist apart from membership in the Church and then prove that membership in the Church is necessary for salvation. And then explain the difference between membership in the Church and being inside the Church.

          • Novus Ordo Watch

            Error has no rights, Timotheos. At Novus Ordo Watch, we believe and promote Catholic teaching, and if you want to know what that is, you can consult the Church’s theology books from before John XXIII, specifically with regard to the necessity of baptism.

            I will send by email to 2c3n1 the full text you originally submitted. May I give him your email address if he wishes to respond? (Your email address is visible to me; there is no need for you to post it publicly.)

          • Timotheos

            If I committed an error, you should point it out to me. That’s what 2c3n1 did. He pointed out a factual error in what I wrote, and I am grateful to him for it.

            However, I am not aware of any error in what I subsequently wrote. I quoted from the Catechism of the Council of Trent, the Catechism of St Pius X, and the Gospel. And I drew what I consider entirely reasonable conclusions therefrom.

            By all means give 2c3n1 my email address. Perhaps you would also be kind enough to do the same for Sede for Christ if he requests it.

            ‘Error has no rights.’ Exactly. But who is in error here? Is it not folk who peevishly shun debate who are the ones usually found to be in error?

          • Novus Ordo Watch

            The errors in question are refuted in the very theology books the Church herself used in the training of her own priests, such as the Sacrae Theologiae Summa of the Jesuit Fathers. See

            I do not have time to moderate comments all day and to correct every error someone may put forth in good faith. Novus Ordo Watch is not a debating forum, and most certainly not a debating forum for discussing whether or not the teaching of the Catholic Church is correct. I am not opposed to debating the issues in order to help someone understand, but it cannot happen here because then nothing else will get done.

            God bless you.

          • Timotheos

            In cases of evident contradiction, Catholics follow the infallible teaching of Christ’s Church, not the fallible reasonings of theologians which are occasionally found to contradict such. The charism of infallibility was given to resolve issues of this kind.

            If the Church most solemnly pronounces, as she does, that the Sacrament of Baptism is necessary for all without exception, and if ‘baptism of desire’ is not a sacrament, it follows that no one can be saved by their desire alone, be it explicit or implicit.

            As you say, your website should NOT be a forum for discussing whether the teaching of the Catholic Church is correct. So why are you doing exactly that by preferring fallible theologians to the Church’s infallible Magisterium?

          • Novus Ordo Watch

            This isn’t about fallible vs. infallible, this is about credible vs. silly. What you’re ultimately saying is that the Church herself taught one thing but apparently no one actually noticed, including the Church’s most capable theologians and the Popes themselves. Allegedly baptism of desire is a most dangerous heresy, and yet no Catholic authority ever thought of condeming it specifically even though it was virtually ubiquitous. And whenever direct magisterial proof is put forward for baptism of desire — such as Pius XII’s address to the congress of midwives in 1951, or the Code of Canon Law solemnly promulgated in 1917 — then the most absurd excuses are adduced, such as that the Pope never signed the decree of promulgation (which is misleading because the Pope does not sign every document himself, and so, for example, neither did St. Pius X ever sign the decree Lamentabili, and in any case, Pope Benedict XV presided over the solemn promulgation ceremony and implemented the Code of Canon Law), etc.

            Necessity can be of means and of precept. Necessity of means can be absolute or it can be relative. Etc. Apparently no one noticed this “evident contradiction” in the Church’s teaching on baptism until someone in the 20th century came along. I’ve notived that those who deny baptism of blood and desire are willing to entertain any scenario as plausible, no matter how absurd, so long as it does not disprove their position.

            Enough now.

          • 2c3n1 .

            Timotheos is preaching one of the most disgusting heresies ever by saying the Church has promulgated heresy by catechism and law. This is the foundational R&R argument. Why can’t they see that a church that teaches and promulgates heresy is a false religion. Protestants don’t claim infallibility so does that mean they don’t really teach and promulgate heresy? I’m astounded at how a Catholic can think his religion is heretical, just not as heretical as the rest of them.

          • Timotheos

            Perhaps 2c3n1 would be so kind as to tell us what reputable authority ever claimed that EVERYTHING (without exception) contained in canon law or in local catechisms (like that attributed to St Pius X) or in theological handbooks specifically written for parish priests (like that named after the Council of Trent) is immune from any blemish of error, i.e. infallible.

          • 2c3n1 .

            Timotheos, didn’t say catechisms were infallible. But they can’t be heretical. That’s the point. If the Church can promulgate heresy, then it would be no different from Protestantism.

            As for canon law, the CE states: Whatever may be said about the forms used in the past, today the promulgation of general ecclesiastical laws is effected exclusively by the insertion of the law in the official publication of the Holy See, the “Acta Apostolical Sedis”, in compliance with the Constitution “Promulgandi”, of Pius X, dated 29 September, 1908, except in certain specifically mentioned cases. The law takes effect and is binding on all members of the community as soon as it is promulgated, allowing for the time morally necessary for it to become known, unless the legislator has fixed a special time at which it is to come into force.

            How can the Church bind heresy by law?

            Perhaps you could be so kind as to tell us what reputable authority ever claimed the Church can be heretical.

          • Timotheos

            I replied but yet again the moderator censored my answer, presumably because (subconsciously at least) he perceives how frail the theory of ‘baptism of desire’ really is and how much it stands in need of protection against robust objections based on logic and loyalty to the infallible magisterium.

          • 2c3n1 .

            Timotheos, N.O.W. is not a platform for your blasphemies and denial of Church teaching and rejection of Church law.

          • Timotheos

            Had I been permitted to defend myself here against your accusations, you would see that I do neither. The treatment I am subjected to here helps me understand better how ‘baptism of desire’ made such headway between the mid 19th and mid 20th centuries. Any reasoned objections to its intrinsic incompatibility were simply squashed and the objector treated as persona non grata.

          • 2c3n1 .

            Timotheos. you have proved my original point. If you’re going to call Pope Pius XiI a heretic, you must call his predecessors heretics, too. Thank you for proving me right.

          • Timotheos

            If I called Pope Pius XII a heretic for believing in ‘baptism of desire’, there might be some justice in your claim. But I didn’t. Your logic may be correct, but your premise is faulty.

            I have called no one a heretic for believing in ‘baptism of desire’. Yes, I believe it a serious theological error, one that is irreconcilable with Catholic doctrine and therefore incapable of being promulgated by the infallible magisterium of the Church. Nevertheless, given the current state of affairs and the weakness of the human intellect, I do not hold those who believe in it to be necessarily heretical. Why, I used to believe in it myself up to a few years ago.

            The reason I suggested that the sedes vacans began in 1953, not 1958, has nothing to do with Pius XII’s personal belief in ‘baptism of desire’. If that were the case, I would have selected an earlier date. No, it was due to his confirmation of the ‘excommunication’ of Fr Leonard Feeney for professing the doctrine extra ecclesiam nulla salus and insisting on its literal meaning.

            Now I am sure you know that the ostensible reason given for said ‘excommunication’ was one of disobedience to a peremptory command to go to Rome on an unspecified charge, not one of adherence to heresy. Nevertheless, everyone knows the real reason for said ‘excommunication’. It was strictly doctrinal.

          • 2c3n1 .

            Timotheos, Pope Pius XII’s predecessors held the same view as Pope Pius XII. If Pope Pius XII believed that salvation can be obtained outside of the Church, he wouldn’t have believe in Baptism of Desire since BOD is how one gets in the Church to be saved. GAME OVER. Move on.

          • Novus Ordo Watch

            Oh well I think it is just too kind that you have deigned not to accuse the Holy Father of heresy, only of adhering innocently to a very serious theological error. It’s a real pity that the Vicar of Christ wasn’t as theologically competent as enlightened as a few people in and around Boston in the 1940s and their followers. And I’m curious to see what in Catholic teaching you think permits you to hold a Pope to have lost his office on the grounds of (what you believe to be an unjust) excommunication.

          • Timotheos

            Obviously if one holds that Fr Leonard Feeney’s ‘excommunication’ was unjust, one must believe that it was valid. But that’s not my position. The thesis I am proposing here is that Pope Pius XII vacated the papacy in the very act of seeking to authorize this ‘excommunication’. Why? Because, at root, this was not a disciplinary matter, it was a doctrinal matter, one that went to the very heart of the Church’s teaching on salvation.

            If one accepts that the private letter of Cardinal Marchetti-Selvaggiani to Archbishop Richard Cushing of Boston in 1949 (Suprema haec sacra) is heretical, and if it is true that Pius XII finally gave the teaching therein his full public support in 1953 by seeking to excommunicate Fr Leonard Feeney, then it surely follows that Pius XII vacated the Church and the papal office in the process. For as we all know, Almighty God has never allowed the papacy to be sullied by heresy – at least in reality if not always in appearance.

            The event had massive worldwide repercussions on people’s beliefs, far more than so than any papal encyclical. The Lodge and the Synagogue were particularly exultant. No less so was the fanatically pro-semite Archbishop Cushing whose sister had married a ‘Jew’, who worked closely with B’nai B’rith,
            and who was outraged by the Fr Feeney’s insistence on the necessity of joining the Catholic Church in order to be saved. Dark forces were at work here.

            Now if Pius XII did become an antipope in 1953, then clearly all his subsequent ‘papal acts’ would be null and void. Perhaps somewhat foolishly I thought that some of the N.O.W. readers might find a degree of consolation in this thought. No longer, for example, would his supposed changes to the liturgy pose them any problem.

            As for Pope Pius XII’s theological competence, I don’t impugn it in the least. Ratzinger has plenty of theological competence. So it’s hardly an asset that is incompatible with the profession of heresy.

          • Novus Ordo Watch

            I have noticed that people who deny baptism of desire and blood never seem to consider as a possibility the one scenario that would explain why the Holy Office could issue the Suprema Haec Sacra letter, why the Code of Canon Law could codify baptism of desire, why St Alphonsus could label it as “de fide” and have all his works papally declared as safe for Catholics to read, why Pius XII could teach it as part of his magisterium, etc: because it is true. It is the authentic Catholic teaching, and those who deny it are actually in error.

  5. Lori Williams

    An objective outsider might conclude that Sedevacantists, Traditionalists, Semi-Trads, and Neo-con Catholics ALL have a case of cognitive dissonance with regard to the teachings of their Church and the reality they either ignore (ie Pollyannas), are beginning to see (ie diabolical Francis), or have seen for decades (ie Vatican II apostasy) and/or centuries (ie. Michael Hoffman regarding Papal teaching/practice on usury beginning in the Renaissance).

    Perhaps all of these faithful followers of Christ need to reevaluate their a priori rejection of Eastern Orthodox claims that Roman Catholicism has strayed from the Apostolic Faith, specifically with regard to dogmas regarding the Papacy? If such a consideration is unacceptable then it would appear, from an outsider’s viewpoint, that all faithful Catholics will have to continue to walk a life of intellectual contradiction (to one degree or another).

    • Novus Ordo Watch

      Today the Eastern Orthodox religion is just as false (and provably so) as it was before Vatican II. It is in times like these that it becomes the forbidden fruit for many who, not enduring the Mystical Passion of the Church, seek for a more comfortable solution. Ironically, the Eastern Orthodox have been practicing the ‘Amoris Laetitia’ doctrine for a long time, accepting adultery as divorce and ‘remarriage’ even more openly than does Francis’ document. In addition, the Eastern Orthodox are by no means unified, as was once again visible last year (or was it 2016?) with regard to their ‘ecumenical council’ in Crete. And, of course, the Eastern Orthodox are big into ecumenism, at least, depending on which branch of Orthodoxy you go with…

      • Nestorian

        If Eastern Orthodoxy is false, this needs to be proven, not merely asserted to have been proven.

        The deep truth underlying Lori Williams’ point is that there is an irreconcilable contradiction between Tradition and Authority as these are dogmatically conceived in Roman Catholicism. Only by abandoning the Catholic view of (papal) Authority and embracing a fully authentic understanding of Tradition as embodied in the Christian East can the contradiction be fully resolved.

        You are quite right to take Ferrara to task in the way you do. But you at novusordowatch are guilty of the same kind of intellectual transgression too, in that you refuse to acknowledge the manifestly apparent fact that all popes since Pius XII have been every bit as legitimate in their papacy as all of their predecessors (with the institution as a whole, however, being strictly human and not divine in its origin). That is the particular blind spot to which you and other sedevacantists fall prey on account of your unwillingness to acknowledge the deep theological contradiction at the heart of Catholicism between Tradition and Authority.

        • Novus Ordo Watch

          Eastern Orthodoxy is refuted in any substantial Catholic apologetics or ecclesiology manual, such as Fr. Sylvester Berry’s “The Church of Christ”. The proofs that were valid then are still valid now. Then of course there are also the works of converts, such as Vladimir Soloviev, that can be consulted. I am not going to elaborate here because Novus Ordo Watch is not meant as an apologetics site directed at non-Catholics. It is mainly for those people who are already or at least believe themselves to Catholics.

        • 2c3n1 .

          Nestorian, Eastern Orthodoxy is easily proven false. Take the following instances and put them together…1. The early Eastern Fathers Sts. Cyprian, Ephraim, and Cyril recognized papal authority and tell us so. 2. The founders of the Eastern heresies, called heresiarchs, were overcome by the decisions of the pope after the Eastern Bishops appealed to the pope to have the final say, since no one in the East could do so. 3. When Nestorius preached heresy, it was Rome that was turned to and the Pope was listened to by the people in Constantinople. 4. The infamous “Robber Synod” of Ephesus of A.D. 449 lead by the patriarch of Alexanderia, Dioscorus, was stripped and deposed by the teaching of Pope Leo the Great and the Council of Chalcedon which was attended by nearly 600 Eastern bishops who appealed to the pope to deal with it, proving that the East recognized papal authority. 5. When the East severed ties to Rome, they split up nationally when before they were united under Rome.

          I could go on and on but the fact remains that the Eastern Orthodox religion is a false religion made up of heretics and schismatics who refused to hear their Eastern forefathers on papal authority.

          There have been over 50 antipopes in history. The Vat2 popes are just more false claimants to the papacy like the ones before them. So you can’t make up an argument that somehow they are true popes contradicting past popes. Not so. And you won’t find true popes contradicting Tradition. Only the Eastern Orthodox have do so.

      • Lori Williams

        Thank you for posting my initial comment. Your willingness to allow critical inquiry is a sign that you are a lover of Truth and NOT living in fear as so many others are in the Traditionalist, Semi-Trad and Neo-con Catholic communities are.

        Now for full disclosure. I am a Novus Order Catholic who entered full communion back in 2002 from an Evangelical Protestant background. At the time I was enamored with Neo-con First Things/JPII Catholicism. As time unfolded my disgust with the sycophantic cover-up by Neo-con Catholic media of the homosexual infiltration of the hierarchy and the systemic sexual abuse scandals led me to take a closer look at the positions laid out by Semi-Trad/Traditionalist regarding the pre-Vatican II Church.

        By the time Bergoglio stepped out onto the loggia on that fateful day back in March 2013, the Holy Spirit had apparently been working in my heart sufficiently to send an unexpected shudder through me warning, in no uncertain terms, of the EXTREME danger of THIS man who stood in a trance-like state refusing to bless the crowd before him. From that moment forward pretty much everything has changed for me. My disgust for Neo-Con Catholic media (and friends) increased a thousand fold as they embarrassingly tried to defend the imposter and worse attacked those, like myself, who asked simple questions.

        Believe me, I am trying with all my heart, to find a way to remain Catholic. Unfortunately, to date, I have found ALL (Neo-Con, Semi-Trad, Traditionalist and Sedevacantist) arguments woefully lacking in adequately defending the incredible dogmatic claims of the Church regarding the Petrine ministry and the reality that has unfolded over the course of decades/centuries. At some point (if they haven’t already), the dogmatic claims dissolve into a sea of complete irrelevancy and become nothing more than a “test” to the faithful to “just believe” by suspending the immutable law of non-contradiction.

        Therefore, an honest and God-fearing Catholic is not acting unreasonably when looping back in time to see if perchance it was Rome that drifted away from the Apostolic Faith and not the Orthodox. Yes, you are correct; some of the teachings (ie divorce/remarriage) within Orthodoxy correspond to what Francis and his cohorts are attempting to change within Catholicism. The BIG difference is that the Orthodox have not contradicted themselves regarding divorce/remarriage AND have NEVER made the grandiose (and historically proven false) episcopal claims that the Catholic Church has made with regard to the Bishop of Rome.

        I WANT the Catholic Church, and ALL Her dogmas to be revealed truth!! The problem is that with each passing day those dogmas lose even the semblance of plausibility for the sincere believer. I personally will “wait it out” a little longer (since I believe a full blown, in your face schism/apostasy are not far off) and hope that the Divine “rescue” as revealed in many Catholic private revelations will cleanse and restore (resurrect) the Church to the truth and beauty which She was and what attracted me to Her!!

        Our Lady of Fatima….pray for us!!!

        • anna mack

          The problem with this is that, if you don’t accept the authority of the Pope (a true Pope, obviously), then you are not actually a Roman Catholic. You are, to all intents and purposes, Eastern Orthodox. Why not just embrace one of those churches and be done with it?

          • Lee

            And join a church, which in reality is not “orthodox” (right teaching) inside of which there is no salvation.

          • anna mack

            Well, I wouldn’t do it, but I don’t question the teachings of the Catholic Church.

  6. John Logan

    I know this is probably not really the place but I couldn`t find another place to post this. You once told me that Pope Benedict XV who was at that time Cardinal della Chiesa voted for cardinal Domenico Serafini during the 1914 conclave? Was this on the first ballot when Liberal Cardinal Pietro Maffi was still a candidate and do you have a source for this? Thanks, this would be very helpful.

  7. Dum Spiro Spero

    Ferrara’s position is very dangerous. According to him, anyone can be the Pope. They will consent to anything. In contrast, not a few Novus Ordo conservatives admit anything.

  8. Sede for Christ

    Notice in the video Fr. Cekada lays down the law of the Church, and Fr. Jenkins just pontificates. He proves nothing he says. Fr. Cekada does, and all his articles on the topic prove that.

  9. 2c3n1 .

    Nestorian, the Eastern Orthodox don’t follow their Eastern forefathers. Period. You don’t find the Eastern Church rejecting the Papacy in the early Church. They looked to Rome for the final say on doctrinal issues. The Church has told us what constitutes a valid pope and the last 6 claimants don’t qualify. It’s that simple. The root problem with the Eastern Orthodox perspective is they have no one to give the final say on what exactly constitutes membership in the Church.

  10. James Locke

    If Ferrara considers Bergoglio is the Pope then he must follow him completely he should have no misgivings about him. I for one can only follow Popes who were of the Catholic faith, I am bound by what they have said Ex Cathedra which is unchangeable. Ferrara’s conundrum is similar to Catholics who embraced Henry’s the VIII ‘s false religion because Henry was sovereign over the state he invoked the heretical law Cuius regio, eius religio ‘ . Those who were happy with the status quo lost their souls but lived out their lives without incident those that kept the faith were severely punished by this syphilitic despot. Ferrara is blinded by the bricks and mortar of the Vatican II sect and the social aspects of sect. He like many adherents of the cult focus on the illusion of faith rather then true faith. Like the Japanese who endured hundred of years without priests , the Catholics of Northern Europe during the Deformation, the Catholics under the communistic boot to todays Catholics in China and the Middle East we who hold to the Church in the West and the Sedevacantist view are carrying this burden of a church in the catacombs but our burden is very light compared to Christ’s sheep who came before us.

  11. Novus Ordo Watch

    Anyone can make that accusation, Nestorian, but that doesn’t make it true. Like I’ve said, this is not an apologetics web site that defends Catholicism to non-Catholics, so if you’d like to discuss these issues, please do so at a forum or combox that specializes in that. In all argumentation on this site, it will always be assumed that readers already believe that the Roman Catholic Church is the true Church and that she alone preaches the true Faith. The fact that this is “presumed” in all argumentation here does not mean that it is held gratuitously or that it admits of no defense, it only means that people who are not convinced of the truth of Catholicism already will need to go elsewhere for that. Novus Ordo Watch does not specialize in that.

  12. Novus Ordo Watch

    Of course you can raise the question, but the answer is most definitely not the one you think it is. If the Papacy were a human invention, and if it were subject to corruption, it would have failed long, long time ago, and never been able to guarantee the moral miracle that is the Catholic Church.

    The Eastern Orthodox are really not that much different from the Novus Ordo Sect. They have been practicing “Amoris Laetitia” for a long time and accept adulterous “marriages”; they engage in ecumenism; and they are not unified. I think the only thing that makes them attractive to disillusioned Novus Ordos is their externally beautiful liturgies, the hierarchical organizational structure, and their claim to have roots in antiquity.

    • Opacus

      There is an important issue here which is, perhaps, being overlooked. Whatever the opinion of certain Orthodox may be, Orthodoxy does not reject popes as such and actually regards many popes as both saints and paragons of Orthodoxy. It just holds that one cannot be a pope unless one is Orthodox whether or not one happens to be sitting in the chair of St. Peter. Now doesn’t that sound familiar! One reading of Orthodoxy then is simply that it is long-term Sedevacantism since, as the Eastern Patriarchs wrote to Pius IX, the Orthodox are awaiting ‘… a work which will unite the churches of the West to the holy Catholic Church, in which the canonical chief seat of his Holiness, and the seats of all the Bishops of the West remain empty and ready to be occupied’! Were a pope to prove his Orthodoxy then, as those same patriarchs say, “…let his Holiness be assured, that … he shall hear from us sinners today, not only,’Peter has so spoken,’ or anything of like honour, but this also, ‘Let the holy hand be kissed which has wiped away the tears of the Catholic Church.'”

      On this understanding of Orthodoxy, the Orthodox differ from Roman Catholic sedevacantists – or at least those of them who think that the papal chair is vacant due to the formal heresy of its occupant and not due to electoral irregularity – only because of the point at which they think purported popes departed from the teaching of their predecessors. They don’t identify that point as coinciding with various declarations of ‘Pope’ Francis or with the promulgation of the documents of Vatican II but rather with the Great Schism of 1054. Consequently, the Orthodox do not feel bound to pay any more attention to the declarations of the post schism ‘popes’ than Roman Catholic sedevacantists pay to the declarations of post Vatican II ‘popes’.

      Now if a papal vacancy of a thousand years seems preposterous it obviously did not seem so to the Eastern Patriarchs who corresponded with Pius IX and surely the mere length of the vacancy is not the real issue anyway. The real problem is whether the length of the vacancy has impacted on the ability to fill it. For Roman Catholic sedevacantists this seems indeed to be a real issue. The obvious way for the vacancy to be filled would be for cardinals to elect a non-heretical candidate. Yet how many genuine cardinals are left according to Roman Catholic sedevacantists, and would any of them vote for a candidate who was not a heretic? And if some kind of general council were to be called instead, who would attend it and how would it be recognised as authoritative in the absence of a genuine pope to declare it so? On this matter, therefore, the Orthodox seem to have a slight advantage. The schism pre-dates the legislation which requires popes to be elected by cardinals. It appears that the Orthodox could end the vacancy to their own satisfaction if they took the actions necessary to appoint an Orthodox bishop as bishop of Rome, though that would be a lengthy matter given the difficulty of getting the various Orthodox churches to agree on anything! Whether they would choose to take such an action, however, is debatable. If the lack of a first-among-equals makes it difficult for them to resolve any new issue it also makes it difficult to rapidly spread heresy by piggy-backing on a readiness to submit to recognised authority. Many Orthodox, therefore, are unlikely to want there to be an Orthodox bishop of Rome for much the same reason that Bishop Williamson no longer wants the ‘Catholic Resistance’ to be hierarchically organised. If increasing numbers of Roman Catholics are to be prevented then from drifting over to Orthodoxy due to its exterior beauty and a new found aversion to ‘papolatry’, sedevacantists will have to work much harder to convince them that they know how a generations long papal vacancy can be satisfactorily ended.

      • Novus Ordo Watch

        You couldn’t be more wrong. Yes, Eastern Orthodoxy rejects the Papacy (papal primacy) as such, not simply certain individual claimants to the papal office. They furthermore reject Catholic doctrine on the Church, on the Filioque, on the Immaculate Conception, on purgatory, and on the indissolubility of marriage.

  13. 2c3n1 .

    Nestorian, I see that you haven’t read what I wrote at all. The East always looked to the pope for the final say. I’ve already proved Eastern Orthodoxy as false and you haven’t addressed one of the points.

  14. sharbel23

    Ferrara could be an agent of the secret societies.
    Maybe he is, maybe he isn’t, but the point is, that the message would be the same either way – stay “faithful” to traditional Catholic teaching, and “resist” the attacks on the faith from the modernists, but remain in “communion” with the “pope” and “hierarchy.”
    Either way, people are influenced to stay in the V2 sect.

  15. James Locke

    The Sedevacantist position is that the Chair is empty at this point. But this has not always been the case. We still follow our Shepherds .Pope St. Gregory the Great, quoted in Summo Iugiter Studio 590-604 ” The Holy Universal Church teaches that it is not possible to worship God truly, except in her and asserts that all who are outside of her will not be Saved” Something to think about before entering into man made religions. Rejecting the Papacy was and is a grave sin. Rejecting anti popes and Satan’s handy work is the work of the faithful Catholic. Those who attack Christ’s bride basically do it to advance themselves through mercantilism, greed and the lust of power. The followers of these false religions are ripe to be shorn and then butchered because they have no shepherd to protect them from the wolves.

  16. Novus Ordo Watch

    It would be a grave mistake to think that all the doctrines I mentioned weren’t yet settled Catholic belief before 1054, as though the Catholic Church simply made them up at some point after that date. Certainly the primacy of the Pope, for example, can be traced to antiquity, and, just like the indissolubility of marriage, is taught directly in Sacred Scripture.

    I realize you’re trying hard to draw some kind of parallel between Eastern Orthodoxy and Sedevacantism, but I’m not quite sure what you think you’re accomplishing here. If you mean to say that because both sedevacantists and Eastern Orthodox hold that a public heretic or apostate cannot hold office validly in the true Church, then the reason for that similarity lies quite simply in the fact that this happens to be true. It is simply a Catholic principle, and one that the Eastern Orthodox have chosen to retain. And if I’m not entirely mistaken, then even the Novus Ordo Sect, at least in theory, holds that principle as well.

    But to suggest, as you appear to do, that because of that, the differences between Eastern Orthodoxy and Sedevacantism are only accidental, is a grave error and does not follow. By that logic, you could ultimately claim that all or most religions are the same, in that they all claim that we must go by divine revelation, they just disagree on what that divine revelation is. Whoop dee do.

  17. Sede for Christ

    There is something the R&R/SSPX, NOites and the Orthodox have in common and that is the rejection of the papacy. Because the 1st group rejects the papacy as the rule of faith, but maintains it visibly, the 2nd ascribes to it an ability it a priori per se doesn’t have (redefining Dogma) and the 3rd rejects it in principle (rejects the dogma). In other words, all three of these groups want religion, be it Catholicism or Orthodoxy, but independently and apart from what the Papacy truly is. They all seek to keep their notion of the papacy and proceed to do that which the papacy clearly would forbid. The issue of public heretics being pope never actually is addressed, because in the ideology of these three groups the issue is a non-issue, because they all reject that which the papacy by nature is. All three positions have a logical fallacy built in and that is evading the point, the occupation of the papacy by heretics is never addressed, but only a solution offered which, in all three cases, leaves the occupation of the papacy by heretics intact.

  18. Novus Ordo Watch

    The Roman Catholic Magisterium has been entirely consistent from the beginning until the death of Pope Pius XII. Catholic doctrine has developed, it has been deepened, clarified, made more precise, etc., but never has it been corrupted, nor does it now mean the opposite of what it once meant.

    The opposite is true for the Novus Ordo Sect, and it is verifiably so. The very books that were used just 60 years ago to teach the Faith are anathema to them today. If you were to teach Quas Primas, Mortalium Animos, Humani Generis, or Satis Cognitum in any parish or school today, the local “bishop” would step in and forbid you. Case in point: Try teaching in a Novus Ordo school that the death penalty is an act of paramount obedience to the Fifth Commandment, as the Catechism of Trent says. Teach that it is good and just, and not an affront to human dignity. Try teaching that and see how far you can get. The Vatican II Sect essentially *forbids* the pre-Vatican II religion, and this only makes sense because the Catholic religion before Vatican II forbade and condemned the very ideas now promoted by the Novus Ordo religion! Thus it is impossible to adhere to both the pre- and the post-Vatican II teachings.

    By contrast, this is not at all the case with Vatican I or Trent, for example. It’s not like what the Church condemned in 1242 suddenly became Catholic teaching in 1566, or that what you were required to assent to in 1865 was suddenly condemned five years later. No matter which way you look at it, either the Church after Vatican II is true or the Church before Vatican II, but it cannot be both.

    As time progresses, I am sure the Novus Ordos and the Eastern Orthodox will find that they have more things in common still than they yet realize.

  19. Novus Ordo Watch

    One more thing: No, there really is NO legitimate dispute as to whether adultery dissolves a marriage or not. Our Lord merely spoke of the permission to separate, not to “remarry”, in the case of adultery. Besides, it would be a most absurd idea to say that adultery ends a marriage. In that case, anyone who wants to get out of a marriage needed to commit adultery, and BOOM! the marriage bond would be dissolved. How convenient! No, there can be no exceptions, and in fact there are no exceptions at all mentioned in the vow “until death do us part”. It doesn’t say, “until one of us becomes unfaithful”.

    It is true that, logically speaking, indissolubility does not imply exclusivity, but now you’re implicitly arguing for the permissibility of bigamy or polygamy. And this is where we will end this discussion.

  20. 2c3n1 .

    Timotheos, Pope Leo X in his Bull ‘Cum postquam’ at the Fifth Lateran Council declared: “You will firmly abide by the true decision of the Holy Roman Church and to this Holy See, which does not permit errors.”

  21. 2c3n1 .

    Timotheos, we have canon laws which are binding that you call heresy. Pope Leo’s teaching would apply to the law, too. Yet, you pick and choose what canon law you’ll accept and won’t accept and then argue that Pope Pius XII broke canon law with Feeney. Your arguments are laughable.

  22. 2c3n1 .

    Timotheos N.O.W was speaking about all the popes, saints, theologians, and canonists that you claim are wrong about salvation. You can’t produce a single authority that condemns what you call a heresy. NOT ONE! All you can do is give your own personal interpretation of this or that dogma to argue against all of the popes, saints, theologians, and canonists.

    • Novus Ordo Watch

      Yes, it wasn’t an argument from pure numbers per se. Anyway we will end this discussion right now. 2c3n2, please post no more on this topic. Timotheos, no further posts from you on this topic will be approved.

      • Timotheos

        I am sure you are perfectly well aware that moderation on a public Catholic website carries grave responsibilities. By are you sufficiently cognisant of the fact that by censoring several well-reasoned responses on my part you have falsified this chain and misrepresented me as either refusing to or unable to respond to my crtics?

        Now it was very apparent to me that you censored several of my more forceful contributions. This can only mean that you recognize their force. This doesn’t surprise in the least me because you have been gifted with some remarkable gifts of the intellect. The rapier-like wit and intelligence you display in your articles is quite extraordinary. Few people in the world can wield the pen in the masterful way that you do.

        But … and doubtless you’ve already sensed the sting in the tail here … that makes your own refusal to face up to the essential contradiction between the infallible and the fallible teaching in this matter even less excusable. Exclaim all you like that others haven’t seen it, so why should you? The contradiction remains. It will never go away.

        • Novus Ordo Watch

          It is precisely because I am aware of my grave responsibility as a moderator that I will not tolerate further discussion on this point and very much censor as needed. Sorry, but the Catholic Church also didn’t publish the Anglicans’ response to “Apostolicae Curae”, even if that meant giving the impression that the Anglicans had no response.

          • Timotheos

            No comparison. The teaching authority of Christ’s Church doesn’t operate like an online forum.

            However, had her representatives chosen to engage in a public dialogue with the Anglicans on this matter, everyone would have expected them to do so openly and honestly, without any clandestine filtering of their opponents’ arguments.

          • Novus Ordo Watch

            May I remind you that I was honest and transparent enough to *note* that I had suppressed your comments, as applicable. I did not simply cut stuff out. People were told that part of the comments had been suppressed.

            Every exchange of views in a combox must at some point come to an end, and that means that, necessarily, the last word will go to the one or the other party — and in this combox, it will go to the moderator. End of discussion.

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