If It Is In The Acta Apostolicae Sedis, It Is Official Teaching

[1] And we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and of our gathering together unto him: [2] That you be not easily moved from your sense, nor be terrified, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by epistle, as sent from us, as if the day of the Lord were at hand. [3] Let no man deceive you by any means, for unless there come a revolt first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, [4] Who opposeth, and is lifted up above all that is called God, or that is worshipped, so that he sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself as if he were God. [5] Remember you not, that when I was yet with you, I told you these things? (2 Thess. 1-5.)

Jorge Mario Bergoglio and his predecessors since October 28, 1958, have been men of sin.

Anyone who does not see this by now is to be pitied.

To be pitied more, however, are those who know this to be true and who keep insisting that these men of have sin have been true and legitimate Successors of Saint Peter, which means that there have been and continue to be heretical "popes," something that Saint Robert Bellarmine taught could never be the case (see Saint Robert Bellarmine's Defense of Popes Said to Have Erred in Faith).

Two important posts at Novus Ordo Watch Wire, including a new page devoted to providing cogent refutations to the false ecclesiology of the “resist while recognize” apologists (see The Gates of Hell Will Never Prevail and True Or False Popes.com), continue to provide concrete doctrinal documentation that the faith of a true and legitimate Successor of Saint Peter can never fail. Moreover, as has been demonstrated on this site ad nauseam, ad infinitum in the past ten years since I came to recognize the counterfeit church of conciliarism is not the Catholic Church, Holy Mother Church enjoys a perpetual immunity from error and heresy:

Not least among the blessings which have resulted from the public and legitimate honor paid to the Blessed Virgin and the saints is the perfect and perpetual immunity of the Church from error and heresy. (Pope Pius XI, Quas Primas, December 11, 1925.)

The Catholic Church is incapable of being touched by any kind of error, no less heresy, yes, even in her Universal Ordinary Magisterium.

Yet it is that those in the “resist while recognize” movement continue to insist that one can oppose a true pope in those things that are not “official” and thus mandated for belief. Although the point has been made about ten times on this site in the past thirteen months, I think that it is well worth noting once again that none other than Monsignor Joseph Clifford Fenton, the editor of the American Ecclesiastical Review between 1943 and 1963, explained that everything that a pope causes to be inserted into the Acta Apostolicae Sedis is indeed very official and thus binding upon all Catholics without any kind of dissent or discussion:

Despite the fact that there is nothing like an adequate treatment of the papal allocutions in existing theological literature, every priest, and particularly every professor of sacred theology, should know whether and under what circumstances these allocutions addressed by the Sovereign Pontiffs to private groups are to be regarded as authoritative, as actual expressions of the Roman Pontiff's ordinary magisterium. And, especially because of the tendency towards an unhealthy minimism current in this country and elsewhere in the world today, they should also know how doctrine is to be set forth in the allocutions and the other vehicles of the Holy Father's ordinary magisterium if it is to be accepted as authoritative.  The present brief paper will attempt to consider and to answer these questions.

The first question to be considered is this: Can a speech addressed by the Roman Pontiff to a private group, a group which cannot in any sense be taken as representing either the Roman Church or the universal Church, contain doctrinal teaching authoritative for the universal Church?

The clear and unequivocal answer to this question is contained in the Holy Father's encyclical letter Humani generis, issued Aug. 12, 1950.  According to this document: "if, in their 'Acta' the Supreme Pontiffs take care to render a decision on a point that has hitherto been controverted, it is obvious to all that this point, according to the mind and will of these same Pontiffs, can no longer be regarded as a question theologians may freely debate among themselves."[6]

Thus, in the teaching of the Humani generis, any doctrinal decision made by the Pope and included in his "Acta" are authoritative.  Now many of the allocutions made by the Sovereign Pontiff to private groups are included in the "Acta" of the Sovereign Pontiff himself, as a section of the Acta apostolicae sedis.  Hence, any doctrinal decision made in one of these allocutions that is published in the Holy Father's "Acta" is authoritative and binding on all the members of the universal Church.

There is, according to the words of the Humani generis, an authoritative doctrinal decision whenever the Roman Pontiffs, in their "Acta," "de re hactenus controversa data opera sententiam ferunt."  When this condition is fulfilled, even in an allocution originally delivered to a private group, but subsequently published as part of the Holy Father's "Acta," an authoritative doctrinal judgment has been proposed to the universal Church.  All of those within the Church are obliged, under penalty of serious sin, to accept this decision. . . .

Now the questions may arise: is there any particular form which the Roman Pontiff is obliged to follow in setting forth a doctrinal decision in either the positive or the negative manner? Does the Pope have to state specifically and explicitly that he intends to issue a doctrinal decision on this particular point?  Is it at all necessary that he should refer explicitly to the fact that there has hitherto been a debate among theologians on the question he is going to decide?

There is certainly nothing in the divinely established constitutional law of the Catholic Church which would in any way justify an affirmative response to any of these inquiries.  The Holy Father's doctrinal authority stems from the tremendous responsibility Our Lord laid upon him in St. Peter, whose successor he is.  Our Lord charged the Prince of the Apostles, and through him, all of his successors until the end of time, with the commission of feeding, of acting as a shepherd for, of taking care of, His lambs and His sheep.[7]  Included in that responsibility was the obligation, and, of course, the power, to confirm the faith of his fellow Christians.

And the Lord said: "Simon, Simon, behold Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat.  But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and thou, being once converted, confirm thy brethren."[8]

St. Peter had, and has in his successor, the duty and the power to confirm his brethren in their faith, to take care of their doctrinal needs.  Included in his responsibility is an obvious obligation to select and to employ the means he judges most effective and apt for the accomplishment of the end God has commissioned him to attain.  And in this era, when the printed word possesses a manifest primacy in the field of the dissemination of ideas, the Sovereign Pontiffs have chosen to bring their authoritative teaching, the doctrine in which they accomplish the work of instruction God has commanded them to do, to the people of Christ through the medium of the printed word in the published "Acta."

The Humani generis reminds us that the doctrinal decisions set forth in the Holy Father's "Acta" manifestly are authoritative "according to the mind and will" of the Pontiffs who have issued these decisions.  Thus, wherever there is a doctrinal judgment expressed in the "Acta" of a Sovereign Pontiff, it is clear that the Pontiff understands that decision to be authoritative and wills that it be so.

Now when the Pope, in his "Acta," sets forth as a part of Catholic doctrine or as a genuine teaching of the Catholic Church some thesis which has hitherto been opposed, even legitimately, in the schools of sacred theology, he is manifestly making a doctrinal decisionThis certainly holds true even when, in making his statement, the Pope does not explicitly assert that he is issuing a doctrinal judgment and, of course, even when he does not refer to the existence of a controversy or debate on the subject among theologians up until the time of his own pronouncement.  All that is necessary is that this teaching, hitherto opposed in the theological schools, be now set forth as the teaching of the Sovereign Pontiff, or as "doctrina catholica."

Private theologians have no right whatsoever to establish what they believe to be the conditions under which the teaching presented in the "Acta" of the Roman Pontiff may be accepted as authoritative.  This is, on the contrary, the duty and the prerogative of the Roman Pontiff himself.  The present Holy Father has exercised that right and has done his duty in stating clearly that any doctrinal decision which the Bishop of Rome has taken the trouble to make and insert into his "Acta" is to be received as genuinely authoritative.

In line with the teaching of the Humani generis, then, it seems unquestionably clear that any doctrinal decision expressed by the Sovereign Pontiff in the course of an allocution delivered to a private group is to be accepted as authoritative when and if that allocution is published by the Sovereign Pontiff as a part of his own "Acta."  Now we must consider this final question: What obligation is incumbent upon a Catholic by reason of an authoritative doctrinal decision made by the Sovereign Pontiff and communicated to the universal Church in this manner?

The text of the Humani generis itself supplies us with a minimum answer.  This is found in the sentence we have already quoted: "And if, in their 'Acta,' the Supreme Pontiffs take care to render a decision on a point that has hitherto been controverted, it is obvious to all that this point, according to the mind and will of these same Pontiffs, can no longer be regarded as a question theologians may freely debate among themselves."

Theologians legitimately discuss and dispute among themselves doctrinal questions which the authoritative magisterium of the Catholic Church has not as yet resolved.  Once that magisterium has expressed a decision and communicated that decision to the Church universal, the first and the most obvious result of its declaration must be the cessation of debate on the point it has decided. A man definitely is not acting and could not act as a theologian, as a teacher of Catholic truth, by disputing against a decision made by the competent doctrinal authority of the Mystical Body of Christ on earth.

In line with the teaching of the Humani generis, then, it seems unquestionably clear that any doctrinal decision expressed by the Sovereign Pontiff in the course of an allocution delivered to a private group is to be accepted as authoritative when and if that allocution is published by the Sovereign Pontiff as a part of his own "Acta."  Now we must consider this final question: What obligation is incumbent upon a Catholic by reason of an authoritative doctrinal decision made by the Sovereign Pontiff and communicated to the universal Church in this manner? (The doctrinal Authority of Papal allocutions.)

Monsignor Fenton answered the question he posted with a ringing condemnation of the false proposition that one can "ignore," no less seek to "refute," anything contained in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis:

The text of the Humani generis itself supplies us with a minimum answer.  This is found in the sentence we have already quoted: "And if, in their 'Acta,' the Supreme Pontiffs take care to render a decision on a point that has hitherto been controverted, it is obvious to all that this point, according to the mind and will of these same Pontiffs, can no longer be regarded as a question theologians may freely debate among themselves."

Theologians legitimately discuss and dispute among themselves doctrinal questions which the authoritative magisterium of the Catholic Church has not as yet resolved.  Once that magisterium has expressed a decision and communicated that decision to the Church universal, the first and the most obvious result of its declaration must be the cessation of debate on the point it has decided.  A man definitely is not acting and could not act as a theologian, as a teacher of Catholic truth, by disputing against a decision made by the competent doctrinal authority of the Mystical Body of Christ on earth.

Thus, according to the clear teaching of the Humani generis, it is morally wrong for any individual subject to the Roman Pontiff to defend a thesis contradicting a teaching which the Pope, in his "Acta," has set forth as a part of Catholic doctrine.  It is, in other words, wrong to attack a teaching which, in a genuine doctrinal decision, the Sovereign Pontiff has taught officially as the visible head of the universal Church.  This holds true always an everywhere, even in those cases in which the Pope, in making his decision, did not exercise the plenitude of his apostolic teaching power by making an infallible doctrinal definition.

The Humani generis must not be taken to imply that a Catholic theologian has completed his obligation with respect to an authoritative doctrinal decision made by the Holy Father and presented in his published "Acta" when he has merely refrained from arguing or debating against it.  The Humani generis reminded its readers that "this sacred magisterium ought to be the immediate and universal norm of truth for any theologian in matters of faith and morals."[9]  Furthermore, it insisted that the faithful are obligated to shun errors which more or less approach heresy, and "to follow the constitutions and decrees by which evil opinions of this sort have been proscribed and forbidden by the Holy See."[10]  In other words, the Humani generis claimed the same internal assent for declarations of the magisterium on matters of faith and morals which previous documents of the Holy See had stressed.

We may well ask why the Humani generis went to the trouble of mentioning something as fundamental and rudimentary as the duty of abstaining from further debate on a point where the Roman Pontiff has already issued a doctrinal decision, and has communicated that decision to the Church universal by publishing it in his "Acta."  The reason is to be found in the context of the encyclical itself.  The Holy Father has told us something of the existing situation which called for the issuance of the "Humani generis."  This information is contained in the text of that document.  The following two sentences show us the sort of condition the Humani generis was written to meet and to remedy:

"And although this sacred magisterium ought to be the immediate and universal norm of truth on matters of faith and morals for any theologian, as the agency to which Christ the Lord has entrusted the entire deposit of faith - that is, the Sacred Scriptures and divine Tradition - to be guarded and defended and explained, still, the duty by which the faithful are obligated also to shun those errors which approach more or less to heresy, and therefore 'to follow the constitutions and decrees by which evil opinions of this sort have been proscribed and forbidden by the Holy See,' is sometimes ignored as if it did not exist.  What is said in encyclical letters of the Roman Pontiffs about the nature and constitution of the Church is habitually and deliberately neglected by some with the idea of giving force to a certain vague notion which they claim to have found in the ancient Fathers, especially the Greeks."[11]

Six years ago, then, Pope Pius XII was faced with a situation in which some of the men who were privileged and obligated to teach the truths of sacred theology had perverted their position and their influence and had deliberately flouted the teachings of the Holy See about the nature and the constitution of the Catholic Church.  And, when he declared that it is wrong to debate a point already decided by the Holy Father after that decision has been published in his "Acta," he was taking cognizance of and condemning an existent practice.  There actually were individuals who were contradicting papal teachings.  They were so numerous and influential that they rendered the composition of the Humani generis necessary to counteract their activities.  These individuals were continuing to propose teachings repudiated by the Sovereign Pontiff in previous pronouncements.  The Holy Father, then, was compelled by these circumstances to call for the cessation of debate among theologians on subjects which had already been decided by pontifical decisions published in the "Acta."

The kind of theological teaching and writing against which the encyclical Humani generis was directed was definitely not remarkable for its scientific excellence.  It was, as a matter of fact, exceptionally poor from the scientific point of view.  The men who were responsible for it showed very clearly that they did not understand the basic nature and purpose of sacred theology.  For the true theologian the magisterium of the Church remains, as the Humani generis says, the immediate and universal norm of truth.  And the teaching set forth by Pope Pius IX in his Tuas libenter is as true today as it always has been.

But when we treat of that subjection by which all Catholic students of speculative sciences are obligated in conscience so that they bring new aids to the Church by their writings, the men of this assembly ought to realize that it is not enough for Catholic scholars to receive and venerate the above-mentioned dogmas of the Church, but [they ought also to realize] that they must submit to the doctrinal decisions issued by the Pontifical Congregations and also to those points of doctrine which are held by the common and constant agreement of Catholics as theological truths and conclusions which are so certain that, even though the opinions opposed to them cannot be called heretical, they still deserve some other theological censure.[12]

It is definitely the business of the writer in the field of sacred theology to benefit the Church by what he writes.  It is likewise the duty of the teacher of this science to help the Church by his teaching.  The man who uses the shoddy tricks of minimism to oppose or to ignore the doctrinal decisions made by the Sovereign Pontiff and set down in his "Acta" is, in the last analysis, stultifying his position as a theologian. (The doctrinal Authority of Papal allocutions.)

Are there any further questions about the binding nature of what a true and legitimate Successor of Saint Peter places in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis?

Monsignor Joseph Clifford Fenton denounced "the shoddy tricks of minimism to ignore the doctrinal decisions made by the Sovereign Pontiff and set down his his 'Acta'."

The same shoddy tricks of minimism that were being used by the likes of Father John Courtney Murray, S.J., and the "new theologians," including Father Joseph Ratzinger, in the 1950s that prompted Pope Pius XII to issue Humani Generis, August 12, 1950, have been employed for the past forty years or more by those seeking to claim the absolutely nonexistent ability to ignore and/or refute the teaching of men they have recognized to be a true and legitimate Successor of Saint Peter. I know. I contributed to that literature for a while. I was wrong. So are those who persist in their willful, stubborn rejection of the binding nature of all that is contained in the Universal Ordinary Magisterium of the Catholic Church even though if not declared infallible in a solemn manner.

Writing in 1949, a year before Pope Pius XII issued Humani Generis and seven years before his commentary on the binding authority of papal allocutions, Monsignor Fenton explained that what is contained in the Universal Ordinal Magisterium of Holy Mother Church is to be believed with religious assent, which means that no one has the authority to dissent therefrom:

[Theologians] Vacant and Scheeben make it clear that in speaking of the Decreta (as distinct from the Constitutiones), the Vatican Council definitely included the pronouncements of the various Roman Congregations among those teachings which Catholics are bound in conscience to accept perseveringly. [62] These pronouncements are unquestionably non-infallible statements. They have obviously less authority than those documents which emanate directly from the Holy Father, even when the Vicar of Christ does not intend to use the fullness of his apostolic teaching power. If these decrees of the Roman Congregations are mentioned as doctrinal pronouncements “to be observed” by all of the faithful, then it is perfectly clear that the Vatican Council, speaking as the voice of the entire ecclesia docens, insists that the teachings set forth in papal encyclicals must be accepted sincerely.

The Vatican Council’s exhortation has reference, immediately and directly, to those Constitutiones et Decreta which appeared prior to the promulgation of the Dei Filius and which dealt with doctrine closely connected with the teachings set forth in the Dei Filius. Indirectly however, by reason of the Council’s mode of procedure, it most certainly affirmed the obligation incumbent upon all Catholics of accepting and assenting to the teachings presented to the City of God on earth, even in a non-infallible manner, by the Roman Pontiff. It must be remembered that the Council did not intend to oblige the faithful to accept these pontifical statements by reason of any command contained in the Dei Filius. It simply warned them to be faithful to the obligation already incumbent upon them by reason of the pontifical authority itself. The encyclicals which have appeared since the year 1870 have manifestly just as much claim to be accepted and believed by all the faithful as had the pontifical documents issued prior to that date.

The internal acceptance which Catholics are bound to give to that portion of the Church’s teaching not presented absolutely as infallible is described as a “religious assent.” It is truly religious by reason of its object and of its motives. The Vatican Councl’s conclusion to its Constitution Dei Filius stresses the religious object of this assent. The faithful are reminded of their obligation to believe the doctrinal pronouncements of the Roman Congregations because these statements denounce and forbid definite errors which are closely connected with “heretical wickedness” and which thus are opposed to the purity of the faith. Teachings that contradict errors of this sort are obviously religious in character since they deal more or less directly with the content of divine revelation, the body of truth which guides and directs the Church of God in its worship.

The letter Tuas libentur, sent on Dec. 21, 1863 by Pope Pius IX to the Archbishop of Munich, stresses in a singularly effective way the religious motivation of the assent Catholics are bound to give to those teachings presented in a non-infallible manner in the Church’s ordinary magisterium. After reminding his readers that the dogma itself can be set forth by the Church’s ordinary magisterium as well as in its solemn judgments, the great Pontiff made the following statement.

Sed cum agatur de illa subiectione, qua ex conscientia ii omnes catholici obstringuntur, qui in contemplatrices scientias incumbunt, ut novas suis scriptis Ecclesiae afferant utilitates, idcirco eiusdem conventus viri recognoscere debent, sapientibus catholicis haud satis esse, ut praefata Ecclesiae dogmata recipiant ac venerentur, verum etiam opus esse, ut se subiciant decisionibus, quae ad doctrinam pertinentes a Pontificiis Congregationibus proferuntur, tum iis doctrinae capitibus, quae communi et constanti Catholicorum consensu retinentur ut theologicae veritates et conclusiones ita certae, ut opiniones eisdem doctrinae capitibus adversae quamquam haereticae dici nequant, tamen aliam theologicam mereantur censuram. [63] (Authority of Papal Encyclicals.)

The passage from Pope Pius IX's Tuas Liberantur that was cited by Monsignor Fenton in 1949, a year before the issuance of Humani Generis by Pope Pius XII that prompted him, Monsignor Fenton, to explicate once again on the matter as he, as noed above, applied the teaching of Human Generis to papal allocutions and all other pronouncements recorded in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, was preceded by another paragraph that is just as important to demonstrate the fallacy of "rejecting" the teaching of the Universal Ordinary Magisterium while claiming to "recognize" a man to be a true and legitimate Successor of Saint Peter:

While, in truth, We laud these men with due praise because they professed the truth, which necessarily aries from their obligation to the Catholic faith. We wish to persuade Ourselves that they did not wish to confine the obligation, by which Catholic teachers and writers are absolutely bound, only to those decrees which are set forth by the infallible judgment of the Church as dogmas of faith, to be believed by all. And We persuade Ourselves, also, that they did not wich toe declare that that perfect adhesion to revealed truths, which they recognized as absolutely necessary to attain true progress in the sciences and to refute errors, could be obtained if faith and obedience were only given to the dogmas expessly defined by the Church. For, even if it were a matter concerning that subjection which is to be manifested by an act of divine faith, nevertheless, it would not have to be limited to those matters which have been defined by express decrees of the ecumenical Councils, or of the Roman Pontiffs and of this See, but would have to be extended also to those matters which are handed down as divinely revealed by the ordinary teching power of the whole Church spread throughout the world, and therefore, by universal and ocmmon consent are held by Catholic theologians to belong to faith.

But since it is a matter of subjection by which in conscience all those Catholics are bound who work in the speculative sciences, in order that they may bring new advantages to the Church by their writings, on that account, then, the men of the same convention should recognize that it is not sufficient for learned Catholics to accept and revere the aforesaid dogmas of the Church, but that it is also necessary to subject themselves to the decisions pertaining to doctrine which are issued by the Pontifical Congregations, and also to those forms of doctrine which are held by the common and constant consent of Catholics as theological truths and conclusions, so certain that opinions opposed to these same forms of doctrine, although they cannot be called heretical, nevertheless deserve some theological censure. (Pope Pius IX, "The Conventions of the Theologians of Germany," from the letter Tuas Libenter, to the Archbishop of Munich-Freising, December 21, 1863. As found in Henry Denzinger, Enchirdion Symbolorum, thirteenth edition, translated into English by Roy Deferrari and published in 1955 as The Sources of Catholic Dogma--referred to as "Denziger," by B. Herder Book Company of St. Louis, Missouri, and London, England, Nos. 1683-1684, pp. 427-428.)

Unfortunately for those who believe in the resist while recognize position that is just a recrudesence of the Gallican heresy, the One responsible for the formulation of dogma is the Third Person of the Most Blessed Trinity, under Whose infallible protection popes teach the truths of the Catholic at all times, yes, even when not proclaiming something solemnly ex cathedra. Catholics are bound to obey everything proposed by a true and legitimate Successor of Saint Peter without any degree of dissent, reservation or qualification. Monsignor Joseph Clifford Fenton proved that this is so in his scholary treatises cited above.

In other words, it it’s in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, it is official. No Catholic may take it unto himself to decide what is or is not binding upon himself or other Catholics. Those Catholics who keep insisting that they have the “right” to “sift” through official papal teaching have been condemned throughout the course of Holy Mother Church’s history.

Indeed, all that the late Monsignor Joseph Clifford Fenton did when explicating the meaning of total adherence to papal encyclical letters and allocutions and other matters that he chooses to insert into the Acta Apostolicae Sedis was to reaffirm what Pope Pius VI taught in Auctorem Fidei, August 28, 1794, as he condemned the "pope sifting" principles of Gallicanism, principles that were mocked by Bishop Emile Bougaud about eighty-five years later:

6. The doctrine of the synod by which it professes that "it is convinced that a bishop has received from Christ all necessary rights for the good government of his diocese," just as if for the good government of each diocese higher ordinances dealing either with faith and morals, or with general discipline, are not necessary, the right of which belongs to the supreme Pontiffs and the General Councils for the universal Church,schismatic, at least erroneous.

7. Likewise, in this, that it encourages a bishop "to pursue zealously a more perfect constitution of ecclesiastical discipline," and this "against all contrary customs, exemptions, reservations which are opposed to the good order of the diocese, for the greater glory of God and for the greater edification of the faithful"; in that it supposes that a bishop has the right by his own judgment and will to decree and decide contrary to customs, exemptions, reservations, whether they prevail in the universal Church or even in each province, without the consent or the intervention of a higher hierarchic power, by which these customs, etc., have been introduced or approved and have the force of law,—leading to schism and subversion of hierarchic rule, erroneous.

8. Likewise, in that it says it is convinced that "the rights of a bishop received from Jesus Christ for the government of the Church cannot be altered nor hindered, and, when it has happened that the exercise of these rights has been interrupted for any reason whatsoever, a bishop can always and should return to his original rights, as often as the greater good of his church demands it"; in the fact that it intimates that the exercise of episcopal rights can be hindered and coerced by no higher power, whenever a bishop shall judge that it does not further the greater good of his church,—leading to schism, and to subversion of hierarchic government, erroneous. (Pope Pius VI, Auctorem Fidei, August 28, 1794.)

Bishop Emile Bougaud, who served as the ordinary of Laval, France, from November 16, 1887, to his death on November 7, 1888, mocked those possessed of the Gallican mentality that teaches the falsehood that bishops and others can "sift" the words of a true pope:

The violent attacks of Protestantism against the Papacy, its calumnies and so manifest, the odious caricatures it scattered abroad, had undoubtedly inspired France with horror; nevertheless the sad impressions remained. In such accusations all, perhaps, was not false. Mistrust was excited., and instead of drawing closer to the insulted and outraged Papacy, France stood on her guard against it. In vain did Fenelon, who felt the danger, write in his treatise on the "Power of the Pope," and, to remind France of her sublime mission and true role in the world, compose his "History of Charlemagne." In vain did Bossuet majestically rise in the midst of that agitated assembly of 1682, convened to dictate laws to the Holy See, and there, in most touching accents, give vent to professions of fidelity and devotedness toward the Chair of St. Peter. We already notice in his discourse mention no longer made of the "Sovereign Pontiff." The "Holy See," the "Chair of St. Peter," the "Roman Church," were alone alluded to. First and alas! too manifest signs of coldness in the eyes of him who knew the nature and character of France! Others might obey through duty, might allow themselves to be governed by principle--France, never! She must be ruled by an individual, she must love him that governs her, else she can never obey.

These weaknesses should at least have been hidden in the shadow of the sanctuary, to await the time in which some sincere and honest solution of the misunderstanding could be given. But no! parliaments took hold of it, national vanity was identified with it. A strange spectacle was now seen. A people the most Catholic in the world; kings who called themselves the Eldest Sons of the Church and who were really such at heart; grave and profoundly Christian magistrates, bishops, and priests, though in the depths of their heart attached to Catholic unity,--all barricading themselves against the head of the Church; all digging trenches and building ramparts, that his words might not reach the Faithful before being handled and examined, and the laics convinced that they contained nothing false, hostile or dangerous. (Right Reverend Emile Bougaud, The Life of Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque. Published in 1890 by Benziger Brothers. Re-printed by TAN Books and Publishers, 1990, pp. 24-29.)

Quite ironically, Pope Pius VI used Auctorem Fidei to condemn the errors of the illegal Synod of Pistoia that are identical to those of conciliarism, proving yet again that the Catholic Church has always condemned errors and that she, the spotless, virginal Mystical Bride of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, can never be the author of errors, which is why it is way past time for those stuck in the time warp of the "resist while recognize" movement to accept the simple fact that The Chair is Still Empty.

Furthermore, Pope Leo XIII personally condemned those journalists who dared to put into question or to publicly criticize the decisions and teaching of a Sovereign Pontiff and his bishops:

To the shepherds alone was given all power to teach, to judge, to direct; on the faithful was imposed the duty of following their teaching, of submitting with docility to their judgment, and of allowing themselves to be governed, corrected, and guided by them in the way of salvation. Thus, it is an absolute necessity for the simple faithful to submit in mind and heart to their own pastors, and for the latter to submit with them to the Head and Supreme Pastor. In this subordination and dependence lie the order and life of the Church; in it is to be found the indispensable condition of well-being and good government. On the contrary, if it should happen that those who have no right to do so should attribute authority to themselves, if they presume to become judges and teachers, if inferiors in the government of the universal Church attempt or try to exert an influence different from that of the supreme authority, there follows a reversal of the true order, many minds are thrown into confusion, and souls leave the right path . . . .

On this point what must be remembered is that in the government of the Church, except for the essential duties imposed on all Pontiffs by their apostolic office, each of them can adopt the attitude which he judges best according to times and circumstances. Of this he alone is the judge. It is true that for this he has not only special lights, but still more the knowledge of the needs and conditions of the whole of Christendom, for which, it is fitting, his apostolic care must provide. He has the charge of the universal welfare of the Church, to which is subordinate any particular need, and all others who are subject to this order must second the action of the supreme director and serve the end which he has in view. Since the Church is one and her head is one, so, too, her government is one, and all must conform to this.

When these principles are forgotten there is noticed among Catholics a diminution of respect, of veneration, and of confidence in the one given them for a guide; then there is a loosening of that bond of love and submission which ought to bind all the faithful to their pastors, the faithful and the pastors to the Supreme Pastor, the bond in which is principally to be found security and common salvation.

In the same way, by forgetting or neglecting these principles, the door is opened wide to divisions and dissensions among Catholics, to the grave detriment of union which is the distinctive mark of the faithful of Christ, and which, in every age, but particularly today by reason of the combined forces of the enemy, should be of supreme and universal interest, in favor of which every feeling of personal preference or individual advantage ought to be laid aside.

That obligation, if it is generally incumbent on all, is, you may indeed say, especially pressing upon journalists. If they have not been imbued with the docile and submissive spirit so necessary to each Catholic, they would assist in spreading more widely those deplorable matters and in making them more burdensome. The task pertaining to them in all the things that concern religion and that are closely connected to the action of the Church in human society is this: to be subject completely in mind and will, just as all the other faithful are, to their own bishops and to the Roman Pontiff; to follow and make known their teachings; to be fully and willingly subservient to their influence; and to reverence their precepts and assure that they are respected. He who would act otherwise in such a way that he would serve the aims and interests of those whose spirit and intentions We have reproved in this letter would fail the noble mission he has undertaken. So doing, in vain would he boast of attending to the good of the Church and helping her cause, no less than someone who would strive to weaken or diminish Catholic truth, or indeed someone who would show himself to be her overly fearful friend. (Pope Leo XIII, Epistola Tua, June 17, 1885.)

Not only must those be held to fail in their duty who openly and brazenly repudiate the authority of their leaders, but those, too, who give evidence of a hostile and contrary disposition by their clever tergiversations and their oblique and devious dealings. The true and sincere virtue of obedience is not satisfied with words; it consists above all in submission of mind and heart.

But since We are here dealing with the lapse of a newspaper, it is absolutely necessary for Us once more to enjoin upon the editors of Catholic journals to respect as sacred laws the teaching and the ordinances mentioned above and never to deviate from them. Moreover, let them be well persuaded and let this be engraved in their minds, that if they dare to violate these prescriptions and abandon themselves to their personal appreciations, whether in prejudging questions which the Holy See has not yet pronounced on, or in wounding the authority of the Bishops by arrogating to themselves an authority which can never be theirs, let them be convinced that it is all in vain for them to pretend to keep the honor of the name of Catholic and to serve the interests of the very holy and very noble cause which they  have undertaken to defend and to render glorious.

Now, We, exceedingly desirous that any who have strayed return to soundness of mind and that deference to the sacred Bishops inhere deeply in the hearts of all men, in the Lord We bestow an Apostolic Blessing upon you, Venerable Brother, and to all your clergy and people, as a token of Our fatherly good will and charity. (Pope Leo XIII, Est Sane Molestum, December 17, 1888. The complete text may be found at: Est Sane Molestum, December 17, 1888. See also  Pope Leo XIII Quashes Popular “Resist-And-Recognize Position.)

According to the explication provided by Monsignor Fenton, this is all binding up the consciences of every Catholic around the world and cannot be questioned by any serious Catholic who loves the Holy Faith.

Yet it is that those in the "resist while recognize" movement continue to refuse to admit that these apostolic letters even exist or that they are applicable to their own false view of papal infalliblity and the due submission we must give to a true Roman Pontiff. No amount of ignoring them, however, can make them or their authority go away.

This is so clear as to make any attempt to reject it is an irresponsible disservice to the truth.

After all, the following heretical passage from Evangelium Vitae, November 26, 2013, was inserted into the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, and it is the official teaching of what purports, albeit falsely, of course, to be the Catholic Church but it is in fact her counterfeit ape:

247. We hold the Jewish people in special regard because their covenant with God has never been revoked, for “the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable” (Rom 11:29). The Church, which shares with Jews an important part of the sacred Scriptures, looks upon the people of the covenant and their faith as one of the sacred roots of her own Christian identity (cf. Rom 11:16-18). As Christians, we cannot consider Judaism as a foreign religion; nor do we include the Jews among those called to turn from idols and to serve the true God (cf. 1 Thes 1:9). With them, we believe in the one God who acts in history, and with them we accept his revealed word.

248. Dialogue and friendship with the children of Israel are part of the life of Jesus’ disciples. The friendship which has grown between us makes us bitterly and sincerely regret the terrible persecutions which they have endured, and continue to endure, especially those that have involved Christians.

249. God continues to work among the people of the Old Covenant and to bring forth treasures of wisdom which flow from their encounter with his word. For this reason, the Church also is enriched when she receives the values of Judaism. While it is true that certain Christian beliefs are unacceptable to Judaism, and that the Church cannot refrain from proclaiming Jesus as Lord and Messiah, there exists as well a rich complementarity which allows us to read the texts of the Hebrew Scriptures together and to help one another to mine the riches of God’s word. We can also share many ethical convictions and a common concern for justice and the development of peoples. (Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Evangelii Gaudium, November 26, 2013.)

"Pope Francis" chose to have this "apostolic exhortation" published in the December, 2013, edition of the Acta Apostolicae Sedis.

Here are the three passages as found in the Italian language (not Latin, by the way!) in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis as it is published in its conciliar captivity:

247. Uno sguardo molto speciale si rivolge al popolo ebreo, la cui Alleanza con Dio non è mai stata revocata, perché “i doni e la chiamata di Dio sono irrevocabili” (Rm 11, 29). La Chiesa, che condivide con l’Ebraismo una parte importante delle Sacre Scritture, considera il popolo dell’Alleanza e la sua fede come una radice sacra della propria identità cristiana (cfr Rm 11, 16-18). Come cristiani non possiamo considerare l’Ebraismo come una religione estranea, né includiamo gliebrei tra quanti sono chiamati ad abbandonare gli idoli per convertirsi al vero Dio (cfr 1 Ts 1, 9). Crediamo insieme con loro nell’unico Dio che agisce nella storia, e accogliamo con loro la comune Parola rivelata.

248. Il dialogo e l’amicizia con i figli d’Israele sono parte della vita dei discepoli di Gesù. L’affetto che si è sviluppato ci porta sinceramene ed amaramente a dispiacerci per le terribili persecuzioni di cui furono e sono oggetto, particolarmente per quelle che coinvolgono o hanno coinvolto cristiani.

249. Dio continua ad operare nel popolo dell’Antica Alleanza e fa nascere tesori di saggezza che scaturiscono dal suo incontro con la Parola divina. Per questo anche la Chiesa si arricchisce quando raccoglie i valori dell’Ebraismo. Sebbene alcune convinzioni cristiane siano inaccettabili per l’Ebraismo, e la Chiesa non possa rinunciare ad annunciare Gesù come Signore e Messia, esiste una ricca complementarietà che ci permette di leggere insieme i testi della Bibbia ebraica e aiutarci vicendevolmente a scerare le ricchezze della Parola, come pure di condividere molte convinzioni etiche e la comune preoccupazione per la giustizia e lo sviluppo dei popoli. (Data presso San Pietro, alla chiusura dell’Anno della fede, il 24 novembre, Solennità i i. S. Gesù Cristo Re dell’Universo, dell’anno 2013, primo del mio Pontificato. Acta Apostolicae Sedis, December, 2013.)

If one professes belief that a particular claimant to the Throne of Saint Peter is legitimate and is indeed the Vicar of Christ on earth, a matter about which no Catholic is free to err or to profess indifference, then one must accept as binding upon his conscience and beyond all criticism even Evangelii Gaudium as part of the Universal Ordinary Magisterium of the Catholic Church without complaint, reservation or qulification of any kind.

Obviously, Jorge Mario Bergoglio's "teaching" on the Jews is heretical, and it is in this and in so many other ways that he shows himself to be a perfect disciple of the falsehoods promulgated by the authority of his predecessors since the death of Pope Pius XII on October 9, 1958. Jorge Mario Bergolio lacks the Catholic Faith, He has openly denied Catholic doctrine on this subject with great boldness. Although he style is more vulgar, visceral profane that those who have perceded him, he is, of course, merely following those before him who have denied, whether implicitly or explicitly, the Catholic truth about the Old Covenant that was summarized so clearly by Pope Pius XII in Mystici Corporis, June 29, 1943:

28.That He completed His work on the gibbet of the Cross is the unanimous teaching of the holy Fathers who assert that the Church was born from the side of our Savior on the Cross like a new Eve, mother of all the living. [28] "And it is now," says the great St. Ambrose, speaking of the pierced side of Christ, "that it is built, it is now that it is formed, it is now that is .... molded, it is now that it is created . . . Now it is that arises a spiritual house, a holy priesthood." [29] One who reverently examines this venerable teaching will easily discover the reasons on which it is based.

29.And first of all, by the death of our Redeemer, the New Testament took the place of the Old Law which had been abolished; then the Law of Christ together with its mysteries, enactments, institutions, and sacred rites was ratified for the whole world in the blood of Jesus Christ. For, while our Divine Savior was preaching in a restricted area -- He was not sent but to the sheep that were lost of the house of Israel [30] -the Law and the Gospel were together in force; [31] but on the gibbet of his death Jesus made void the Law with its decrees, [32] fastened the handwriting of the Old Testament to the Cross, [33] establishing the New Testament in His blood shed for the whole human race. [34] "To such an extent, then," says St. Leo the Great, speaking of the Cross of our Lord, "was there effected a transfer from the Law to the Gospel, from the Synagogue to the Church, from many sacrifices to one Victim, that, as our Lord expired, that mystical veil which shut off the innermost part of the temple and its sacred secret was rent violently from top to bottom." [35]

30. On the Cross then the Old Law died, soon to be buried and to be a bearer of death, [36] in order to give way to the New Testament of which Christ had chosen the Apostles as qualified ministers; [37] and although He had been constituted the Head of the whole human family in the womb of the Blessed Virgin, it is by the power of the Cross that our Savior exercises fully the office itself of Head in His Church. "For it was through His triumph on the Cross," according to the teaching of the Angelic and Common Doctor, "that He won power and dominion over the gentiles"; [38] by that same victory He increased the immense treasure of graces, which, as He reigns in glory in heaven, He lavishes continually on His mortal members it was by His blood shed on the Cross that God's anger was averted and that all the heavenly gifts, especially the spiritual graces of the New and Eternal Testament, could then flow from the fountains of our Savior for the salvation of men, of the faithful above all; it was on the tree of the Cross, finally, that He entered into possession of His Church, that is, of all the members of His Mystical Body; for they would not have been united to this Mystical Body. (Pope Pius XII, Mystici Corporis, June 29, 1943.)

Pope Pius XII's Mystici Corporis was inserted into the Acta Apostolicae Sedis in 1943. Although it was nothing new whatsoever, Pope Pius XII reaffirmed an irreformable teaching that is part of the Sacred Deposit of Faith. The fact that Jorge Mario Bergoglio chose to insert a contrary teaching into the Acta Apostlicae Sedis shows that he is, in perfect communion of mind and heart with his predecessors, a heretic who is outside of the bosom of the Catholic Church, an imposter on the Throne of Saint Peter.

Although the apologists of the schismatic "resist while recognize" movement keep making caricatures of themselves by engaging in the same kind of minimism that was condemned by Monsignor Joseph Clifford Fenton fifity-eight years ago now in his treatise on the binding authority of papal allocutions, the fact remains that, yes, despite their best efforts to refuse to admit the reality that is plainly before their eyes, The Chair is Still Empty.

Indeed, the apologists of the "resist while recognize" movement keep expanding the scope of that minimism to reduce into meanginlessness Jorge Mario Bergoglio's claim to the papacy as if human salvation had nothing to do with the identity of the Roman Pontiff and/or that one can can "ignore" a true Sovereign Pontiff with absolute impunity yet save his soul.

This is not so.

Similarly, Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI’s “papal” endorsement of his long held belief in dogmatic evolutionism was repackaged in his infamous Christmas address to the conciliar curia on December 22, 2005:

It is precisely in this combination of continuity and discontinuity at different levels that the very nature of true reform consists. In this process of innovation in continuity we must learn to understand more practically than before that the Church's decisions on contingent matters - for example, certain practical forms of liberalism or a free interpretation of the Bible - should necessarily be contingent themselves, precisely because they refer to a specific reality that is changeable in itself. It was necessary to learn to recognize that in these decisions it is only the principles that express the permanent aspect, since they remain as an undercurrent, motivating decisions from within.

On the other hand, not so permanent are the practical forms that depend on the historical situation and are therefore subject to change. (Christmas greetings to the Members of the Roman Curia and Prelature, December 22, 2005.)

The very foundation of what Ratzinger/Benedict came to term as the "heremeneutic of continuity" is both philosophically absurd and stands as dogmatically condemned, representing also, of course utter blaspehmy against the Third Person of the Most Blessed Trinity, God the Holy Ghost, by not only "hiding" a "discovery" of the impermnance of dogmatic formulations but had actually permitted direct condemnations of this very proposition by a dogmatic council and various true popes.

Is it really necessary to provide documentation as to how this is heretical?

Well, for new readers to this site—and there are a few who have written in recent months despite the slowdown in my productivity, I will provide the documentation yet again in the appendix

“Pope Benedict’s” teaching was not official?

Well, quite the contrary.

Ratzinger/Benedict’s December 22, 2005, is found in Volume 98 of the Acta Apostolicae Sedis (2006) at pages 40-53, and was published verbatim in L’Osservatore Romano on January 4, 2006.

It’s “officially” binding on Catholics who are attached to the counterfeit church of conciliarism.

As Ratzinger/Benedict’s “official” teaching has been condemned by the [First] Vatican Council, Session III, April 24, 1870, by Pope Saint Pius X in Pascendi Dominci Gregis, September 8, 1907, and The Oath Against Modernism, September 1, 1910, and by Pope Pius XII, Humani Generis, August 12, 1950, Catholics who understand that Holy Mother Church is the spotless, virginal mystical spouse of her Divine Founder, Invisible Head and Mystical Bridegroom, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, know that the retired antipope’s “teaching” is heretical and thus a sign of the counterfeit nature of the religious sect that most people believe is the Catholic Church.

Efforts to contextualize Catholic teaching on the basis of the historical circumstances in which it was pronounced were condemned by the Pro-Prefect of the Holy Office, Alfredo Cardinal Ottaviani, who wrote the following in condemnation of the “New Theology’s” recycling of Modernism’s dogmatic evolutionism, focusing specifically on Father John Courtney Murray’s endorsement of the heresy of “religious liberty” and separation of Church and State:

Here the problem presents itself of how the Church and the lay state are to live together. Some Catholics are propagating ideas with regard to this point which are not quite correct. Many of these Catholics undoubtedly love the Church and rightly intend to find a mode of possible adaptation to the circumstances of the times. But it is none the less true that their position reminds one of that of the faint-hearted soldier who wants to conquer without fighting, or of that of the simple, unsuspecting person who accepts a hand, treacherously held out to him, without taking account of the fact that this hand will subsequently pull him across the Rubicon towards error and injustice.

The first mistake of these people is precisely that of not accepting fully the "arms of truth" and the teaching which the Roman Pontiffs, in the course of this last century, and in particular the reigning Pontiff, Pius XII, by means of encyclicals, allocutions and instructions of all kinds, have given to Catholics on this subject.

To justify themselves, these people affirm that, in the body of teaching given in the Church, a distinction must be made between what is permanent and what is transitory, this latter being due to the influence of particular passing conditions. Unfortunately, however, they include in this second zone the principles laid down in the Pontifical documents, principles on which the teaching of the Church has remained constant, as they form part of the patrimony of Catholic doctrine.

In this matter, the pendulum theory, elaborated by certain writers in an attempt to sift the teaching set forth in Encyclical Letters at different times, cannot be applied. "The Church," it has been written, "takes account of the rhythm of the world's history after the fashion of a swinging pendulum which, desirous of keeping the proper measure, maintains its movement by reversing it when it judges that it has gone as far as it should.... From this point of view a whole history of the Encyclicals could be written. Thus in the field of Biblical studies, the Encyclical, Divino Afflante Spiritu, comes after the Encyclicals Spiritus Paraclitus and Providentissimus.  In the field of Theology or Politics, the Encyclicals, Summi Pontificatus, Non abbiamo bisogno and Ubi Arcano Deo, come after the Encyclical, Immortale Dei."

Now if this were to be understood in the sense that the general and fundamental principles of public Ecclesiastical Law, solemnly affirmed in the Encyclical Letter, Immortale Dei, are merely the reflection of historic moments of the past, while the swing of the pendulum of the doctrinal Encyclicals of Pope Pius XI and Pope Pius XII has passed in the opposite direction to different positions, the statement would have to be qualified as completely erroneous, not only because it misrepresents the teaching of the Encyclicals themselves, but also because it is theoretically inadmissible. In the Encyclical Letter, Humani Generis, the reigning Pontiff teaches us that we must recognize in the Encyclicals the ordinary magisterium of the Church: "Nor must it be thought that what is expounded in Encyclical Letters does not of itself demand assent, in that, when writing such Letters, the Popes do not exercise the supreme power of their teaching authority. For these matters are taught with the ordinary teaching authority, of which it is true to say "He who heareth you heareth Me" (St. Luke 10:16); and generally what is expounded and inculcated in Encyclical Letters already belongs for other reasons to Catholic doctrine."

Because they are afraid of being accused of wanting to return to the Middle Ages, some of our writers no longer dare to maintain the doctrinal positions that are constantly affirmed in the Encyclicals as belonging to the life and legislation of the Church in all ages.  For them is meant the warning of Pope Leo XIII who, recommending concord and unity in the combat against error, adds that "care must be taken never to connive, in anyway, at false opinions, never to withstand them less strenuously than truth allows." (Duties of the Catholic State in Regard to Religion.)

Father John Courtney Murray was trying to "historicize" Catholic Social Teaching even though our true popes had condemned "religious liberty" and "separation of Church and State" as heretical in se as matters of principle while, of course, conceding the existence of those heresies as a fait accompli in the pluralist, religious indifferentist state of Modernity. Our true popes never ceased condemning these heresies while making allowance for Holy Mother Church's childen in such countries to make use of the constitutional and legal structures under which they lived to practice their Faith and to profess It openly without inteference or molestation from the civil authorities.

Father Murray sought to "historicize" Catholic Social Teaching even though such "historicization," which asserts that part of a particular teaching was applicable only to the situation that existed at a certain time and thus was not binding upon the Church in perpetuity, had been condemned by Pope Pius XII in Humani Generis, August 12, 1950, which was, of course, simply a reiteration of the condemnations of the "evolution of dogma" promulgated at the [First] Vatican Council by Pope Pius IX and contained in the teaching of Pope Saint Pius X, most particularly in Pascendi Dominici Gregis, September 8, 1907.

Father Murray's efforts to "historicize" Catholic Social Teaching did not escape the notice of young priest who had been ordained on June 29, 1951, the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, in Munich, Germany, named Father Joseph Alois Ratzinger, who had been trained in his seminary years by the "new theologians" in this exact same methodology, which was reflected in the famous interventions of Albert Cardinal Meyer, the Archbishop of Chicago, at the "Second" Vatican Council in 1964:

Father Francis Sullivan, S.J., explained that there was a remarkable similarity between the points about Tradition that had been made by Albert “Cardinal” Meyer, Father Joseph Alois Ratzinger and the report of the so-called “Faith and Order Commission” of the pro-abortion, pro-perversity, pro-contraception supporter of one world governance, the World Council of Churches, which has a sorry history of supporting Communist regimes around the world:

In his commentary on the way the question of tradition was handled at Vatican II, Ratzinger made a positive reference to the same way this question had been treated by the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council of Churches in a conference that took place in Montreal in July of 1963, between the first and second sessions of Vatican II. It is illuminating to see how the report of that conference anticipated the question raised by Meyer and Ratzinger about the need to distinguish between authentic and inauthentic traditions. The report began by distinguishing between different meanings of the word tradition. ‘We speak of the Tradition (with a capital T), tradition (with a small t), and traditions. By the Tradition is meant the Gospel itself, transmitted from generation to generation in and by the Church itself. Christ himself present in the life of the Church. By tradition is meant the traditionary process. The term traditions is meant in two senses, to indicate both the diversity of forms of expression and also what we call confessional traditions, for instance what we call the Lutheran tradition or the Reformed tradition.

The report gave a fuller explanation of what it meant by the Tradition in a passage that Ratzinger quoted with approval in his commentary on Dei Verbum. There the Faith and Order Commission had said: “Thus we can cay that we exist as Christians by the Tradition of the Gospel (the paradosis of the kerygma) testified in Scirpture, transmitted in and by the Church, through the power of the Holy Spirit. Tradition taken in this sense is actualized in the preaching of the Word, in the administration of the Sacraments and worship, in Christian teaching and theology, and in mission and witness to Christ by the lives of the members of the Church.

The report went on to speak of traditions and of their evaluations. It said:

“But this tradition which is the work of the Holy Spirit is embodied in traditions (in the two senses of the word, both as referring to diversity in forms of expression, and in the sense of separate communions). The traditions in Christian history are distinct from, and yet connect to, the Tradition. They are the expressions and manifestations in diverse historical forms of the one truth and reality which is Christ. The evaluation of the traditions poses serious problems. For some, questions such as these are raised. It is possible to determine more precisely what the content of the one Tradition is, and by what means? Do all traditions which claim to be Christian contain the Tradition? How can we distinguish traditions embodying the true Tradition and merely human traditions? Where do we find the genuine Tradition, and where impoverished tradition or even distortion of Tradition? Tradition can be a faithful transmission of the Gospel, but also a distortion of it. In this ambiguity the seriousness of the problem of tradition is indicated. These questions imply a search for a criterion. This has been the main concern of the Church from the beginning.”

There is a remarkable agreement between the point that Cardinal Meyer raised in his intervention at the Second Vatican Council, the commentary that Joseph Ratzinger wrote on chapter 2 of Dei Verbum, and the report of the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council of Churches. All three agree on the necessity of distinguishing between Tradition, as the whole mystery of Christ as it has been handed on in the teaching, life, and worship of the Church, and traditions, which are the particular beliefs and practices in which that mystery has been embodied in the ongoing life of the church. Obviously, such beliefs and practices must have a venerable history and be widely shared to be justified as “traditions.” But the problem is, whether the venerable history and wide diffusion of a particular tradition necessarily means that this is an authentic rather than a distorting tradition; in other words, whether it is a genuine embodiment of divine Tradition or merely human tradition. (Father Francis A. Sullivan, S.J., Catholic Tradition and Traditions. Michael J. Lacey and Francis Oakley, editors, The Crisis of Authority in Catholic Modernity, Oxford University Press, 2011, pp. 114-115. See The Crisis of Authority in Catholic Modernity.)

Ratzinger/Benedict "baptized" his "new theology's" recyclying and rabeling of Modernism's dogmatic evolutionism on December 22, 2005, and caused it to be inserted into the Acta Apostolicae Sedis. It is "official" even though his proposition has been condemned repeatedly by the Catholic Church as a means to contexualize the express of dogmatic truth so as to make it subject to further "modifications" as circumstances are said to require.

The very errors condemned by Cardinal Ottaviani are the bedrock of the counterfeit church of conciliarism’s “social teaching.” Something that was false before 1962 cannot be made “true” thereafter simply because it has been posited as such.

There is absolutely no excuse for any serious Catholic not to understand the official teaching of the Catholic Church is to be found in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis. No Catholic can simply decide to reject teaching that has been pronounced by a true and legitimate Successor of Saint Peter.

Those who resist this truth while rejecting those parts of the teaching of one they recognize and state publicly is a true pope keep trying to assuage themselves with the fact that there has never been a papal vacancy lasting over fifty-seven years.

All right. True enough.

However, there has never been any time in the history of Catholic Church when popes have fed Catholics a steady dose of heresy and blasphemy, no less a time lasting fifty-seven years.

After all, it does not take one who possesses a doctorate in Sacred Theology to understand that the following passage in Jorge Mario Bergoglio’s “homily” on Sunday, December 27, 2015, which was the Novus Ordo feast of the Holy Family, contained the following heretical and blasphemous passage:

At the end of that pilgrimage, Jesus returned to Nazareth and was obedient to his parents (cf. Lk 2:51). This image also contains a beautiful teaching about our families. A pilgrimage does not end when we arrive at our destination, but when we return home and resume our everyday lives, putting into practice the spiritual fruits of our experience. We know what Jesus did on that occasion. Instead of returning home with his family, he stayed in Jerusalem, in the Temple, causing great distress to Mary and Joseph who were unable to find him. For this little “escapade”, Jesus probably had to beg forgiveness of his parents. The Gospel doesn’t say this, but I believe that we can presume it. Mary’s question, moreover, contains a certain reproach, revealing the concern and anguish which she and Joseph felt. Returning home, Jesus surely remained close to them, as a sign of his complete affection and obedience. Moments like these become part of the pilgrimage of each family; the Lord transforms the moments into opportunities to grow, to ask for and to receive forgiveness, to show love and obedience. (Jorge the Blasphemer Strikes Again.)

In other words, Jorge Mario Bergoglio believes that the very Second Person of the Blessed Trinity made Incarnate by the power of the Third Person of the Most Blessed Trinity, God the Holy Ghost, in the Virginal and Immaculate Womb of His Most Blessed Mother had to ask for forgiveness. The Omniscient God made Flesh Who enjoyed the perfect human nature of Adam before Original Sin was “guilty” of an act that required Him to seek forgiveness from His Most Blessed Mother and His most loving foster-father, Saint Joseph.


What true and legitimate Successor of Saint Peter has ever spoken in such a manner?

To accomplish this feast of blasphemy, the Argentine Apostate, who told us on September 17, 2013, that “all these things come to me somewhat randomly” (see Reflecting on our Mother Church and my own "Who Today Will Presume To Say She Is Widowed?"), had to ignore the fact that Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ had addressed Our Lady and Saint Joseph by asking them the following question:

[49] And he said to them: How is it that you sought me? did you not know, that I must be about my father' s business? (Luke 2: 49.)

That is, the Co-Equal, Co-Eternal God the Son had to be about the business of His Co-Equal, Co-Eternal God the Father as He answered questions posed to Him by the teachers of the Law, thereby explaining to them the true character of the Messias as their own prideful blindness kept them from recognizing Him as that very Messias.

Far from asking “forgiveness” of Our Lady and Saint Joseph, Our Lord explained to His Most Blessed Mother everything that had happened, and it was this explanation that Our Lady treasured in the deepest most recesses of her Immaculate Heart.

The Venerable Mary of Agreda provides us with the account of the finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple and what happened during the journey back to Nazareth as she had learned it directly from the Mother of God herself:

55. Other arguments did the Child Jesus add, and while seeming to ask questions He taught with a divine efficacy. The scribes and learned men who heard Him were all dumbfounded. Convinced by his arguments they looked at each other and in great astonishment asked: “What miracle is this? And what a prodigy of a Boy! From whence has He come, and who is this Child? But though thus astonished, they did not recognize or suspect who it was that thus taught and enlightened them concerning such an important truth. During this time, and before Jesus had finished his argument, his most holy Mother and St. Joseph her most chaste spouse arrived, just in time to hear Him advance his last arguments. When He had finished all the teachers of the law arose with stupendous amazement (LK 2:47). The heavenly Lady, absorbed in joy, approached her most loving Son, and in the presence of the while assembly spoke to Him the words recorded by St. Luke: Son, why hast Thou done so to us? Behold thy father and I have sought Thee sorrowing (IB. 48). This loving complaint the heavenly Mother uttered with equal reverence and affection, adoring Him as God and manifesting her maternal affliction. The Lord answered (Ib. 49): How is it that you sought Me? Did you not know that I must be about my Father's business?

56. The Evangelist says that they did not understand the mystery of these words (Ib. 50). For it was hidden at that time to most holy Mary and St. Joseph, and this for two reasons. On the one hand, the interior joy of now reaping what they had sown in so much sorrow, and the visible presence of their precious Treasure, entirely filled the faculties of their souls; and on the other hand, the time for the full comprehension of what had just been treated of in this discussion had not yet arrived for them; moreover, for the most solicitous Queen there was another hindrance just at that time, for the veil concealing the interior of her most holy Son had again intervened, and was not manifested to her until later. The learned men departed, commenting in their amazement upon the wonderful event by which they had been privileged to hear the teaching of eternal Wisdom, although they did not recognize it. Being thus left almost alone, the Blessed Mother, embracing Him with maternal affection, said to Him: “Permit my longing heart, my Son, to give expression to its sorrow and pain so it may not die of grief as long as it can be or use to Thee. Do not cast me off from thy sight, but accept me as thy slave. If it was my negligence which deprived me of thy presence, pardon me ad make me worthy of thy company, and do not punish me with thy absence.” The divine Child received her with signs of pleasure and offered Himself as her Teacher and Companion until the proper time would arrive. Thus was the dovelike and affectionate Heart of the great Lady appeased and they departed for Nazareth.

But at some distance from Jerusalem, when they were alone upon the road, the most prudent Lady fell on her knees before her Son and adored Him, asking his benediction, for She had not thus reverence Him openly in the presence of the people in the temple, being always anxious to conduct Herself with the perfection of holiness. With loving tenderness the Child raised her from the ground and spoke to her words of sweetest comfort. Immediately the veil fell, revealing anew his most holy soul with greater depth and clearness than ever before. Then the heavenly Mother read and perceived in the interior of her most holy Son all the mysteries of his doings during those three days in Jerusalem. She understood also all that had passed in the dispute with the doctors, what the child Jesus had said and why He did not manifest Himself more clearly as the true Messiah. Many other sacramental secrets He revealed to his Virgin Mother, depositing them with Her as in an archive of all the treasure of the incarnate Word, so He could thus receive for all of them the return of honor and praise due to Him as the Author of such great wonders, and she, the Virgin Mother, fulfilled all the expectations of the Lord. Then she asked Him to rest a while in the field and partake of some nourishment, and He accepted it from the hands of the great Lady, the attentive Mother of the Wisdom himself (Eccles. 24:24)

58. During the rest of the journey the heavenly Mother discoursed with her sweetest Son on the mysteries interiorly manifested to her concerning the discussion with the teachers, and He repeated by word of mouth what He had shown her interiorly. In particular He told Her that these doctors had not recognized Him as the Messiah because they were inflated and arrogant in their own knowledge. Their understanding was obscured by the darkness of their pride, and thus they could not perceive the divine light shining forth in such profusion from Him, whereas if they had the humble and loving desire of seeing the truth his reasoning would have sufficiently convinced them. Because of these obstacles they saw it not, though it was open before their eyes. Our Redeemer converted many souls to the way of salvation on this journey, and as his most holy Mother was with Him He used her as an instrument of his wonderful works. By means of her most prudent words and holy admonitions He enlightened the hearts of all to whom She spoke. They restored health to many of the sick, consoled the afflicted and sorrowful, and everywhere they scattered grace and mercies without ever losing an occasion for doing good. Since I have described more particularly some of the wonders performed during other journeys (Inc. 624, 645, 667, 704) I do not stop to describe any more here, for many chapters and much time would be necessary to relate them all, and there are other things more to the point to be related in this History.

They arrived at Nazareth where they occupied themselves in what I shall record later on. The evangelist Luke compendiously mentions all these mysteries in few words, saying the Child Jesus was subject to his parents, namely most holy Mary and St. Joesph, and that His heavenly Mother noted and preserved within her Heart all these events (Lk 2:51), and that Jesus advanced in wisdom, and age, and grace with God and men (Ib 52), concerning which, as far as my understanding goes, I shall speak later on. Just now I desire only to mention that the humility and obedience of our God and Master toward His parents was the admiration of the Angels; and so was the dignity and excellence of His most blessed Mother, who thus merited that the incarnate God subject and resign Himself to her care to the extent that She, with the assistance of St. Joseph, governed and ruled Him as her own. Although his subjection and obedience was to a certain extent a natural result of Her Motherhood, yet in order to make proper use of this maternal right and superiority a different grace was necessary that the one by which She conceived and gave birth to Him. The graces necessary for such ministry and office were given to most holy Mary in such abundance that they overflowed into the soul of St. Joseph, making him worthy of being the reputed father of Jesus and the head of the Holy Family.

60. To the obedience and subjection of Her most holy Son the great Lady on Her part responded by heroic works. Among Her excellences She conceived as it were an incomprehensible humility and a most heartfelt gratitude for having regained the companionship of Her Son. This blessing, of which the heavenly Queen deemed Herself unworthy, vastly increased in Her most pure Heart Her love and Her anxiety to serve Her divine Son. And She was so constant in showing Her gratitude, so punctual and solicitous to serve Him, kneeling before Him and lowering Herself to the dust, that it excited the admiration of the highest Seraphim; moreover, She sought with the closest attention to imitate Him in all His actions as they became known to Her and exerted Herself most anxiously to copy them and reproduce them in Her own life. The plenitude of Her perfection wounded the Heart of Christ our Lord (Cant. 4:9), and according to our way of speaking held Him bound to Her with chains of invincible love (Osee 11:4). His being thus bound as God and as Son to this heavenly Princess gave rise to such an interchange and divine reciprocity of intense love as surpasses all created understanding, for into the ocean of the soul of Mary entered all the vast floods of the graces and blessings of the incarnate Word, and this ocean did not overflow (Eccles. 1:7) because Her soul contained the depth and expanse necessary to receive them. But these currents turned back to their source like ebbs and tides of the Divinity held between two shores, the Son of God and His Mother. This explains the many repetitions of humble acknowledgment of the Spouse: My Beloved to me, and I to Him who feedeth among the lilies, till the day break, and the shadows retire (Can. 2:16-17). And elsewhere: I to my Beloved, and my Beloved to me (Ib. 6:2); I to my Beloved, and his turning is towards me. (Ib. 7:10). (The Venerable Mary of Agreda, The Mystical City of God: Book III: The Transfixion,  as taken from Mr. Timothy Duff's New English Edition. For information on purchasing the four volume set of books, please see New English Edition of Mystical City of God.)

Our Lady gave the Venerable Mary of Agreda a slightly different account of what happened with the Child Jesus on the journey back to Nazareth than that conjured up out of the swampland of a mind possessed by Jorge Mario Bergoglio.

Jorge Mario Bergoglio is a blaspheming heretic, and it is a mockery of the papacy to contend that such a man holds the Throne of Saint Peter, which is the Principle of Unity and the guarantor of the integrity of doctrine, and even though the December 27, 2015, "homily" probably will not be inserted into the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, it is nevertheless correlative proof of the heresy that stenches the swampland that is the Argentine Apostate's mind. To reduce Our Lord, the God-Man, to but a projection of one's heretical, blaspehmous imagination is to cast doubt on the integrity of His perfect human nature.

Although each of the conciliar “popes” have been infected with Modernism and/or the principles of “new theology” that were condemned by Pope Pius XII in Humani Generis, August 12, 1950, Jorge Mario Bergoglio is showing what the false conciliar “religion” looks like without any kind of masquerade. He is just as much the end-product of conciliarism as Barack Hussein Obama/Barry Soetoro is the end product of Americanism.

Catholic teaching, though, remains what it is despite the vast multitude of those who refuse even to look seriously at what a conciliar "cardinal," the late Mario Francesco Pompedda, who had been head of the conciliar Apostolic Signatura, said as "Saint John Paul II" was dying of Stage III Parkinson's disease in February of 2005:

It is true that the canonical doctrine states that the see would be vacant in the case of heresy. ... But in regard to all else, I think what is applicable is what judgment regulates human acts. And the act of will, namely a resignation or capacity to govern or not govern, is a human act. (Cardinal Says Pope Could Govern Even If Unable to Speak, Zenit, February 8, 2005.)

It does not take one with a doctorate in sacred theology to see that Jorge Mario Bergoglio and each of his predecessors have been heretics. It simply takes the courage to recognize the truth of the state of the Church Militant in this time of apostasy and betrayal as we are reminded once again by the words of Pope Pius XI that were cited at the beginning of this commentary and repeated a second time for the sake of providing newer readers with the peace of mind in knowing that the Catholic Church can never be the author of any doctrinal errors or heresy that a true pope caused to inserted into the Acta Apostolicae Sedis:

Not least among the blessings which have resulted from the public and legitimate honor paid to the Blessed Virgin and the saints is the perfect and perpetual immunity of the Church from error and heresy. (Pope Pius XI, Quas Primas, December 11, 1925.)

May we cling to Our Lady, especially through her Most Holy Rosary, to cling to the truth in these terrible times without any degree of doubt about the simple fact that a heretic cannot be a true and legitimate Successor of Saint Peter and that it is necessary to separate ourselves from the false church of conciliarism with its false litugical rites and blasphemous, heretical "teachings" and pastoral practices.

A continued blessed Christmas to you all!

Viva Cristo Rey! Vivat Christus Rex!

Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us.

Saint Joseph, pray for us.

Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.

Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.

Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.

Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.

Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.

Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.

Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.

Saints Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, pray for us.


The Catholic Church's Condemnation of the Evolution of Dogma

  • For the doctrine of the faith which God has revealed is put forward

    • not as some philosophical discovery capable of being perfected by human intelligence,
    • but as a divine deposit committed to the spouse of Christ to be faithfully protected and infallibly promulgated.
  • Hence, too, that meaning of the sacred dogmas is ever to be maintained which has once been declared by holy mother church, and there must never be any abandonment of this sense under the pretext or in the name of a more profound understanding.

God cannot deny himself, nor can truth ever be in opposition to truth.

The appearance of this kind of specious contradiction is chiefly due to the fact that either: the dogmas of faith are not understood and explained in accordance with the mind of the church, or unsound views are mistaken for the conclusions of reason.

Therefore we define that every assertion contrary to the truth of enlightened faith is totally false. . . .

3. If anyone says that it is possible that at some time, given the advancement of knowledge, a sense may be assigned to the dogmas propounded by the church which is different from that which the church has understood and understands: let him be anathema.

And so in the performance of our supreme pastoral office, we beseech for the love of Jesus Christ and we command, by the authority of him who is also our God and saviour, all faithful Christians, especially those in authority or who have the duty of teaching, that they contribute their zeal and labour to the warding off and elimination of these errors from the church and to the spreading of the light of the pure faith.

But since it is not enough to avoid the contamination of heresy unless those errors are carefully shunned which approach it in greater or less degree, we warn all of their duty to observe the constitutions and decrees in which such wrong opinions, though not expressly mentioned in this document, have been banned and forbidden by this holy see. (Pope Pius IX, Vatican Council, Session III, Dogmatic Constitution on the Catholic Faith, Chapter 4, On Faith and Reason, April 24, 1870. SESSION 3 : 24 April 1.)

Hence it is quite impossible [the Modernists assert] to maintain that they [dogmatic statements] absolutely contain the truth: for, in so far as they are symbols, they are the images of truth, and so must be adapted to the religious sense in its relation to man; and as instruments, they are the vehicles of truth, and must therefore in their turn be adapted to man in his relation to the religious sense. But the object of the religious sense, as something contained in the absolute, possesses an infinite variety of aspects, of which now one, now another, may present itself. In like manner he who believes can avail himself of varying conditions. Consequently, the formulas which we call dogma must be subject to these vicissitudes, and are, therefore, liable to change. Thus the way is open to the intrinsic evolution of dogma. Here we have an immense structure of sophisms which ruin and wreck all religion.

It is thus, Venerable Brethren, that for the Modernists, whether as authors or propagandists, there is to be nothing stable, nothing immutable in the Church. Nor, indeed, are they without forerunners in their doctrines, for it was of these that Our predecessor Pius IX wrote: 'These enemies of divine revelation extol human progress to the skies, and with rash and sacrilegious daring would have it introduced into the Catholic religion as if this religion were not the work of God but of man, or some kind of philosophical discovery susceptible of perfection by human efforts.' On the subject of revelation and dogma in particular, the doctrine of the Modernists offers nothing new. We find it condemned in the Syllabus of Pius IX, where it is enunciated in these terms: ''Divine revelation is imperfect, and therefore subject to continual and indefinite progress, corresponding with the progress of human reason'; and condemned still more solemnly in the Vatican Council: ''The doctrine of the faith which God has revealed has not been proposed to human intelligences to be perfected by them as if it were a philosophical system, but as a divine deposit entrusted to the Spouse of Christ to be faithfully guarded and infallibly interpreted. Hence also that sense of the sacred dogmas is to be perpetually retained which our Holy Mother the Church has once declared, nor is this sense ever to be abandoned on plea or pretext of a more profound comprehension of the truth.' Nor is the development of our knowledge, even concerning the faith, barred by this pronouncement; on the contrary, it is supported and maintained. For the same Council continues: 'Let intelligence and science and wisdom, therefore, increase and progress abundantly and vigorously in individuals, and in the mass, in the believer and in the whole Church, throughout the ages and the centuries -- but only in its own kind, that is, according to the same dogma, the same sense, the same acceptation.' (Pope Saint Pius X, Pascendi Dominci Gregis, September 8, 1907.)

Fourthly, I sincerely hold that the doctrine of faith was handed down to us from the apostles through the orthodox Fathers in exactly the same meaning and always in the same purport. Therefore, I entirely reject the heretical' misrepresentation that dogmas evolve and change from one meaning to another different from the one which the Church held previously. . . .

Finally, I declare that I am completely opposed to the error of the modernists who hold that there is nothing divine in sacred tradition; or what is far worse, say that there is, but in a pantheistic sense, with the result that there would remain nothing but this plain simple fact-one to be put on a par with the ordinary facts of history-the fact, namely, that a group of men by their own labor, skill, and talent have continued through subsequent ages a school begun by Christ and his apostles. I firmly hold, then, and shall hold to my dying breath the belief of the Fathers in the charism of truth, which certainly is, was, and always will be in the succession of the episcopacy from the apostles. The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way.

I promise that I shall keep all these articles faithfully, entirely, and sincerely, and guard them inviolate, in no way deviating from them in teaching or in any way in word or in writing. Thus I promise, this I swear, so help me God. (The Oath Against Modernism, September 1, 1910; see also Nothing Stable, Nothing Secure.)

In theology some want to reduce to a minimum the meaning of dogmas; and to free dogma itself from terminology long established in the Church and from philosophical concepts held by Catholic teachers, to bring about a return in the explanation of Catholic doctrine to the way of speaking used in Holy Scripture and by the Fathers of the Church. They cherish the hope that when dogma is stripped of the elements which they hold to be extrinsic to divine revelation, it will compare advantageously with the dogmatic opinions of those who are separated from the unity of the Church and that in this way they will gradually arrive at a mutual assimilation of Catholic dogma with the tenets of the dissidents.

Moreover they assert that when Catholic doctrine has been reduced to this condition, a way will be found to satisfy modern needs, that will permit of dogma being expressed also by the concepts of modern philosophy, whether of immanentism or idealism or existentialism or any other system. Some more audacious affirm that this can and must be done, because they hold that the mysteries of faith are never expressed by truly adequate concepts but only by approximate and ever changeable notions, in which the truth is to some extent expressed, but is necessarily distorted. Wherefore they do not consider it absurd, but altogether necessary, that theology should substitute new concepts in place of the old ones in keeping with the various philosophies which in the course of time it uses as its instruments, so that it should give human expression to divine truths in various ways which are even somewhat opposed, but still equivalent, as they say. They add that the history of dogmas consists in the reporting of the various forms in which revealed truth has been clothed, forms that have succeeded one another in accordance with the different teachings and opinions that have arisen over the course of the centuries.

It is evident from what We have already said, that such tentatives not only lead to what they call dogmatic relativism, but that they actually contain it. The contempt of doctrine commonly taught and of the terms in which it is expressed strongly favor it. Everyone is aware that the terminology employed in the schools and even that used by the Teaching Authority of the Church itself is capable of being perfected and polished; and we know also that the Church itself has not always used the same terms in the same way. It is also manifest that the Church cannot be bound to every system of philosophy that has existed for a short space of time. Nevertheless, the things that have been composed through common effort by Catholic teachers over the course of the centuries to bring about some understanding of dogma are certainly not based on any such weak foundation. These things are based on principles and notions deduced from a true knowledge of created things. In the process of deducing, this knowledge, like a star, gave enlightenment to the human mind through the Church. Hence it is not astonishing that some of these notions have not only been used by the Oecumenical Councils, but even sanctioned by them, so that it is wrong to depart from them.

Unfortunately these advocates of novelty easily pass from despising scholastic theology to the neglect of and even contempt for the Teaching Authority of the Church itself, which gives such authoritative approval to scholastic theology. This Teaching Authority is represented by them as a hindrance to progress and an obstacle in the way of science. Some non Catholics consider it as an unjust restraint preventing some more qualified theologians from reforming their subject. And although this sacred Office of Teacher in matters of faith and morals must be the proximate and universal criterion of truth for all theologians, since to it has been entrusted by Christ Our Lord the whole deposit of faith -- Sacred Scripture and divine Tradition -- to be preserved, guarded and interpreted, still the duty that is incumbent on the faithful to flee also those errors which more or less approach heresy, and accordingly "to keep also the constitutions and decrees by which such evil opinions are proscribed and forbidden by the Holy See," is sometimes as little known as if it did not exist. What is expounded in the Encyclical Letters of the Roman Pontiffs concerning the nature and constitution of the Church, is deliberately and habitually neglected by some with the idea of giving force to a certain vague notion which they profess to have found in the ancient Fathers, especially the Greeks. The Popes, they assert, do not wish to pass judgment on what is a matter of dispute among theologians, so recourse must be had to the early sources, and the recent constitutions and decrees of the Teaching Church must be explained from the writings of the ancients. (Pope Pius XII, Humani Generis, August 12, 1950.)