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 Siri's "election"/acceptance of popes/Paul VI 
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New post Siri's "election"/acceptance of popes/Paul VI
A priest who regularly says a Tridentine Rite Mass here in the UK (Latin Mass Society) used to work for a long time under Cardinal Siri. I spoke to him today after Mass and asked him what he thought of the Siri Thesis. He replied that Cardinal Siri had personally told him himself that he was "elected" in the 1958 conclave but did not accept the papacy because he felt he was "not worthy to follow such a great and holy Pope as Pius XIIth".

I pointed out that the "Siri Thesis" implied more than this. That Cardinal Siri was actually lent on and threatened with harm if he accepted the Papacy which would of course make him a valid Pope since a resignation under duress would not be valid. "He never made any such claim to me" answered this priest.

"Well realistically, if the threat was that great he probably wouldn't, would he?". "He would kept it secret for his own safety". I answered.

This obviously does not confirm or deny the Siri Thesis but it does provide a reliable witness statement that Card. Siri was chosen as Papal candidate in 1958. I've never seen this reliably confirmed anywhere else.

I think it unwise and unfair to post the name of the priest publicly.


Sun Oct 07, 2007 9:49 pm
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New post Re: Interesting confirmation on Siri's 1958 "election&q
ConversionofRussia wrote:
A priest who regularly says a Tridentine Rite Mass here in the UK (Latin Mass Society) used to work for a long time under Cardinal Siri. I spoke to him today after Mass and asked him what he thought of the Siri Thesis. He replied that Cardinal Siri had personally told him himself that he was "elected" in the 1958 conclave but did not accept the papacy because he felt he was "not worthy to follow such a great and holy Pope as Pius XIIth".


Hmmmm...I find the above quoted statement of Siri's, if it is accurate, to be rather odd: it was well known in Italy at the time that Pius XII desired that Siri be his successor. So much so, in fact, that he wished to appoint Siri as his successor, and even suggested such a course to him. However, Siri, himself, told Piux XII that he would rather be elected, than appointed, to the office.

Quote:
I pointed out that the "Siri Thesis" implied more than this. That Cardinal Siri was actually leant on and threatened with harm if he accepted the Papacy which would of course make him a valid Pope since a resignation under duress would not be valid. "He never made any such claim to me" answered this priest.

"Well realistically, if the threat was that great he probably wouldn't, would he?". "He would kept it secret for his own safety". I answered.


And also possibly for the safety of others. His own extended family has been mentioned as being a possible vulnerable target by some.

What did the priest reply to your rejoinder?

Quote:
This obviously does not confirm or deny the Siri Thesis but it does provide a reliable witness statement that Card. Siri was chosen as Papal candidate in 1958. I've never seen this reliably confirmed anywhere else.


There were several similar statements by witnesses over the years. However, most of those were published in Italian, and, as far as I know, none were ever made easily available to the English-speaking world. Although. . . some words of one such witness, Fr. Charles-Roux, on the matter were recently published in the sede-plenist rag, Inside the Vatican, of all places.

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I think it unwise and unfair to post the name of the priest publicly.


Agreed. It could even be dangerous for him. There is precedent...

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Sun Oct 07, 2007 10:19 pm
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Pax Christi

Interesting, but-
Quote:
That Cardinal Siri was actually lent on and threatened with harm if he accepted the Papacy which would of course make him a valid Pope since a resignation under duress would not be valid. "He never made any such claim to me" answered this priest.


A few comments,

When someone is elected during a conclave, they are not automatically " pope". The “ elect” must accept the election. Given this, it would seem Siri never " resigned" the office. Therefore any duress at not accepting the election does not make his a "resignation " from being the Roman Pontiff.

At least if I understand the process correctly.

And all this talk of " family" members being targeted for assassination, is that really a valid reason for not accepting an election guided by the Holy Ghost? In the 2000 year history of the papacy , have threats against an elect never occured before?

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 6:34 am
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With all due respect to those who want to believe this theory, I can't understand why. He seems to be a weak pope, if a pope at all, certainly doubtful, and you know what they say about a doubtful pope.

I also don't know what difference it would make to us, now. Please if I am missing something important I welcome anyone to enlighten me. I do agree it would make a very interesting mystery fiction.

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 1:37 pm
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Can we agree that it is at least highly interesting that we now have a reliable confirmation of Card. Siri telling to a Catholic priest who was a long time close associate, and is personally known to me, that he DID receive a majority of the votes to become the Pope. I've never seen reliable independent confirmation of this.

It has been speculated http://www.dailycatholic.org/issue/04Nov/nov18mdi.htm

Now combine this with the other facts as we understand them. The white smoke that came out of the chimney for a full five minutes before turning black. This is undisupted. There are pictures of the event and it was well reported at the time in the mainstream press. That suggests that the person burning the smoke was told that a Pope had been elected. This leaves us with a few possibilities.

1. Cardinal Siri gained the majority of the votes and refused the Papacy without duress (in which case one wonders why the white smoke would have gone up the Chimney), how would the message to burn the ballots white got confused?

2. Cardinal Siri gained the majority of the votes and delayed in his refusal but the refusal was still without duress. The refusal was unexpected and someone from the conclave told the person burning the ballots to signal that a Pope had been elected.

3. As 2 above but WITH duress. i.e. He was threatened.

4. He accepted the Papacy but THEN backed down under duress and "refused" it again.

As far as I understand it, by Canon Law 1917 his election would stand unless his refusal was made without duress. i.e. If 3 or 4 are essentially correct then he was Pope.


Mon Oct 08, 2007 1:49 pm
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Ken Gordon wrote:
Quote:
So much so, in fact, that he wished to appoint Siri as his successor, and even suggested such a course to him. However, Siri, himself, told Piux XII that he would rather be elected, than appointed, to the office.


Is appointment even possible?


Mon Oct 08, 2007 3:00 pm
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I can agree with your reliable confirmation from the Catholic priest, I don't doubt that at all. I also remember hearing on the radio about the white smoke, and confusion. I still remember that day! I am currently 67 years old.

I think this is all very interesting, but I still don't understand how and what it would all mean to us today! Does it change anything for the sedevacantist?

I am also curious as to why John Lane says John XXIII probably was a pope.

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 3:02 pm
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Chris Browne wrote:
Ken Gordon wrote:
Quote:
So much so, in fact, that he wished to appoint Siri as his successor, and even suggested such a course to him. However, Siri, himself, told Piux XII that he would rather be elected, than appointed, to the office.


Is appointment even possible?


Yes. There is precedent for it too, although I have, for the moment, forgotten the exact time and place. The pope can do practically anything he wants to in that regard.

As I remember it, one of the strongest reasons for NOT appointing a successor is the danger of nepotism.

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:35 pm
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New post The White Smoke.
The white smoke is never sent up the chimney until the elected candidate has accepted the office, and the traditional obeisances of the cardinals present commences. In other words, the white smoke is never sent up the chimney unless and until the new pope has been elected ,accepted the office, and those present have accepted those facts.

(EDIT: Corrected misspelling of obeisances.)

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:39 pm
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New post Reply to Myrna
Myrna wrote:
Does it change anything for the sedevacantist?


Certainly not in a practical sense.

Most of us are certain beyond a shadow of doubt that at least the last four claimants of the Holy See are/were not true popes. That being the case, then most certainly the physical seat of Peter is vacant.

And since we do not know who is, or even if we have, a true pope, we have to continue as though we don't. Given the state of the world and who is running it, it is extremely likely that if we did, in fact, have a true pope, that if he raised his head in public, it would probably be cut off. Mao said something about this sort of thing when asked about it: allowing the flowers of freedom to grow a bit so he could discover who and where they were, and then cut them down.

This is in addition to the simple fact that if such a man existed, how could he prove his papacy in any "normal" way?

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I am also curious as to why John Lane says John XXIII probably was a pope.


Yes. I am curious about that too. I think I know, but would prefer John to answer for himself.

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 6:03 pm
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New post The Avignon "Popes"
Didn't the split in the Church during the Avignon Popes last 70 years? Then one could not be sure who the true Pope was? Like the Babylonian captivity, 70 years. This interregnum could go for 70 years, perhaps. that would put the date 2028 for a true Pope to sit on the Chair of Peter.

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 6:12 pm
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New post Reply to Vince
Vince Sheridan wrote:
When someone is elected during a conclave, they are not automatically " pope". The “ elect” must accept the election.


Yes. This is true.

Quote:
Given this, it would seem Siri never " resigned" the office.


Yes, but you are leaving out one very important fact...

Quote:
Therefore any duress at not accepting the election does not make his a "resignation " from being the Roman Pontiff.


Yes, as far as it goes. However, what you are leaving out is the issue of the white smoke: the white smoke is never released until 1) the votes have been counted, 2) one person has received the required number of votes, 3) he has accepted the office, 4) has taken a new name, and 5) the cardinals present have begun to recognize his election by presenting themselves before him, and acknowledging him as the true pope. (This last is called "the obeisances of the Cardinals".) Only then, is the white smoke sent up the chimney. In the case of 1958, this occured for 5 full minutes on the second balloting. For details, see the various articles on that subject on http://www.eclipseofthechurch.com, our website.

Quote:
At least if I understand the process correctly.


Well, you do...at least partially.

Quote:
And all this talk of " family" members being targeted for assassination, is that really a valid reason for not accepting an election guided by the Holy Ghost?


Of course not. I only mentioned it because it has been mentioned by others. Furthermore, I do not believe that such a thing would have been a factor at all.

Quote:
In the 2000 year history of the papacy , have threats against an elect never occured before?


Many, many times. Pius XII's own family burial plot was bombed during WWII.

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 6:17 pm
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New post 2nd reply to Myrna
Myrna wrote:
With all due respect to those who want to believe this theory, I can't understand why. He seems to be a weak pope, if a pope at all, certainly doubtful, and you know what they say about a doubtful pope.


I have never understood this statement: either the man elected is the pope or he isn't. Whether or not we doubt his election can have no bearing whatever on the facts. Perhaps someone would explain this statement to me in the detail I would clearly understand, AND where it originally came from. Perhaps the source is suspect.

Quote:
I also don't know what difference it would make to us, now.


Well, among other things, it would at least give us a bit of proof, or hope, that the Apostolic Succession has not yet failed.

Quote:
Please if I am missing something important I welcome anyone to enlighten me. I do agree it would make a very interesting mystery fiction.


Have you ever heard the statement, "Truth is stranger than fiction" ? In my experience this is a truism.

Let's put it another way: if, in fact, the 1958 Conclave was highjacked by nefarious forces, it would be the most far-reaching and important crime of the past 2000 years. Surely it would deserve serious investigation, would it not?

One of the first things any investigator asks when investigating any crime, is "Cui bono?". I.e., "Who benefits?"

Then, the seriousness of the crime being investigated is most often predicated on the power and position of the perpetrator(s).

Lastly (for now), most crimes are solved on the basis of circumstantial evidence, not direct evidence, since it is in the best interests of the perpetrators to hide or otherwise dispose of any direct evidence. I cannot think of many murders wherein "the smoking gun" was a factor in their solution. Therefore it seems to me that if we expect to find "the smoking gun" for this crime, we are indulging in wishful thinking. In my opinion, such proof will never be found. Therefore we simply must rely on indirect evidence, or circumstantial evidence.

(Edit: Last statement added.)

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 7:36 pm
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Ken Gordon wrote:
Well, among other things, it would at least give us a bit of proof, or hope, that the Apostolic Succession has not yet failed.


Don't we already know that Apostolic Sucession has not failed (and will never fail for that matter)? IMHO, this is just another attempt to know something that we cannot know right now...it appears to have failed...but we know it cannot fail.


Mon Oct 08, 2007 8:10 pm
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Robert Bastaja wrote:
Ken Gordon wrote:
Well, among other things, it would at least give us a bit of proof, or hope, that the Apostolic Succession has not yet failed.


Don't we already know that Apostolic Sucession has not failed (and will never fail for that matter)? IMHO, this is just another attempt to know something that we cannot know right now...it appears to have failed...but we know it cannot fail.

Yes, Robert. That was my point. Perhaps I didn't make that clear. Sorry.

Sometimes it is nice to have proofs for belief, though.

(Edit: Corrected misspelling.)

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 9:06 pm
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Pax Christi !

Dear Ken,

You stated;
Quote:
The white smoke is never sent up the chimney until the elected candidate has accepted the office, and the traditional obeisances of the cardinals present commences. In other words, the white smoke is never sent up the chimney unless and until the new pope has been elected ,accepted the office, and those present have accepted those facts.


The process of getting white smoke instead of black smoke is not an exact method. It is disputed that the white, ro some reported greyish smoke was ever intented to be sent as " Habemus Papum." . As they burn the ballots, if memory serves, straw or some other additive is used to change the smokes color. If not enough is added, one gets white or off-white smoke.

In Xto,
Vincent


Mon Oct 08, 2007 11:12 pm
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New post Two further points:
If I can make a post without making so many typos that I have to go back and edit them out, I wish to make two further points on this subject:

1) When we read the statement, "Doubtful pope, no pope", I think we have to be very certain what this means.

For example, as is well known to anyone conversant with Church history, the election of Innocent II was "doubted" by most of the Catholic world which existed at the time.

Yet he was the true Pope, and Anacletus II, his rival, was an antipope.

With this as our example, I think the word "doubtful" in the above statement (not examining, for the moment, its source) must, as so many other similar statements have to be, be viewed from a very different prespective than our common understanding. I am thinking that it probably has some very limited legal definition in the Church's laws, in Canon Law, and doesn't mean simply "doubtful" as we commonly understand the term.

Perhaps John, who seemingly has more ready access to and a greater understanding of such things will enlighten us.

2) Although I do not now remember exactly where in the Catholic Encyclopedia of 1913 I read the following statement (it may have been in the article on Interregnum) it is, nonetheless, very apropos to our present situation.

The first duty of the abandoned flock is to find their true pastor.

Now this says to me at least two things: A) we have a duty, a Christian duty, to continue the search for our true pope, and B) that there must be one to find.

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 11:13 pm
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Myrna wrote:
I am also curious as to why John Lane says John XXIII probably was a pope.


Because the theologians say that the adherence of the whole Church to any given claimant is in itself a proof that all of the necessary requisites for validity are present. The reason for this is the indefectibility of the Church, which cannot adhere to a false visible head.

It would in some ways be more convenient if this doctrine did not exist, but it does. :)

By the way, I think that this doctrine is chiefly what Archbishop Lefebvre had in view when he commented in the late '70s that the See of Rome could not be vacant because of the necessary visibility of the Church. In any case, it is certainly a powerful argument for sedeplenism, which is perhaps why most sedevacantists never mention it. :)

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 11:15 pm
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A previous comment on the status of John XXIII:

http://www.strobertbellarmine.net/forum ... =1171#1171


Mon Oct 08, 2007 11:24 pm
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And a previous explanation (following Billot) on the meaning of "doubtful pope."

http://www.strobertbellarmine.net/forum ... =5131#5131


Last edited by Admin on Tue Oct 09, 2007 12:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

Mon Oct 08, 2007 11:56 pm
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New post 2nd Reply to Vince
Vince Sheridan wrote:
The process of getting white smoke instead of black smoke is not an exact method. It is disputed that the white, or some reported greyish smoke was ever intended to be sent as " Habemus Papum." . As they burn the ballots, if memory serves, straw or some other additive is used to change the smokes color. If not enough is added, one gets white or off-white smoke.


True. It is not an exact method. However, the process is quite simple and well organized. The stove ("stuffa" in Italian) is tested throughly before the Conclave starts, and the necessary straw which is used to make the "black" (actually very dense) smoke is tied in bundles of a fairly precise size. Then those bundles are placed in bins near the stove. The person, usually at least a Monsignor, who is designated to mind the stove practices the process until it is almost impossible to make a mistake. As one video I saw on the subject pointed out, it is nearly impossible for anyone involved to make a mistake.

Secondly, we must clarify what is meant by "white" vs "black" smoke and the sequence involved.

When the "white" smoke is "sent up" the chimney, the ballots, only, are burned, and this takes place only every second balloting, unless a pope is "made" on a first balloting (scrutiny). The smoke resulting from the burning of only the paper is a very light, almost colorless, but truly white smoke, and can be quite voluminous.

And, as stated earlier, this only occurs when a pope is really and truly elected with everything that must follow that.

When the result of a balloting (scrutiny) is negative, then damp straw is added to the burning paper in order to make a very, very dense smoke, the true color of which is really a dark yellowish-white, NOT BLACK as we understand the term. The Italian word used to describe this color is similar to our word for dark, and is most often translated into English as "black", but that does not mean the color. It has more to do with the density than the color.

Of course, the preceptions of the spectators must also be taken into account here, since against a cloudy sky, the smoke may LOOK black, or grey or some other color. Or in floodlights it may look even different yet. The DENSITY of the smoke is the key factor here.

Very dense smoke, i.e. "black" smoke equals no pope: very light smoke, i.e. "white" smoke, a pope has been elected.

Also, and this is very important, one cannot start a fire with damp straw! The paper ballots must FIRST be lighted, then after they are blazing well, the damp straw must be added slowly so as not to snuff out the fire. So there is always a first puff or two of "white" smoke before the "black" smoke can follow it. This fact has, very often, confused those watching the process from outside the conclave.

However, in the case of the 1958 conclave, the "white" smoke poured forth from the chimney for 5 full minutes, and even those who were quite familiar with the process were completely convinced that a pope had been well and truly elected. Even some of those INSIDE the conclave were so convinced that they waved white handkerchiefs, as was traditionally done, at the spectators outside to signify that white smoke, indeed, was meant.

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Mon Oct 08, 2007 11:59 pm
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Cardinal Billot, De Ecclesia Christi, 454. Scholion.

"The ancient authors everywhere admitted the axiom, 'Papa dubius est papa nullus' [i.e. 'A doubtful pope is no pope'], and applied it to solve the difficulties which arose from the Great Western Schism. Now this axiom could have several meanings. For instance 'a doubtful pope' could be understood not negatively, but positively - i.e. in the sense that would apply when, after a careful examination of the fact, competent men in the Catholic Church would pronounce: 'The validity of the canonical election of this Roman pontiff is uncertain.' Moreover, the words 'No pope' are not necessarily understood of a pope who has previously been received as certain and undoubted by the whole Church, but concerning whose election so many difficulties are subsequently brought to light that he becomes 'a doubtful pope' so that he would thereby forfeit the pontifical power already obtained.

"This understanding of the axiom concerning 'a doubtful pope' should be reproved, because the whole Church cannot entirely fall away from a Roman pontiff who has been legitimately elected, on account of the unity promised to His Church by Christ. But the other part of this axiom could have the meaning that a Roman pontiff whose canonical election is uncertain and remains subject to positive and solid doubts after studious examination, absolutely never did acquire also the papal jurisdiction from Christ the Lord. For this reason the bishops gathered together in a general council, in the event that they subject to examination a doubtful case of this kind, do not pronounce judgement on a true pope, since the person in question lacks the papal jurisdiction. Now if the axiom be understood in this last sense, the doctrine which it contains is entirely sound. Indeed this is what is deduced in the first place from the very nature of jurisdiction. For jurisdiction is essentially a relation between a superior who has the right to obedience and a subject who has the duty of obeying. Now when one of the parties to this relationship is wanting, the other necessarily ceases to exist also, as is plain from the nature of the relationship. However, if a pope is truly and permanently doubtful, the duty of obedience cannot exist towards him on the part of any subject. For the law, 'Obedience is owed to the legitimately-elected successor of St. Peter,' does not oblige if it is doubtful; and it most certainly is doubtful if the law has been doubtfully promulgated, for laws are instituted when they are promulgated, and without sufficient promulgation they lack a constitutive part, or essential condition. But if the fact of the legitimate election of a particular successor of St. Peter is only doubtfully demonstrated, the promulgation is doubtful; hence that law is not duly and objectively constituted of its necessary parts, and it remains truly doubtful and therefore cannot impose any obligation. Indeed it would be rash to obey such a man who had not proved his title in law. Nor could appeal be made to the principle of possession, for the case in question is that of a Roman pontiff who is not yet in peaceful possession. Consequently in such a person there would be no right of command - i.e. he would lack papal jurisdiction.

"The same conclusion is confirmed on the basis of the visibility of the Church. For the visibility of the Church consists in the fact that she possesses such signs and identifying marks that, when moral diligence is used, she can be recognised and discerned, especially on the part of her legitimate officers. But in the supposition we are considering, the pope cannot be found even after diligent examination. The conclusion is therefore correct that such a doubtful pope is not the proper head of the visible Church instituted by Christ. Nor is such a doubtful pope any less compatible with the unity of the Church, which would be in the highest degree prejudiced in the case of the body being perfectly separated from its head. For a doubtful pope has no right of commanding and therefore there is no obligation of obedience on the part of the faithful. Hence in such a case the head would be perfectly separated from the rest of the body of the Church. Cf. Suarez, De Fide, Disp.10, sect.6, n.4, 19."


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This is the best attempt I've seen to reconcile the doctrine regarding universal peaceful acceptance of a claimant with the suggested non-papacy of (in this case) Paul VI. I think it might just work for Paul VI, but I can't see that it will do for John XXIII.

Arnaldo Vidigal Xavier da Silveira, “Theological and Moral Implications of the New Ordo Missae." Circa 1975.

Quote:
A more attentive examination of the question would reveal, nevertheless, that even on purely theoretical grounds, an important difficulty arises, which would consist in determining precisely what is the concept of pacific and universal acceptation by the Church. For such acceptation to have been pacific and universal would it be enough that no Cardinal had contested the election? Would it be enough that in a Council, for example, almost the totality of the Bishops had signed the acts, recognizing in this way, at least implicitly, that the Pope be the true one? Would it be enough that no voice, or practically no voice had publicly given the cry of alert? Or, on the contrary, would a certain very generalized, though not always well defined, distrust be sufficient to destroy the apparently pacific and universal character of the acceptance of the Pope? And if this distrust became a suspicion in numerous spirits, a positive doubt in many, a certainty in some, would the aforementioned pacific and universal acceptance subsist? And if such distrusts, suspicions, doubts and certainties cropped out with some frequency in conversations or private papers, or now and again in published writings, could one still classify as pacific and universal the acceptance of a Pope who was already a heretic on the occasion of his election by the Sacred College?


Tue Oct 09, 2007 12:13 am
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New post "Doubtful" Pope - Cardinal Billot and da Sliveira
From Cardinal Billot, it seems to me that his argument mostly concerns whether or not we, as Catholics, owe obedience to such an one. He judges that this is, at least, not necessary, and I would be the first to agree with him.

However, he does not, it seems to me, even by implication call the fact of the doubtful one's position, election, papacy, whatever you wish to call it, into question by this argument, but seems to leave that particular part of the question open.

I think that to settle that part of the question, more investigation, and subsequent pronouncement on it, would be required.

Secondly, da Silveira asks a number of questions, but how does he answer them? Yes? No? Maybe so?

It seems to me that by implication he is answering his own questions in the negative...mostly.

Please elucidate.

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Tue Oct 09, 2007 1:16 am
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New post Translation of the Italian words...
Perhaps the more correct English translations for the two Italian words used to denote the colors of the "smokes" would be "transparent" in place of "white", and "opaque" in place of "black".

We sometimes describe an evil person as "dark hearted" or "black hearted" in similar fashion.

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KenGordon wrote:
From Cardinal Billot, it seems to me that his argument mostly concerns whether or not we, as Catholics, owe obedience to such an one. He judges that this is, at least, not necessary, and I would be the first to agree with him.


Because the fact of the possession of the office of the papacy is the same thing as the requirement that all obey him. They are really just two ways of saying the same thing. "Indeed this is what is deduced in the first place from the very nature of jurisdiction. For jurisdiction is essentially a relation between a superior who has the right to obedience and a subject who has the duty of obeying. Now when one of the parties to this relationship is wanting, the other necessarily ceases to exist also, as is plain from the nature of the relationship."



KenGordon wrote:
Secondly, da Silveira asks a number of questions, but how does he answer them? Yes? No? Maybe so?

It seems to me that by implication he is answering his own questions in the negative...mostly.

Please elucidate.


Da Silveira was quite a precise writer, and therefore his purpose in any given passage is usually apparent. In the following he is definitely establishing that the question regarding Paul VI’s status is a lawful one; that the doctrine concerning universal peaceful acceptance cannot be considered to place the question beyond the realm of possibility. In a sense he is trying to create a doubt concerning Paul VI in the mind of the reader, but we know from the rest of his work that he decided that the doubt was not resolvable in the negative. That is, that despite everybody’s utter disgust, Paul VI was pope.

“would a certain very generalized, though not always well defined, distrust be sufficient to destroy the apparently pacific and universal character of the acceptance of the Pope? And if this distrust became a suspicion in numerous spirits, a positive doubt in many, a certainty in some, would the aforementioned pacific and universal acceptance subsist? And if such distrusts, suspicions, doubts and certainties cropped out with some frequency in conversations or private papers, or now and again in published writings, could one still classify as pacific and universal the acceptance of a Pope who was already a heretic on the occasion of his election by the Sacred College?”

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Tue Oct 09, 2007 1:35 am
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Yes, veddy interesting, old trout.

God bless the dear priest for discussing it! So many mysteries and intrigues, and so many potential pitfalls for us as we try to figure out how to practice our Faith. I can't help being curious about all of this.


Tue Oct 09, 2007 2:40 am
New post Interesting confirmation on Cdl Siri's 1958 election
A question regarding da Silveira's comments on universal peaceful acceptance of a claimant of the papacy. When Cardinal Rampolla's election was seemingly approved by the cardinal-electors, there was a veto power by Franz-Joseph of the Austro-Hungarian Empire that was presented by a polish hierarch who's name escapes me at the moment, that forced Rampolla to not accept. I seem to recall that it was due to Rampolla being named as a freemason. Was that veto power eliminated? This veto cleared the way for Cardinal Sarto to be elected as Pope Pius X, who was canonized.

Also, hasn't it been stated that a heretic cannot be elected pope, because a heretic places himself outside the Catholic Church and cannot thus hold office?

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John Lane wrote:
Myrna wrote:
I am also curious as to why John Lane says John XXIII probably was a pope.


Because the theologians say that the adherence of the whole Church to any given claimant is in itself a proof that all of the necessary requisites for validity are present. The reason for this is the indefectibility of the Church, which cannot adhere to a false visible head.

It would in some ways be more convenient if this doctrine did not exist, but it does. :)

By the way, I think that this doctrine is chiefly what Archbishop Lefebvre had in view when he commented in the late '70s that the See of Rome could not be vacant because of the necessary visibility of the Church. In any case, it is certainly a powerful argument for sedeplenism, which is perhaps why most sedevacantists never mention it. :)


Very interesting thread. Being new to the forum, I find these discussions very informational.

In Simon Galloway's recent book, "No Crisis in the Church?" it noted in the Appendix several quotes where John XXIII not only encouraged maintaining membership within Masonry, but quotes saying that he himself (as well as Montini) were Masons , both installed in Paris.

Has anyone come across this before? There were several sources quoted in the book.

If either, or both were Masons, then wouldn't that nullify their papacy?

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New post Roncalli's Masonry
kstewskis wrote:
In Simon Galloway's recent book, "No Crisis in the Church?" it noted in the Appendix several quotes where John XXIII not only encouraged maintaining membership within Masonry, but quotes saying that he himself (as well as Montini) were Masons , both installed in Paris.


Very interesting...and also completely consistent with a rather long article in Sacerdotium on Roncalli's Masonry.

Quote:
Has anyone come across this before?


I have not read that particular book yet...

Quote:
If either, or both were Masons, then wouldn't that nullify their papacy?


It certainly would appear so to me!

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New post Proof by acceptance
John Lane wrote:
Myrna wrote:
I am also curious as to why John Lane says John XXIII probably was a pope.


Because the theologians say that the adherence of the whole Church to any given claimant is in itself a proof that all of the necessary requisites for validity are present.


I notice you use the words "...a proof...".

Therefore I have two questions:

1) Does this mean that there are OTHER proofs, possibly required?

2) How would this effect the case of Innocent II and Anacletus II? After all, Anacletus II was "accepted" by pretty much the whole Church at the time, yet was an anti-pope, while Innocent II required the assistance of St. Bernard to prove he was the true pope.

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John Lane wrote:
Because the theologians say that the adherence of the whole Church to any given claimant is in itself a proof that all of the necessary requisites for validity are present.


This idea of universal acceptance always seemed a bit vague to me...

What does "the adherence of the whole Church to any given claimant" mean?

Is it a morally unanimous adherence? What exactly is "the whole Church"? Laity included...or just Bishops?

Does this acceptance occur immediately? Or would some time have to pass before this adherence would be said to exist?


Tue Oct 09, 2007 5:18 pm
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Many years ago my uncle gave me a magazine titled, The Seraph a Francescan Magazine from Rochester N.Y., through the years I lost the magazine but made copies of this article and this is what it said.

Angelo Roncalli
a) He had been accused of Modernism by the Holy Office in his youth (inedited documentation of letters Calvallanti)

b) In his classes as professor of Church History, he used the test entitled "History of the Ancient Church" by Duchesne, a work that was considered modernizing and which was later placed on the official Index.

c) Cardinal De Lai summoned Roncalli to the Holy Office and severely urged him to observe correct doctrine.

d) In the Holy Office is contained a "Black File" having a card denouncing him for his relations with Modernists.

e) In the book entitled "Prophecies of John XXIII" by Pierre Karpi, it is given to understand that Angelo Roncalli, while in Turkey in the year 1935, was initiated into the sect of the Rosicrcians.

For all these reasons, Angelo Roncalli was not papabile because being a follower of Modernism which Pope St. Pius X declared to be the synthesis of all heresies, he was outside the Church. Being outside the Church, he could in no way be a Pope of the Catholic Church. Furthermore, even though he had been elected, he could never be considered a legitimate Pope. In effect, we have a document of great authority which nullifies his elevation and all his subsequent acts. This document is the Papal Bull CUM EX APOSTOLATUS OFFICIO of His Holiness, Pope Paul IV. The pertinent parts of this Bull are here included:
"...We declare that if ever a Bishop, Archbishop, Patriarch or Primate, a Cardinal or a Legatee, or even a Sovereign Pope, had before their elevation to the Cardinalate or Pontificate, deviated from the Catholic Faith or fallen into some heresy, the promotion or elevation - even if it had taken place with the unanimous assent of all the Cardinals - is INVALID and NULL, without value and one cannot say that it is valid because the person concerned accepts the Office, or receives the Consecration and then enters into possession of the government and administration (of the office) or by the homage rendered to him by all; one cannot accept him as legitimate, and none of his acts of power or administration may be deemed valid whether Bishops, Cardinals, or Sovereign Popes. All their words, deeds and actions, their administration and all that proceeds from them - all these are without value and have no authority or command over anyone. These men, so promoted and elevated, will be by the same fact deprived of all dignity, place, honor, title and power."

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New post Re: Proof by acceptance
KenGordon wrote:
I notice you use the words "...a proof...".


Proof. Sufficient evidence. In itself it is a clear sign of something, which is the validity of the claimant's claim. He is the pope.


KenGordon wrote:
1) Does this mean that there are OTHER proofs, possibly required?

No, it is in itself a sure sign.


KenGordon wrote:
2) How would this effect the case of Innocent II and Anacletus II? After all, Anacletus II was "accepted" by pretty much the whole Church at the time, yet was an anti-pope, while Innocent II required the assistance of St. Bernard to prove he was the true pope.


It does not affect the case at all, except that we may observe that this particular proof was lacking for some period at the beginning of Innocent's reign. Later, it was present. But you seem to be missing the point. We are not saying that no pope is pope unless everybody adheres to him - we are saying that somebody to whom everybody adheres must necessarily be pope. Otherwise the visible unity of the Church is lost.

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Tue Oct 09, 2007 10:43 pm
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Myrna wrote:
For all these reasons, Angelo Roncalli was not papabile because being a follower of Modernism which Pope St. Pius X declared to be the synthesis of all heresies, he was outside the Church.


This kind of argument, of which there have been many over the years, is not valid because it ignores the crucial factor of the relative publicity of the heretical animus of Roncalli (or anybody else). Secret membership in a Freemasonic sect cannot have the effect of loss of membership of the Church. Therefore the inability to possess an ecclesiastical office also is not lost merely by such membership, for one depends utterly upon the other.

The same is true of secret Holy Office dossiers etc. I don't doubt that the Holy Office had a dossier on Roncalli, or that he was suspect, or really that he was a stinking Modernist, all of which have, by the course of time become sufficiently clear. But our question is, can we show that Roncalli was a public heretic at the time he was elected or even at any point during his reign? I don't think so.

And in fact our problems would be compounded if we could show that Roncalli was a public heretic at the time he was elected or even at any point during his reign. Why is this? Because we would then have to explain the universal adherence of the Church to a public heretic as pope, something which all the theologians assert to be impossible, and which contains within itself a denial of the indefectibility of the Church.

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Robert Bastaja wrote:
This idea of universal acceptance always seemed a bit vague to me...


Spoken like a true engineer. :)


Robert Bastaja wrote:
Is it a morally unanimous adherence?

Yes, it is a moral matter to be assessed according to the usual rules governing moral questions. One cannot even discuss it with those who lack a sense of judgement. Familiarity with some historical examples would probably help. After Martin V was elected Peter de Luna (Benedict XIII) refused to accept his election and maintained his own claim. He was supported in this by several (two or three) of his cardinals. Nobody thinks that this small sect detracted from the morally universal acceptance of Martin as pope. On the other hand, as Ken has pointed out, Innocent II did lack this universal adherence for a time. Somewhere between the two cases is "the line." But it isn't a mathematical question, as I'm sure you appreciate.


Robert Bastaja wrote:
What exactly is "the whole Church"? Laity included...or just Bishops?

Laity included, I believe. Although, and here is one of our difficulties, I'd be surprised if any of the theologians would have said that the whole episcopate could adhere to a false pope, yet that is what seems to have happened with Paul VI. (We consider the episcopate distinctly because it is, formally, the "teaching Church".) This is why Da Silveira's questions regarding the exact nature of "peaceful" acceptance are worthy of consideration. There was no peace during Paul VI's reign (or since). He was accepted as an imposition; under a kind of moral violence, if you will.

Robert Bastaja wrote:
Does this acceptance occur immediately? Or would some time have to pass before this adherence would be said to exist?

However long it takes, it either exists and therefore constitutes sufficient proof of validity, or it does not (yet) exist and therefore that particular proof is lacking. It is not necessary, but it is sufficient.

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This is all very interesting to me; I am going to save this thread, sit down and read it over and over very slowly.

Thanks!

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New post Re: Proof by acceptance
John Lane wrote:
KenGordon wrote:
I notice you use the words "...a proof...".


Proof. Sufficient evidence. In itself it is a clear sign of something, which is the validity of the claimant's claim. He is the pope.


KenGordon wrote:
1) Does this mean that there are OTHER proofs, possibly required?

No, it is in itself a sure sign.


KenGordon wrote:
2) How would this effect the case of Innocent II and Anacletus II? After all, Anacletus II was "accepted" by pretty much the whole Church at the time, yet was an anti-pope, while Innocent II required the assistance of St. Bernard to prove he was the true pope.


It does not affect the case at all, except that we may observe that this particular proof was lacking for some period at the beginning of Innocent's reign. Later, it was present. But you seem to be missing the point. We are not saying that no pope is pope unless everybody adheres to him - we are saying that somebody to whom everybody adheres must necessarily be pope. Otherwise the visible unity of the Church is lost.


Just for clarification could you explain how the case of John XXIII regarding visibility and adherance by all of the Church differs from that of Paul VI onwards? How did the whole Church accept John XXIII in a different way than that of Paul VI? Thanks


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New post Re: Proof by acceptance
Colin Fry wrote:
Just for clarification could you explain how the case of John XXIII regarding visibility and adherance by all of the Church differs from that of Paul VI onwards? How did the whole Church accept John XXIII in a different way than that of Paul VI? Thanks


No worries Colin. I know that this is quite a difficult matter in some respects. Especially so in the present context because we started off talking about "doubtful popes," which is a related but distinct question.

Roncalli was accepted by the whole Church as pope and without any significant qualms that I am aware of. During his reign his behaviour did cause people distress and concern, but these things occurred well after he was elected and as far as I know there was no doubt about his claim at any point. (Pacem in terris is absolutely packed with error, by the way, and on the assumption that Roncalli was pope will pose a significant problem for theologians in the future in itself, apart from anything else...)

Montini was elected in a climate of deep concern about the actions of Roncalli and the Vatican Council, which was already in crisis. Montini was already well known as a liberal and from the very beginning his election was regarded with distress and concern by the "conservatives" amongst both the clergy and laity. Think of it this way: “We must recognize the chief characteristic of the modern era – a permanent state of what I call violent peace.” Admiral James D. Watkins, USN (Ret.), former Chief of Naval Operations. That was the state of things in the Church by the time Montini was elected. It was not the state of things when Roncalli was elected, or for some time afterwards.

Now, this all has to do with what could be described as "subjective doubts" about the claims of these men. However, when we characterise a man as a "doubtful pope" we are saying that his claim is objectively doubtful. Such a doubt will have its subjective counterpart, of course, but that is accidental, not essential. What counts is the defect in the election, whatever that might be. The observation of this defect by others is secondary. In the case of Cardinal Siri, let’s suppose he was not just elected but also that he accepted the election. There is no actual known evidence of this latter point. It may have occurred, but it is not established. Therefore the election lacks, objectively, an essential element. Therefore it is not a valid claim.

In the case of Innocent II the facts were solidly established but only known by a few, who then proceeded to convince the rest of the Church. There was no objective doubt about his election, but only subjective doubts.

Does that help?

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New post Re: Interesting confirmation on Cdl Siri's 1958 election
Pat Beck wrote:
Was that veto power eliminated?


Yes, Pope St. Pius X got rid of the veto immediately after he was elected.

Pat Beck wrote:
Also, hasn't it been stated that a heretic cannot be elected pope, because a heretic places himself outside the Catholic Church and cannot thus hold office?


A public heretic, yes. An occult (or “hidden”) heretic, no.

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Wed Oct 10, 2007 10:39 am
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That is a strange distinction really. It seems utilitarian to me. I can't see the sense of it.

Why is it publicity rather than heresy which is the deciding factor.

It means you could have someone who was a total apostate but managed to keep it out of the public eye because they wanted to keep their Vatican apartment and generous pension and was therefore a valid Pope or Cardinal.

Why does the publicity of your apostasy/heresy invalidate you rather than your lack of holding the Catholic faith?


Wed Oct 10, 2007 8:08 pm
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It doesn't make much sense to me either, except I remember hearing the nuns a long, time ago when I was a kid in Catholic school telling us that the proof that the Holy Ghost is guiding the Church is that bad popes can't teach heresy in public. Or something like that.

However, it seems to me that if a person is a Freemason he would be automatically through ipso facto placing himself outside the Church the instant he became a Mason. Therefore the Holy Ghost would not be guiding such a person, which explains why IF John XXIII was a Mason, he did make errors as stated above.

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New post Re: Proof by acceptance
John Lane wrote:
It does not affect the case at all, except that we may observe that this particular proof was lacking for some period at the beginning of Innocent's reign.


Then, for "...some period at the beginning of Innocent's reign.", he was not the pope.

Quote:
Later, it was present. But you seem to be missing the point. We are not saying that no pope is pope unless everybody adheres to him - we are saying that somebody to whom everybody adheres must necessarily be pope.


Oh, I most certainly got the point all right. The point I am trying to make is that Anacletus II was "adhered to" by "everybody", therefore he was the pope...yet he wasn't. And, since it is impossible for two different people to be the pope simultaneously, if Anacletus II was the Pope, then Innocent II wasn't. Make sense?

Quote:
Otherwise the visible unity of the Church is lost.


Excuse me, but I do not think one can predicate the visible unity of the Church ONLY on this single factor.

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ConversionofRussia wrote:
That is a strange distinction really. It seems utilitarian to me. I can't see the sense of it.


I, too, find this nearly inexplicible. In God's eyes, a man is either the Pope or he isn't, and whether or not we believe him to be or not to be (Hamlet) does not determine the facts.

Quote:
Why is it publicity rather than heresy which is the deciding factor?


I suppose one could say that as long as his heresy is not known by men, he is the pope, but as soon as it is known, then he is not the pope. In my humble opinion, this still stinks of subjectivism...

As far as I know, God doesn't work like that...but then again, what do **I** know? Apparently little or nothing.

Quote:
It means you could have someone who was a total apostate but managed to keep it out of the public eye because they wanted to keep their Vatican apartment and generous pension and was therefore a valid Pope or Cardinal.

Why does the publicity of your apostasy/heresy invalidate you rather than your lack of holding the Catholic faith?


I agree with you on both counts. This seems to me to be giving mankind much too much power over objective fact. It even makes it appear that mankind's opinion has greater power over fact than God's sure knowledge of it.

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Wed Oct 10, 2007 11:46 pm
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New post ANOTHER reply to John:
Look, John, what totally escapes me is how the opinion of mankind, even the universal opinion of mankind, in this case, can posibly appear to be absolute and infallible, according to what you are saying.

It is well known, or should be, by every student of human history that universal error is rampant amongst the human species.

In fact, most really good historians will assure you that those who believe anything which is true are in a very, very, VERY tiny minority of the population of the entire world, presently, and throughout history. At one time there were only 7000 men in the entire world who believed in the true faith. All the rest were pagans. So according to your doctrine, paganism was the true faith...at least until it was proven incorrect.

Knowing the fact that only a tiny minority of mankind has EVER believed the truth (and I would HOPE I don't have to provide examples or I would be writing for days), how can the acceptance of a pope by mankind be the sole criteria for his legitimacy? This is totally unacceptable to me. Human beings are much too prone to error.

Now I will certainly agree with you that anti-popes CAN be accepted as legitimate by the vast majority of mankind AT FIRST, but that simply means to me that that vast majority of mankind was in error. This does NOT prove to me that the anti-pope so accepted was a true pope. He was NEVER a true pope. And I believe St. Robert Bellarmine himself said as much.

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Quote:
Why is it publicity rather than heresy which is the deciding factor.


St. Robert Bellarmine wrote:
"Therefore, the true opinion is the fifth, according to which the Pope who is manifestly a heretic ceases by himself to be Pope and head, in the same way as he ceases to be a Christian and a member of the body of the Church; and for this reason he can be judged and punished by the Church. This is the opinion of all the ancient Fathers, who teach that manifest heretics immediately lose all jurisdiction, and outstandingly that of St. Cyprian (lib. 4, epist. 2) who speaks as follows of Novatian, who was Pope [i.e. antipope] in the schism which occurred during the pontificate of St. Cornelius: 'He would not be able to retain the episcopate [i.e. of Rome], and, if he was made bishop before, he separated himself from the body of those who were, like him, bishops, and from the unity of the Church.'

According to what St. Cyprian affirms in this passage, even had Novatian been the true and legitimate Pope, he would have automatically fallen from the pontificate, if he separated himself from the Church.

"This is the opinion of great recent doctors, as John Driedo (lib. 4 de Script. et dogmat. Eccles., cap. 2, par. 2, sent. 2), who teaches that only they separate themselves from the Church who are expelled, like the excommunicated, and those who depart by themselves from her or oppose her, as heretics and schismatics. And in his seventh affirmation, he maintains that in those who turn away from the Church, there remains absolutely no spiritual power over those who are in the Church. Melchior Cano says the same (lib. 4 de loc., cap. 2), teaching that heretics are neither parts nor members of the Church, and that it cannot even be conceived that anyone could be head and Pope, without being member and part (cap. ult. ad argument. 12). And he teaches in the same place, in plain words, that occult heretics are still of the Church, they are parts and members, and that therefore the Pope who is an occult heretic is still Pope. This is also the opinion of the other authors whom we cite in book I De Ecclesia.

"The foundation of this argument is that the manifest heretic is not in any way a member of the Church, that is, neither spiritually nor corporally, which signifies that he is not such by internal union nor by external union. For even bad Catholics [i.e. who are not heretics] are united and are members, spiritually by faith, corporally by confession of faith and by participation in the visible sacraments; the occult heretics are united and are members although only by external union; on the contrary, the good catechumens belong to the Church only by an internal union, not by the external; but manifest heretics do not pertain in any manner, as we have already proved."


Thu Oct 11, 2007 12:16 am
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New post Public opinion and a papal election.
Robert Bastaja wrote:
Quote:
Why is it publicity rather than heresy which is the deciding factor.


St. Robert Bellarmine wrote:
"Therefore, the true opinion is the fifth, according to which the Pope who is manifestly a heretic ceases by himself to be Pope and head, in the same way as he ceases to be a Christian and a member of the body of the Church; and for this reason he can be judged and punished by the Church. This is the opinion of all the ancient Fathers, who teach that manifest heretics immediately lose all jurisdiction, and outstandingly that of St. Cyprian (lib. 4, epist. 2) who speaks as follows of Novatian, who was Pope [i.e. antipope] in the schism which occurred during the pontificate of St. Cornelius: 'He would not be able to retain the episcopate [i.e. of Rome], and, if he was made bishop before, he separated himself from the body of those who were, like him, bishops, and from the unity of the Church.'

According to what St. Cyprian affirms in this passage, even had Novatian been the true and legitimate Pope, he would have automatically fallen from the pontificate, if he separated himself from the Church.

"This is the opinion of great recent doctors, as John Driedo (lib. 4 de Script. et dogmat. Eccles., cap. 2, par. 2, sent. 2), who teaches that only they separate themselves from the Church who are expelled, like the excommunicated, and those who depart by themselves from her or oppose her, as heretics and schismatics. And in his seventh affirmation, he maintains that in those who turn away from the Church, there remains absolutely no spiritual power over those who are in the Church. Melchior Cano says the same (lib. 4 de loc., cap. 2), teaching that heretics are neither parts nor members of the Church, and that it cannot even be conceived that anyone could be head and Pope, without being member and part (cap. ult. ad argument. 12). And he teaches in the same place, in plain words, that occult heretics are still of the Church, they are parts and members, and that therefore the Pope who is an occult heretic is still Pope. This is also the opinion of the other authors whom we cite in book I De Ecclesia.

"The foundation of this argument is that the manifest heretic is not in any way a member of the Church, that is, neither spiritually nor corporally, which signifies that he is not such by internal union nor by external union. For even bad Catholics [i.e. who are not heretics] are united and are members, spiritually by faith, corporally by confession of faith and by participation in the visible sacraments; the occult heretics are united and are members although only by external union; on the contrary, the good catechumens belong to the Church only by an internal union, not by the external; but manifest heretics do not pertain in any manner, as we have already proved."


Most of us understand this part of it, Robert. I.e., that until an heretic is "manifest", or public he is still a member of the Church, ergo, if a member of the Church, then the pope also.

But that is not what we are having trouble understanding.

To digress a moment: In St. Robert Bellarmine's book, Controversiarum, De Summo Pontifice, Liber Quartus, De Potestate Spirituali, Caput VI, entitled, De Pontifice ut est particularis quaedam persona., he says, ...Secundo probatur ab eventu; nam hactenus nullus fuit haereticus, vel certe de nullo probari potest, quod haereticus fuerit; ergo signum est, non posse esse.

According to my very free translation of this, St. Robert is telling us that his study of all the true popes who have ever been accused of heresy shows that NONE of them actually were ever proven to be heretics, and that "...therefore, this is a sign that this is not possible." The fact that no true pope, in his study of them, was EVER really proven to be an heretic, is a sign from heaven that no true pope could ever be a heretic, or fall into heresy. He would be protected by Heaven from it.

What we are having trouble understanding, Robert, is that John is saying, backed up by significant authority, that the very fact that a man was accepted by the "entire Catholic world" as being a true pope, proves that he was a true pope.

I, at least, say that it is also very possible, in fact under certain circumstances extremely likely, that the "entire" Catholic world could be mistaken.

Perhaps the bone of contention between us is our differing understanding of what is meant by "the entire Catholic world".

I say it is limited. John apparently believe it is unlimited.

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 1:29 am
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New post One further point...
I must make one further point here: a point which I firmly believe to be of crucial importance!

I firmly believe that no true pope would ever be allowed by God to become an heretic...not even privately!

I also believe I am backed up in this belief by St. Robert Bellarmine, among others.

What this means, if it is true (and I firmly believe it IS true!), is that the very fact that the recent antipopes have proven themselves to be heretics, SIMPLY PROVES THAT THEY WERE NEVER TRUE POPES TO BEGIN WITH!!!!!

In other words, I am looking at the situation completely in reverse to the common viewpoint.

The common viewpoint says, essentially, that their heresy came first, and their anti-pope-ness came second.

I say, backed up by St. Robert Bellarmine (and possibly by others) that their anti-pope-ness came first, and is PROVEN by their heresy, which comes second in importance.

I believe that God has given us the proof of their anti-pope-ness by their obvious, manifest, heresy.

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 2:03 am
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New post And yet another point...
I must make yet one more point:

I simply cannot understand how anyone who knows anything about the intrigue which is de rigueur amongst the secret societies could possibly believe that these last anti-popes were elected in a completely free and normal election.

After all, why are they called secret societies if everything they will and accomplish occurs completely in the light of day?

To say that the elections of these anti-popes were completely clean and above-board strikes me as the absolute height of naivete!

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New post Re: Proof by acceptance
KenGordon wrote:
The point I am trying to make is that Anacletus II was "adhered to" by "everybody", therefore he was the pope...yet he wasn't.


Not "everybody" adhered to him, and it was only a temporary situation, soon rectified.

The thing to keep in view is the objective factual situation. There were public facts showing that Innocent was pope right from the beginning, and there were people who adhered to him publicly. They were in a minority but they were vocal. Contrast this with John XXIII, against whom there were exactly zero public objections.

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 12:31 pm
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KenGordon wrote:
I, too, find this nearly inexplicible. In God's eyes, a man is either the Pope or he isn't, and whether or not we believe him to be or not to be (Hamlet) does not determine the facts.


The opinion of men doesn't determine anything. The Church is a visible institution and therefore visible facts are determinate, not secret ones. The fact that men may or may not notice them is secondary and dependent upon those objective realities.

Distinct from this is the adherence of the whole Church to a given claimant. It is not a question of "opinion" but rather of ecclesiastical unity, precisely because it involves the whole Church. Immediately you prescind from this moral unanimity you lose the objective character and you are in the realm of the subjective - that is, of opinion.

I understand that these things are somewhat difficult but you'll have to trust the canonists and theologians who explain them. I can tell you, for what it's worth, that once you have spent time pondering these things they become clear. You can "see" the realities and the various distinctions. They take on a clarity which makes the explanations of the authorities actually "explain" them for you. But I am not sure that everybody has the kind of mind which can grapple successfully with these kinds of abstractions. In any case, the humility to sit at the feet of the authorities is crucial.

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 12:39 pm
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New post 
John Lane wrote:
In any case, the humility to sit at the feet of the authorities is crucial.


Good advice!

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Ken Gordon wrote:
What we are having trouble understanding, Robert, is that John is saying, backed up by significant authority, that the very fact that a man was accepted by the "entire Catholic world" as being a true pope, proves that he was a true pope.

Ken,

I'm sure you'd agree that it is good to be backed by significant authority. :) Also, I don't see where John XXIII was resisted in any way. It seems that everyone admits the validity of the J23 missal. Sure, he called the Second Vatican Council...but it could have turned out differently if the original schemas were not thrown out. He set the stage for the disaster that followed him...but no one resisted him.

Quote:
I, at least, say that it is also very possible, in fact under certain circumstances extremely likely, that the "entire" Catholic world could be mistaken.

I think it better to focus on who resisted him...no one did. He was accepted and adhered to by everyone throughout his entire pontificate.

Quote:
Perhaps the bone of contention between us is our differing understanding of what is meant by "the entire Catholic world".

If no one resisted him...then everyone accepted him.

Quote:
I say it is limited. John apparently believe it is unlimited.

And he has authority behind him and you do not...right? :)

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:40 pm
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New post Re: Proof by acceptance
John Lane wrote:
KenGordon wrote:
The point I am trying to make is that Anacletus II was "adhered to" by "everybody", therefore he was the pope...yet he wasn't.


Not "everybody" adhered to him, and it was only a temporary situation, soon rectified.


I can say exactly the same thing about John XXIII.

After all, it depends on 1) what the word "everybody" means, 2) what the word "temporary" means, and 3) what the word "soon" means. Perhaps, as soon as things settle down at home, you could dig through your books (books by the way which most of us do not have in order to study) to discover the meaning of those words I have quoted above.

In many cases, not necessarily cases involving only the Church, it took a century or two to arrive at the truth of certain matters. The complete truth of many matters is unknown yet today.

In the case of Innocent and Anacletus, it took at least a couple of years for "everybody" to recognize the truth, and many had to be convinced by St. Bernard and another whom I cannot now recall the name. This certainly does not sound like "soon" to me!

In short, I think the sedevacantist position is a completely temporary one, based on the fact that we do not yet know the truth. Furthermore, it seems to me that many sedevacantists are content enough with that position to ignore what to me and others are clear signs that the 1958 conclave was "tampered with", and that this deserves serious investigation.

Quote:
The thing to keep in view is the objective factual situation. There were public facts showing that Innocent was pope right from the beginning, and there were people who adhered to him publicly. They were in a minority but they were vocal. Contrast this with John XXIII, against whom there were exactly zero public objections.


To me, this is comparing apples and oranges: at the time of Innocent and Anacletus, the situation of the world was nothing like our present one. The Church was near the height of its power, most of the then-known world was at least nominally Catholic, and, possibly most importantly of all, the nefarious forces, Masonry, were in their infancy and had very little true power. That situation is completely reversed today. One of the best indicators of which is the very strong evidence that Roncalli himself was a member of these nefarious forces.

I repeat: it is in the best interests of these very strong nefarious forces to keep the truth hidden from the generality of Catholics; from "everybody". To think otherwise, to act otherwise, is the height of naivete.

Our Lord indicated to us the course we must follow in such matters: "Be as wise as serpents, and as gentle as doves." I think most of us here have the "dove" part down pretty well...

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:49 pm
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New post 
Robert Bastaja wrote:
Ken Gordon wrote:
What we are having trouble understanding, Robert, is that John is saying, backed up by significant authority, that the very fact that a man was accepted by the "entire Catholic world" as being a true pope, proves that he was a true pope.

Ken,

I'm sure you'd agree that it is good to be backed by significant authority. :)


Of course. However, "significant authority" is, generally, not infallible either.

Quote:
Also, I don't see where John XXIII was resisted in any way.


Of course you don't. Can you not see that if, in fact, there was resistance to Roncalli within the Conclave, it would be in the best interests of the evil forces to keep it from you? How can you possibly really believe you have all the truth of the matter?

On the other hand, through our investigations, we have discovered enough evidence from eye-witnesses to call into serious question Roncalli's legitimacy. For instance, we are reasonably certain that there was literally a fist-fight around the stove at one point. We have other evidence that someone within the conclave attempted to warn those outside that someone OTHER THAN Roncalli had been elected. We have other evidence that there was very strong opposition to Roncalli's election inside the conclave.

I will most certainly agree that AFTER the conclave, there was no obviously serious opposition to his pontificate, but to me much of that can be explained by knowing who "owns" the news media.

Quote:
It seems that everyone admits the validity of the J23 missal.


I disagree: many in the SSPX didn't, and many still don't. I know I most certainly did not, even before I knew anything about Siri. But I guess I am not included in "everyone", am I?

Quote:
Sure, he called the Second Vatican Council...but it could have turned out differently if the original schemas were not thrown out. He set the stage for the disaster that followed him...but no one resisted him.


And I say that you cannot say that with certainty. To really believe what you are saying is naive in the extreme.


Quote:
Quote:
I, at least, say that it is also very possible, in fact under certain circumstances extremely likely, that the "entire" Catholic world could be mistaken.

I think it better to focus on who resisted him...no one did. He was accepted and adhered to by everyone throughout his entire pontificate.


Again, you do not really KNOW that. You may think you do, but you have not taken into account those few who most certainly did not accept him in any way. Most of those, of course, were looked upon as total kooks at the time, but they were right.

Quote:
Quote:
Perhaps the bone of contention between us is our differing understanding of what is meant by "the entire Catholic world".

If no one resisted him...then everyone accepted him.


First of all, that does not follow. Secondly, I repeat...

Quote:
Quote:
I say it is limited. John apparently believes it is unlimited.

And he has authority behind him and you do not...right? :)


Well one authority I have is simple logic, and a fairly good understanding of exactly how evil the world has become. We also have precedent.

Robert: if you REALLY believe that all the external signs you have quoted are the entire answer to this question, then I repeat: you are being naive.

Lastly, PROVE to me that there was no opposition!

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New post Opposition to Roncalli
At the time of his "election", I was 16 years old by a few months.

I distinctly remember my shocked Mother saying, "He has taken the name of an anti-pope! I wonder how he can do that?!? Why did he do that?!? I wonder what that means?!? Something smells fishy here!!"

Then she discussed this with some of her Catholic friends. Part of the discussion revolved around whether or not he was a true pope at all. The consensus arrived at was that they didn't know enough to say. They decided to wait to see what the priests would say about it.

One of my Mother's favorite sayings was, "Something smells rotten in the state of Denmark", and she applied it here.

But, then again, I suppose she and her friends wouldn't be included in "everyone" or "everybody"...

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 4:55 pm
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New post 
CMRI and sedevacantism expanding
John Lane



On another thread John Lane replied
Posted: Sun Oct 07, 2007 8:57 am


Quote:
Sounds reasonable to me too, but that's where we seem to be at cross-purposes. I have formed various judgements about this crisis which happen to differ with those of many other traditional Catholics. For example,

1. The See of Rome is presently vacant
2. John XXIII was probably pope.


Note: John wrote probably, a pope, not absolute. Ken, we are talking about something that we can't prove, at least I don't think we can at this point. God will not judge us on how we felt about Siri or John XXIII, but on how we are living the Faith.

I say we move on.

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 6:25 pm
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New post Another reply to Myrna:
Myrna wrote:
John Lane wrote:
1. The See of Rome is presently vacant
2. John XXIII was probably pope.


Note: John wrote probably, a pope, not absolute.


Oh, I understood that completely, Myrna. I have no problem with John's belief on the subject, as far as it goes.

However, he predicates that belief on what I consider to be an erroneous assumption, and he backs up that erroneous assumption with legitimate authority, which legitimate authority, to my mind does not precisely enough fit the present situation.

He says that "no one" opposed him. He says that "everyone" accepted him, and like statements. Yet, I submit that there is no way he can know either of these things to be absolutely true.

I, on the contrary, say that we do not know these things to be certainly true. That, on the contrary, there is considerable consistent evidence, all indirect, most certainly, but evidence nonetheless, against this idea, which, at the very least, bears serious investigation.

Furthermore, I say that the words "everyone" and "no one" are not precisely enough defined for us to be even discussing this issue at present.

For instance, in a conclave, if it should happen that a man is elected "unanimously", that, obviously, means that he has the support of "everyone" in the conclave. But he most certainly does not have the support of "everyone" in the Catholic world...since they do not yet know of his election. If we read John's authorities as they have been presented, which "everyone" are they talking about? If by "everyone" we mean the entire Catholic world (which, if I am not mistaken, is what John means by "everyone") then the man so elected is not yet the pope until "everyone" acknowledges him as such.

If this is what is meant, I find this unacceptable.

Or looking at this from the other direction, in the conclave "no one" opposes him, therefore he is the pope. But, outside, "no one" has even heard of him, so that larger "no one" doesn't know whether it opposes him or not, and perhaps, if it knew who was being proposed that "no one" might just oppose him.

To John and his supporters, the question of Roncalli's position as pope has been answered satisfactorily, and there is no need for further investigation. They will believe everything they have read concerning Roncalli from the newspapers, orally, or any other common means of modern communication, while I and a few others, on the contrary, call into question everything which come from these modern means of communications, since they are owned by agents of satan and cannot be relied on to tell the truth.

Quote:
Ken, we are talking about something that we can't prove, at least I don't think we can at this point.


Agreed. But does that mean we sit on our hands and do nothing about it? Doesn't doing such a thing sound something like the heresy of "quietism"?

Quote:
God will not judge us on how we felt about Siri or John XXIII, but on how we are living the Faith.


However, God WILL judge us if we do not take the necessary means to find out the truth of those things necessary for our salvation.

Quote:
I say we move on.


Fine. You move on. I intend to keep digging at this question, like a dog with a root, until God allows some solution to be found.

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 7:17 pm
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New post Re: Another reply to Myrna:
KenGordon wrote:
He says that "no one" opposed him. He says that "everyone" accepted him, and like statements. Yet, I submit that there is no way he can know either of these things to be absolutely true.


Dear Ken,

I can only know what I have evidence for. The Faith is the evidence of things not seen. Other than that, things not seen are not in evidence and are not believed. Declining to believe things which are not in evidence is not a form of naiveté; it is common sense. We are not required to prove negatives; the proponents of any positive claim are required to prove it.

Keeping one’s mind open to possibilities, even unlikely ones, is a good idea in a climate of extreme disorder like this, but there is a Colorado chasm between keeping one’s mind open to possibilities and accepting mere suggestions as truth.

One of the important aids we have for discovering truth is to know and understand the principles of law and theology which apply to any question, so that we know where the hard edges are, so to speak.

“Everyone” is taken in prudent moral estimation. As I tried to suggest by mentioning the case of Benedict XIII, “a few kooks” don’t detract from moral unanimity. But a St. Bernard and thousands of other serious men does constitute a substantial departure from that unanimity. The character of the people concerned, their level of knowledge, and their propensity to inform others, are all factors to be considered.

Your mother’s initial quibbles concerning John XIII would be dismissed by any canonist, I think, as irrelevant.

KenGordon wrote:
If by "everyone" we mean the entire Catholic world (which, if I am not mistaken, is what John means by "everyone") then the man so elected is not yet the pope until "everyone" acknowledges him as such.


No, the moral unanimity of adherence is sufficient proof of valid election, not necessary proof. Innocent II was pope right from when he was elected, but not everybody understood this.


KenGordon wrote:
To John and his supporters, the question of Roncalli's position as pope has been answered satisfactorily, and there is no need for further investigation.

That’s not accurate. I have said many times that I think there is sufficient evidence of irregularity at the ’58 conclave to merit some investigative effort. When that effort produces fruit then it ought to be published so that it can be considered by prudent men. Until then it ought not to be treated as though it obliged anybody, because it doesn’t. And until then I, for one, will continue to observe what I consider to be the unchallenged public fact that there was zero opposition to Roncalli’s claim to the papacy, and I will continue to draw the necessary conclusion from it, even though I would prefer to have contrary evidence and draw the opposite conclusion.

Does that make sense?

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Thu Oct 11, 2007 10:29 pm
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New post new Quidlibit = pope as "manifest" or "public
I found a new posting by Fr. Cekada on Quidlibet, regarding a pope being a "manifest" or "public" heretic. He divides it into two parts. I: Heresy" confusing "sin" with canonical "crime", and II: Mistaken assumptions about "manifest", "public", and "notorious".

I thought it could easily fit into this subject matter.

In Jesus and Mary, Pat Beck


Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:42 am
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