It's Not the Rabbi, It's the "Pope"
Thomas A. Droleskey
Most of this brief commentary is recycled from
A Trap Goes Snap from three months ago now. The purpose of recycling this material is to demonstrate once again that the schema for the upcoming synod of conciliar "bishops," Instrumentum laboris, is contrary to the Catholic Faith and that it represents perfectly the thought of Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI himself. Some have commented that Instrumentum laboris is the principal problem facing the conciliar "synod," not the presentation that will be made by a rabbinical adherent of the Talmud. Sure, the rabbi himself is not the problem. It is the "pope" who invited him, the "pope" who has contempt for the "past" decisions of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, the "pope" who believes in a condemned notion of dogmatic truth that makes it possible for him, at least in his own Hegelian mind, to represent condemned propositions as being in accord with the Faith.
I will let those attached to the structures of the counterfeit church of conciliarism argue about proving that the language found in the "Second" Vatican Council's Dei Verbum, October 18, 1965, is in accordance with the authentic teaching of the Catholic Church, just as I will let Alaska Governor Sarah Heath Palin argue that she has foreign policy experience because Russian Prime Minister Vladmir Putin's plane flies through Alaskan airspace ("It's a bird. . . .It's a plane. . . .It's Putin!) Ah, but that is the subject of another article, which I will hold in abeyance until after Thursday's debate between the uninformed Mrs. Palin and the gaffe-prone apostate named Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr. So much work. So little time. I have a limited amount of time (and patience) to deal with the insanity of the "hermeneutics of continuity in discontinuity" in the ecclesiastical realm and naturalistic farce in the civil realm
Perhaps it would be useful to point out that Joseph Ratzinger has, as "Benedict XVI," reaffirmed his Modernist view that past decisions concerning the interpretation of Scripture lost their binding force over time as historical circumstances change, thus making it more possible to "understand" Scripture in ways that those in the past could not have accepted because they, the past popes, were conditioned by the contingent circumstances in which they lived:
It is precisely in this combination of continuity and discontinuity at different levels that the very nature of true reform consists. In this process of innovation in continuity we must learn to understand more practically than before that the Church's decisions on contingent matters - for example, certain practical forms of liberalism or a free interpretation of the Bible - should necessarily be contingent themselves, precisely because they refer to a specific reality that is changeable in itself. It was necessary to learn to recognize that in these decisions it is only the principles that express the permanent aspect, since they remain as an undercurrent, motivating decisions from within.
On the other hand, not so permanent are the practical forms that depend on the historical situation and are therefore subject to change. (Christmas greetings to the Members of the Roman Curia and Prelature, December 22, 2005.)
I have pointed out repeatedly how such a statement, which is opposed to natural reason and logic and has been condemned by the authority of the Catholic Church, is a proof of the Modernist mind of Joseph Ratzinger, demonstrating that he has beliefs that have placed himself outside of the Faith, as taught by Holy Mother Church herself:
Hence, that meaning of the sacred dogmata is ever to be maintained which has once been declared by Holy Mother Church, and there must never be an abandonment of this sense under the pretext or in the name of a more profound understanding.... If anyone says that it is possible that at some given time, given the advancement of knowledge, a sense may be assigned to the dogmata propounded by the Church which is different from that which the Church has always understood and understands: let him be anathema. [Vatican Council, 1870.]
Hence it is quite impossible [the Modernists assert] to maintain that they [dogmatic statements] absolutely contain the truth: for, in so far as they are symbols, they are the images of truth, and so must be adapted to the religious sense in its relation to man; and as instruments, they are the vehicles of truth, and must therefore in their turn be adapted to man in his relation to the religious sense. But the object of the religious sense, as something contained in the absolute, possesses an infinite variety of aspects, of which now one, now another, may present itself. In like manner he who believes can avail himself of varying conditions. Consequently, the formulas which we call dogma must be subject to these vicissitudes, and are, therefore, liable to change. Thus the way is open to the intrinsic evolution of dogma. Here we have an immense structure of sophisms which ruin and wreck all religion.
It is thus, Venerable Brethren, that for the Modernists, whether as authors or propagandists, there is to be nothing stable, nothing immutable in the Church. Nor, indeed, are they without forerunners in their doctrines, for it was of these that Our predecessor Pius IX wrote: "These enemies of divine revelation extol human progress to the skies, and with rash and sacrilegious daring would have it introduced into the Catholic religion as if this religion were not the work of God but of man, or some kind of philosophical discovery susceptible of perfection by human efforts." On the subject of revelation and dogma in particular, the doctrine of the Modernists offers nothing new. We find it condemned in the Syllabus of Pius IX, where it is enunciated in these terms: ''Divine revelation is imperfect, and therefore subject to continual and indefinite progress, corresponding with the progress of human reason"; and condemned still more solemnly in the Vatican Council: ''The doctrine of the faith which God has revealed has not been proposed to human intelligences to be perfected by them as if it were a philosophical system, but as a divine deposit entrusted to the Spouse of Christ to be faithfully guarded and infallibly interpreted. Hence also that sense of the sacred dogmas is to be perpetually retained which our Holy Mother the Church has once declared, nor is this sense ever to be abandoned on plea or pretext of a more profound comprehension of the truth." Nor is the development of our knowledge, even concerning the faith, barred by this pronouncement; on the contrary, it is supported and maintained. For the same Council continues: "Let intelligence and science and wisdom, therefore, increase and progress abundantly and vigorously in individuals, and in the mass, in the believer and in the whole Church, throughout the ages and the centuries -- but only in its own kind, that is, according to the same dogma, the same sense, the same acceptation." (Pope Saint Pius X, Pascendi Dominci Gregis, September 8, 1907.)
Fourthly, I sincerely hold that the doctrine of faith was handed down to us from the apostles through the orthodox Fathers in exactly the same meaning and always in the same purport. Therefore, I entirely reject the heretical' misrepresentation that dogmas evolve and change from one meaning to another different from the one which the Church held previously. . . .
Finally, I declare that I am completely opposed to the error of the modernists who hold that there is nothing divine in sacred tradition; or what is far worse, say that there is, but in a pantheistic sense, with the result that there would remain nothing but this plain simple fact-one to be put on a par with the ordinary facts of history-the fact, namely, that a group of men by their own labor, skill, and talent have continued through subsequent ages a school begun by Christ and his apostles. I firmly hold, then, and shall hold to my dying breath the belief of the Fathers in the charism of truth, which certainly is, was, and always will be in the succession of the episcopacy from the apostles. The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way.
I promise that I shall keep all these articles faithfully, entirely, and sincerely, and guard them inviolate, in no way deviating from them in teaching or in any way in word or in writing. Thus I promise, this I swear, so help me God. (The Oath Against Modernism, September 1, 1910.)
To attack the nature of dogmatic truth is to attack the nature of God. It is a relatively easy thing to deconstruct Sacred Scripture when attacks the nature of God and His immutable truths.
What I would like to point out once again in this article, however, is that Instrumentum laboris, although certainly not an "official" document of the counterfeit church of conciliarism and one that will give way to "synod" discussions and then the "post-synodal exhortation" that will be issued by Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI thirteen months or so after the conclusion of the "synod," which will meet in Rome, Italy, from October 5 to October 26, 2008, is a perfect expression of the Modernist mind of Ratzinger/Benedict. The beliefs expressed in Instrumentum laboris contain the de facto teaching to be found in most conciliar parishes and "educational" institutions, as I explained three months ago:
Conciliarism's defections from the Faith are on evident display throughout its structures, where bishops and priests and religious and ordinary lay teachers can not only propagate conciliarism's approved errors but remain in perfectly good standing, at least in most instances, as they deny quite openly articles contained in the Deposit of Faith, including the absolute inerrancy of Sacred Scripture. I simply cannot count the number of "homilies" to which I permitted myself to be subjected in the Novus Ordo world in the 1970s and 1980s and early-1990s wherein priests denied the inerrancy of Sacred Scripture most openly, repeating almost word-for-word Modernism's most basic presuppositions about the Bible that were condemned by Pope Saint Pius X in Lamentabili Sane, July 3, 1907, and in Pascendi Dominci Gregis, September 8, 1907. I only had one Scripture professor in my seminary days, the late Father William Heidt, O.S.B., who died on March 28, 2000, who defended--and brilliantly so--the binding nature of those decrees and of Pope Leo XIII's Providentissimus Deus, November 18, 1893, and Pope Pius XII's Divino Afflante Spiritu, September 30, 1943. The rest, including the late Archbishop John Francis Whealon of Hartford, Connecticut, were absolute Modernists in their views on Sacred Scripture.
Thus it is the parties continue to go on in the Motu world as the conciliar Vatican attempts to "encourage" them to make the transition to the conciliar liturgical mentality over the course of time and as the conciliar doctrinal revolution continues in full force, as is evident from a working document that will serve as the basis of discussion at the counterfeit church's Synod of Bishops in October (only a handful of the men present, mostly those from the Eastern rites, will be true bishops). That working document, which is by no means the "final say" on what will emerge from synod itself or from the post-synodal exhortation that will be issued by Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI about twelve to thirteen months after its conclusion in late October of this year, 2008. It is, however, nevertheless revealing that to examine the boldness of asserting one of Modernism's key propositions, that there are parts of Sacred Scripture that are inspired while other parts are not:
c. In summary, the following can be said with certainty:
— the charism of inspiration allows God to be the author of the Bible in a way that does not exclude humankind itself from being its true author. In fact, inspiration is different from dictation; it leaves the freedom and personal capacity of the writer in tact, while enlightening and inspiring both;
— with regards to what might be inspired in the many parts of Sacred Scripture, inerrancy applies only to "that truth which God wanted put into sacred writings for the sake of salvation" (DV 11);
— in virtue of the charism of inspiration, the Holy Spirit constitutes the books of the Bible as the Word of God and entrusts them to the Church, so that they might be received in the obedience of faith;
— the totality and organic unity of the Canon of Sacred Scripture constitutes the criterion for interpreting the Sacred Book; and
— since the Bible is the Word of God recorded in human language, its interpretation is consonant with literary, philosophic and theological criteria, always subject, however, to the unifying force of faith and the guidance of the Magisterium (13). (No. 15, Instrumentum laboris (May 11, 2008).)
The following can be said with certainty? It can be said with certainty that "inerrancy applies only to 'that truth which God wanted put into sacred writings for the sake of salvation'"? It is a certainty that this statement is false, contrary to the Faith and condemned by the authority of the Catholic Church. That is what is certain.
Consider, for example, the following condemnations of the "certain" statement contained in the conciliar Synod of Bishops' Instrumentum laboris:
11. Divine inspiration does not extend to all of Sacred Scriptures so that it renders its parts, each and every one, free from every error.
(Proposition condemned by Pope Saint Pius X, Lamentabili Sane, July 3, 1907.)
20. The principles here laid down will apply to cognate sciences, and especially to History. It is a lamentable fact that there are many who with great labor carry out and publish investigations on the monuments of antiquity, the manners and institutions of nations and other illustrative subjects, and whose chief purpose in all this is too often to find mistakes in the sacred writings and so to shake and weaken their authority. Some of these writers display not only extreme hostility, but the greatest unfairness; in their eyes a profane book or ancient document is accepted without hesitation, whilst the Scripture, if they only find in it a suspicion of error, is set down with the slightest possible discussion as quite untrustworthy. It is true, no doubt, that copyists have made mistakes in the text of the Bible; this question, when it arises, should be carefully considered on its merits, and the fact not too easily admitted, but only in those passages where the proof is clear. It may also happen that the sense of a passage remains ambiguous, and in this case good hermeneutical methods will greatly assist in clearing up the obscurity. But it is absolutely wrong and forbidden, either to narrow inspiration to certain parts only of Holy Scripture, or to admit that the sacred writer has erred. For the system of those who, in order to rid themselves of these difficulties, do not hesitate to concede that divine inspiration regards the things of faith and morals, and nothing beyond, because (as they wrongly think) in a question of the truth or falsehood of a passage, we should consider not so much what God has said as the reason and purpose which He had in mind in saying it -- this system cannot be tolerated. For all the books which the Church receives as sacred and canonical, are written wholly and entirely, with all their parts, at the dictation of the Holy Ghost; and so far is it from being possible that any error can co-exist with inspiration, that inspiration not only is essentially incompatible with error, but excludes and rejects it as absolutely and necessarily as it is impossible that God Himself, the supreme Truth, can utter that which is not true. This is the ancient and unchanging faith of the Church, solemnly defined in the Councils of Florence and of Trent, and finally confirmed and more expressly formulated by the Council of the Vatican. These are the words of the last: "The Books of the Old and New Testament, whole and entire, with all their parts, as enumerated in the decree of the same Council (Trent) and in the ancient Latin Vulgate, are to be received as sacred and canonical. And the Church holds them as sacred and canonical, not because, having been composed by human industry, they were afterwards approved by her authority; nor only because they contain revelation without error; but because, having been written under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, they have God for their author." Hence, because the Holy Ghost employed men as His instruments, we cannot therefore say that it was these inspired instruments who, perchance, have fallen into error, and not the primary author. For, by supernatural power, He so moved and impelled them to write -- He was so present to them -- that the things which He ordered, and those only, they, first, rightly understood, then willed faithfully to write down, and finally expressed in apt words and with infallible truth. Otherwise, it could not be said that He was the Author of the entire Scripture. Such has always been the persuasion of the Fathers. "Therefore," says St. Augustine, "since they wrote the things which He showed and uttered to them, it cannot be pretended that He is not the writer; for His members executed what their Head dictated." And St. Gregory the Great thus pronounces: "Most superfluous it is to inquire who wrote these things -- we loyally believe the Holy Ghost to be the Author of the book. He wrote it Who dictated it for writing; He wrote it Who inspired its execution."
21. It follows that those who maintain that an error is possible in any genuine passage of the sacred writings, either pervert the Catholic notion of inspiration, or make God the author of such error. And so emphatically were all the Fathers and Doctors agreed that the divine writings, as left by the hagiographers, are free from all error, that they labored earnestly, with no less skill than reverence, to reconcile with each other those numerous passages which seem at variance -- the very passages which in great measure have been taken up by the "higher criticism;" for they were unanimous in laying it down, that those writings, in their entirety and in all their parts were equally from the afflatus of Almighty God, and that God, speaking by the sacred writers, could not set down anything but what was true. The words of St. Augustine to St. Jerome may sum up what they taught: "On my part I confess to your charity that it is only to those Books of Scripture which are now called canonical that I have learned to pay such honor and reverence as to believe most firmly that none of their writers has fallen into any error. And if in these Books I meet anything which seems contrary to truth, I shall not hesitate to conclude either that the text is faulty, or that the translator has not expressed the meaning of the passage, or that I myself do not understand." (Pope Leo XIII, Providentissimus Deus, November 18, 1893.)
The Modernists assert a general inspiration of the Sacred Books, but they admit no inspiration in the Catholic sense. (Pope Saint Pius X, Pascendi Dominci Gregis, September 8, 1907.)
22. To return, however, to the new opinions mentioned above, a number of things are proposed or suggested by some even against the divine authorship of Sacred Scripture. For some go so far as to pervert the sense of the Vatican Council's definition that God is the author of Holy Scripture, and they put forward again the opinion, already often condemned, which asserts that immunity from error extends only to those parts of the Bible that treat of God or of moral and religious matters. They even wrongly speak of a human sense of the Scriptures, beneath which a divine sense, which they say is the only infallible meaning, lies hidden. In interpreting Scripture, they will take no account of the analogy of faith and the Tradition of the Church. Thus they judge the doctrine of the Fathers and of the Teaching Church by the norm of Holy Scripture, interpreted by the purely human reason of exegetes, instead of explaining Holy Scripture according to the mind of the Church which Christ Our Lord has appointed guardian and interpreter of the whole deposit of divinely revealed truth.
23. Further, according to their fictitious opinions, the literal sense of Holy Scripture and its explanation, carefully worked out under the Church's vigilance by so many great exegetes, should yield now to a new exegesis, which they are pleased to call symbolic or spiritual. By means of this new exegesis the Old Testament, which today in the Church is a sealed book, would finally be thrown open to all the faithful. By this method, they say, all difficulties vanish, difficulties which hinder only those who adhere to the literal meaning of the Scriptures.
24. Everyone sees how foreign all this is to the principles and norms of interpretation rightly fixed by our predecessors of happy memory, Leo XIII in his Encyclical "Providentissimus," and Benedict XV in the Encyclical "Spiritus Paraclitus," as also by Ourselves in the Encyclical "Divino Afflante Spiritu."
25. It is not surprising that novelties of this kind have already borne their deadly fruit in almost all branches of theology. It is now doubted that human reason, without divine revelation and the help of divine grace, can, by arguments drawn from the created universe, prove the existence of a personal God; it is denied that the world had a beginning; it is argued that the creation of the world is necessary, since it proceeds from the necessary liberality of divine love; it is denied that God has eternal and infallible foreknowedge of the free actions of men -- all this in contradiction to the decrees of the Vatican Council. (Pope Pius XII, Humani Generis, August 12, 1950.)
Pope Pius XII used Humani Generis to condemn the principles of the New Theology that were warping the mind of seminarian Joseph Ratzinger in Germany in 1950. Heedless of the condemnations listed above (which are only partial listing of such condemnations) and contemptuous of Humani Generis, Joseph Ratzinger was so bold as to assert the following on July 2, 1990:
The text [of the Second Vatican Council] also presents the various forms of bonds that rise from the different degrees of magisterial teaching. It affirms -- perhaps for the first time with this clarity -- that there are decisions of the Magisterium that cannot be a last word on the matter as such, but are, in a substantial fixation of the problem, above all an expression of pastoral prudence, a kind of provisional disposition. Its nucleus remains valid, but the particulars, which the circumstances of the times have influenced, may need further ramifications.
“In this regard, one may think of the declarations of Popes in the last century about religious liberty, as well as the anti-Modernist decisions at the beginning of this century, above all, the decisions of the Biblical Commission of the time. As a cry of alarm in the face of hasty and superficial adaptations, they will remain fully justified. A personage such as Johann Baptist Metz said, for example, that the Church's anti-Modernist decisions render the great service of preserving her from immersion in the liberal-bourgeois world. But in the details of the determinations they contain, they become obsolete after having fulfilled their pastoral mission at the proper moment.” (L'Osservatore Romano, July 2, 1990.)
Just as Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI believes that the Catholic Church's understanding of the Fathers has been distorted by Saint Thomas Aquinas and Scholasticism, so is it the case that he believes that the papal condemnations of the varying views of Scriptural inerrancy held by Modernists and his own school of the New Theology are no longer "relevant." Thus there is the need for "adjustments" now and again to determine, especially in light of the "insights" of the secular sciences, what is "inspired" and what is not, confining the inspired text only to that which is considered "necessary" for salvation. He takes lightly past encyclical letters and solemn condemnations that he believes have "outlived" their usefulness (much as he rejects, completely and entirely, the immutable doctrine of the Social Reign of Christ the King).
Unfortunately for Ratzinger/Benedict, the true popes of the Catholic Church have had a few things to say about his dismissive attitude of their condemnations:
8. They are free from all blame who treat lightly the condemnations passed by the Sacred Congregation of the Index or by the Roman Congregations. (Proposition condemned by Pope Saint Pius X, Lamentabili Sane, July 3, 1907.)
In his encyclical letter "Providentissimus Deus," given on November 18, 1893, our predecessor, Leo XIII, of immortal memory, after describing the dignity of Sacred Scripture and commending the study of it, set forth the laws which govern the proper study of the Holy Bible; and having proclaimed the divinity of these books against the errors and calumnies of the rationalists, he at the same time defended them against the false teachings of what is known as the higher criticism, which, as the Pontiff most wisely wrote, are clearly nothing but the commentaries of rationalism derived from a misuse of philology and kindred studies. Our predecessor, too, seeing that the danger was constantly on the increase and wishing to prevent the propagation of rash and erroneous views, by his apostolic letters "Vigilantes studiique memores," given on October 30, 1902, established a Pontifical Council or Commission on Biblical matters, composed of several Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church distinguished for their learning and wisdom, to which Commission were added as consulters a number of men in sacred orders chosen from among the learned in theology and in the Holy Bible, of various nationalities and differing in their methods and views concerning exegetical studies. In so doing the Pontiff had in mind as an advantage most adapted for the promotion of study and for the time in which we live that in this Commission there should be the fullest freedom for proposing, examining and judging all opinions whatsoever, and that the Cardinals of the Commission were not to reach any definite decision, as described in the said apostolic letters, before they had examined the arguments in favor and against the question to be decided, omitting nothing which might serve to show in the clearest light the true and genuine state of the Biblical questions under discussion. Only after all this had been done were the decisions reached to be submitted for the approval of the Supreme Pontiff and then promulgated.
After mature examination and the most diligent deliberations the Pontifical Biblical Commission has happily given certain decisions of a very useful kind for the proper promotion and direction on safe lines of Biblical studies. But we observe that some persons, unduly prone to opinions and methods tainted by pernicious novelties and excessively devoted to the principle of false liberty, which is really immoderate license and in sacred studies proves itself to be a most insidious and a fruitful source of the worst evils against the purity of the faith, have not received and do not receive these decisions with the proper obedience.
Wherefore we find it necessary to declare and to expressly prescribe, and by this our act we do declare and decree that all are bound in conscience to submit to the decisions of the Biblical Commission relating to doctrine, which have been given in the past and which shall be given in the future, in the same way as to the decrees of the Roman congregations approved by the Pontiff; nor can all those escape the note of disobedience or temerity, and consequently of grave sin, who in speech or writing contradict such decisions, and this besides the scandal they give and the other reasons for which they may be responsible before God for other temerities and errors which generally go with such contradictions.
Moreover, in order to check the daily increasing audacity of many modernists who are endeavoring by all kinds of sophistry and devices to detract from the force and efficacy not only of the decree "Lamentabili sane exitu" (the so-called Syllabus), issued by our order by the Holy Roman and Universal Inquisition on July 3 of the present year, but also of our encyclical letters "Pascendi dominici gregis" given on September 8 of this same year, we do by our apostolic authority repeat and confirm both that decree of the Supreme Sacred Congregation and those encyclical letters of ours, adding the penalty of excommunication against their contradictors, and this we declare and decree that should anybody, which may God forbid, be so rash as to defend any one of the propositions, opinions or teachings condemned in these documents he falls, ipso facto, under the censure contained under the chapter "Docentes" of the constitution "Apostolicae Sedis," which is the first among the excommunications latae sententiae, simply reserved to the Roman Pontiff. This excommunication is to be understood as salvis poenis, which may be incurred by those who have violated in any way the said documents, as propagators and defenders of heresies, when their propositions, opinions and teachings are heretical, as has happened more than once in the case of the adversaries of both these documents, especially when they advocate the errors of the modernists that is, the synthesis of all heresies.
Wherefore we again and most earnestly exhort the ordinaries of the dioceses and the heads of religious congregations to use the utmost vigilance over teachers, and first of all in the seminaries; and should they find any of them imbued with the errors of the modernists and eager for what is new and noxious, or lacking in docility to the prescriptions of the Apostolic See, in whatsoever way published, let them absolutely forbid the teaching office to such; so, too, let them exclude from sacred orders those young men who give the very faintest reason for doubt that they favor condemned doctrines and pernicious novelties. We exhort them also to take diligent care to put an end to those books and other writings, now growing exceedingly numerous, which contain opinions or tendencies of the kind condemned in the encyclical letters and decree above mentioned; let them see to it that these publications are removed from Catholic publishing houses, and especially from the hands of students and the clergy. By doing this they will at the same time be promoting real and solid education, which should always be a subject of the greatest solicitude for those who exercise sacred authority.
All these things we will and order to be sanctioned and established by our apostolic authority, aught to the contrary notwithstanding. (Pope Saint Pius X,
Praestantia Scripturae, November 18, 1907.)
It really does not get much clearer, does it? After all, it must be remembered that Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI has written extensively on how the Old Testament does not point unequivocally to Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ as the Messiah, that the Talmudic interpretation is valid:
It is of course possible to read the Old Testament so that it is not directed toward Christ; it does not point quite unequivocally to Christ. And if Jews cannot see the promises as being fulfilled in him, this is not just ill will on their part, but genuinely because of the obscurity of the texts and the tension in the relationship between these texts and the figure of Jesus. Jesus brings a new meaning to these texts – yet it is he who first gives them their proper coherence and relevance and significance. There are perfectly good reasons, then, for denying that the Old Testament refers to Christ and for saying, No, that is not what he said. And there are also good reasons for referring it to him – that is what the dispute between Jews and Christians is about.” (Joseph Ratzinger, God and the World, p. 209.)
His Excellency Bishop Mark A. Pivarunas wrote the following about Ratzinger's view of Sacred Scripture in the passage quoted above:
What blasphemy! According to Ratzinger, divine revelation is obscure and there are perfectly good reasons for denying that the Old Testament refers to Christ! What he is saying in reality is that God has failed inasmuch as the divinely inspired prophecies aren't sufficiently clear enough. This is the reason that Pope St. Pius X, knowing this evil tenet of modernism, explicitly stated in the Oath Against Modernism that miracles and prophecies are the surest signs of the divine origin of the Christian religion, and that they are well adapted to all eras and all men. (His Excellency Bishop Mark A. Pivarunas, Adsum, December, 2007.)
Ratzinger/Benedict's Modernist views of Sacred Scripture were condemned by Saint John Chrysostom in the Fourth Century:
Let that be your judgment about the synagogue, too. For they brought the books of Moses and the prophets along with them into the synagogue, not to honor them but to outrage them with dishonor. When they say that Moses and the prophets knew not Christ and said nothing about his coming, what greater outrage could they do to those holy men than to accuse them of failing to recognize their Master, than to say that those saintly prophets are partners of their impiety? And so it is that we must hate both them and their synagogue all the more because of their offensive treatment of those holy men." (Saint John Chrysostom, Fourth Century, A.D., Saint John Chrysostom: Eight Homilies Against the Jews.)
Does Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI know about all of these condemnations of his work? Of course he does. He does not care. Having dispensed with the very nature of dogmatic truth in perfect accord with his rejection of Scholasticism and his embrace of the New Theology condemned by Pope Pius XII in Humani Generis, the currently reigning conciliar "pontiff" believes that truth is "anchored" in one place for a time before it is "anchored" in another place at a another time. Truth, according to this view, which runs contrary to even natural reason, is apprehended in the mind, which can never apprehend it completely in all of its various aspects or express it clearly and adequately at any given time. Anyone who denies that this is indeed the mind of Joseph Ratzinger as he has expressed it throughout his priesthood is living in a fantasy world of his own choosing.
Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI had to swear to uphold The Oath Against Modernism, which forbade him from even entertaining, no less propagating publicly, the positions that he has espoused since the day of his ordination on June 29, 1951, and that shape his efforts at the present time to "correct" the "distortions" of the Fathers of the Church provided by Saint Thomas Aquinas and Scholasticism:
I firmly hold, then, and shall hold to my dying breath the belief of the Fathers in the charism of truth, which certainly is, was, and always will be in the succession of the episcopacy from the apostles. The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way.
I promise that I shall keep all these articles faithfully, entirely, and sincerely, and guard them inviolate, in no way deviating from them in teaching or in any way in word or in writing. Thus I promise, this I swear, so help me God. (The Oath Against Modernism, September 1, 1900.)
As noted last week in Mainstreaming the Oldies, central to the work of Joseph Ratzinger has been his lifelong warfare against Saint Thomas Aquinas and Scholasticism. This is, of course, one of the chief goals of any Modernist, as Pope Saint Pius X noted in Pascendi Dominci Gregis:
They recognize that the three chief difficulties which stand in their way are the scholastic method of philosophy, the authority and tradition of the Fathers, and the magisterium of the Church, and on these they wage unrelenting war. Against scholastic philosophy and theology they use the weapons of ridicule and contempt. Whether it is ignorance or fear, or both, that inspires this conduct in them, certain it is that the passion for novelty is always united in them with hatred of scholasticism, and there is no surer sign that a man is tending to Modernism than when he begins to show his dislike for the scholastic method. Let the Modernists and their admirers remember the proposition condemned by Pius IX: "The method and principles which have served the ancient doctors of scholasticism when treating of theology no longer correspond with the exigencies of our time or the progress of science." They exercise all their ingenuity in an effort to weaken the force and falsify the character of tradition, so as to rob it of all its weight and authority.
Several excerpts from the readings contained in the Dominican Breviary (II Nocturn) for the Feast of the Patronage of Saint Thomas Aquinas on November 13 amplify this point:
No one can give an adequate account of the praises honoring the blessed Thomas by theologians, and how much his unblemished doctrine has been acclaimed by the Sovereign Pontiffs.
Innocent VI: "The teaching of this Doctor above all others, with the exception of Canon Law, has precision in terminology, propriety of expression, truth of judgment: so that never is one who has held it been found to have deviated from the path of truth."
Pius V: "It was wrought by the providence of Almighty God that by the force and truth of the Angelic Doctor's teaching, by which he illumined the Apostolic Church with the refutation of innumerable errors, that the many heresies which have arisen after his canonization have been confounded, overthrown and dispersed. This has been made evident both earlier and recently in the sacred decrees of the Council of Trent."
Clement VIII to the Neapolitans: "Devoutly and wisely are you thinking of adopting a new patron of your city, your fellow citizen, the Angelic interpreter of the Divine Will, splendid in the sanctity of his life and by his miracles, Thomas Aquinas, since indeed is this honor owed with the greatest justification to his virtues joined to his admirable doctrine. Indeed, witness to his doctrine is the great number of books which he composed, in a very brief time, in almost every class of learning, with a matchless arrangement and wondrous clearness, without any error whatsoever."
Paul V: "We greatly rejoice in the Lord that honor and veneration are increasing daily for the most splendid champion of the Catholic Faith, blessed Thomas Aquinas, by the shield of whose writings the Church Militant successfully parries the spears of the heretics.
And Leo XIII, at once embracing hand surpassing all of the praises of his predecessors, says of him: "Distinguishing reason from Faith, as is proper, but nevertheless combining the two in a friendly alliance, he both preserved the rights of each and had regard for the dignity of both., in such a way too that reason, carried on the wings of Thomas to the highest human limit, now almost cannot rise any higher, and faith almost cannot expect more or stronger helps from reason than it has already obtained through Thomas."
--And again, presenting St. Thomas to Catholics as a model and patron in various sciences, he says: "In him are all the illustrious ornaments of mind and character by which he rightly calls others to the imitation of himself: the richest doctrine, incorrupt, fittingly arranged; obedience to the Faith, and a marvelous consonance with the truths divinely handed down; integrity of life with the splendor of the greatest virtues." (Readings from the Dominican Breviary (II Nocturn) for the feast of the Patronage of Saint Thomas Aquinas, November 13. Text provided by His Excellency Bishop Robert F. McKenna, O.P. I thank His Excellency for providing me with these readings from the Dominican Breviary.)
None of these papal testimonies matters at all to Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, whose abandonment of Thomism is essential redefining the Faith and the nature Its Tradition. He has contempt for the work of the Angelic Doctor, relegating Scholasticism merely "to
the philosophical tradition to which he belonged" (see Spe Salvi, November 30, 2007), implying that that philosophical "tradition" is not the one and only official philosophy of the Catholic Church. Indeed, the very clearness for which Saint Thomas Aquinas was praised by Pope Clement VIII is something that has always repulsed the ever-obscure Ratzinger, steeped in his world of Hegelian paradox and contradiction into which he has been immersed courtesy of his late mentor, Father Hans Urs von Balthasar:
The cultural interests pursued at the seminary of Freising were joined to the study of a theology infected by existentialism, beginning with the writings of Romano Guardini. Among the authors preferred by Ratzinger was the Jewish philosopher Martin Buber. Ratzinger loved St. Augustine, but never St. Thomas Aquinas: "By contrast, I had difficulties in penetrating the thought of Thomas Aquinas, whose crystal-clear logic seemed to be too closed in on itself, too impersonal and ready-made" (op. cit., p.44). This aversion was mainly due to the professor of philosophy at the seminary, who "presented us with a rigid, neo-scholastic Thomism that was simply too far afield from my own questions" (ibid.). According to Cardinal Ratzinger, whose current opinions appear unchanged from those he held as a seminarian, the thought of Aquinas was "too closed in on itself, too impersonal and ready-made," and was unable to respond to the personal questions of the faithful. This opinion is enunciated by a prince of the Church whose function it is to safeguard the purity of the doctrine of the Faith! Why, then, should anyone be surprised at the current disastrous crisis of Catholicism, or seek to attribute it to the world, when those who should be the defenders of the Faith, and hence of genuine Catholic thought, are like sewers drinking in the filth, or like gardeners who cut down a tree they are supposed to be nurturing? What can it mean to stigmatize St. Thomas as having a "too impersonal and ready-made" logic? Is logic "personal"? These assertions reveal, in the person who makes them, a typically Protestant, pietist attitude, like that found in those who seek the rule of faith in personal interior sentiment.
In the two years Ratzinger spent at the diocesan seminary of Freising, he studied literature, music, modern philosophy, and he felt drawn towards the new existentialist and modernist theologies. He did not like St. Thomas Aquinas. The formation described does not correspond to the exclusively Catholic formation that is necessary to one called to be a priest, even taking into account the extenuating circumstances of the time, that is, anti-Christian Nazism, the war and defeat, and the secularization of studies within seminaries. It seems that His Eminence, with all due respect, gave too much place to profane culture, with its "openness" to everything, and its critical attitude...Joseph Ratzinger loved the professors who asked many questions, but disliked those who defended dogma with the crystal-clear logic of St. Thomas. This attitude would seem to us to match his manner of understanding Catholic liturgy. He tells us that from childhood he was always attracted to the liturgical movement and was sympathetic towards it. One can see that for him, the liturgy was a matter of feeling, a lived experience, an aesthetically pleasing "Erlebnis," but fundamentally irrational (op. cit. passim.). (The Memories of a Destructive Mind: Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger's Milestones.)
Dispense with Saint Thomas Aquinas and Scholasticism and one dispenses with the Catholic Church's safeguards against heresy and novelty. Seminarian Joseph Ratzinger knew better than the popes quoted in the Dominican Breviary. "Pope" Joseph Ratzinger is using his "pontificate" as the means to use his encyclical letters and general audience allocutions to "mainstream" the New Theology of which he so proud, the New Theology that has been condemned by a true pope of the Catholic Church. For Ratzinger/Benedict to be correct about Saint Thomas Aquinas, you see, the true popes of the past all have to be wrong. Who is the true sedevacantist? Did God the Holy Ghost, the Third Person of the Most Blessed Trinity, permit the Catholic Church, the very Church Militant on earth, to be wrong about the liturgy and about philosophy and about matters of Scriptural interpretation and about her very ecclesiology until the conciliarists "got it right"?
Consider the reaction of Douglas Horton, a Protestant observer at the "Second" Vatican Council, to promulgation of the "dogmatic" constitution on Divine Revelation, Dei Verbum:
There were two other conciliar instruments promulgated today--the dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation and the Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity.
That on divine revelation is of special interest, for its history is virtually the history of the evolution of the mind and of the council itself. It had been developed by a pre-conciliar commission infected by the biblical theology of today, nostalgic for the happy yesterdays when the magisterium of the church commanded an unreflecting obedience from all the faithful, and definitely fearful of the results that a scientific approach to the Bible record might have upon Rome. Examining some of the methods and attitudes accepted by leading biblical scholars throughout the Western world, it roundly condemned form criticism and its finding, and in general represented the scholarly thought of 1870 rather than that of 1962. Pope John appointed a joint commission to repair the document, and this commission, having worked effectively through the intervening years, was now able to witness the culmination and coronation of its work. Instead of putting out a declaration oriented to the past, which would have been an astonishment and hissing among scholars, the church today promulgated a constitution which casts light on the path into the future, and unites Roman scholarship with that of the best schools of the Western world. (Douglas Horton, Vatican Diary: 1965: A Protestant Observes the Fourth Session of Vatican Council II, United Church Press, 1966, pp, 158-159.)
Instrumentum laboris is merely a continuation of the revolutionary work praised by the Protestant Douglas Horton. Behold the loss of belief in the inerrancy of Sacred Scripture among most Catholics yet attached to the conciliar church as a result. The "Second" Vatican Council was and remains a revolution against the Catholic Faith from beginning to end.
Oh, sure, there will be loads of people who will keep on repeating the condemned Gallican error that we can "pick and choose" what comes out of the conciliar Vatican, assuring themselves and others that most of the egregious things that occur in the conciliar church represent nothing "official," nothing "binding" on the consciences of Catholics worldwide. Obviously, this is true, although not because the Gallican errors condemned by Pope Pius VI in Auctorem Fidei on August 28, 1794, are the basis for recognizing a valid pontiff while resisting almost everything he does and says. I believed in this myself for a time before coming to realize that the Catholic Church cannot give us error of any kind and that those who propagate errors that they know to be contradictory to the Catholic Faith fall from the Faith as per Pope Leo XIII's cogent summary of Catholic doctrine on this matter in Satis Cognitum, June 29, 1896:
The Church, founded on these principles and mindful of her office, has done nothing with greater zeal and endeavour than she has displayed in guarding the integrity of the faith. Hence she regarded as rebels and expelled from the ranks of her children all who held beliefs on any point of doctrine different from her own. The Arians, the Montanists, the Novatians, the Quartodecimans, the Eutychians, did not certainly reject all Catholic doctrine: they abandoned only a tertian portion of it. Still who does not know that they were declared heretics and banished from the bosom of the Church? In like manner were condemned all authors of heretical tenets who followed them in subsequent ages. "There can be nothing more dangerous than those heretics who admit nearly the whole cycle of doctrine, and yet by one word, as with a drop of poison, infect the real and simple faith taught by our Lord and handed down by Apostolic tradition" (Auctor Tract. de Fide Orthodoxa contra Arianos).
The practice of the Church has always been the same, as is shown by the unanimous teaching of the Fathers, who were wont to hold as outside Catholic communion, and alien to the Church, whoever would recede in the least degree from any point of doctrine proposed by her authoritative Magisterium. Epiphanius, Augustine, Theodoret, drew up a long list of the heresies of their times. St. Augustine notes that other heresies may spring up, to a single one of which, should any one give his assent, he is by the very fact cut off from Catholic unity. "No one who merely disbelieves in all (these heresies) can for that reason regard himself as a Catholic or call himself one. For there may be or may arise some other heresies, which are not set out in this work of ours, and, if any one holds to one single one of these he is not a Catholic" (S. Augustinus, De Haeresibus, n. 88).
The need of this divinely instituted means for the preservation of unity, about which we speak is urged by St. Paul in his epistle to the Ephesians. In this he first admonishes them to preserve with every care concord of minds: "Solicitous to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace" (Eph. iv., 3, et seq.). And as souls cannot be perfectly united in charity unless minds agree in faith, he wishes all to hold the same faith: "One Lord, one faith," and this so perfectly one as to prevent all danger of error: "that henceforth we be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine by the wickedness of men, by cunning craftiness, by which they lie in wait to deceive" (Eph. iv., 14): and this he teaches is to be observed, not for a time only-"but until we all meet in the unity of faith...unto the measure of the age of the fulness of Christ" (13). But, in what has Christ placed the primary principle, and the means of preserving this unity? In that-"He gave some Apostles-and other some pastors and doctors, for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ" (11-12).
It is always a helpful thing to be a member of the Catholic Church in order to hold ecclesiastical office within her ranks.
Admitting, of course, that I was blind for a very long time to this truth and resisted the efforts of others to correct me, I am nevertheless grateful to Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and His Most Blessed Mother for having sent us the graces to recognize the heroic work that has been done in defense of the true Faith by those true bishops and priests who have made many sacrifices and who have endured much calumny and many sufferings and hardships while making no concessions whatsoever to conciliarism or to the nonexistent legitimacy of its revolutionary shepherds. I wasted so much time as a "conservative" trying to reconcile the irreconcilable and to defend the indefensible, wasting more time as an "indulterer" who worked for the "restoration" within the confines of a counterfeit church who did indeed "pick and choose" which "papal" decrees to obey. Without knowing how much longer I have in this passing, mortal vale of tears, I do hope that I use the time left to me to make reparation for my own errors of the past, offering up whatever I can to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary in reparation for those sins of mine (as well as so many, many others) and for those of the whole world.
Trying to "correct" the errors of conciliarism is very much akin to trying to "restore" "constitutional" principles in the United States of America. The errors of conciliarism and the false, naturalistic, anti-Incarnational and semi-Pelagian principles of the modern civil state, including that of the government of the United States of America, are not remediable. They must be rejected, part and parcel.
Dom Prosper Gueranger, O.S.B., penned a prayer to Saint Jerome, whose feast day is tomorrow, September 30, 2008, my dear wife's forty-fifth birthday (yes, I robbed the cradle), that is most appropriate in light of the Scriptural interpretation apostasies of conciliarism:
O Jerome, thy special glory is a participation in the power of the Lamb to open the mysterious Book; the key of David was given to thee to unclose the many seals of holy Scripture and to show us Jesus concealed beneath the letter. The Church, therefore, sings thy praises to-day, and presents thee to her children as the official interpreter of the inspired writings which guide her to her eternal destiny. Accept the homage and the gratitude of her sons. My our Lord, by thy intercession, renew in us the respect and love by thy intercession, renew in us the respect and love due to His divine word. May thy merits obtain for the world other holy doctors, and learned interpreters of the sacred Books. But them them bear in mind the spirit of reverence and prayer with which they must hear the voice of God in order to understand. God will have His word obeyed, not discussed; although the various interpretations of which that divine word is susceptible, it is lawful, under the guidance of the Church, to seek out the true one; and it is praise-worthy to be over sounding the depths of beauty hidden in that augustine doctrine. Happy is he who follows thy footsteps in these holy studies! Thou didst say: 'To live in the midst of such treasures, to be wholly engrossed in them, to know and to seek nothing else, is it not to dwell already more in heaven than on earth? Let us learn in time that science which will endure for ever. (The Liturgical Year, Time After Pentecost, Book V, p. 294.)
Let us listen to the sure guidance of the saints on Sacred Scripture while we reject the rantings of the conciliar revolutionaries and while we are not deceived by efforts on the part of conservative enablers to make apostasy seem compatible with the Faith. The devastation of the faithful that has taken place before our very eyes is proof enough of how the errors of conciliarism have led in many instances to an acceptance of the disproved ideology of evolutionism, to the rejection of Origins and Special Creation, and to a Biblical relativism that justifies almost every sin imaginable.
Isn't it time to pray a Rosary now so that we can plant a few more seeds that might result, please God and by the intercession of Our Lady, in the restoration of the Catholic Faith and the vanquishing of conciliarism and all of its egregious errors and novelties and blasphemies and sacrileges and heresies once and for all? Just one Rosary more. Right now. Isn't it time?
All to thee, Blessed Mother. All to thy Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart. Jesus, Mary and Joseph, we love you. Save souls.
Viva Cristo Rey!
Our Lady of the Rosary, us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saints Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, pray for us.
See also: A Litany of Saints