Embracing the Faith No Matter the Consequences
Thomas A. Droleskey
Many older priests went thrown for the proverbial"loop" by the the doctrinal and liturgical revolutions wrought by the the "Second" Vatican Council and its aftermath. These older priests had a variety of different reactions to the "changes" wrought by these revolutions.
Some of these priests simply went along with the "changes" even though they did not like or understand them, even though they believed that the changes could not be reconciled to the Catholic Faith and/or that the changes would prove detrimental to the good of the souls for whom Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ shed every single drop of His Most Precious Blood on the wood of the Holy Cross.
The late Monsignor Klaus Gamber, who was not a traditionalist, wrote in The Reform of the Roman Liturgy of the predicament in which these older priests who went along with the "changes" found themselves.
At the same time, the priests and the faithful are told that the new liturgy created after the Second Vatican Council is identical in essence with the liturgy that has been in use in the Catholic Church up to this point, and that the only changes introduced involved reviving some earlier liturgical forms and removing a few duplications, but above all getting rid of elements of no particular interest.
Most priests accepted these assurances about the continuity of liturgical forms of worship and accepted the new rite with the same unquestioning obedience with which they had accepted the minor ritual changes introduced by Rome from time to time in the past, changes beginning with the reform of the Divine Office and of the liturgical chant introduced by Pope St. Pius X.
Following this strategy, the groups pushing for reform were able to take advantage of and at the same time abuse the sense of obedience among the older priests, and the common good will of the majority of the faithful, while, in many cases, they themselves refused to obey.
The pastoral benefits that so many idealists had hoped the new liturgy would bring about did not materialize. Our churches emptied in spite of the new liturgy (or because of it?), and the faithful continue to fall away from the Church in droves.
Although our young people have been literally seduced in to supporting the new forms of liturgical worship, they have, in fact, become more and more alienated from the faith. They are drawn to religious sects--Christian and non-Christian ones--because fewer and fewer priests teach them the riches of our Catholic faith and the tenets of Christian morality. As for older people, the radical changes made to the traditional liturgy have taken from them the sense of security in their religious home.
Today, many among us wonder: Is this the Spring people had hoped would emerge from the Second Vatican Council? Instead of a genuine renewal in our Church, we have seen only novelties. Instead of our religious life entering a period of new invigoration, as happened in the past, what we see now is a form of Christianity that has turned towards the world.
We are now involved in a liturgy in which God is no longer the center of our attention. Today, the eyes of our faithful are no longer focused on God's Son having become Man hanging on the cross, or on the pictures of His saints, but on the human community assembled for a commemorative meal. The assembly of people is sitting there, face to face with the "presider," expecting from him, in accordance with the "modern" spirit of the Church, not so much a transfer of God's grace, but primarily some good ideas and advice on how to deal with daily life and its challenges.
There are few people who speak of the Holy Mass as the Sacrifice of the New Covenant which we offer to God the Father through Jesus Christ, or of the sacramental union with Christ that we experience when we receive Holy Communion. Today, we are dealing with the "Eucharistic feat," and with the "holy bread," to be shared as a sign among as a sign of our brotherhood with Jesus.
The real destruction of the traditional Mass, of the traditional Roman rite with a history of more than one thousand years, is the wholesale destruction of the faith on which it was based, a faith that had been the source of our piety and of our courage to bear witness to Christ and His Church, the inspiration of countless Catholics over many centuries. Will someone, some day, be able to say the same thing about the new Mass? (Monsignor Klaus Gamber, The Reform of the Roman Liturgy, pp. 100-102.)
Other older priests offered some version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition for the various "independent" chapels that sprung up around the country.
The late Father Gommar de Pauw was removed from the faculty of Mount Saint Mary's Seminary in 1965 by Lawrence Cardinal Shehan, the Archbishop of Baltimore, for his criticism of the Ordo Missae of Giovanni Montini/Paul VI that had replaced the modernized version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition that had been promulgated by Angelo Roncalli/John XXIII in 1961 and 1962. He established Ave Maria Chapel in Westbury, New York, in 1968.
Father Martin Stepanich, O.F.M., S.T.D., refused to pray the Canon of the Mass in the vernacular in 1967 and was banished by his Franciscan superiors immediately thereafter. Father Martin was one of the first, if not the first, older priest, ordained on May 18, 1941, to embrace the sedevacantist position in the 1970s.
Fathers Robert F. McKenna, O.P. left his assignment in New Haven, Connecticut, with the Order of Preachers to offer Holy Mass according to the Dominican Rite at Our Lady of the Rosary Chapel in Monroe, Connecticut, working for a time with Father Francis Fenton, now deceased, who had left the Diocese of Bridgeport. Bishop McKenna, consecrated as a bishop in 1986 by Bishop Guerard de Lauriers, O.P., in France, and Father Fenton worked for about a decade with other older priests in an association called the Orthodox Roman Catholic Movement, Inc., which still owns Our Lady of the Rosary Chapel.
Father Hugh Wish, the longtime pastor of Saint Lawrence Church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, offered the Mass of all ages in his parish until 1977, at which time he took an early retirement rather than to distribute what purported to be Communion in the hand in the Protestant and Masonic Novus Ordo service. He was "suspended" by the doctrinally and morally corrupt Archbishop Rembert G. Weakland, O.S.B., for his act of defiance. His work led to the founding of Saint Hugh of Lincoln Church in Milwaukee, which is under the direction of His Excellency Bishop Daniel L. Dolan, who, along with Father Anthony Cekada, were encouraged in the early-1970s to leave the Cistercian seminary and to join the Society of Saint Pius X.
Monsignor John Cleary, who was a hospital chaplain when I met him as I was recovering from spinal fusion surgery at the Hospital for Special Surgery in the Borough of Manhattan in the City of New York, New York, in February of 1968, offered Holy Mass, was one of several older priests who offered the Mass of the ages for Catholics who would later form Our Lady of Fatima Chapel in Pequannock, New Jersey, which was served for sixteen years by Father Thomas Ross, O.F.M., until his death in 1991.
Monsignor Raymond Ruscitto stopped offering the Novus Ordo service in 1976 when he was the pastor of Holy Family Church in Kingsburg, California. He has been offering the modernized version of the Mass of Tradition at a Mass center in Travers, California, since 1976.
Father John Roach, a retired priest of the Diocese of Youngstown, Ohio, established Queen of the Holy Rosary Chapel in 1978.
The inimitable Father Frederick Schell, S.J., who died on September 28, 2002, had left the Society of Jesus to seek incardination in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in the 1970s. He refused to give out what purported to be Communion in the hand, denounced it from the pulpit the week before this travesty was to be instituted on November 20, 1977:
They told me I would have to give out Communion in the hand on November 20, 1977," Father Schell told us, "I told people at the time, 'This is a sacrilege. They can't make me do it." He saw so clearly what so many priests acquiesced to in a perversion of a true Catholic understanding of the word "obedience." Father Schell was not out to please man but God, "So, I preached against it on November 13, 1977," he told us, "and by the next week I was gone. The last twenty-five years have been the happiest of my life."
Father Schell found his way back to the Immemorial Mass of Tradition with the help of Monsignor Charles Donohue, a priest of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, who was offering the Mass of the ages in his parish when a curate (that is, an assistant priest in his own parish) "forbade" him to continue doing so. Donohue founded Queen of the Angels Church in Arcadia, California, in 1974, where he served until his death in 1995. And it was Father Schell who helped that late Father Paul Wickens, who had been "suspended" by the notorious Archbishop of Newark, New Jersey, Peter Leo Gerety, for refusing to permit the students of his parish to be indoctrinated by the rot of explicit classroom instruction in matters pertaining the Sixth and Ninth Commandments, to offer the Mass of Tradition once again following his suspension.
Father Lawrence Brey, a priest of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, offered Mass in the underground (a location that was literally underground in a rock quarry) in Saint Cloud, Minnesota, for decades prior to his death 2006. We had the privilege of assisting at a Mass of his in August of 2003.
Father Francis LeBlanc, who died in 2006, left the conciliar structures in Canada, eventually founding Our Lady of the Sun International Shrine in El Mirage, California.
Father Graham Walters of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City founded Queen of Angels Church there. A new church was erected in 1987 on land purchased following the death of his parents.
There are many other examples of older priests who left the conciliar structures in the aftermath of the "Second" Vatican Council and the promulgation of the Novus Ordo service in 1969. Time just does not permit a full listing of these other examples of priestly courage and zeal. Please forgive me if I did not list a priest who was known to any of you personally.
Most of these older priests never came to the conclusion that conciliar "pontiffs" where heresiarchs with whom Catholics could not associate in any way. However, these priests, concerned about the honor and glory of God and the good of the souls who had been entrusted to their pastoral care, knew that "something" had to be done to preserve the Holy Faith and to seek to protect It as best as they knew how by offering some version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition.
Other older priests, such as the late Harry Marchosky, with whom my dear wife Sharon was very close for about a decade prior to his death, maintained their "good standing" in the conciliar structures while refusing to offer the Novus Ordo. Father Marchosky, who was a co-founded of Thomas Aquinas College in Santa Paula, California, resigned from the college in 1976 rather than offer the Novus Ordo service. "I could have been a bishop," he once told us. "I gave it all up." Father Marchosky was not sympathetic to sedevacantism in the slightest. He was not, however, very sympathetic to Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II, asking me in November of 2003 when we visited him in Veneta, Oregon, "When is this pope going to hurry up and die?" I told Father that there was no guarantee that the "next one" would be any better.
There came later a new generation of men, "ordained" by phony conciliar "bishops" in the new rite of priestly "ordination," who broke from the conciliar structures once they had concluded the the Novus Ordo was offensive to God, if not invalid on its face. Some of these "priests" went to non-sedevacantist independent chapels. Some started apostolates of their own. Others joined Ecclesia Dei communities.
Still others joined the Society of Saint Pius X. Some of those who joined the Society of Saint Pius X were ordained conditionally after leaving their dioceses or religious communities. I know of at least three (and, from what I have been told, possibly four) men, two who fled their dioceses and one who fled from his religious community, who were conditionally ordained by the Society of Saint Pius X, whose leaders have gone back and forth over the years concerning the conditions under which a man "ordained" in the conciliar structures would be "asked" to "consider" conditional ordination by a bishop of the Society of Saint Pius X. As with almost everything else in the Society of Saint Pius X, consistency on this rather important point has been hard to find. Indeed, the inconsistency on this matter that deals with whether the faithful are getting true sacraments or simulated ones was one of the breaking points between "The Nine" and the late Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre in 1983 (see
The Nine vs. Lefebvre: We Resist You to Your Face and
Letter of 'the Nine' to Abp. Marcel Lefebvre).
Much more rare, although not entirely unheard of, are the examples of men "ordained" by pretend "bishops" in the conciliar structures who have come to the conclusion that the conciliar "pontiffs" have indeed been heresiarchs with whom no Catholic can, objectively speaking, knowingly associate. Although we knew one man who had fled from a diocese in conciliar captivity who was on the verge of meeting with His Excellency Bishop Mark A. Pivarunas of the Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen a few years ago, it is indeed very rare for a man "ordained" in the conciliar structures to admit that he is not a true priest and to come to the recognition that Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI expelled himself from the Catholic Church decades ago because of the mutiple ways in which he defects from the Catholic Faith.
Such, however, is the case of a courageous young man from the Diocese of Rockford, Illinois, Father Michael Oswalt, who, after much study and prayer and reflection and consultation, came to the conclusion that the Protestant and Novus Ordo service was invalid, that he was not a true priest, and that the conciliar "pontiffs" have been antipopes who have been enemies of God and of the souls for whom Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ shed every single drop of His Most Precious Blood on the wood of the Holy Cross. It was only after much soul-searching and a great deal of agonizing in prayer that Father Oswalt came to the conclusion that he was not a true priest.
Although he has told his story in his own words in response to a series of questions that I posed to him via e-mail recently, suffice it to say that Father Oswalt knew that he would castigated by his conciliar "bishop," Thomas Doran, and by members of the clergy of the Diocese of Rockford. He knew that members of his own family would be bewildered, if not scandalized. He knew that his parishioners and students would be saddened and dismayed by his departure. This caused him much cause for reflection before the events that led to his departure occurred.
Indeed, Father Oswalt contacted me in November to seek advice as to how to proceed. I directed him to His Excellency Bishop Daniel L. Dolan and to His Excellency Bishop Donald Sanborn and to Father Anthony Cekada. Father Oswalt was in consultation with others prior to his writing me, as he explains in one of his responses below. He did decide, however, to visit Bishop Sanborn and Father Cekada at Most Holy Trinity Seminary in Brooksville, Florida, in January, which was a turning point for him in his deliberations.
As readers will discover, Father Oswalt has been subject to great humiliation by his superiors in the Diocese of Rockford. His parish's secretary spied on the websites he was visiting, reporting this to his pastor, who reported his "offense" to the chancery office, which called him into the office for a tongue-lashing. (Yes, this was one of the "offending" websites).
Father Oswalt later found that his personal effects had been rifled through while he was away on Saturday, February 28, 2009. Letters that he had prepared to send to "Bishop" Doran and his pastor and his parish staff and to the clergy of the Diocese of Rockford had been shifted from one place to another. He found himself being summoned to the chancery office on Monday, March 2, 2009, as result of the "discovery" that had been made by the rifling of his personal effects. It was then, three days earlier than he had planned, that he sent his letters to their intended recipients, packed up his truck and left his parish--and the counterfeit church of conciliarism--once and for all.
A man without much in the way of personal financial wealth, Father Oswalt discovered after he left that his final paycheck, which he had deposited into his savings account, was withdrawn without his permission by the Diocese of Rockford, a matter that I have raised in a series of questions to "Bishop" Doran He is now living at home with his mother prior to his humbly starting seminary over again at Most Holy Trinity Seminary in Brooksville, Florida, this coming September.
As I want readers of this site to pray for Father Oswalt and as his story might help other younger "priests" in the conciliar structures to muster the courage to break from the false church whose "head" enters into mosques and synagogues and personally esteems the symbols of false religions that many millions of the Catholic Church's martyrs gave up their lives rather than to burn even one grain of incense to, I sought permission from Bishop Sanborn to publicize Father Oswalt's case and to ask this courageous man some questions. Father Oswalt was good enough to take the time to answer these questions in detail, and I thank him formally for his cooperation in making his situation known.
Q. Father Oswalt, could you provide readers with some information as to your background. That is, where and when were you born? Where did you grow up? What did you learn in conciliar schools and/or religious education programs? Did you ever question what was being taught to you in your youth? What was your impression of the Novus Ordo as were growing up?
A. I was born July 7, 1972 in a small Midwestern town of Dixon, Illinois as the youngest of 6; 5 boys and 1 girl.
My oldest brother is 55 and my closest brother is 44. My sister is in the middle – well protected while growing up, I might add.
I went to the local Catholic grade school for 8 years, where there were still a couple of nuns teaching in the school at the time, not in habits, of course, but usually in pantsuits with a religious pin on their lapel which did nothing for the stimulation of any sort of vocations for the young ladies. There was a religion class that we took on a daily basis in every grade as well as CCD classes which I continued through high school.
The lay teachers at the school were good, hardworking teachers, of which we were taught well in secular studies, but as is the norm in the 70’s and 80’s I really was not taught the Catholic Faith. I only remember, in essence of course, being taught that God loves me, draw a picture of God, and things like that. No Baltimore Catechism there!
As our family was on the poorer side, and still is, I then attended the city public high school as it was much cheaper than the Catholic high school in the next town. Throughout my religious education training in grade school and high school I never questioned anything I was taught because, like I mentioned, I really wasn’t taught anything of substance. How can you question that God loves you?! I was born into the Novus Ordo and that was all that I ever knew, so even if I thought something may be wrong, I knew nothing else. Although I remember a lot of craziness in the liturgies, etc. I nevertheless, had an innate conservatism that kept me from participating and laid the seeds for my questioning things as I got older.
Q. What did you do, Father Oswalt, prior to entering the seminary to study for the conciliar priesthood? That is, where did you go to college? What did you do after you graduated from college? What led you to study for the conciliar priesthood as a "late" or a "delayed" vocation?
A.. I graduated from North Central College in Naperville, Illinois in 1995 with a degree in Business Management. I very easily could have gotten a job in Chicago or surrounding suburbs and worked my way up in a company but my father was just diagnosed with cancer and the prognosis was that he was only to live another 2 years, so I moved back home to help my mother take care of him and got a job working for Hormel foods as a 2nd shift supervisor for the hot dog department (eat beef hot dogs, stay away from the chicken and pork hot dogs) in a town near Dixon. I worked there for about 2 years and an opportunity came for me to work for Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company of which I took and sold insurance for about a year or so.
I wasn’t very successful because I did everything I could to help those I talked to but when it came time to ask for money to buy the policies, I couldn’t do that very well as I knew money was usually very tight for those I talked to. I then got a job for a local eye doctor in town to be a sort of jack of all trades, working in the tech area, the business area, etc. It was there that the pastor of my parish asked me while in for an appointment put the question to me of if I was married yet and when I said “not yet”, he asked me if I ever thought of the priesthood. I had very much so when I was an altar boy in grade school but when high school and college rolled around I succumbed to the trappings of the world and with me being somewhat of a sports star (baseball - of which I received scholarships) there were many more temptations that presented themselves. But the question stuck and I could not shake it, so after about a year or so of continual prayer, research, discernment, etc. I made the leap and contacted the diocesan vocation director.
Q. Can you describe the admissions process in the Diocese of Rockford? That is, was there a psychological screening? Were members of the laity involved in the interviewing process? Were any possible "problem areas" pointed out to you prior to your being accepted? Was your acceptance granted to you on a conditional or unconditional basis? That is, were you deemed "suspect" of being "rigid" or in need of being "monitored" to determine if you were too "conservative" for ordination.
A. The admissions process was somewhat involved in that they tested you for just about everything. The Diocese of Rockford has a reputation as being one of the more conservative dioceses, so in their eyes a conservative bent is not something of a red flag. There was quite an extensive psychological test given of which I passed as being normal and on the conservative side. I was vetted by the vocation department mostly and I was granted acceptance by the bishop unconditionally. At that time I still had not much of an idea as to the different strata within the conciliar church as to liberal, conservative, traditional, etc. It wouldn’t come until my second year at seminary when the red flags were being thrown about me as being too rigid by the seminary and I was being monitored by the seminary because of my trying to be faithful to all the traditions of the Church.
Q. What seminary did your attend? What did you think of its program? Were there any professors who went beyond the approved apostasies of conciliarism to place into question articles contained in the Deposit of Faith (the historicity of Scripture, the historicity of the Resurrection, the nature of the miracles performed by Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, the Perpetual Virginity of Our Lady)? Was there any hint of heterodoxy in your moral theology courses (fundamental option, proportionalism, use of an "informed" conscience" to use contraceptive pills and devices)? Any problems in your Christology or sacramental theology courses?
A. I attended Mundelein Seminary in Chicago. I had no clue as to the reputation of the seminary, or any other for that matter, and I was given the choice, thanks to the diocese’s kindness, of where to go to seminary.
As my father, as I mentioned before, was still very sick at this point, I wanted to stay close as possible to home to help out when I could. Mundelein was the closest that we sent our guys. At first, all being very new to me, it was good in the first year. I had no other reference to compare to other than secular college, but as time went on, the comparisons were very close to a secular college in the structure and freedom given as well as the overall atmosphere of the seminary, which seemed odd to me, but I didn’t know any better.
There were a few stellar professors at the seminary but after the initial few years are under your belt and you start to comprehend the basic philosophical and theological principles you started to pick up on the inconsistencies being taught, even from instructor to instructor.
We started to before every class put on our “heresy filters”, the things that somehow didn’t seem right some of us would go back and do research by looking at pre-Vatican II theology books, manuals, encyclicals, etc. There was even times when there would be a direct contradiction taught even to the new catechism of John Paul II. There were many instances of things taught that weren’t right, like one instructor telling us that we don’t have to assent to every doctrine of the Catholic Church, or another instructor telling us that the Church really began at Vatican II.
After awhile you knew who were the instructors were who you could at least put some trust in and the others who you just had to suffer through the class to get it out of the way. There seemed to be a heavy emphasis on psychology and on being “pastoral” of which I still don’t understand what was meant by that in their eyes other than being all-inclusive and not hurting anyone’s feelings. It was often that some of the theologians or resources studied were Protestants.
With some of the instructors things like Liberation Theology were still being taught or emphasized. Although a lot of the times things were not taught formally in class, but when you talked to the professors outside of class, like eating at the refectory, you saw some of their beliefs – married and woman priests, homosexuality as being acceptable, erroneous morality on issues like contraception, abortion, etc. Sometimes it would seep into the formal classes, like in Morals on how we should leave people in ignorance if they are contracepting or whatever to avoid problems with their conscience.
Of course, we had our classes on Ecumenism and how great it is, where we were required to attend a Protestant service and write of our impressions as well as a non-Christian worship like the Jews, Muslims, Hindus, whatever and write of our experience. There were also the perennial musings of liberalism by nearly all the professors – like in Christology pondering the question of whether or not our Blessed Lord knew He was God (they would say not), the sort of things that when you look at say, the Baltimore Catechism, those clear answers were often debated in classes or spun using the eyes of Vatican II – especially in areas like ecclesiology, Christology, and Liturgy.
Q. What were you taught about the Sacred Liturgy in the seminary? That is, were you given any history in the development of the Mass of the Roman Rite in the first centuries of the Church? What were you taught about the Novus Ordo (did the matter of its compatibility with the true Mass of the Roman Rite ever come up)? Were the conciliar "efforts" to end "abuses in the Novus Ordo mentioned (Dominicae Cenae, Inaestimabile Donum, Liturgiam Authenticam, etc.). What were you taught about the General Instruction to the Roman Missal?
A. In terms of Sacred Liturgy, we were taught all in the context of the Novus Ordo. We did look at the historical development of the Mass but the thrust of learning came from Vatican II and post Vatican II documents and theological works, especially Sacrosanctum Concilium and the General Instruction to the Roman Missal. There really was no comparison of the True Mass with that of the New Mass. In fact, we never really mentioned the Latin Mass, other than in a historical footnote. Everything about the first 1,962 years of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass was somehow proven how the New Mass is the same and explained always within the context of the New Mass. There was mention here and there of some of the abuses but we did have a pretty good Liturgy instructor who insisted on following the rubrics as is and in a most conservative way of “reading the black and doing the red” only. But with the New Mass it doesn’t matter as anything goes.
Q. Was there a "pastoral year" involved in your seminary formation? If so, where did you spend the year? What did you think of it at the time?
A. I did take a pastoral year in that at the very beginning right before I left for my first year in seminary my father passed away so I stayed at home with my mother to help her half the week and the other half I worked in my local parish. It was there I started to see behind the scenes, of how in praxis the Catholic faith was being conveyed in all the different programs and “ministries” and practiced by the people.
Q. What personal experiences in your pastoral life as a conciliar priest after your "ordination" led you to question the nature of conciliarism? Could you describe any one or two episodes that stand out in your mind concerning the extent of the apostasy--both theoretical and as a matter of pastoral praxis--that you encountered during your pastoral work?
A. There were so many things that continued to gnaw at me upon being in the thick of things in the parish.
In general, things like how there were so many “ministries” were being run by the laity and how the role of the priest has been so stripped of its proper meaning that the people in the “ministries” (albeit most were in good faith) looked upon their duties as equal to that of the priest.
There were many meetings that we would have as a presbyterate, especially the junior clergy, where it was reinforced of looking at the priesthood as a “career” or a job.
One instance comes to mind in one of our junior clergy meetings where some of us younger clergy were apt to wear cassocks, traditional vestments and other external traditional practices as well as some of us said the Traditional Latin Mass in the parish and there were apparently many complaints coming into the chancery about us and our traditional practices. So the vicar for clergy gave us quite a tongue lashing on how we shouldn’t be doing or wearing these traditional things, at one point he even yelled at us for having too much lace on our albs. We were accused of “playing dress up” and we were sending the wrong signals to the people.
But then he said something that really stuck in my throat when he told us that by doing these things we would be damaging “our careers” and the possibility of advancing, especially of being made pastors, etc. That did not sit well at all and really ignited in me that terrible feeling that something is very wrong with the conciliar church, something that intellectually I studied and began to understand but it didn’t take on flesh until I began to see things from the other side of the table that as an everyday man in the pew I never saw.
But for me, the real crux of the problem came in the saying of the New Mass and just realizing that no matter how reverent I may be, no matter how beautiful the vestments were, it was Protestant – from top to bottom. Normally, I would always keep my eyes lowered during the service and not glance up to look at the people, only during the sermon, but I remember one time standing at the “table” and I looked up and I got the unmistakable feeling that I was an entertainer, an actor on a stage and that the whole service was aimed at pleasing each other and it was like I was just a storyteller as I read off the prayers to the people. Needless to say, I never looked up again.
Q. Please describe the study that you undertook privately that led you to question your priestly orders and the legitimacy of the conciliar religion.
A. From about the second year of seminary I began to try and build up my personal library, so I would go to used book sales and pick up many pre-Vatican II books that people were getting rid of, and of course having Tan Publishing in the Rockford diocese I would get a lot of their books, so I would read and study a lot of those older books, the books that were not infected with Modernism.
I also began to read the older encyclicals of the Popes prior to Vatican II and, obviously, when one reads the encyclicals of a Pius IX, Pius X and so forth you begin to see the things that they were saying is the exact opposite of what is being taught today. The condemned propositions of the Catholic Church for millennia are now all of a sudden being forgotten and the opposite is being taught.
I had planned on getting an advanced degree in theology in seminary so I began to look at a possible thesis and I thought a good one would be looking at the polemics within the Church and the theological basis for the “left” and the “right” understanding of the Faith. So I would occasionally do research of all the liberal writings and groups as well as the conservative writings and groups. It was there that I began to compare all the pre-Vatican writings and theology, you know what has always been taught from the beginning, with that of the new theology.
Besides the formal books and theologians I would read from many of the Traditional writings of the Catholic Resistance today – the Ottoviani Intervention, books and articles by Fr. Wathan, Fr. Trinchard, Fr. Cekada, Bishop Sanborn, Bishop Dolan, Bishop Pivaranus, Dr. Droleskey and a host of other publications like The Remnant, Catholic Family News, The Four Marks, The Angelus, The Reign of Mary, etc. and many traditional websites all from a wide spectrum of neo-conservatives to the “recognize and resist” to sedevacantists. It was looking at the preponderance of evidence given and the comparison thereof that I began to see the truth little by little.
Q. When did your pastor and your conciliar bishop suspect that you were entertaining doubts about your priestly orders and the validity of the Novus Ordo service? Were you questioned by them? How did you respond to their questioning?
A. I became suspect by the pastor because of the external things I had – simple things like I would wear my cassock a lot, my vestments were the old Roman fiddle backs, when I would go bless a building or something I would wear my biretta and cope – these external manifestations led the pastor to put a critical eye on me.
It escalated dramatically when I would preach, because I rejected the storytelling, feel good preaching in favor of the traditional preaching, preaching the hard truths and not watering them down which some people would send letters to the pastor complaining about that. All this began to give the impression that I was “attached to the past” or had a “pre-occupation with tradition”.
What really sent the pastor over the brink was that I said the Traditional Latin Mass and that I would get people coming to that when I said it privately and many others were finding out that I said it and were becoming interested.
The final straw came when one of the secretaries looked at the history of websites on the computer and saw a lot of the traditional websites I read. I did not have internet access in my room so I would use the computer in the office to do my research – so I would read and visit websites like Christ or Chaos, the Daily Catholic, Tradition in Action, Novus Ordo Watch, etc. As I mentioned, my plan was to continue to prepare for writing my thesis and I needed to read as much as I could from both the right and the left. But she flew off the handle when she saw these websites and printed it out for the pastor who in turn contacted the vicar for clergy and the bishop who then the very next day called me in immediately for a meeting.
I was brought into the bishop’s office with the vicar for clergy and he began to question me in regards to my beliefs.
I found out that the pastor was continually calling the vicar and, in essence, complaining about me because of my vestments, sermons, etc. so there was a general feeling that I was questioning the post conciliar church. I was quite taken aback, not to mention a little scared, as I did not know what this was about until the bishop asked a few questions like, “Are you questioning and doubting your ordination and the validity of the Mass”. I answered “no” because it was at that point, being confronted like that, through all those years of research and prayer, I had in that instant certainty the falsity of the Novus Ordo. So when I said “no” I did not elaborate as, in essence, I was saying no I am not questioning the validity anymore because it is false. To my shame, I should have said that right there but I knew, from hearing of cases before, they would have forced me to see a psychiatrist and/or a “priest” to “re-educate me”. In my weakness and sinfulness I needed some time to plan what this means and how I would proceed.
After that I had to meet with the pastor and he was blunter in the questions, like “do you believe what is on those websites, etc.” I was fairly vague in my answers stating that I was doing research, which I was, and trying not to incriminate me just yet, again to my shame. I finally got a little perturbed with the silly questions like, “do you pray the Luminous mysteries of the Rosary” that I just said “Look, I am trying to be a loyal son of the Church, what is with all the questions”. And then the pastor said something that was the icing on the cake, something that he didn’t mean as so serious, but he answered, “Which Church are you trying to be the son of, the pre-Vatican II Church or the post-Vatican II Church?” And then it hit me like a ton of bricks, there are two Churches, one that our Blessed Lord gave to us, the True Catholic Church for almost 2000 years and a new church, a new religion that sprung up after Vatican II, not from our Lord. Inadvertently, the pastor helped to bring things to light.
Q. When did you conclude with moral certainty that you were not a true priest and that the conciliar religion was false? What steps did you take after you had reached that conclusion? What role did Our Lady play in your deliberations?
A. So now I had come to the conclusion in my conscience of the sad state of affairs the Church was in and of myself involved in a false religion, no less “ordained” into it. I had reached out prior to this to some people for help as to what I can do, primarily before I was looking to be conditionally ordained somehow and maybe remain within the conciliar structure, as I was not fully convinced of it being a false religion. But now there was no question, so I was in contact with Fr. Paul Trinchard at first, then through Michael Cain of the Daily Catholic with the CMRI priests and finally through Dr. Droleskey with Bishop Sanborn, Bishop Dolan and Fr. Cekada. Through many e-mails I started to try and get a feel of what I can do, primarily I wanted to know how to leave the conciliar church and what am I going to do when I leave. I finally set up a time to fly down to the Most Holy Trinity Seminary in Florida to meet with Bishop Sanborn and Fr. Cekada to discuss my situation in person. So I flew out on a Tuesday and met with them to discuss my situation and flew back on Wednesday to be back in the parish. From that point I began to prepare to leave, trying to tie up loose ends and getting all my ducks in a row, so to speak.
The only reason that I had the actual graces sent to me as I came to these conclusions and not to continue in the false religion of the Novus Ordo to continue to offend our Blessed Lord is, I think, by the pity shown to me by our Most Blessed Mother Mary.
Prior to entering the seminary I consecrated myself using St. Louis de Montfort’s consecration to Mary and since then have developed and intensified a great devotion to her and a great love for her, especially to her Immaculate Heart by praying the full Rosary everyday (minus the luminous mysteries, thank you), the BROWN scapular, the Miraculous Medal, reading the great spiritual writings of the saints about her (St. Bernard, St. Alphonsus, St. John Vianney, etc., etc.) and honoring her as best as my sinful self could do. Funny, but in seminary she was not talked about too much in any of the classes. There was only one class on Mariology and it was an elective and at a difficult time for anyone to take. But I believe she has a direct hand in helping me, even when I did not and do not deserve to be helped as much as I have blasphemed and committed sacrilege within the Novus Ordo.
Q. Why did your remain in your pastoral assignment after reaching the conclusion that you were not a true priest? That is, why did you continue simulating sacramental rites that you knew to be offensive to God when you knew yourself not to be a true priest?
A. Ah yes, a most important question and one that will reveal my weaknesses, shortcomings, sinfulness and shame.
The short answer is fear and a misguided sense of responsibility.
After the meetings at the chancery and with the pastor and the immediate light bulb moment, so to speak, of the truth I began to serious look at how I could leave. I began to seriously look at my situation and began to realize how deep I was in the structure of the Novus Ordo.
In retrospect, I had been sent many actual graces while in seminary as I was studying the True Faith compared to the Novus Ordo to embrace the truth, but being born into the Novus Ordo and knowing nothing else I would continue to make the mental gymnastics of rationalization of submission to what this church said, never questioning the fact that there was a possibility that this is a false religion and those who claim to have authority even all the way to the top, have no authority at all. So I would submit my conscience to the Church and that is why I was able to be “ordained” into it, thinking that this was the True Catholic Faith albeit that there were many who practiced things at variance with the Faith but that somehow this was the True Catholic Church. So I would reject those graces sent to me in lieu of this kind of rationalistic mental gymnastics. But as I mentioned, Our Lady was persistent.
Once I came to the conclusion that this wasn’t the Catholic Church, it was a shock to my system, one that paralyzed me for a little while. I knew I had to flee, but I didn’t know what to do. The thoughts of those who were entrusted to me in the parish haunted me as if my leaving would leave them abandoned. I also taught Catholicism in high school so I felt a great responsibility to stay with my students until the end of the year because what I was teaching them was the True Catholic Faith (my reference books were the Baltimore Catechism, the Catechism of the Council of Trent and a few other pre-Vatican II textbooks).
But worst of all, was my own self-preservation started to kick in, in that I let my temporal situation override my spiritual welfare. I had and continue to have bills that must be paid off (old school loan, a bank loan that I have that covered 6 years of seminary and personal expenses) and for the first time in 6 years I could see that in 3 or 4 years I could pay them off with my salary that I was receiving. Add to that fact that I was also giving money to my mother to help her with her bills, let my temporal needs put fear into me.
But once I knew I had to flee I started to rationalize again, thinking that I can finish out the school year and put some money in the bank to give me a little cushion to cover the minimum every month.
Now you see my own weakness and sinfulness at work. In essence, I was selling our Lord again for thirty pieces of silver. This is not false humility but the reality, in all its ugliness, of being a sinner and putting me over that of God.
But through the grace of Our Blessed Savior, often speaking through that of others like Bishops Sanborn and Dolan, Fr. Cekada and Dr. Droleskey I knew I could not continue much longer within the conciliar church. I even would get physically sick after every “Mass” I would say on the weekdays and weekends.
So I set the date to leave to be the second week of March. From there, again to my shame, I started to “sneak around” by gradually moving out of my room on my day off by taking things with me to my mother’s home. I was evasive if not dishonest with those around me as I prepared to leave. As you can see, I have a lot to answer for and to make amends with sacrifice and mortifications for my many mistakes and lack of courage and honesty. I do ask for all the prayers I can get.
How had you planned to leave your conciliar assignment? How did it wind up that you actually left your conciliar assignment?
A. My initial plan as I mentioned was to leave the Thursday of the second week of March. I had planned to leave an explanation letter for the parish, with the school and then to give it to the bishop that day and leave and not look back. I had the great assistance of Bishop Sanborn and Fr. Cekada in the writing of the letters (they did the vast majority of the work) and I started putting together envelopes and things together to mail to the clergy of the diocese and to some of the laity as to why I was leaving. I worked on this at night and kept this in a box in my closet with a bag over the top. This is not how I left, however, as things started to accelerate and the changing of circumstances forced my hand earlier.
How did your pastor justify his rifling through your personal effects on Saturday, February 28, 2009? Do you believe that a civil crime was committed by your pastor? Have you reported this to the police?
A. This is why I left earlier than expected and in more of a rush fashion.
I would always keep the door to my room closed when I left the rectory (my small room was both my living quarters and my office so I kept everything in there) with the understanding that the only person that would enter would be the housekeeper to clean on my day off, and she was very good and honest with her job.
However, I would know when someone had been looking through my paperwork of my drawers as I am very organized and know if anything has been moved (a skill I learned from living with 5 other siblings). I knew that the pastor had been in my room before, especially when I was confronted about the traditional websites as some of the questions asked came from articles I had printed out and kept in a folder in my desk, which I knew was looked through.
I had been out of the parish the day in question and when I came back I saw my door closed but when I entered the room there on the floor next to my desk was a printed schedule for the next week, of which the pastor gives to us. In other words, the only way it could have gotten there was if he had been in my room. So I looked in my closet to check on the box of addressed envelopes and printed letters of departure to see if he saw that and the plastic bag I had over it was thrown to the side and I could tell it had been looked through. So I knew the jig was up, but a little relieved as I began to not be able to look at myself in the mirror from the sneaking around I had been doing.
Sure enough, on Monday my phone was ringing off the hook from the chancery for me to call them and come in immediately for a meeting. I never confronted the pastor or asked him about it as I deserved what I got.
So on Monday, I put the remaining things I had left in my truck and left early to go to the school, worked most of the day on finishing the letters, addressing them, putting into envelopes, etc., taught my last class (not telling the children, freshman, anything) and after class driving to my mother’s home.
I never called back the chancery for my immediate meeting.
On that Tuesday morning, very early I drove to the parish and left for the pastor and the other assistant my letters of departure, my keys, etc. and mailed to the school, the clergy, the laity and the bishop my letters; leaving detailed notes for any loose ends for the parish and the school if they needed it. In essence, it was a cowardly thing to do by not physically giving these things but at this point I was extremely angry at the invasion of my privacy and utterly frustrated and spent to be able to keep my cool and be virtuous in the meetings, plus I knew I would be berated up and down by everyone. So, like pulling off a band-aid, I left quickly and immediately. Again, messy, ugly and weak on my part and I will reap what I have sown. I never once thought about any criminal charges or anything as that would not have helped the situation and would only have come from my own anger.
I am in receipt of the letters you sent to "Bishop" Doran and to your parish staff and your parishioners and members of the clergy of the Diocese of Rockford. Is there anything that you would like to add to your letters?
A. I think the letters are pretty straightforward and express the situation. For all the trouble that this is causing and how the diocese is seeking to punish me to the full extent, I wonder with all the talk that Vatican II and all that goes with it extols on freedom for everything (religion, liberty, conscience, etc.) it seems that it only applies to those things and people who never question the Modernist teachings of the New Church. You would think that my reference to my conscience and how I cannot continue in the Novus Ordo would be respected and valued but it makes no difference to them. I wonder if the threats and eventual reality of being sanctioned and excommunicated, as they are seeking, would be leveled at me if I told them I was leaving to get married, or that I was leaving to be an Anglican or something. Heaven forbid that I am leaving to be an actual Catholic and, God willing, a true Catholic priest and for that “Hell hast no fury like a Modernist scorned!”
Q. What are your future plans?
A. My future plans are that I am going to spend the next few months at my mother’s home resting, recuperating, reading and studying. My family has not embraced my actions, in fact, the news is starting to reach our small town and people are asking them questions and I am afraid that they are more worried about how this will affect them and how people see them than about me. So I will spend the next few months trying to answer questions from them and preparing again for seminary. Plus, on a more positive note, I will get to spend a lot of time with my 2 black labs who are always happy to be with me!
Then in September I will attend Most Holy Trinity Seminary in Florida with Bishop Sanborn and learn and sort through the things that I learned in the conciliar seminary that were good and reject all that wasn’t and to continue to learn the Traditional Catholic Faith in all theological areas, including all the traditional rites of the Church as well as learning Latin. Amazing enough they did not teach Latin in seminary, only offering 2 classes in 5 years that I was there, so we had to try and study on our own. I and others were able to be good in the pronunciation of Latin but I need to understand the mother tongue of the Church. I am not sure how long I must be in seminary again, maybe 3 – 4 years more.
Q. Where do you hope to serve following your conditional ordination to the priesthood after the completion of your additional studies?
A. I will go wherever I would be needed. It would be nice to be able to stay close to my family but wherever those with much more holiness and wisdom than I deem it would be good to go, I’ll go there.
Q. Is there anything else that would like to add, Father Oswalt?
A. Nothing other than I would ask the continued prayers of your readers for me as I continue the ordeal I am in with the diocese and also for those younger clergy in the conciliar church who are trying to be faithful to the True Catholic Church that someday they, too, will come to realize the truth and leave the conciliar church to be a true priest of Jesus Christ. I would also be remiss if I didn’t put a plug in for anyone who would like to help with donations towards my expenses as I embark on this new path. Bishop Sanborn, in his great generosity, will allow me to attend seminary at no expense but I would like to be able to provide for as much as I can on my own to alleviate any burden upon them.
But most of all I ask for your prayers and I hope that your readers will see, minus all the mistakes I have made and continue to make and my own weakness and sinfulness, that it is in large part to the prayers of the faithful remnant that someone like me is able to break free and maybe a seed will be planted to any of the clergy in the conciliar church who is looking to leave and become a true priest by your continual prayers and sacrifices. For this, I am eternally grateful.
Q. Thank you for your time.
Although "Bishop" Doran accused Father Oswalt of having made "unspecified" charges of heresy concerning the "Second" Vatican Council and its aftermath, one can see that the letter Father Oswalt sent to the clergy of the Diocese of Rockford, which "Bishop" Doran received, was very specific and detailed:
Dear fellow clergy of the Diocese of Rockford:
I have decided to leave the Diocese of Rockford for the reason that I have come to the conclusion that the changes enacted by Vatican II are not compatible with Roman Catholicism.
No one denies that Vatican II imposed deep and vast changes upon the Catholic Church. But all change is either accidental or substantial. If the changes wrought by Vatican II are merely accidental, then there could be no justification in mounting opposition to them, even if one found them to be distasteful. On the other hand, if these changes are substantial, then the changes of Vatican II represent nothing less than the establishment of a new religion which differs essentially from Roman Catholicism. In such a case it would be the duty of every Catholic, and especially priests, to resist these changes and strive to dispel them from Catholic buildings and institutions, as Catholics have striven in the past to drive out Arianism, Nestorianism, Protestantism and the many other heresies which have attempted to overtake the Roman Catholic Church.
For many years I have studied the differences between pre-Vatican II Catholicism and the post-Vatican II religion. These differences appeared to me to be profound. But in all cases I strove as best I could to give the benefit of the doubt to those who were promulgating these changes. In many cases I was driven to denial, that is, to a blinding of myself to facts which I knew in my heart were true, but which I could not face as true.
No one denies, furthermore, that the Faith which was believed and practiced up to the Second Vatican Council was Roman Catholicism, that is, the religion and Church founded by Our Lord Jesus Christ, which we believe to be the one, true Church outside of which there is no salvation. All must concede, therefore, that in order that the post-Vatican II religion qualify as truly Roman Catholic, it must conform substantially in all things with the pre-Vatican II Faith and practice. In other words, in order to legitimately and truthfully claim that we are Roman Catholic priests, it is necessary that there be a substantial continuity between the pre-Vatican II Faith and the post-Vatican II changes. If this substantial continuity is broken, then we as priests lose our link to Our Lord Jesus Christ, to the Roman Catholic Church, to every true Roman Pontiff who ever sat on the throne of Peter, to all of the saints of heaven, indeed to every Catholic who has preceded us in the Faith. We lose our claim to apostolicity, to unity of faith, to catholicity, and to sanctity. Indeed it would be difficult to think of anything more false, more absurd, more useless, nay more dangerous, than a priest who claims to be Catholic, but who has lost continuity with the sacred tradition of Roman Catholicism.
It remains for me, therefore, to prove this claim of discontinuity between present and past, a claim which for some may seem outlandish, but for other some a truth which lies deeply buried in their minds, and weighs heavily on their hearts. The evidence for the position which I am taking is indeed vast. It would require a book of many volumes to do justice to the evidence which must be presented. But I will present these convincing facts and arguments in a condensed manner, and invite at the same time all who may be interested to further reading in various books, websites, and periodicals.
I will present the evidence in the following manner: (1) the heresies contained in Vatican II; (2) the heresy taught in the 1983 Code of Canon Law, and the sinful practices sanctioned by it; (3) how the 1969 New Mass is false and non-Catholic worship, as it is a liturgical expression of the heresies of Vatican II; (4) the heteropraxis of the Vatican II religion, that is, the confirmation of the heretical nature of Vatican II by the common observances and practices of the Vatican II religion, whether officially sanctioned and practiced by its hierarchy, or merely approved by silence on a universal level; (5) how the sacraments have been altered substantially, leading in many cases to either invalidity or doubt of validity; (6) the heresies which are publicly professed by Benedict XVI; (7) how the four marks of the Catholic Church cannot be found in the new religion of Vatican II.
I will then summarize by pointing out that in the three essential elements of any religion, namely in doctrine, worship, and discipline, Vatican II and its subsequent changes have effected a substantial change of the Catholic Faith. From thence I will draw all of the logical conclusions, both speculative and practical.
The heresies contained in Vatican II. There are four principal heresies contained in this Council.
The first is that of ecumenism, found in the document Redintegratio Unitatis, which teaches that non-Catholic religions are means of salvation. This heretical doctrine was later emphasized in John Paul II’s Catechesi Tradendæ. This assertion is directly contrary to the doctrine that outside of the Church there is no salvation, which Pope Pius IX called “a most well-known Catholic dogma.” Both the notion and the practices of ecumenism were condemned by Pope Pius XI in the encyclical Mortalium Animos of 1928.
The second heresy is that concerning the unity Church, namely that the Church of Christ is not exclusively identified with the Catholic Church, but merely subsists in it. This heretical doctrine is contained principally in Lumen Gentium, and its heretical meaning is confirmed in statements of John Paul II and Benedict XVI, particularly in the 1983 Code of Canon Law, in the 1992 Statement concerning Church and Communion, and in the Ecumenical Directory. It is contrary to the teaching of the Catholic Church, contained principally in Satis Cognitum of Pope Leo XIII, Mortalium Animos of Pope Pius XI, Mystici Corporis of Pope Pius XII, and in the condemnations of the “Branch Theory” made by the Holy Office under Pope Pius IX.
The third heresy is that of religious liberty, in Dignitatis Humanæ, which nearly word for word asserts the very doctrine which was condemned by Pope Pius VII in Post Tam Diuturnas, by Pope Gregory XVI in Mirari Vos, by Pope Pius IX in Quanta Cura, and by Pope Leo XIII in Libertas Præstantissimum. The teaching of Vatican II on religious liberty also contradicts the royalty of Jesus Christ in society as expressed in Quas Primas of Pope Pius XI, and the constant attitude and practice of the Church with regard to civil society.
The fourth heresy is that of collegiality which alters the monarchical constitution of the Catholic Church, with which she was endowed by the Divine Savior. The doctrine of Vatican II, confirmed by the 1983 Code of Canon Law, which states that the subject (the possessor) of the supreme authority of the Church is the college of bishops together with the pope, is contrary to the defined doctrine of the Council of Florence and of Vatican I.
The heresy taught in the 1983 Code of Canon Law, and the sinful practices sanctioned by it. The 1983 Code of Canon Law contains the heresy of Vatican II concerning the unity of the Church, contained in Lumen Gentium.1 It also permits sacrilege to the Blessed Sacrament, by approving of its reception by non-Catholics, which is a mortal sin, and permits communicatio in sacris with non-Catholics, which is also a mortal sin. In addition, the Ecumenical Directory of 1993 permits ecumenical practices which have always been taught by the Church to be mortally sinful.
How the 1969 New Mass is false and non-Catholic worship, as it is a liturgical expression of the heresies of Vatican II. (1) It contains a heretical definition of the Mass in the original General Instruction2; (2) it was composed with the express purpose of making an ecumenical liturgy, pleasing to Protestants, stripped of Catholic truths concerning the priesthood, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and the Real Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist; (3) it was composed with the help and input of six Protestant ministers, which shows the heretical spirit in which it was conceived and formulated; (4) its authors systematically deleted from its prayers and lessons doctrines which would be offensive to heretics; (5) it teaches, both by its omissions and its symbolism and gestures, heresies and errors concerning the priesthood, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and the Real Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist; (6) it is most probably invalid owing to a defect of intention which it causes in him who celebrates it, and owing, at least in the vernacular, to a blasphemous alteration of the words of Christ in the consecration formula; (7) the original edition contained the Arian heresy in the fourth eucharistic prayer, by saying to God the Father: “You alone are God,” without any reference to the other Persons.3
The heteropraxis of the Vatican II religion, that is, the confirmation of the heretical nature of Vatican II by the common observances and practices of the Vatican II religion, whether officially sanctioned and practiced by its hierarchy, or merely approved by silence on a universal level. That Vatican II did indeed inject a new and false religion into the institutions of the Catholic Church can been seen from the years of abominable practices. These include: (a) sins against the First Commandment of God in the form of ecumenical services of all kinds; (b) pastoral and liturgical practices which implicitly condone homosexual sins; (c) weird and profane liturgical aberrations, at times using impurely dressed girls and/or rites which are derived from paganism; (d) the destruction of the Sacrament of Matrimony by indiscriminate granting of annulments, and for false reasons; (e) the implicit, or sometimes explicit, condoning of artificial birth control; (f) the reign of heresy in Catholic seminaries, universities, and parochial schools; (g) the substantial alteration of the Sacrament of Extreme Unction by conferring it upon those who are not in proximate danger of death; (h) the practice of communion in the hand, with the result that what purports to be the Body and Blood of Christ is many times treated in a gravely sacrilegious manner;
How the sacraments have been altered substantially, leading in many cases to either invalidity or doubt of validity. Episcopal consecration was rendered invalid in the Latin rite by the introduction of the 1968 rite of the ordination of bishops. Although it purports to be using a form which is derived from the Eastern rites, in fact what was taken from these rites was not the essential form of episcopal consecration, but instead the ceremony for the installation of patriarchs, who were already consecrated. The 1968 rite of consecration fails to mention the grace of the episcopal dignity as the fullness of the priesthood.
There is no need to mention the enormity of this problem, that since 1968 the validity of bishops in the Latin rite has been gradually snuffed out, and with it the validity of the priests whom they attempt to ordain. Apart from every other consideration of Vatican II and its effects, this is by far the worst. In turn, it has invalidated or promises to invalidate every other sacrament except Baptism and Matrimony.
The validity, furthermore, of the Mass has been compromised by the intention of the rite, which is expressed in the General Instruction. In this document, the words of consecration, formerly set apart from the rest of the text and in bold type, are now referred to as the “institution narrative.” But if a priest, even validly ordained, says these words as merely an institution narrative, he does not consecrate, owing lack of proper intention, the Body and Blood of Christ. Indeed, these very words, “institution narrative,” in referring to the sacred declaration of the priest, “This is My Body,” effecting Transubstantiation, are proof positive of the Protestant character of the New Mass.
The validity of the consecration of the wine is rendered doubtful by the false translation of pro multis as for all. Anyone with a fundamental knowledge of the original Greek knows that this is a mistranslation of these most sacred words, indeed a blasphemous distortion of the actual words of Christ. Because it is possible that these words are required for validity, the consecration of the wine at the New Mass is made doubtful, since this mistranslation could constitute a substantial alteration of the essential form.
But the Vatican II religion has abandoned the very idea of the necessity of matter and form, in any case, since John Paul II approved as valid “Masses” of the Assyrian church, a schismatic sect which descends from the Nestorians, in whose “Masses” there are no words of consecration. Such an approval is to abandon the Church’s universal teaching and practice concerning the validity of the sacraments, and is therefore heretical.
Other alterations have cast doubt upon the Sacraments of Extreme Unction, Confirmation, and Holy Orders.
The heresies which are publicly professed by Benedict XVI and other members of the Vatican II hierarchy. Benedict XVI teaches the following heresies, among others:
(1) That ecumenism does not seek that someone in another religion convert to the Catholic religion.
(2) That Jewish messianic expectation is not in vain.
(3) That there are perfectly good reasons to say that the Old Testament does not refer to Christ.
(4) Calling into doubt the dogma of the primacy of jurisdiction of the Roman Pontiff.
(5) The fact that he recognizes schismatic bishops as “pastors of the Church.”
(6) the fact that he hopes that Protestant sects not dissolve, but “that they will be strengthened in their confessions and in their ecclesial reality.”
(7) That the Catholic Church “has no right to absorb other Churches, but instead that a “basic unity – of Churches that remain Churches, yet become one Church – must replace the idea of conversion.”
(8) That there is “the saving presence of the Lord in the [Protestant] Evangelical Lord’s Supper.”
(9) That Protestantism is not a heresy.
(10) That the “validity of the liturgy depends primarily, not on specific words, but on the community of the Church...”
(11) That the baptism of infants is a questionable practice.
(12) That the biblical creation story is in part based on pagan accounts.
(13) That the Koran, which explicitly denies the divinity of Christ and refers to women as cattle, is a holy book of a great religion for which he has respect.
(14) That there are such things as pagan saints.
(15) That non-Catholic religions are means of salvation.
(16) That the term “original sin” is misleading and imprecise.
(17) That the Church of Christ exists outside of the boundaries of the Catholic Church.
(18) That the Church of Christ is divided.
(19) That the unity of the Church is still in the process of formation.
(20) That it is important that everyone can belong to the religion of his choice.
(21) That there will be no resurrection of bodies from the dead.
(22) That in the Holy Eucharist, “Christ is in the bread,” thereby espousing Luther’s doctrine of impanation or consubstantiation.
This list could be much longer, but space does not permit us to elaborate further. (If anyone wishes to see references and quotations which substantiate these accusations of heresy, he may obtain them by requesting them from me).
How the four marks of the Catholic Church cannot be found in the new religion of Vatican II. The four marks of the Church, found in the Nicene Creed, are the essential characteristics of the true Church of Christ, by which it is distinguishable from false sects. But these four marks — one, holy, catholic, and apostolic — are missing from the Vatican II religion.
The new religion is not holy because of (1) its public profession and promulgation of heresy with regard to both faith and morals; (2) its false and evil disciplines; (3) the grave sins against the First Commandment which it condones and promotes in the name of ecumenism.
The new religion is not one, because the unity of faith has been completely destroyed in it. It has lost its unity of faith with the previous ages of the Church, since it has broken away from the ancient doctrines. It has, furthermore no unity of faith within itself. Indeed every doctrinal aberration is permitted. The only doctrinal sin after Vatican II is to adhere to the Catholic Faith as the one, true Faith.
The new religion is not catholic, or universal, since without unity of doctrine, without consistency with the past, catholicity is impossible. For catholicity is nothing else than to be one thing, i.e., one faith, one discipline, and one worship, applied to all places and times in the world. But I have already pointed out the break with the past in so many ways, as well as the interior doctrinal, disciplinary, and liturgical chaos which currently exists in the new religion. There is, therefore, no mark of catholicity.
Finally, there is no apostolicity. The Vatican II religion has dissolved the bonds of unity with the Apostles in doctrine, worship and discipline. It has broken the line of apostolic succession by the invalid consecration of bishops. It has altered the Apostolic constitution of the Catholic Church by altering the notion and role of the Roman Pontiff.
In short, the new religion is nothing but a non-Catholic sect, just one of so many which have risen up in the past two thousand years in an attempt to alter the Church of Christ.
For this reason, after much prayer and reflection, I have decided to leave this religion which is alien to the Catholic Faith as it has been always known and practiced, and cherished by my Catholic ancestors. I want to die in the same faith as they did, and not in Modernism. I want to be a true Catholic priest, and say a valid and Catholic Mass, which sanctified souls so efficaciously for centuries, and built up the Church to the magnificent structure which it was in 1958, when Pope Pius XII passed away.
Since that fateful day of his passing, the Catholic Church has gone into a tailspin of decline, immorality, and misfortune. It has been reduced, miserably, to a small number of faithful who have undertaken to resist the onslaught of Modernism, so forcefully condemned by Saint Pius X. May God grant me the grace to live in the true and holy Catholic priesthood, and to die in the sacred Faith of our ancestors.
Avoiding any and all discussions of the substantive issues raised by Father Oswalt's letter, "Bishop" Doran sent a letter, dated March 13, 2009, that threatened Father Oswalt with all manner of canonical sanctions according to the 1983 Code of Canon Law promulgated by the false "pontiff," Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II:
I was saddened and disappointed to receive your letters last week. From our discussion in this office, I had hoped that you would follow the example of Jacob; instead you have followed Esau. This is discouraging to all of us who had come to know and respect you, including, even though they may not say so in so many words, members of your own family.
I know you realize that implementing the steps you indicate must, as far as I am concerned in the exercise of my sacred office, have serious consequences about which I warn you now. The material that you sent suggests an obstinate external rejection (cf. c. 1330) of the Doctrine of the Faith, (cf. c. 750 #2), and of Ecclesial Communion (c. 209).
These things do subject you to the censure of c. 1364 #1, and the strictures of c. 1331 #1, and if you persist in this, and I am forced to make a declaration of your condition, the strictures also of c. 1331 #2. Since you are a cleric, the penalties of c. 1336 #1 also apply.
Therefore, it is my pastoral duty to urge you to think over what your decision will require us to do and to realize that at this moment it is not impossible for you to reenter the Communion of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.
I urge you to be in touch with either Monsignor Eric Barr, the Vicar for Clergy, or with Father Matthew Bergschneider, my secretary, to arrange for your reentry within 10 days from the receipt of this letter.
Commending you to the help of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and His Blessed Mother, I remain
Sincerely yours in Christ,
The Most Reverend Thomas G. Doran, D.D., J.C.D.
Bishop of Rockford
Father Oswalt responded to "Bishop" Doran as follows:
Thank you for your letter.
With all due respect, however, I do not consider it to be an adequate response. You merely cited the numbers of various canons to me, as if my departure was somehow tied to non-observance of various legalistic details.
I fear that this is a red herring. In my March 2 letter, I said that I came to “a moral certitude in my conscience that the changes enacted by Vatican II are not compatible with Roman Catholicism,” and that my experiences in the parish “put flesh” on this.
I also sent a letter to fellow clergy of the Diocese of Rockford explaining various points about the heresies of Vatican II, the unorthodox practices it promoted, the substantial changes in the sacraments, etc.
These are serious and substantive doctrinal issues, and as a “teacher of doctrine” (c. 375.1), you would be obliged to address them.
I respectfully request that you take the time to address in writing the doctrinal issues I raised in my previous letters.
Awaiting your response, Your Excellency, I am
Father Michael Oswalt
"Bishop" Doran's response to Father Oswalt's reply to his own letter of March 13, 2009 ignored entirely the fact that Father Oswalt had indeed been most specific in his recitation of the incompatibility of the conciliar changes with the Catholic Faith:
While I thank you for your prompt response to my letter of March 13, 2009, I am sorry that you mistake its purpose. Let me try to be clearer – that letter was like this one, a required canonical warning to you of the Ecclesiastical censures to which you are liable by virtue of your embrace of “heterodoxy.” While it is certainly possible to discuss many of the matters that have troubled you, the time for dialogue is over.
You allege without specificity that the “changes” (globatim) are not compatible with Roman Catholicism. You further allege that certain subjective experiences of yours (unspecified and undetailed) somehow establish this. You describe heresies, unorthodox practices and substantial changes in the sacraments which you do not detail. If, as you assert, these are serious and substantive issues, you should be able to prove them. What c. 375 prescribes for bishops, c. 279 prescribes for presbyters.
You note the relevant canons that pertain to your situation. I have known you, Michael, through all the years of your seminary formation. In one of your letters, you spoke of many “years” of struggle to come to the point in which you now find yourself. Less than 12 months ago, you took an oath of fidelity to adhere to the dogmas, doctrines and teachings of the Catholic faith that were handed down by tradition through the successors of St. Peter and all bishops in communion with him. That, too, was an act of conscience, and I know you took it freely and without any force of any kind.
The basis upon which I make my claims rests not on this or that magisterial teaching, but upon the words of the head of the Church Himself in Matthew 16: 17-19; cf. 18:18, Luke 31-32. Relying on these words of the Savior, I require no others.
The path of the Church from Christ down through time is strewn with the unmarked graves of those who contest the authority that Jesus gave to St. Peter and the college of the Apostles and their successors. It is my prayer that you will adhere to St. Peter in his humility rather than to the heretics and their pride.
I remind you of what I said to you before. For the second time I warn you that if you continue to reject the norms of c. 1330, 750 #2, and c. 209, you are liable to the censure of c. 1364 #1 and the strictures of c. 1331 #2. Since you are a cleric, the penalties of c. 1336 #1 also apply. This is the second of the canonical warnings.
Therefore, it is my pastoral duty to urge you to think over what your decision will require us to do and to realize that at this moment it is not impossible for you to reenter the Communion of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.
I urge you to be in touch with either Monsignor Eric Barr or with Father Matthew Bergschneider to arrange your reentry within 10 days from the receipt of this letter.
Commending you to the help of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and His Blessed Mother, I remain
Sincerely yours in Christ,
The Most Reverend Thomas G. Doran, D.D., J.C.D.
Bishop of Rockford
Father Oswalt replied to this second letter from "Bishop" Doran as follows:
It is clear from your letter that you wish to charge me with the crime of heresy, which according to Catholic moral teaching is worse than the sin of cold-blooded murder. Would Your Excellency be so kind as to point out to me any doctrine I am holding which is contrary to divine and catholic Faith, or any doctrine of divine and catholic faith which I deny? For heresy to me is most abhorrent, and it is precisely to avoid falling into heresy that I have taken this decision to no longer function as a Vatican II priest.
I do find it ironic that you feel the need to prosecute me for heresy, the "heresy" of adhering to pre-Vatican II Catholicism, while the denial of the Catholic Faith and moral teaching has free rein in your diocese, as well as in every other.
Sincerely yours in Christ, etc.
Father Oswalt has received no response as of yet to his third letter to "Bishop" Doran.
Father Oswalt's former pastor, Monsignor Joe Linster, issued the following statement in the parish bulletin of Saint Patrick Church in Saint Charles, Illinois, on Sunday, March 15, 2009:
Last weekend, I spoke at all the Masses (except the
Saturday, 4 p.m., Crane Road Church—it wasn’t appropriate
during that mass for Here I Am Lord vocations
conference) about the situation with Fr. Michael
Oswalt. It is important to put those words in print so
that they are properly remembered…
On Tuesday morning, March 3, I found a letter on my
desk from Fr. Oswalt informing me that he has left St.
Patrick Parish and the Diocese of Rockford. He intends
to join a traditionalist movement that does not consider
Pope Benedict XVI, or any other pope since the death
of Pope Pius XII in 1958, to be a true pope of the Roman
Catholic Church. It is also a movement that totally
rejects the changes enacted by the second Vatican
Council. Because of those two points, this movement
maintains that the Catholic Church as we know it is not
the one, true Roman Catholic Church of Jesus Christ.
By doing this, Fr. Oswalt has left the priesthood.
I informed the bishop of this situation and he has
asked me to personally deliver this letter to you:
“My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ: It is with
great sadness that I write this letter to you regarding
Father Michael Oswalt and his leaving St. Patrick Parish
and his assignment as your Associate Pastor. We
must be grateful to our Holy Father, Pope Benedict
XVI, for his heroic efforts to reconcile disaffected and
dissident groups with the one true Catholic Church.
Our Holy Father’s efforts are intended to avoid incidents
such as Father Oswalt’s erroneous and unfortunate
decision to abandon his present assignment.
“I request most sincerely that you offer daily prayer
for Father Oswalt that by God’s grace he will realize
and recognize his error and peaceably return to and be
reconciled with the Catholic Church. Moreover, I ask
all of you to continue to remember in your daily
prayers, your good and faithful parish priests here at
St. Patrick Parish, all the priests of the Diocese, both
secular and religious, and finally I ask you to pray for me, your Bishop, that I too may humbly fulfill all the duties entrusted to me by the Lord.
“Please know that I am praying for all of you at St. Patrick Parish that you will grow and prosper in your faith, hope, and charity before God our Father.
“With every good wish, I remain, Cordially yours in
Christ, The Most Reverend Thomas G. Doran, Bishop of Rockford.”
Obviously, this situation has had profound effect, not
only on Fr. Simon and me, but on our entire parish staff.
I understand that Fr. Oswalt has mailed a letter to several
parishioners and that that letter has been summarized
and emailed to other parishioners. That is unfortunate,
especially the email because what Fr. Oswalt
states in that letter does not need to be widely disseminated.
In that letter, Fr. Oswalt writes that he has done
nothing wrong nor has he left the priesthood. Both of
those statements are false… they are wrong… they are
not true. Perhaps not from Michael Oswalt’s point of
view, but from bishop Doran’s point of view and even
from Pope Benedict’s point of view—what he has done
is wrong and he has left the priesthood.
I only wish that Michael would have been truthful
with me in this situation. It would not have changed the
outcome, but things could have been handled in an honest,
I must admit that this incident did not catch me by
surprise. In fact, several weeks ago, I told Msgr. Barr
(the Diocesan Vicar for Clergy) that I expected Michael
to be leaving. Because of that, we already have another
priest assigned to the parish. His name is Fr. Nicholas
Federspiel and his appointment became effective on
Friday, March 13… things don’t usually happen this
It is important that I mention my appreciation for the
support and encouragement I am receiving from Fr.
Simon and the parish staff. They are a wonderful group
of people and we are fortunate to have them ministering
in our parish. I also want to express my appreciation
for the support I receive from Fr. Joe Lutz and the
Benedictine priests of Marmion Abbey. We would be
hard pressed if it wasn’t for their faithful assistance.
Finally, I want to thank you, the parishioners of St.
Patrick, for the support and encouragement you have
given me, not only in this situation, but in the many
other areas of parish activities. It is hard to believe that
I have been your pastor for sixteen years and all
throughout those years, I have felt your support… for
that, I am very grateful!
Please remember what Bishop Doran wrote in his
letter… we need to keep Fr. Oswalt in our prayers.
I end by quoting the late Paul Harvey… “now you
know the rest of the story.” (March 15, 2009, Saint Patrick Church Bulletin, Saint Charles, Illinois)
May God bless you!
Msgr. Joe Linster
In light of Monsignor Linster's statement in the Saint Patrick Church bulletin of March 15, 2009, I sent him the following questions on Monday March 30, 2009, which, as will be seen shortly, will remain unanswered:
I have come across the statement you included in your parish's March 15, 2009, Bulletin. As I am preparing an extensive article on Father Michael Oswalt's departure from the counterfeit church of conciliarism, I want to ask you a few questions for the record as a matter of fundamental fairness in accordance with the binding precepts of the Eighth Commandment. (Other questions have been submitted to Monsignor Eric Barr to be forward to Bishop Doran.)
1) You noted in your statement that you had wished that Father Oswalt had been "truthful" with you about his plans. Could you elaborate on why you believe that Father Oswalt had been less than forthright with you?
2) Father Oswalt has stated for the record that he noticed that personal effects in his room, including the letters that he intended to send out to various recipients, including yourself, had been disturbed. It is his contention that you entered his room without his permission and reviewed the contents of his letters, which is why he had been called into the chancery office on March 2, 2009, before he had submitted any of his letters. Is this true?
3) Father Oswalt has stated that your parish's secretary had reported to you, Monsignor Linster, the websites that he, Father Oswalt, was visiting? Is this true?
4) Father Oswalt has stated that you, Monsignor Linster, had criticized him, Father Oswalt, for wearing a cassock and for his preaching about various subjects. Is this true?
5) Father Oswalt has stated that you, Monsignor Linster, said the following to him: "Which Church are you trying to be the son of, the pre-Vatican II Church or the post-Vatican II Church?" Is this true? If it is true, Monsignor, why did you ask such a question?
6) Why did you state that Father Oswalt's letter should not be widely circulated? He documents--with great specificity--the contradictions between the Catholic Faith and the false religion of conciliarism. Why should not the people be informed of these facts that have been subjected to Hegelian illogic and outright double-speak in the past forty years that conform completely to Pope Saint Pius X's description of the methodology of Modernists that he wrote in Pascendi Dominci Gregis, September 8, 1907?
7) Why were the proceeds of Father Oswalt's last paycheck taken out of his personal savings account without his permission or knowledge?
As I would like to proceed with the publication of my article by tomorrow, March 31, 2009, I would appreciate your most kind cooperation in answering these questions.
Sincerely yours in Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen,
Thomas A. Droleskey, Ph.D.
Father Oswalt has, of course, addressed the matter of his failing to leave the conciliar structures, as he was advised to do, with alacrity. He has expressed his regrets for not having done so.
That having been noted, however, it is rather interesting that Monsignor Linster makes it appear in his March 15, 2009, statement that he only learned of Father Oswalt's letter to him when it was placed on his desk on March 3, 2009, a contention that is difficult to reconcile with the fact that Father Oswalt had been called by a chancery official on March 2, 2009, two days after he, Father Oswalt noticed that his effects had been examined while he was out of his room. This fact is left out of Monsignor "Joe's" statement to the parishioners of Saint Patrick Church in Saint Charles, Illinois.
I also submitted the following questions to "Bishop" Doran, indicating that I would need a response by Tuesday, March 31, 2009, for the completion of this article. As will be explained below these question also will go unanswered:
Father Michael Oswalt has been kind enough to share with me a letter that he sent to you and to each of the priests of the Diocese of Rockford. The letter is quite specific concerning the divergences between the Catholic Faith and the new religion that has been advanced by the "Second" Vatican Council and the men who have claimed to be the Successors of Saint Peter in this new religion. In light of Father Oswalt's substantive letter, I have the following questions to ask of you for the readers of www.Christorchaos.com:
1) Why have you--or any of your diocesan staff--not attempted to address the substance of the claims made by Father Oswalt in his letter to the clergy of the Diocese of Rockford that was sent to you as well?
2) You have intimated that Father Oswalt is guilty of heresy. Could you please specify which article (or articles) contained in the Deposit of Faith that Father Oswalt disbelieves?
3) Perhaps it is the case that you believe that the assertion that the See of Peter is vacant in the case of heresy is itself a heretical view to hold. Do you believe this to be the case?
4) Was the late Mario Francesco Cardinal Pompedda, the Prefect of the Apostolic Signatura from 1999 to 2004, said the following in 2005 just two months before the death of John Paul II:
"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.).
Was Cardinal Pompedda guilty of heresy for stating that the canonical doctrine of the Catholic Church is indeed that the See of Peter is vacant in the case of heresy?
5) You have called Father Oswalt to "return" to communion with the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church from which he has not departed. Have you ever, publicly or privately, called a Protestant "minister" or a Jewish rabbi or Mohammedan "cleric" to return to communion with the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church?
6) What justified Father Oswalt's pastor rifling through his private letters and effects in his room on Saturday, February 28, 2009? Can you cite any statutes on the books in the State of Illinois that justify this invasion of Father Oswalt's privacy? Would Father Oswalt have been within his legal rights to conduct a search through his pastor's office?
7) By what legal authority did the Diocese of Rockford act to seize the proceeds of Father Oswalt's last paycheck from the Diocese of Rockford that he had deposited into his savings account? Had he given "power of attorney" for this withdrawal? Does the Diocese of Rockford have a legal agreement with the bank in question to seize the assets of one of their depositors upon a demand being made for such a seizure by a representative of the diocese?
8) Why was Father Oswalt under "suspicion" by his pastor for wearing a cassock and preaching the perennial truths of the Catholic Faith from the pulpit?
9) Why did Father Oswalt's pastor ask him the following question: “Which Church are you trying to be the son of, the pre-Vatican II Church or the post-Vatican II Church?" Does Father Oswalt's pastor believe that the patrimony of the Catholic Church prior to the "Second" Vatican Council is irrelevant, if not harmful, to the eternal good of souls.
10) It is my information that another priest of your diocese, Father John Fritz, while remaining within the conciliar structures, has refused to say the Novus Ordo any longer. Is this true? What penalties, if any, have you imposed upon Father Fritz, whose parents we met when I spoke in Davenport, Iowa, three years ago now?
11) Pasted below is just a partial and very incomplete listing of the obvious contradictions between the beliefs of Benedict XVI and the teaching of the Catholic Church. Could you reconcile those contradictions in light of Paragraph 9 of Pope Leo XIII's Satis Cognitum, June 29, 1896. [Readers of this site, please see A Reference Resource: Ratzinger's War Against Catholicism for this list of contradictions, variations of which have been published on this site in many articles recently.]
As I would like to proceed to the publication of my article on this matter by Tuesday, March 31, 2009, I would like to ask Your Excellency (or one of your assistants) to respond as promptly as you have to Father Oswalt's communications.
If, however, you choose to ignore the substantive issues raised herein as you have with Father Oswalt's letter to your clergy, I will have no choice but to publish my questions to you with these obvious and undeniable contradictions between the beliefs of Benedict XVI and the perennial teaching of the Catholic Church in the body of my article about Father Oswalt's situation
Thanking you for your attention to these questions and assuring you of a remembrance in my prayers every single day without fail, I am.
Sincerely yours in Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen,
Thomas A. Droleskey, Ph.D., Publisher-Editor, www.Christorchaos.com
Monsignor Eric Barr, the Vicar for the Clergy of the Diocese of Rockford, wrote to me on March 31, 2009, as follows:
Dear Dr. Droleskey,
Thank you for your e-mail. I did discuss this matter with Bishop and he asked me to write you and say that the matter of Father Michael Oswalt is sub judice: In other words, the matter is being handled canonically, so of course, neither the Bishop nor anyone else in authority can discuss the matter.
I know that as a writer and reporter that doesn’t help you much, but I am sure you can understand the position we are in. I only hope that you will join with me in praying for Father Oswalt, that his situation may be clarified and that he may remain within the Roman Catholic Church.
With every best wish for a blessed holy week, I remain
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Monsignor Eric Barr
Episcopal Vicar for Clergy and Religious
Diocese of Rockford, Illinois
I responded to Monsignor Barr as follows within a few hours of the receipt of his note on March 31, 2009, after having left him two voice messages (one at 4:28 p.m. on Monday, March 30, 2009, and the other at around 8:50 a.m. on Tuesday, March 31, 2009) for him prior to the receipt of his e-mail:
Dear Monsignor Barr,
I thank you for taking the the time to write to me.
It would be pointless to engage in a colloquy on this matter. I will only point out that Father Oswalt has no more left the Catholic Church than did Saint Athanasius when he was exiled by the Arians.
The words contained in the letter that Saint Athanasius sent to his flock in the Fourth Century apply in these our days:
"May God console you! ... What saddens you ... is the fact that others have occupied the churches by violence, while during this time you are on the outside. It is a fact that they have the premises – but you have the Apostolic Faith. They can occupy our churches, but they are outside the true Faith. You remain outside the places of worship, but the Faith dwells within you. Let us consider: what is more important, the place or the Faith? The true Faith, obviously. Who has lost and who has won in the struggle – the one who keeps the premises or the one who keeps the Faith? True, the premises are good when the Apostolic Faith is preached there; they are holy if everything takes place there in a holy way ...
"You are the ones who are happy; you who remain within the Church by your Faith, who hold firmly to the foundations of the Faith which has come down to you from Apostolic Tradition. And if an execrable jealousy has tried to shake it on a number of occasions, it has not succeeded. They are the ones who have broken away from it in the present crisis. No one, ever, will prevail against your Faith, beloved Brothers. And we believe that God will give us our churches back some day.
"Thus, the more violently they try to occupy the places of worship, the more they separate themselves from the Church. They claim that they represent the Church; but in reality, they are the ones who are expelling themselves from it and going astray. Even if Catholics faithful to Tradition are reduced to a handful, they are the ones who are the true Church of Jesus Christ." (Letter of St. Athanasius)
I have no doubt, Monsignor Barr, that these words apply equally as well today to the situation wrought by the heresies and apostasies of the false religion of conciliarism.
With prayers during this Passiontide, I am.
Sincerely yours in Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen,
Thomas A. Droleskey, Ph.D.
Remembering that we must pray for the conversion of the officials of the counterfeit church of conciliarism, especially for those who are in custody of the offices of the Catholic Church within the boundaries of the dioceses where we assist at Holy Mass offered at the hands of true bishops and true priests who make no concessions to these conciliar officials or to the false religion they represent, we must also remember that "ecumenical dialogue" with these officials is almost as fruitless as the "ecumenical dialogue" that they, the conciliar officials, have undertaken with non-Catholics.
Nothing gets accomplished by these exercises in what Pope Pius XI termed in Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928, as "obstinate wranglings." We must proclaim the truths of the true Faith with love, that is with an act of the will to seek the eternal good of those from whom the circumstances of the moment estrange us for one reason or another, and trust that the graces that Our Lady sends to the souls for whose conversion to the true Faith we pray--and to whom we seek to proclaim the truths of the true Faith--will respond positively to those graces and not kick them away reflexively.
Regardless of how others respond to our own poor efforts to proclaim the truths of the true Faith, efforts that are, of course, hindered so frequently by our own weaknesses and limitations and the cumulative effects of our sins upon our intellects and or wills, we must never delay taking action to embrace the truth once we have come to understand and accept it. A mere intellectual grasp of the fact that those who defect from the Faith cannot hold ecclesiastical office legitimately is useless unless we seek to flee from association with those who are enemies of the Faith, mindful, of course, that we are not one whit better than anyone else and that we must be serious about the conversion of our own souls on a daily basis by means of a fervent and earnest cooperation with the graces won for us by the shedding of every single drop of the Most Precious Blood of the Divine Redeemer, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, as they are sent into our souls through the loving hands of Our Lady, she who is the Mediatrix of All Graces.
Just as one outside of the Faith is culpable before God once he comes to know and to accept the fact that the Catholic Faith is the one and only true religion, so is it the case that we are culpable before God once we come to recognize and accept that conciliarism is a false religion and that the conciliar officials are no more representatives of the Catholic Church or administrators of the Sacred Mysteries than the "clergy" of any other non-Catholic religion. God expects us to act on the knowledge that He gives to us.
While it is one thing to take one's time to deliberate on these most important matters, about which there is no margin for error as nothing other than the salvation of our souls is at sake, it is quite another to keep waiting for some "sign from Heaven," if you will, to conclude the counterfeit church is false and its sacraments are bogus. The evidence is overwhelming about the falsity of conciliarism. The false ecclesiology of the Society of Saint Pius X that has damaged so many souls has been critiqued most openly. The hour is late. People need to flee from anything and everything to do with conciliarism.
Obviously, this is a decision that each person, including priests, legitimately ordained or not, in the structures of the counterfeit church of conciliarism, must make for himself. We can and must provide information to others, including priests in the conciliar structures, giving them also the contact information for our true bishops so that they can know where to turn if they find the information compelling.
More importantly, however, we must, after acting as a disseminator of information, commend these people, including priests in the conciliar structures, to the mercies of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus as we commend them to this Heart of hearts through the Immaculate Heart of Mary. We must not look for any results of our efforts, remembering that Saint Philip was whisked away by God the Holy Ghost after baptizing a convert from Ethiopia, never knowing in this life what happened to his convert. We must have the same detachment as Saint Philip:
Now an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying: Arise, go towards the south, to the way that goeth down from Jerusalem into Gaza: this is desert. And rising up, he went. And behold a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch, of great authority under Candace the queen of the Ethiopians, who had charge over all her treasures, had come to Jerusalem to adore. And he was returning, sitting in his chariot, and reading Isaias the prophet. And the Spirit said to Philip: Go near, and join thyself to this chariot. And Philip running thither, heard him reading the prophet Isaias. And he said: Thinkest thou that thou understandest what thou readest?
Who said: And how can I, unless some man shew me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him. And the place of the scripture which he was reading was this: He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb without voice before his shearer, so openeth he not his mouth. In humility his judgment was taken away. His generation who shall declare, for his life shall be taken from the earth? And the eunuch answering Philip, said: I beseech thee, of whom doth the prophet speak this? of himself, or of some other man? Then Philip, opening his mouth, and beginning at this scripture, preached unto him Jesus.
And as they went on their way, they came to a certain water; and the eunuch said: See, here is water: what doth hinder me from being baptized? And Philip said: If thou believest with all thy heart, thou mayest. And he answering, said: I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still; and they went down into the water, both Philip and the eunuch: and he baptized him. And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord took away Philip; and the eunuch saw him no more. And he went on his way rejoicing. But Philip was found in Azotus; and passing through, he preached the gospel to all the cities, till he came to Caesarea. (Acts 8: 26-40.)
We cannot, however, "badger" those who had yet to embrace the canonical doctrine of sedevacantism and that it applies to the conciliar "pontiffs."
For example, I use no advertising or "hit boosters" to increase traffic for this site. People are led to this site in a variety of different ways in the Providence of God. We have to retain a "human sense" of the simple fact that most people do not respond well to being badgered on a constant basis with information they are not ready to review, no less to accept and thus to act upon with alacrity.
Indeed, some of the worst witnesses for sedevacantism we met in the years prior to our coming to accept it for ourselves three years ago were, of course the relentless sedevacantists who simply would not leave us alone. One man in particular, who shall be not be named, was constantly trying to impose himself upon my family's breakfast outings after what I now understand to have been simulated offerings of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition at a non-sedevacantist independent chapel. He was a pest about the matter. A pest. We embraced the truth of the canonical doctrine of sedevacantism and that it applied in our circumstances despite such experiences. Indeed, we must always remember that we do not embrace sedevacantism because of this or that "person." We embrace it because it is true, because our loyalty to the Catholic Faith comes before our subject judgments about anyone who is opposed to or in favor of sedevacantism.
This is an important point to emphasize. Thus, let me emphasize it, please.
Some people use all manner of rationalizations to continue their association with the One World Church centering around a misplaced "loyalty" to a person, perhaps a well-meaning priest in the conciliar structures who "needs" their "support." Others want to remain "loyal" to their local "parish" or "diocese," not realizing that the parish or the diocese is in the hands of the enemy and that efforts to "save" the Faith there are akin to the Japanese soldiers who were
hunkered down on Mindanao and other places in the Philippine islands for as long as thirty to forty years after the end of World War II.
Our loyalty cannot and must not be to any person, not even an apparently holy priest, not even to the late Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre himself, who is for many Catholics the be-all and end-all of Catholicism no matter the multiple ways in which he contradicted himself and the fact that he believed in a false ecclesiology that had been condemned by the authority of the Catholic Church. And thus it is that our "loyalty" cannot be to the Society of Saint Pius X, which is not the Catholic Church and which takes positions contrary to her teaching authority (see the list provided in Pots and Kettles). Our loyalty must be to Catholic truth, and this means that we are going to be hated, misunderstood, misrepresented, calumniated and ostracized, especially by people we might admire, respect and love.
We must remember that the easiest thing to do in the past when heresy triumphed in parishes and dioceses that were once Catholic was to compromise and to say, "Oh, I just want to go to Mass. Who knows whether Arianism is right or wrong. Who knows whether that Athanasius character is a rebel or a white martyr for the Faith. I can't be expected to disturb the good order of my life to withdraw from my local parish, can I?" The easiest thing to have done during the Protestant Revolt in England was to say, "The King or the Pope, who knows? Mass is 'pretty much' the same now as it was in the past. It's just in the vernacular with a few minor changes, right? I don't have to go into the underground to hear Mass said by some 'treasonous' priest such as Father Edmond Campion, now do I? I can't afford to have my property taxed heavily and my career threatened by remaining loyal to the Roman Catholic Faith. Times do change, right?"
Yes, it is always "easier," in the short run, of course, to make the compromises and to "go along" with the crowd rather than to use one's mind and to think clearly as a Catholic when hard, solid facts are presented before us. It is "easier" to emote, to rationalize, to obfuscate and bury one's head in the sand than it is to run the risk of rejection and ridicule and ostracism and even financial hardship as a result of embracing the fullness of the truth without compromise and without fear of the consequences, including having to move to where there are true bishops and true priests who offer Holy Mass without being in "communion" with the false "pontiff" who defects from the Catholic Faith in numerous ways and blasphemes God on a regular basis.
Some might protest that the "people" will be denied the Sacraments if they embrace sedevacantism. Leaving aside that they don't really have Sacraments at the hands of invalidly "ordained" priests in the conciliar structures or at the hands of true priests who are "one with" Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, one way to assure that "the people" will not be without the Sacraments is for their priests to act with the courage that Father Michael Oswalt has demonstrated. People won't be denied the Sacraments if their priests eschew human respect and place their future in the hands of Our Lady, knowing that she will take care of their temporal needs and that "vindication." It is thus incumbent upon us to pray for the men in the conciliar structures, whether in the Motu communities or attached to the dioceses that are in conciliar captivity at the present time, who consider themselves to be priests, asking Our Lady to help these men to quit offending God and to exhibit manly courage to recognize that the Catholic Church cannot give us defective liturgies or doctrinal pronouncements or "papal" allocutions full of error and ambiguity.
Pope Pius XI taught us in Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928, that the Catholic Church brings the truths contained in the Deposit of Faith to the minds of men with ease and with clarity, something that should prove to us the apostate nature of conciliarism without any question as even the conciliar revolutionaries cannot agree on the "true" meaning of the conciliar documents, which is why Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI has had to invent his logically absurd and dogmatically condemned "hermeneutic of continuity and discontinuity" to get the "interpretation" of the conciliar revolution "right" once and for all.
Ratzinger/Benedict is also attempting to to "prove" to traditionally-minded Catholics in the conciliar structures that, there is no necessary "contradiction" between Tradition and conciliarism as the expression of dogmatic pronouncements is said to be contingent upon the historical circumstances that gave rise to those pronouncements and the alleged "imprecision" of the language to used to make them, a contention that is blasphemous as the Third Person of the Most Blessed Trinity, God the Holy Ghost, Himself inspired the Council Fathers of the Church's twenty dogmatic councils (concluding with the Vatican Council in 1869-1870) to make the pronouncements that they did in the precise language that they used. To contend that the dogmatic pronouncements and papal allocutions and encyclical letters of the past are subject to "reinterpretation" in light of the historical circumstances that gave rise to them is to blaspheme God the Holy Ghost and to deny, at least implicitly, the very immutability of the Most Blessed Trinity.
This is what Pope Pius XI wrote about the inherently clear nature of the transmission of the Deposit of Faith by the Catholic Church:
For the teaching authority of the Church, which in the divine wisdom was constituted on earth in order that revealed doctrines might remain intact for ever, and that they might be brought with ease and security to the knowledge of men, and which is daily exercised through the Roman Pontiff and the Bishops who are in communion with him, has also the office of defining, when it sees fit, any truth with solemn rites and decrees, whenever this is necessary either to oppose the errors or the attacks of heretics, or more clearly and in greater detail to stamp the minds of the faithful with the articles of sacred doctrine which have been explained
The very fact that the language conciliarism is often unclear and ambiguous and gives rise to contradictory interpretations even among its most ardent supporters is, over and above is very clear and overt contradictions of the Catholic Faith, a prima facie proof that it is not of God, Who teaches us through His true Church with clear, ease and security. It is really that simple.
Pope Gregory XVI had drive this point home in Singulari Nos, June 25, 1834:
As for the rest, We greatly deplore the fact that, where the ravings of human reason extend, there is somebody who studies new things and strives to know more than is necessary, against the advice of the apostle. There you will find someone who is overconfident in seeking the truth outside the Catholic Church, in which it can be found without even a light tarnish of error. Therefore, the Church is called, and is indeed, a pillar and foundation of truth. You correctly understand, venerable brothers, that We speak here also of that erroneous philosophical system which was recently brought in and is clearly to be condemned. This system, which comes from the contemptible and unrestrained desire for innovation, does not seek truth where it stands in the received and holy apostolic inheritance. Rather, other empty doctrines, futile and uncertain doctrines not approved by the Church, are adopted. Only the most conceited men wrongly think that these teachings can sustain and support that truth.
There can be no error or ambiguity or uncertainty associated with the teaching and pastoral praxis authorized by the Catholic Church.
This truth was not understood fully by those older priests in the 1960s and 1970s who knew that "something" was wrong but could not bring themselves to admit that they were in the midst of an "operation of error" that had been prophesied by Saint Paul the Apostle in his Second Epistle to the Thessalonians:
And now you know what withholdeth, that he may be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity already worketh; only that he who now holdeth, do hold, until he be taken out of the way. 8 And then that wicked one shall be revealed whom the Lord Jesus shall kill with the spirit of his mouth; and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming, him, Whose coming is according to the working of Satan, in all power, and signs, and lying wonders, And in all seduction of iniquity to them that perish; because they receive not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. Therefore God shall send them the operation of error, to believe lying:
That all may be judged who have not believed the truth, but have consented to iniquity. But we ought to give thanks to God always for you, brethren, beloved of God, for that God hath chosen you firstfruits unto salvation, in sanctification of the spirit, and faith of the truth: Whereunto also he hath called you by our gospel, unto the purchasing of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, brethren, stand fast; and hold the traditions which you have learned, whether by word, or by our epistle. (2 Thess. 6-14.)
We know more now than those older priests did thirty to forty years ago. We have more proof of the harm that has been caused by the falsehoods of the conciliar revolution, falsehoods that are from the devil and are thus irredeemable. We have seen the "papal" apostasies and blasphemies and sacrileges with our own eyes. The conciliar "pontiffs" have committed their apostasies to writing. The time for "waiting" has long since passed. The honor and glory of the Most Blessed Trinity and good of the souls redeemed by the shedding of every single drop of the Most Precious Blood of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ require men in the conciliar priesthood to imitate the courage of Father Oswalt, a courage that was prompted by his love of God and of the Holy Faith that He has entrusted exclusively to the Catholic Church for Its eternal safekeeping and infallible explication.
There might be those who are new to this site, perhaps drawn here for the first time because they know Father Oswalt and are curious as to why he would take such a drastic action as he has taken. It is for these particular readers, no matter how few in number they might be, that I want to reiterate here what I have include in several other articles on this site to explain that the truth is not to be found in the "mainstream" in times of apostasy and betrayal. There have always been situations in salvation history when those in the minority were correct and those in the majority were most grievously mistaken:
God permitted one hundred percent of the human race to be deceived in the Garden of Eden.
God permitted all but eight members of the human race to be deceived and deluded prior to the Great Flood.
Almost all of the Chosen People who had been led out of their bondage to the slavery of the Egyptian Pharaoh by Moses built and worshiped a molten calf whilst Moses was receiving the Ten Commandments from God on Mount Sinai.
All but a handful of people stood by Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ as He suffered and died for us on the wood of the Holy Cross on Good Friday.
All but a handful of bishops remained faithful to the Church during the Arian heresy that was fought by Saint Athanasius. Saint Jerome, of those who fought Arianism, wrote
"The whole world groaned, and was astonished to find itself Arian."
All but one bishop, Saint John Fisher of Rochester, England, defected from the Faith at the time of the Protestant Revolt in England when King Henry VIII took this thoroughly Catholic country out of the Church.
All but thirty bishops defected from the Faith at the time Queen Elizabeth I took England out of the Church once again in the 1560s following the brief restoration that took place under the reign of her half-sister, Queen Mary, from 1553 to 1558.
The "mainstream" is not be followed. We need apostolic courage in these times of apostasy and betrayal. God's greater honor and glory must be defended against the against of men who have proved themselves to be precursors of the Antichrist.
God does indeed permit massive numbers of people to be deceived. His greater honor and glory are defended in most cases by a relative handful of the most unlikely souls, whom He raises up to confound the mighty and the powerful and the respected.
How do we think that we are going to recognize, no less resist and reject, the Antichrist when he comes when we are so complacent and smug in the face of the groundwork that is being laid by his conciliar minions for his coming? Will the emotionalism of sentimentality and the delusion of positivism not prevail then in the minds and hearts of most men?
We pray to Our Lady always. We know that the Triumph of her Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart will vanquish the foes of the Faith in the world and in the counterfeit church of conciliarism once and for all. Every Rosary we pray, offered to the Most Holy Trinity through that same Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart, will plant a few seeds for this triumph, especially as we spend time in prayer before her Divine Son's Real Presence in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Every Rosary that we pray will help to plant a few seeds for the restoration of the Church Militant on earth and of the Social Reign of Christ the King in the world as we make reparation for our sins and those of the whole world as the clients of her Divine Son's Most Sacred Heart through her own Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart.
We must trust that Our Lady will indeed rescue us from the hands of the barons of Modernity in the world and the lords of Modernism in the counterfeit church of conciliarism and that she will send us more men from the conciliar structures like Father Michael Oswalt to defend the Holy Faith and to give us the true Sacraments so as to get us home to Heaven in the glory of the Beatific Vision of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, triumph soon.
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!
Saint Joseph, Patron of Departing Souls, 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.
See also: A Litany of Saints
Isn't it time to pray a Rosary now?