High Church, Low Church
by Thomas A. Droleskey
Bear not the yoke with unbelievers. For what participation hath justice with injustice? Or what fellowship hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? Or what part hath the faithful with the unbeliever?
And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God; as God saith: I will dwell in them, and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore, Go out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing: And I will receive you; and I will be a Father to you; and you shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty. (2 Cor. 6: 14-18)
"And what concord hath Christ with Belial?" Well, according to the scions of the counterfeit church of conciliarism, a great deal. A modernized version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition hath concord with the Protestant and Masonic Novus Ordo service, which is itself a work of Belial that has given grave offense to God and wreaked havoc in the lives of so many Catholics, reaffirming them in the spirit of the world, which is in the grip of the devil, and serving as a deterrent to the conversion of those outside of the Catholic Church to her maternal bosom for their sanctification and salvation, to say nothing of how its abominable spirit and the sacrileges that it has brought forth have responsible for driving so many Catholics out of the Church and into the waiting arms of Protestant "ministers" and their false sects. The Immemorial Mass of Tradition is of God. The Novus Ordo service was designed by a Modernist and a Freemason, Annibale Bugnini, and bears the spirit engendered by the six liberal Protestant "observers" whose "observations" were made during coffee breaks and then read into the record by various episcopal members of the Consilium as reflecting their own views.
The Novus Ordo service is evil. One either recognizes this or he does not. This is not to condemn those who remain in the conciliar structures and who assist at the Novus Ordo, just as it is not to condemn individual Protestants for adhering to the evil that is Protestantism. We pray that those in false religions sects, including conciliarism, can be led out of those sects and to come to a recognition of their evil natures. We must in no way, however, pretend that evil things, such as conciliarism, which denies the Social Reign of Christ the King and states that Catholics are in "communion" with Protestants and the Orthodox who deny articles contained in the Deposit of Faith, including Papal Primacy and Papal Infallibility and Purgatory as defined by the authority of the Catholic Church, and the Novus Ordo service, can come from the Catholic Church. They cannot. It is impossible, as I noted in Defending the Truth is Never Any Kind of Game five days ago.
Pope Pius XI, writing in Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928, explained this very clearly:
So, Venerable Brethren, it is clear why this Apostolic See has never allowed its subjects to take part in the assemblies of non-Catholics: for the union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it. During the lapse of centuries, the mystical Spouse of Christ has never been contaminated, nor can she ever in the future be contaminated, as Cyprian bears witness: "The Bride of Christ cannot be made false to her Spouse: she is incorrupt and modest. She knows but one dwelling, she guards the sanctity of the nuptial chamber chastely and modestly." The same holy Martyr with good reason marveled exceedingly that anyone could believe that "this unity in the Church which arises from a divine foundation, and which is knit together by heavenly sacraments, could be rent and torn asunder by the force of contrary wills." For since the mystical body of Christ, in the same manner as His physical body, is one, compacted and fitly joined together, it were foolish and out of place to say that the mystical body is made up of members which are disunited and scattered abroad: whosoever therefore is not united with the body is no member of it, neither is he in communion with Christ its head.
Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI does indeed believe that the "mystical body is made up of members which are disunited and scattered abroad." Anyone who denies this is either a rank fool or engaging in the most deceitful form of positivism imaginable. Joseph Ratzinger believes in notions about dogmatic truth that have been condemned repeatedly by the authority of the Catholic Church. His mind and heart are one with Modernism and its progeny, the "New Theology." Once again, anyone who does not recognize this would have us believe that it is possible for a Catholic to remain in good standing with God while supporting openly and repeatedly propositions that have been condemned by the Catholic Church without ever having abjured those condemned propositions.
(Yes, I know that there are many Catholics who do believe just this. One screed against sedevacantism last year even went so far as to state that no canonized saint had ever been a sedevacantist. Duh! The geniuses in France who wrote this piece of self-serving sophistry would like the reader to believe that there has ever been this kind of general apostasy in the history of the Church where those who pass for "officials" of the Catholic Church defy one condemned proposition after another repeatedly and openly by embracing the very things condemned by her authority. Such a state of general apostasy, one of the things that the Church has always taught will occur before the Second Coming of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ at the General Judgment of the Living and the Dead on the Last Day, has never occurred in the history of the Catholic Church. Heresies aplenty there have been. A state of general apostasy where "popes" embrace a concept of truth that flies in the face of even natural reason and has been condemned by the authority of the Catholic Church. Never. And insofar as calling sedevacantism an "unproved" theory, let me point out again--for the umpteenth time--that the late head of the conciliar Signatura, Mario Francesco "Cardinal" Pompedda, noted the following in 2005,
"It is true that the canonical doctrine states that the see would be vacant in the case of heresy." One might be unwilling to admit that the conciliarists have espoused heresy. To deny that sedevacantism is the canonical doctrine of the Catholic Church in the case of heresy is simply incorrect.)
The "new theology" permeates the entirety of Joseph Ratzinger's lifelong work, permitting him to make of the word "tradition" almost anything that he wants it to mean as some traditionally-minded Catholics, men who used to know better and who once wrote repeatedly and voluminously about the errors extant in his writings, serve as his lapdogs in deceiving their fellow Catholics that the man of Hegelianism means to "reform the Church" because he has "liberated" the modernized version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition promulgated by Angelo Roncalli/John XXIII in 1961 (and changed in 1962 with the addition of the name of Saint Joseph in the Roman Canon). Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI has "liberated" the Immemorial Mass of Tradition in order to mute all opposition from traditionally-minded Catholics to the evils of conciliarism, including the Novus Ordo service itself.
It is not only those terrible breed of people who have come to the conclusion that the canonical doctrine of the Catholic Church concerning the simple fact that those who defect from even one article of the Catholic Faith expel themselves from her ranks by means of violating the Divine Positive Law and thus cannot hold ecclesiastical office legitimately who assert these things. The prior of the Society of Saint Pius X, Father Basilio Meramo, expressed this exact belief in clear, concise and thorough terms in a letter dated on the Feast of Saint Lucy, December 13, 2007, that has now been posted on the Traditio website and called to my attention by a reader of this site who sends out various postings from different sources to those on her e-mail list. I thank the reader for sending me the article, which I would not have seen otherwise, at least not as soon as the Third Sunday of Lent, a day on which I had intended to write on this very same subject in light of what appears to a major forthcoming development to ensnare the Society of Saint Pius X corporately into conciliarism once and for all.
The contents of Father Meramo's letter state clearly that Summorum Pontificum is nothing other than a trap to draw traditionally-minded Catholics into the Hegelian Ratzinger's dialectical "synthesis of Faith":
Sacred Scripture warns us that Satan often transforms himself into an Angel of Light (2 Corinthians 11:14), that is, as an apparent good, to seduce the faithful. "For the Devil, as a roaring lion, goeth about seeking whom he may devour" (2 Peter 5:8). For this reason, St. Peter exhorts us to be sober and watchful.
Many, if not the great majority, of the defenders of the Traditional Mass and doctrine have seen the Motu Proprio of Benedict XVI as a great good, in that it recognized that the Traditional Latin Mass was never abrogated. This "recognition" is seen by those holding this "optimistic" view as something like a piece of parched land that would welcome a gently-falling rain after a long drought. And, even more, we see how they are so overcome with gratitude that they are forecasting the most promising vistas for a happy future, of verdant greenery and bright and beautiful blossoms.
But if we analyze the facts dispassionately and in the steady, clear light of the Faith, we see that the beautiful scenery vanishes before our eyes, like the vain and dangerous mirage-like illusion that it is. Nothing could be better or more perspicacious than to recognize as true that the Traditional Mass was never legally abrogated, although it was suppressed in a manner that was an abuse of power, as Archbishop Lefebvre and traditional Catholics have always maintained.
Therefore, the declaration by Benedict XVI affirming that the true Mass was never abolished appears, at first sight, to be a victory. However, after closer examination of the declaration, one perceives both the subtlety and the intelligence of this action. Benedict XVI is attempting by an audacious and effective way to accomplish his most profound and desired goal according to his Modernistic mindset, so that many critics of Modernism have not been able to appreciate fully the vastness of his aims or the subtlety of his strategy.
Benedict XVI, who has a keen and penetrating intellect, intends to legitimize the New Mass by attempting to portray it as a legitimate and faithful development of the ancient Roman rite. To be successful, he had to heal the rupture created by the attempted suppression of the Traditional Mass, first by denying that the Traditional Mass had been abolished. For the Traditional Mass was the faithful expression of the ancient Roman Mass, both in its historical development and in its dogmatic content, promulgated in perpetuity.
Historically, it could not be affirmed that a schismatic break had taken place in the development of the rite, as Joseph Ratzinger declared in his autobiography. But this is in fact what had been declared had happened when the New Mass was introduced, so it was necessary to repair the breach. The second great event that occurred at the beginning of my years at Ratisbon was the publication of the Missal of Paul VI, with the almost total prohibition of the Traditional Missal. But I was perplexed by the prohibition of the Traditional Missal, for nothing similar had ever occurred in the history of the liturgy. One cannot speak of a prohibition of the older and, until then, legitimately valid Missal, whose development through the centuries can be traced back all the way to the Sacramentaries of the early Church. This brought about a break in the history of the liturgy, whose consequences could be only tragic (Joseph Ratzinger, Mi Vida, ed. Encuentro, Madrid, 2005, pp. 148-149).
We can see then that, for Cardinal Ratzinger, the historical break cannot be legitimately defended, and this rupture had to be healed, especially given his plan to portray the New Mass as a legitimate continuation and development of the Traditional Missal and as an authentic expression of the Roman Rite of the Mass. With his dialectic, oecumenist mind, he could perceive that it could not be affirmed that the New Missal was a legitimate development of the Roman Rite, if on the other hand it was affirmed that the Traditional Missal was not.
Therefore, if both Missals are legitimate developments of the ancient Roman Rite, then it is incoherent to affirm that the Traditional Missal is prohibited or has been abolished, especially if one wants to pass off the New Mass, described by Archbishop Lefebvre as a Protestantized and bastard rite, as an equally legitimate development and expression of the ancient Roman Rite, as the Traditional Rite indeed was. Which brings us to the ultimate aim of Benedict XVI.
The attempt to reconcile the New Mass with the Traditional Mass is the first step in his plan to bring about a reconciliation between the teachings of Vatican II and the True Faith. He cannot permit a rupture or separation to remain, which would impede his dialectic synthesis, for, as he declared when he was Cardinal Ratzinger: "For the life of the Church, it is dramatically urgent that a renewal of the liturgical conscience take place that will recognize once again the unity of the history of the liturgy and will understand Vatican II not as a rupture, but as a moment of development" (ibidem). It now becomes clearly manifested what was the real motivation behind the recognition of the fact that the Traditional Missal was never abrogated. It is s the well-known one step backward/two steps forward strategy.
It would be naïve to think that Benedict XVI has taken these measures because he is moving closer to the Traditional Mass and the True Faith. For according to his own words, the aim of these measures is the consolidation and legitimization of the New Mass and of Vatican II. He is attempting this not through brutal and dramatic measures that break with the past, but by using the method of a subtle and gradual evolution [as "Fr." Ratzinger did at Vatican II], he hopes to reconcile and convince all of the opponents of Vatican II and of the New Mass of their legitimacy.
Benedict XVI is proceeding gently, yet firmly, to establish that the New Mass and Vatican II do not constitute a break with the past, either liturgically or doctrinally, but rather that they are the fruit of an organic growth and development within the Church and must be accepted by all of the faithful. Therefore, the Traditional Mass is the expression of an historical past, and the New Mass is the faithful expression of the vital present and the promise of an even more glorious future.
One cannot conceive of a more subtle, clever, and intelligent maneuver that clearly intends to eliminate the forces that compose the Catholic resistance to the innovations and that defend the Traditional Mass and doctrines of the Catholic Church. This elimination is to take place without any dramatic clashes or brutal confrontations, as was attempted in the past, but rather with a warm oecumenical embrace, which will not leave behind any rotting corpses that could mar the irenic and bucolic scenery. This is not how one proceeds in our democratic age, for now we destroy by dialectic substitution.
(February 2008 Commentaries on Traditio)
This is a simply superb analysis of the true purposes of Summorum Pontificum, written by a priest who understands the Hegelian mind of Benedict XVI perfectly. Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI does indeed want to draw as many traditionally-minded Catholics as possible into his false "church" so that they will at least be silent about, if not actually embrace, the new ecclesiology and religious liberty and false ecumenism and the Novus Ordo service. This is what has happened with the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter and the Institute of Christ the King and the Society of Saint John Mary Vianney of Campos, Brazil, among others of the "Motu" communities, admitting some isolated exceptions here and there, especially in the 1990s before the conciliar Vatican forced the ouster of Father Josef Bisig, who was ordained by the late Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, as the Superior General of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter when he resisted efforts on the part of some conciliar bishops in France to use Fraternity priests who were sympathetic to the Novus Ordo service to offer this abomination under "diocesan" auspices. There has been little save for silence about, if not actually praise of, conciliarism in the past decade from men who once believed, in all sincerity, that they could "work from within" to "reform the Church." Unfortunately, the "church" these priests sought to reform was not and is not the Catholic Church.
The same fate awaits those bishops and priests and members of the laity within the Society of Saint Pius X who decide to "reconcile" with the conciliar Vatican in order to join with the existing "Motu" communities as taking their place in a corner of the One World Church of conciliarism along with Focolare and Cursillo and the "Catholic" Charismatic Renewal and all of the other "movements" that coexist within the conciliar structures despite their being full-throated conciliarists who have no intention of "turning the clock back" to the "preconciliar" days of triumphalism. It is nothing other than an exercise in rank self-delusion to believe that "things" will be "different" this time around than they were twenty years ago when the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter was formed out of the ranks of the Society of Saint Pius X following Archbishop Lefebvre's episcopal consecrations of June 30, 1988. "Things" can be no "different" now than they were then as it is same false church that hath concord with Belial himself that continues to offend God and harm souls, both Catholic and non-Catholic alike, even more now--and more openly now--than was the case twenty years ago.
Although even a step such as lifting the "excommunications" imposed upon the bishops consecrated by Archbishop Lefebvre, a move that appears, at least according to some sources within the Society of Saint Pius X, to be but twenty-eight days away from today, which would be the seventeenth anniversary of the Archbishop's death, will be hailed by defenders of Benedict XVI as a means to "bring the Church back" to Tradition, the plain truth is that such a move would serve to neutralize any criticism of conciliarism in the name of "working from within," would serve to reinforce the nonexistent "legitimacy" of the conciliar rites of episcopal consecration and priestly ordination, would serve to give credence to the lies told by Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI that the "extraordinary form" and the "ordinary form" are but two "expressions" of the "one Roman Rite."
Although the putative lifting of the excommunications may be only yet another "step" in the long process of "reconciling" the Society of Saint Pius X with the counterfeit church of conciliarism (and not the actual "reconciliation" itself), the choice at that point could not be clearer for those within the Society of Saint Pius X who recognize this as an effort to ensnare them into the One World Church: it will have to be admitted, once and for all, that to be "una cum" Benedict XVI, no less to be in unquestioned "full communion" with him, is to be in "full communion" with the Hegelianism of conciliarism and to be "full communion" with a "Mass" that is an abomination from Hell itself that is meant to mock God and to harm the souls for whom He shed every single drop of His Most Precious Blood on the wood of the Holy Cross.
We are eyewitnesses to the Hegelian "evolution" of the counterfeit church of conciliarism into an almost exact ape of the Anglican "church." The counterfeit church of conciliarism has a rite of episcopal consecration that is nearly identical to the Anglican rite that was condemned by Pope Leo XIII in Apostolicae Curiae, September 15, 1896. The counterfeit church of conciliarism has a "Mass" that is very similar to the liturgy of the Anglican "church." And the counterfeit church of conciliarism has evolved itself into a "high church, low church" paradigm that permits those who like the 'beauty" of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition to be "members" in the same "church" as those who like the sacrileges of the Novus Ordo service, permitting as well those who are opposed, but quietly, you understand, to the false Hegelian notion of truth and to false ecumenism and religious liberty and the separation of Church and State and the new ecclesiology to be "members" of the same "church" as those who are full-throated, unapologetic apologists of such errors and apostasies, thereby creating a veritable pan-federation of Catholics, disunited on various matters of doctrine and discipline, that is of the essence of the sort of pan-Christian federation condemned by Pope Pius XI in Mortalium Animos:
These pan-Christians who turn their minds to uniting the churches seem, indeed, to pursue the noblest of ideas in promoting charity among all Christians: nevertheless how does it happen that this charity tends to injure faith? Everyone knows that John himself, the Apostle of love, who seems to reveal in his Gospel the secrets of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and who never ceased to impress on the memories of his followers the new commandment "Love one another," altogether forbade any intercourse with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ's teaching: "If any man come to you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him: God speed you." For which reason, since charity is based on a complete and sincere faith, the disciples of Christ must be united principally by the bond of one faith. Who then can conceive a Christian Federation, the members of which retain each his own opinions and private judgment, even in matters which concern the object of faith, even though they be repugnant to the opinions of the rest? And in what manner, We ask, can men who follow contrary opinions, belong to one and the same Federation of the faithful? For example, those who affirm, and those who deny that sacred Tradition is a true fount of divine Revelation; those who hold that an ecclesiastical hierarchy, made up of bishops, priests and ministers, has been divinely constituted, and those who assert that it has been brought in little by little in accordance with the conditions of the time; those who adore Christ really present in the Most Holy Eucharist through that marvelous conversion of the bread and wine, which is called transubstantiation, and those who affirm that Christ is present only by faith or by the signification and virtue of the Sacrament; those who in the Eucharist recognize the nature both of a sacrament and of a sacrifice, and those who say that it is nothing more than the memorial or commemoration of the Lord's Supper; those who believe it to be good and useful to invoke by prayer the Saints reigning with Christ, especially Mary the Mother of God, and to venerate their images, and those who urge that such a veneration is not to be made use of, for it is contrary to the honor due to Jesus Christ, "the one mediator of God and men." How so great a variety of opinions can make the way clear to effect the unity of the Church We know not; that unity can only arise from one teaching authority, one law of belief and one faith of Christians. But We do know that from this it is an easy step to the neglect of religion or indifferentism and to modernism, as they call it. Those, who are unhappily infected with these errors, hold that dogmatic truth is not absolute but relative, that is, it agrees with the varying necessities of time and place and with the varying tendencies of the mind, since it is not contained in immutable revelation, but is capable of being accommodated to human life. Besides this, in connection with things which must be believed, it is nowise licit to use that distinction which some have seen fit to introduce between those articles of faith which are fundamental and those which are not fundamental, as they say, as if the former are to be accepted by all, while the latter may be left to the free assent of the faithful: for the supernatural virtue of faith has a formal cause, namely the authority of God revealing, and this is patient of no such distinction. For this reason it is that all who are truly Christ's believe, for example, the Conception of the Mother of God without stain of original sin with the same faith as they believe the mystery of the August Trinity, and the Incarnation of our Lord just as they do the infallible teaching authority of the Roman Pontiff, according to the sense in which it was defined by the Ecumenical Council of the Vatican. Are these truths not equally certain, or not equally to be believed, because the Church has solemnly sanctioned and defined them, some in one age and some in another, even in those times immediately before our own? Has not God revealed them all? 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. But in the use of this extraordinary teaching authority no newly invented matter is brought in, nor is anything new added to the number of those truths which are at least implicitly contained in the deposit of Revelation, divinely handed down to the Church: only those which are made clear which perhaps may still seem obscure to some, or that which some have previously called into question is declared to be of faith.
Any "cardinal" made from the ranks of a "reconciled" Society of Saint Pius X would be "one with" (una cum) his brother "bishops" in the conciliar structures (with the exception of maybe fifty to seventy very elderly bishops worldwide who were consecrated prior to 1968, the only legitimate bishops in the conciliar structures are those Eastern rite prelates consecrated in their own rites by true bishops), "one with" Walter "Cardinal" Kasper, whose recent defense of the "revised" Good Friday prayer, which was criticized in part recently by Bishop Fellay, stated that the Catholic Church had no mission to convert "Israel," that such conversion was left up to God, not to what purports to be the "Catholic" Church, an exercise in rank apostasy. Such a "diversity" of beliefs is characteristic of schismatic sects, such as Anglicanism, not of Catholicism. An ape of the Anglican "church" affords room for men training to be "priests" in the conciliar structures to study how to offer the modernized version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition as long as they remember that the Novus Ordo is the "ordinary form" of the "one" Roman Rite and as long as they pass their studies in praise of Henri de Lubac and Karl Rahner and Maurice Blondel and Hans Urs von Balthasar and Yves Congar and Joseph Ratzinger himself.
The "diversity" of belief in the ape of the Anglican "church" that is the counterfeit church of conciliarism requires one who believes in the necessity of seeking the unconditional conversion of all men to the true Faith to be circumspect, if not entirely silent about, in discussing such apostasies as those reflected in the then Joseph "Cardinal" Ratzinger's preface to the Pontifical Biblical Commission's The Jewish People and their Sacred Scriptures in the Christian Bible, 2001, and the actual text of that document itself:
In its work, the Biblical Commission could not ignore the contemporary context, where the shock of the Shoah has put the whole question under a new light. Two main problems are posed: Can Christians, after all that has happened, still claim in good conscience to be the legitimate heirs of Israel's Bible? Have they the right to propose a Christian interpretation of this Bible, or should they not instead, respectfully and humbly, renounce any claim that, in the light of what has happened, must look like a usurpation? The second question follows from the first: In its presentation of the Jews and the Jewish people, has not the New Testament itself contributed to creating a hostility towards the Jewish people that provided a support for the ideology of those who wished to destroy Israel? The Commission set about addressing those two questions. It is clear that a Christian rejection of the Old Testament would not only put an end to Christianity itself as indicated above, but, in addition, would prevent the fostering of positive relations between Christians and Jews, precisely because they would lack common ground. In the light of what has happened, what ought to emerge now is a new respect for the Jewish interpretation of the Old Testament. On this subject, the Document says two things. First it declares that “the Jewish reading of the Bible is a possible one, in continuity with the Jewish Scriptures of the Second Temple period, a reading analogous to the Christian reading, which developed in parallel fashion” (no. 22). It adds that Christians can learn a great deal from a Jewish exegesis practised for more than 2000 years; in return, Christians may hope that Jews can profit from Christian exegetical research (ibid.). I think this analysis will prove useful for the pursuit of Judeo-Christian dialogue, as well as for the interior formation of Christian consciousness. (Joseph Ratzinger, Preface to The Jewish People and Their Scriptures in the Christian Bible.)
Although the Christian reader is aware that the internal dynamism of the Old Testament finds its goal in Jesus, this is a retrospective perception whose point of departure is not in the text as such, but in the events of the New Testament proclaimed by the apostolic preaching. It cannot be said, therefore, that Jews do not see what has been proclaimed in the text, but that the Christian, in the light of Christ and in the Spirit, discovers in the text an additional meaning that was hidden there.
The horror in the wake of the extermination of the Jews (the Shoah) during the Second World War has led all the Churches to rethink their relationship with Judaism and, as a result, to reconsider their interpretation of the Jewish Bible, the Old Testament. It may be asked whether Christians should be blamed for having monopolised the Jewish Bible and reading there what no Jew has found. Should not Christians henceforth read the Bible as Jews do, in order to show proper respect for its Jewish origins?
In answer to the last question, a negative response must be given for hermeneutical reasons. For to read the Bible as Judaism does necessarily involves an implicit acceptance of all its presuppositions, that is, the full acceptance of what Judaism is, in particular, the authority of its writings and rabbinic traditions, which exclude faith in Jesus as Messiah and Son of God.
As regards the first question, the situation is different, for Christians can and ought to admit that the Jewish reading of the Bible is a possible one, in continuity with the Jewish Sacred Scriptures from the Second Temple period, a reading analogous to the Christian reading which developed in parallel fashion. Both readings are bound up with the vision of their respective faiths, of which the readings are the result and expression. Consequently, both are irreducible.
On the practical level of exegesis, Christians can, nonetheless, learn much from Jewish exegesis practised for more than two thousand years, and, in fact, they have learned much in the course of history. For their part, it is to be hoped that Jews themselves can derive profit from Christian exegetical research. . . .
Through his teaching, John Paul II has, on many occasions, taken the initiative in developing this Declaration. During a visit to the synagogue of Mainz (1980) he said: “The encounter between the people of God of the Old Covenant, which has never been abrogated by God (cf. Rm 11:29), and that of the New Covenant is also an internal dialogue in our Church, similar to that between the first and second part of its Bible”. Later, addressing the Jewish communities of Italy during a visit to the synagogue of Rome (1986), he declared: “The Church of Christ discovers its ‘links' with Judaism ‘by pondering its own mystery' (cf. Nostra Aetate). The Jewish religion is not ‘extrinsic' to us, but in a certain manner, it is ‘intrinsic' to our religion. We have therefore a relationship with it which we do not have with any other religion. You are our favoured brothers and, in a certain sense, one can say our elder brothers”. Finally, in the course of a meeting on the roots of anti-Jewish feeling among Christians (1997) he said: “This people has been called and led by God, Creator of heaven and earth. Their existence then is not a mere natural or cultural happening,... It is a supernatural one. This people continues in spite of everything to be the people of the covenant and, despite human infidelity, the Lord is faithful to his covenant”. This teaching was given the stamp of approval by John Paul II's visit to Israel, in the course of which he addressed Israel's Chief Rabbis in these terms: “We (Jews and Christians) must work together to build a future in which there will be no more anti-Jewish feeling among Christians, or any anti-Christian feeling among Jews. We have many things in common. We can do much for the sake of peace, for a more human and more fraternal world”.
On the part of Christians, the main condition for progress along these lines lies in avoiding a one-sided reading of biblical texts, both from the Old Testament and the New Testament, and making instead a better effort to appreciate the whole dynamism that animates them, which is precisely a dynamism of love. In the Old Testament, the plan of God is a union of love with his people, a paternal love, a spousal love and, notwithstanding Israel's infidelities, God will never renounce it, but affirms it in perpetuity (Is 54:8; Jr 31:3). In the New Testament, God's love overcomes the worst obstacles; even if they do not believe in his Son whom he sent as their Messiah Saviour, Israelites are still “loved” (Rm 11:29). Whoever wishes to be united to God, must also love them. (From the text of The Jewish People and their Sacred Scriptures in the Christian Bible.)
When was the last time you heard Bishop Fernando Areas Rifan of the Society of Saint John Mary Vianney in Campos, Brazil, wax about the blasphemies contained in Benedict XVI's preface and the text of the document that was issued with his approval? Do not kid yourselves. As reflected in the remarks made recently by Walter Kasper about the "revised" Good Friday prayer for the Jews, the text of
The Jewish People and their Sacred Scriptures in the Christian Bible, no matter the "unofficial" nature of documents issued by the Pontifical Biblical Commission under its conciliar leaders, represents the very "official" teaching of the counterfeit church of conciliarism concerning its relationship with the adherents of the Talmud. "Una cum" Benedict XVI, anyone?
Although it would be difficult for many who have an understandable sense of loyalty to Archbishop Lefebvre to admit this fact, it should be clear now, twenty-five years later, that the much calumniated "nine" (Fathers Clarence Kelly, Donald Sanborn, Daniel Dolan, Anthony Cekada, William Jenkins, Joseph Collins, Thomas Zapp, Eugene Berry, Martin Skierka) were correct about everything and that the Archbishop, whose personal holiness and defense of the Faith, especially concerning the Social Reign of Christ the King and his steadfast opposition to false ecumenism, are beyond question, could have profited from listening to them rather than to others in his circle who believed that an "opening" existed with the conciliar Vatican under Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II, meaning no disparagement to the memory of His Excellency Archbishop Lefebvre whatsoever. (Please see
Letter of “the Nine” to Abp. Marcel Lefebvre, March 25, 1983.) There has been a great deal of "papalotry" in the past three decades. There has also been "episcopalotry," if you will, that has prevented so many from looking dispassionately at the very well laid out case that the "nine" had presented to Archbishop Lefebvre. The points made by the "nine" stand the test of time.
It is time for those in the Society of Saint Pius X who recognize conciliarism for what it is--and who understand the Hegelianism of one of its chief progenitors, Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, to put aside the past and to examine the facts without prejudice to the disinformation that has been spread in the past twenty-five years about the "nine." The fact that they, "the nine" were correct does not mean that Archbishop Lefebvre, who was truly torn about how the Catholic Church could be responsible for the un-Catholic things he was witnessing with his own eyes--and who in 1976 called the conciliar church a "schismatic" church, is to be considered any of a lesser figure in the history of opposition to conciliarism and its abominations. It is merely to say that he, a fallible human being, refused, after much mind-changing and many contradictory statements, to see that it was indeed impossible for the Catholic Church to be the author of the things he opposed so clearly and forcefully, that no legitimate Roman Pontiff, to whom a Catholic owes his total submission in matters of Faith, morals and liturgical discipline, could promulgate such things.
The Society of Saint Pius X's "resist and recognize" approach to the Church and to papal infallibility and papal authority is an expression of the condemned errors of Gallicanism, that bishops can "pick and choose" which orders of the Roman Pontiff they can obey. It is really no different than the approach to "papal" authority taken by those conciliar "bishops" and "priests" and theologians who believe that they have the "right" to go beyond the "approved" novelties of conciliarism and to "authorize" "unapproved" liturgical novelties as well to sponsor conferences in support of women's ordination. The principles are the same: we will decide which conciliar Roman edicts we will obey. This was condemned by Pope Pius VI in Auctorem Fidei, August 28, 1794:
6. The doctrine of the synod by which it professes that "it is convinced that a bishop has received from Christ all necessary rights for the good government of his diocese," just as if for the good government of each diocese higher ordinances dealing either with faith and morals, or with general discipline, are not necessary, the right of which belongs to the supreme Pontiffs and the General Councils for the universal Church,—schismatic, at least erroneous.
7. Likewise, in this, that it encourages a bishop "to pursue zealously a more perfect constitution of ecclesiastical discipline," and this "against all contrary customs, exemptions, reservations which are opposed to the good order of the diocese, for the greater glory of God and for the greater edification of the faithful"; in that it supposes that a bishop has the right by his own judgment and will to decree and decide contrary to customs, exemptions, reservations, whether they prevail in the universal Church or even in each province, without the consent or the intervention of a higher hierarchic power, by which these customs, etc., have been introduced or approved and have the force of law,—leading to schism and subversion of hierarchic rule, erroneous.
8. Likewise, in that it says it is convinced that "the rights of a bishop received from Jesus Christ for the government of the Church cannot be altered nor hindered, and, when it has happened that the exercise of these rights has been interrupted for any reason whatsoever, a bishop can always and should return to his original rights, as often as the greater good of his church demands it"; in the fact that it intimates that the exercise of episcopal rights can be hindered and coerced by no higher power, whenever a bishop shall judge that it does not further the greater good of his church,—leading to schism, and to subversion of hierarchic government, erroneous.
The leadership of the Society of Saint Pius X does not like the omission of the second Confiteor in the 1961 Missal? Just ignore the omission and insert the second Confiteor into Masses without including it in a hand missal. Simple enough, huh? Unsure about the priestly pedigree of a priest-refugee from the Novus Ordo? Well, maybe he should be conditionally ordained and maybe he shouldn't? It's all to the priest in question. There's no particular problem in conditionally ordaining a man who has been "ordained" according to the new rite that was approved by the authority of the ones they have recognized as popes, right? The Catholic Church can give us rites of priestly ordination and episcopal consecration that are questionable, right? It's up to the leadership of the Society of Saint Pius X to determine, in consultation with a particular priest, if there is a need for conditional ordination for some and not for others, right? After all, the conciliar "popes" have been so very busy destroying the Faith that one can't expect them to have gone over all of the fine details contained in the new rites of priestly ordination and episcopal consecration, right? The leadership of the Society of Saint Pius does not like the "revised" Good Friday prayer? Just condemn it, as Bishop Bernard Fellay has done in part and Bishop Richard Williamson has done in blistering terms, and use the prayer that was revised by Angelo Roncalli/John XXIII (who removed the word "faithless" from this most ancient of prayers in the liturgy of the Catholic Church).
This is no different than the attitude of many of the American "bishops" prior to the approval of "Communion in the hand" and "altar girls" by the conciliar Vatican. The conciliar "bishops" ignored every instruction from the conciliar Vatican to enforce the few binding rules that govern the offering of the Novus Ordo service, scoffing at John Paul II's Inaestimabile Donum in 1980. One priest told me when I complained that he was not doing what the "pope" wanted, "So? He's got no authority over the liturgy. I follow my bishop." Those "bishops" did as they pleased without regard to the "rules" of the conciliar Vatican. So does the Society of Saint Pius X in many instances. (See the then Father Robert Neville's Letter to Bishop Bernard Fellay for amplification on this point.) None of this has anything to do with Catholicism, which demands a perfect communion with a legitimate Supreme Pontiff and a humble submission to his decrees, something that Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI will insist upon once the final "reconciliation" with the Society of Saint Pius is accomplished. (Listen to Father Anthony Cekada's excellent sermon on this subject, The Errors of the Society of St Pius X.)
As His Excellency Bishop Robert F. McKenna, O.P., who was kind enough to review this article and to pass along his approval of its contents, noted to me yesterday, Monday, February 25, 2008, "The Society of Saint Pius X wants to have their pope and eat him, too! I say, if he is your pope, why would you want him?"
There is no place for the toleration of heresy or abomination in the Catholic Church, as Father Frederick Faber pointed out in the Nineteenth Century:
This is particularly offensive to the world. So especially opposed is it to the spirit of the world, that, even in good, believing hearts, every remnant of worldliness rises in arms against this hatred of heresy, embittering the very gentlest of characters and spoiling many a glorious work of grace. In the judgment of the world, and of worldly Christians, this hatred of heresy is exaggerated, bitter, contrary to moderation, indiscreet, unreasonable, aiming at too much, bigoted, intolerant, narrow, stupid, and immoral. What can we say to defend it? Nothing which they can understand. The mild self-opinionatedness of the gentle, undiscerning good will also take the world's view and condemn us; for there is a meek-looking positiveness about the timid goodness which is far from God, and the instincts of whose charity is more toward those who are less for God, while its timidity is daring enough for a harsh judgment. Heresy can only be hated by an undivided heart. (The Foot of the Cross, published originally as The Dolors of Mary, 1857.)
If we hated sin as we ought to hate it, purely, keenly, manfully, we should do more penance, we should inflict more self-punishment, we should sorrow for our sins more abidingly. Then, again, the crowning disloyalty to God is heresy. It is the sin of sins, the very loathsomest of things which God looks down upon in this malignant world. Yet how little do we understand of its excessive hatefulness! It is the polluting of God’s truth, which is the worst of all impurities.
Yet how light we make of it! We look at it, and are calm. We touch it and do not shudder. We mix with it, and have no fear. We see it touch holy things, and we have no sense of sacrilege. We breathe its odor, and show no signs of detestation or disgust. Some of us affect its friendship; and some even extenuate its guilt. We do not love God enough to be angry for His glory. We do not love men enough to be charitably truthful for their souls.
Having lost the touch, the taste, the sight, and all the senses of heavenly-mindedness, we can dwell amidst this odious plague, in imperturbable tranquility, reconciled to its foulness, not without some boastful professions of liberal admiration, perhaps even with a solicitous show of tolerant sympathies.
Why are we so far below the old saints, and even the modern apostles of these latter times, in the abundance of our conversations? Because we have not the antique sternness? We want the old Church-spirit, the old ecclesiastical genius. Our charity is untruthful, because it is not severe; and it is unpersuasive, because it is untruthful.
We lack devotion to truth as truth, as God’s truth. Our zeal for souls is puny, because we have no zeal for God’s honor. We act as if God were complimented by conversions, instead of trembling souls rescued by a stretch of mercy.
We tell men half the truth, the half that best suits our own pusillanimity and their conceit; and then we wonder that so few are converted, and that of those few so many apostatize.
We are so weak as to be surprised that our half-truth has not succeeded so well as God’s whole truth.
Where there is no hatred of heresy, there is no holiness.
A man, who might be an apostle, becomes a fester in the Church for the want of this righteous indignation. (The Precious Blood, 1860)
There can be no "half truths" with God. We must oppose the evil of conciliarism, including that of the Novus Ordo service itself, as we recognize the false, apostate nature of the sect responsible for its propagation. This is no work that we can do on our own. We need the help of Our Lady, who hates heresy as it mocks and blasphemes her Divine Son, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ Himself.
The aforementioned Father Frederick Faber explained in a meditation on Our Lady's Third Dolor, The Losing of the Child Jesus in the Temple, in his The Foot of the Cross/The Dolors of Mary how we must make endure the sufferings of the present moment, as the Church Militant on earth suffers her Mystical Passion, Death, and Burial, by becoming bolder with an increase of graces that accrue to those who suffer valiantly as did Our Lady when searching for her Beloved Son, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ:
Thus it was that our dearest Mother had her Passion at the end of the Infancy; and her Compassion, together with His Passion, at the end of the Ministry. The darkness of this third dolor was the Gethsemane; the loss of Jesus was the crucifixion of her soul; her complaint was her cry upon the Cross, just when the torment of the Cross was ending. It was with her now as it was to be with Him hereafter.
There is yet another thing which strikes us as unlike our Lady in this third dolor. It is her venturing to question our Blessed Lord as to the reasons of His conduct. In the midst of her love of Jesus, the thought always uppermost in her mind, the memory that never went to sleep, the faith which was her life, the fact which was her worship was His Divinity. Indeed, the greatness of her love arose from this very thing. It seems more probably that our Lord had actually shown her His Divine Nature. But at all events she saw it always by faith. It was the prominent thing which she saw in Him incessantly. Hence it would seem impossible for her to question Him. Her humility and her intelligence would alike forbid it. She had asked a question for one moment, just before consenting to the Incarnation. But it was of an angel, not of God; and moreover, those days were passed. How is it then that she seems to call upon Him, and in public also, to explain and justify Himself for what He had done? In all the Gospels her word are without any parallel. They stand out by themselves, inviting notice, and yet full of mystery. Her spirit was not troubled by the interior darkness of her soul. It have never been troubled by it. Trouble is not the word. Besides, the darkness had gone at the first sight of Jesus. It was not in the flush of joy, which at that instant was crowding in at all the inlets of her soul, that she spoke, not knowing what she said, like Peter upon Tabor when he talked of building three tabernacles. Neither joy nor sorrow ever made the balance of her tranquility to quiver. There was never any conflict in her. Struggle would have desecrated her Immaculate Heart. It was not exactly what she wanted to know. Her science was so vast, that it was absolutely without desire of increase, so far at least as it was merely science, and not the beatifying accompaniment of an ever-augmenting love. Her science was such as was befitting her attitude as the Mother of God. She knew, not only all that was due to her, not only all that was convenient for her, but all which could perfect her perfections within the limits of a creature. Every thing in her had its limits. Every thing was vast but it was also limited. Her beauty was in her limitations. She remained a creature. Hence her science was perfect, having nothing imperfect about it but the inevitable imperfection of whatsoever is created. God only is illimitable, God only omniscient, God only perfect with absolute independent, intrinsical perfection. Why then did she question Jesus about this? We must reverently venture upon a conjecture. It was by an impulse of the Holy Spirit, by an attraction from Jesus Himself, by a will of His which she read in His Sacred Heart. She had just been raised to a fresh height of sanctity. She had drawn closer to God. The time of boldness follows great graces, just as the time of great graces follows great trials. Heavenliness of mind takes the form of an adoring familiarity, when it is in actual contact with God. We see this in the saints. But what will the corresponding phenomenon be in the sanctity of Mary? Jesus invited her to claim Him, to assert her rights over Him, to exercise her authority upon Him. And all this publicly before the doctors. Thus would He make solemn proclamation of her being His Mother, and do her honor before all, while they who heard little knew the import of that royal proclamation. Just as it required vast grace in St. Joseph to enable His humility to govern and command His God, so now did it require immense grace in Mary thus to assert her rights over Jesus. But she did it in the same calm simplicity with which she had consent to the Incarnation; and that moment she stood once more on another mountain, higher than that which a moment since had been the pedestal of her wonderful grace. The glory of obedience, the triumph of humility, the magnificence of worship, all of these were in the bold question of the Blessed Mother. (Father Frederick Faber, The Foot of the Cross, published originally in England in 1857 under the title The Dolors of Mary, republished by TAN Books and Publishers, pp. 179-181.)
No believing Catholic should want to be part of a "high church, low church" ape of the Anglican sect. Each believing Catholic must adhere to the totality of the truths of the the Holy Faith without taint of corruption by conciliarism, without any hint of reading Catholicism into the minds of apostates who are truly ravenous wolves in shepherds' vestments. Great examples have been established by the likes of Father Martin Stepanich, O.F.M., S.T.D., and His Excellency Bishop Robert Fidelis McKenna, O.P., the priests of the Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen, who were among the earliest advocates of sedevacantism, and, of course, the "nine" (Bishops Clarence Kelly, Daniel Dolan, Donald Sanborn and Fathers Anthony Cekada, William Jenkins, Eugene Berry, Thomas Zapp, Joseph Collins and Martin Skierka), who were not even given a proper hearing by Archbishop Lefebvre, advised as he was by those who believed that a "deal" with "Rome" was possible in 1983 and would serve the interests of the Faith, among so many others. We must follow these examples no matter the calumny and hardship that we might suffer as a result. They have always had the cause of Truth Himself, Christ the King, on their side.
We must, as always, be very mindful of making reparation for our own many sins, which are more responsible than we would like to think for the state of the Church and thus the state of the world. We must offer up our prayers and sufferings and sacrifices and penances and mortifications humiliations to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus as the consecrated slaves of His Most Blessed Mother's Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart, praying as many Rosaries each day as our states-in-life permit. We are involved in a titanic struggle with the devil each day for the salvation of our own souls. We cannot be on the adversary's side by being oblivious to, if not apologetic of, the errors he has inspired in the false sect of conciliarism that does his bidding for him in so many ways, including most especially in the Novus Ordo service and by refusing absolutely to seek with urgency the unconditional conversion of all men universally to the Catholic Church. We must take the rocky road of rejection and humiliation rather than the smooth road of apostasy and betrayal that leads to the wide gate of eternal perdition, begging Our Lady's company as we keep her company at the foot of her Divine Son's Most Holy Cross every day as we assist at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc in hora mortis nostrae. Amen!
Isn't it time to pray a Rosary now?
Vivat Christus Rex! Viva Cristo Rey!
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saint Matthias, pray for us.
See also: A Litany of Saints