The Inconvenience of Truth
Thomas A. Droleskey
Truth is a most inconvenient thing when one suffers from various of the errors of Modernity and Modernism. Truth is unforgiving as it confronts those steeped in errors with objective reality. This is why, you see, the devil has worked overtime to cloud men's minds as a result of the Protestant Revolt and the rise of Judeo-Masonry, convincing them that almost everything in life is a matter of subjective "feelings" or "opinions," about which men are free to disagree while they "respect" each other in their disagreements over these matters of "opinion." Subjectivism and emotionalism and irrationality thus become paramount in the discourse of men with each other, reinforcing the erroneous view that it is "difficult" to know what is true and that it is "offensive" to others to insist that one's own subjective view of the truth should be the basis for how others should lead their lives, no less the basis of public policy.
Pope Leo XIII, writing in Humanum Genus, April 20, 1884, explained that the sect of Freemasonry considers the very notion of God to be but a mere matter of "opinion:"
Now, the fundamental doctrine of the naturalists, which they sufficiently make known by their very name, is that human nature and human reason ought in all things to be mistress and guide. Laying this down, they care little for duties to God, or pervert them by erroneous and vague opinions. For they deny that anything has been taught by God; they allow no dogma of religion or truth which cannot be understood by the human intelligence, nor any teacher who ought to be believed by reason of his authority. And since it is the special and exclusive duty of the Catholic Church fully to set forth in words truths divinely received, to teach, besides other divine helps to salvation, the authority of its office, and to defend the same with perfect purity, it is against the Church that the rage and attack of the enemies are principally directed.
In those matters which regard religion let it be seen how the sect of the Freemasons acts, especially where it is more free to act without restraint, and then let any one judge whether in fact it does not wish to carry out the policy of the naturalists. By a long and persevering labor, they endeavor to bring about this result -- namely, that the teaching office and authority of the Church may become of no account in the civil State; and for this same reason they declare to the people and contend that Church and State ought to be altogether disunited. By this means they reject from the laws and from the commonwealth the wholesome influence of the Catholic religion; and they consequently imagine that States ought to be constituted without any regard for the laws and precepts of the Church.. . .
If those who are admitted as members are not commanded to abjure by any form of words the Catholic doctrines, this omission, so far from being adverse to the designs of the Freemasons is more useful for their purposes. First, in this way they easily deceive the simple-minded and the heedless, and can induce a far greater number to become members. Again, as all who offer themselves are received whatever may be their form of religion, they thereby teach the great error of this age -- that a regard for religion should be held as an indifferent matter, and that all religions are alike. This manner of reasoning is calculated to bring about the ruin of all forms of religion, and especially of the Catholic religion, which, as it is the only one that is true, cannot, without great injustice, be regarded as merely equal to other religions.
But the naturalists go much further; for, having, in the highest things, entered upon a wholly erroneous course, they are carried headlong to extremes, either by reason of the weakness of human nature, or because God inflicts upon them the just punishment of their pride. Hence it happens that they no longer consider as certain and permanent those things which are fully understood by the natural light of reason, such as certainly are -- the existence of God, the immaterial nature of the human soul, and its immortality. The sect of the Freemasons, by a similar course of error, is exposed to these same dangers; for, although in a general way they may profess the existence of God, they themselves are witnesses that they do not all maintain this truth with the full assent of the mind or with a firm conviction. Neither do they conceal that this question about God is the greatest source and cause of discords among them; in fact, it is certain that a considerable contention about this same subject has existed among them very lately. But, indeed, the sect allows great liberty to its votaries, so that to each side is given the right to defend its own opinion, either that there is a God, or that there is none; and those who obstinately contend that there is no God are as easily initiated as those who contend that God exists, though, like the pantheists, they have false notions concerning Him: all which is nothing else than taking away the reality, while retaining some absurd representation of the divine nature.
When this greatest fundamental truth has been overturned or weakened, it follows that those truths, also, which are known by the teaching of nature must begin to fall -- namely, that all things were made by the free will of God the Creator; that the world is governed by Providence; that souls do not die; that to this life of men upon the earth there will succeed another and an everlasting life.
When these truths are done away with, which are as the principles of nature and important for knowledge and for practical use, it is easy to see what will become of both public and private morality. We say nothing of those more heavenly virtues, which no one can exercise or even acquire without a special gift and grace of God; of which necessarily no trace can be found in those who reject as unknown the redemption of mankind, the grace of God, the sacraments, and the happiness to be obtained in heaven. We speak now of the duties which have their origin in natural probity. That God is the Creator of the world and its provident Ruler; that the eternal law commands the natural order to be maintained, and forbids that it be disturbed; that the last end of men is a destiny far above human things and beyond this sojourning upon the earth: these are the sources and these the principles of all justice and morality.
If these be taken away, as the naturalists and Freemasons desire, there will immediately be no knowledge as to what constitutes justice and injustice, or upon what principle morality is founded. And, in truth, the teaching of morality which alone finds favor with the sect of Freemasons, and in which they contend that youth should be instructed, is that which they call "civil," and "independent," and "free," namely, that which does not contain any religious belief. But, how insufficient such teaching is, how wanting in soundness, and how easily moved by every impulse of passion, is sufficiently proved by its sad fruits, which have already begun to appear. For, wherever, by removing Christian education, this teaching has begun more completely to rule, there goodness and integrity of morals have begun quickly to perish, monstrous and shameful opinions have grown up, and the audacity of evil deeds has risen to a high degree. All this is commonly complained of and deplored; and not a few of those who by no means wish to do so are compelled by abundant evidence to give not infrequently the same testimony.
It is the pernicious and all-pervasive influence of the ethos of Protestantism and Judeo-Masonry that is responsible for the triumph, albeit temporary under the Triumph of Our Lady's Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart, of sentimentality, subjectivism, irrationality and illogic in our national discourse. Let us stipulate that those naturalists of the "left," such as United States Barack Hussein Obama and Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., are steeped in this world as they promote one abject evil after another. Alas, those evils are not going to be retarded by the naturalists of the "right" who have not a blessed clue about why they take the positions they do and/or are pusillanimous in explaining their positions as "matters of opinion" that do not take away from their "respect" for those who disagree with them. My friends, this absurdity, this insanity is the essence of Judeo-Masonry, and anyone who believes that absurdity and insanity can be the basis of retarding the evils of this day is not thinking very clearly, or has convinced himself that a particular short-term "strategy" will win the day over a simple insistence upon an absolute and unwavering adherence to the Deposit of Faith that Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ has entrusted exclusively to the Catholic Church for Its eternal safekeeping and infallible explication as the one and one foundation of personal and social order.
It is with this in mind that I want to apply the truth of simple logic to the answers that Alaska Governor Sarah Health Palin gave to ABC-TV interviewer Charles Gibson's questions in a series of recently televised interviews. What is pasted below is taken from the transcript of the interview (Sarah Palin Answers Questions on Abortion, page 7), which I have not viewed as I have a limited supply of antacid available in our motor home at the present time.
I will indent the questions and answers before providing some commentary that should be familiar to those who have been reading my recent articles on this subject (and who have read the older articles that I have posted within the past few days)"
Sarah Palin on Abortion Rights:
GIBSON: In the time I have left, I want to talk about some social issues.
GIBSON: Roe v. Wade, do you think it should be reversed?
PALIN: I think it should and I think that states should be able to decide that issue... I am pro-life. I do respect other people's opinion on this, also, and I think that a culture of life is best for America... What I want to do, when elected vice president, with John McCain, hopefully, be able to reach out and work with those who are on the other side of this issue, because I know that we can all agree on the need for and the desire for fewer abortions in America and greater support for adoption, for other alternatives that women can and should be empowered to embrace, to allow that culture of life. That's my personal opinion on this, Charlie.
Comment and Analysis: Sarah Heath Palin believes that Roe v. Wade should be reversed and that the "states should be able to decide that issue. There is no "decision" to be made in this regard. No human legislative body at any level of government (state, local, nation) has any "right" to "permit" the deliberate targeting of any innocent human being for execution under cover of law. There is no "decision" to be made. Human law must always be conformed to the Divine Positive Law and the Natural Law as they have been entrusted to the Catholic Church in all that pertains to the good of souls. This is basic. This is simple. This is truth.
Sarah Heath Palin's position, apart being being in contradiction to the binding precepts of the Divine Positive Law and the Natural Law, is also in contradiction to the Republican Party national platform, which calls for an no-exceptions amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America to protect the inviolability of all innocent human life.
Faithful to the first guarantee of the Declaration of Independence, we assert the inherent dignity and sanctity of all human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution, and we endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment's protections apply to unborn children. (2008 Republican Party national platform.
(See: Political Party Platforms, clicking for the years listed above. One can then do a search for the abortion planks.)
Admitting that the 2008 Republican Party national platform plank on abortion is steeped in the "Declaration" heresy (that we oppose abortion on the basis of "fidelity" to the Declaration of Independence and not to the binding precepts of the Divine Positive Law and the Natural Law), the platform does call for a no-exceptions amendment. Mrs. Palin believes that the matter should be thrown back to the state legislatures, forty-three of which will permit some form of child-killing should Roe v. Wade is reversed. Which is it?
Obviously, the Republican Party platform means nothing insofar as public policy is concerned. (John McCain is going to enforce the Republican Party national platform plank on illegal immigration. Yes, belief in the tooth fairy is alive and well.) Still and all, it is interesting to see how quickly a candidate who is supposed to be running on that platform eschews any mention of a constitutional amendment in order to assert what is essentially a "states' rights" position on the issue of abortion, thereby conceding to state legislature a "right" to determine whether innocent human beings can be executed under cover of law that does not exist.
Pope Leo XIII explained this in Sapientiae Christianae, January 10, 1890:
Hallowed, therefore, in the minds of Christians is the very idea of public authority, in which they recognize some likeness and symbol as it were of the Divine Majesty, even when it is exercised by one unworthy. A just and due reverence to the laws abides in them, not from force and threats, but from a consciousness of duty; "for God hath not given us the spirit of fear."
But, if the laws of the State are manifestly at variance with the divine law, containing enactments hurtful to the Church, or conveying injunctions adverse to the duties imposed by religion, or if they violate in the person of the supreme Pontiff the authority of Jesus Christ, then, truly, to resist becomes a positive duty, to obey, a crime; a crime, moreover, combined with misdemeanor against the State itself, inasmuch as every offense leveled against religion is also a sin against the State. Here anew it becomes evident how unjust is the reproach of sedition; for the obedience due to rulers and legislators is not refused, but there is a deviation from their will in those precepts only which they have no power to enjoin. Commands that are issued adversely to the honor due to God, and hence are beyond the scope of justice, must be looked upon as anything rather than laws. You are fully aware, venerable brothers, that this is the very contention of the Apostle St. Paul, who, in writing to Titus, after reminding Christians that they are "to be subject to princes and powers, and to obey at a word," at once adds: "And to be ready to every good work." Thereby he openly declares that, if laws of men contain injunctions contrary to the eternal law of God, it is right not to obey them. In like manner, the Prince of the Apostles gave this courageous and sublime answer to those who would have deprived him of the liberty of preaching the Gospel: "If it be just in the sight of God to hear you rather than God, judge ye, for we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard."
Pope Leo XIII had put the matter this way a fifty months earlier in Immortale Dei, November 1, 1885:
So, too, the liberty of thinking, and of publishing, whatsoever each one likes, without any hindrance, is not in itself an advantage over which society can wisely rejoice. On the contrary, it is the fountain-head and origin of many evils. Liberty is a power perfecting man, and hence should have truth and goodness for its object. But the character of goodness and truth cannot be changed at option. These remain ever one and the same, and are no less unchangeable than nature itself. If the mind assents to false opinions, and the will chooses and follows after what is wrong, neither can attain its native fullness, but both must fall from their native dignity into an abyss of corruption. Whatever, therefore, is opposed to virtue and truth may not rightly be brought temptingly before the eye of man, much less sanctioned by the favor and protection of the law. A well-spent life is the only way to heaven, whither all are bound, and on this account the State is acting against the laws and dictates of nature whenever it permits the license of opinion and of action to lead minds astray from truth and souls away from the practice of virtue. To exclude the Church, founded by God Himself, from the business of life, from the making of laws, from the education of youth, from domestic society is a grave and fatal error. A State from which religion is banished can never be well regulated; and already perhaps more than is desirable is known of the nature and tendency of the so-called civil philosophy of life and morals. The Church of Christ is the true and sole teacher of virtue and guardian of morals. She it is who preserves in their purity the principles from which duties flow, and, by setting forth most urgent reasons for virtuous life, bids us not only to turn away from wicked deeds, but even to curb all movements of the mind that are opposed to reason, even though they be not carried out in action.
These statements, which are simple reiterations of the Divine Positive Law and the Natural Law, bind the consciences of every human being on the face of this earth whether or not they realize or accept them. Sarah Health Palin does not realize this because she is steeped in the errors of Americanism, the direct product of Protestantism and Judeo-Masonry and a progenitor of the conciliar view of Church-State relations held by Joseph Ratzinger Benedict XVI (who comes in for a bit of attention later in this part two of this article.) A person steeped in the subjectivism of Americanism is hardly fit to hold any office of public trust, whether elected or appointed, leaving aside the fact in the particular instance of Sarah Heath Palin that she belongs at home with her children and that her "example," if you call it that, does far more to injure the common good by convincing "conservative" mothers and daughters that it is "no big deal" to balance "career" and family when one wants to do for purely elective reasons.
Mrs. Plain also said in her response to Charles Gibson that she "respects" "other people's" "opinions" about abortion. Well, I have dealt with this one a lot throughout the course of my thirty-five years of teaching and writing and, yes, running for office in the State of New York and campaigning actively for others when I labored under the delusion that voting could be an instrument of at least convincing others of some of the truths of the Faith. Suffice it to say once again, for the sake of emphasis and reiteration, that neither John Sidney McCain III or Sarah Heath Palin would say that they "respected" the "opinions" of those who willed actual physical harm to Jews or blacks or anyone else. Ah, those who have an "opinion" that the civil law should permit the dismemberment of innocent human beings in the womb under cover of law must be "respected." This is the triumph of illogic in our national discourse as a result, proximately speaking, of Protestantism and Judeo-Masonry, and this must be denounced as erroneous and as corrosive to the common temporal good of society.
George Herbert Walker Bush, Barbara Bush, Robert Joseph Dole, Jr,. and his "pro-life" running mate, Dole's fellow Masonic lodge brother, Jack Kemp, George Walker Bush and Richard N. Cheney have all said they "respect" the "opinions" of others who believing that the civil law should permit the dismemberment of innocent babies in their mothers' wombs.
Killing babies is not a matter of "opinion." It is a matter that is forbidden by the Fifth Commandment. And while we pray for the conversion of those who believe that babies can be killed under cover of civil law, we do not "respect" them for so believing. We denounce their erroneous position as we pray for their conversion. We denounce them as unfit to hold public office. We denounce them as supporters of genocide against the preborn. Ah, you see, such language is forbidden in the "touchy-feely" culture of Americanism. We must show "toleration" to those who have differing "opinions."
How anyone can believe that this is in any way a signal that "things" will be better in the future escapes me. I mean, how can we expect a McCain-Palin administration to "hold the line" on various pieces of odious legislation that a Democrat-controlled Congress will pass when the principals are so confused about First and Last Things (and almost everything else in between)?
Sarah Heath Palin also told Charles Gibson she wanted to "reduce" the number of abortions. That's nice. That's the equivalent of the policy enunciated by William Jefferson Blythe Clinton and repeated by his successor, George Walker Bush, in an interview that aired on the Columbia Broadcasting System television network the morning of his first inauguration, Saturday, January 20, 2001 (see
Get a Grip on Reality  and
The Illusion of Secular Salvation ). How will this be done? Contraception, a violation of the Sovereignty of God over the sanctity and fecundity of the ends proper to marriage, which Sarah Heath Palin supports? Classroom instruction in matters pertaining to the Sixth and Ninth Commandments, which Sarah Heath Palin supports? This is the same old Dole-speak and W-speak that pro-life Americans have been swallowing whole for years.
There are two other questions in the Charles Gibson interview with Sarah Heath Palin that will be examined:
GIBSON: John McCain would allow abortion in cases of rape and incest. Do you believe in it only in the case where the life of the mother is in danger?
PALIN: That is my personal opinion.
GIBSON: Would you change and accept it in rape and incest?
PALIN: My personal opinion is that abortion allowed if the life of the mother is endangered. Please understand me on this. I do understand McCain's position on this. I do understand others who are very passionate about this issue who have a differing.
Comment and Analysis: Mrs. Palin, your personal "opinion" is worthless and just happens to be contrary to the very law of God Himself. John McCain's "opinion" is worthless and is contrary to the very law of God Himself. This is not a matter of "opinion." The civil law can never permit the execution of one innocent human being under cover of law. Mrs. Palin, perhaps you ought to consider the fact that each abortion, whether chemical or surgical, is a mystical assault on the very Person of the Divine Redeemer, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Who is in solidarity with every child in every mother's womb. You don't get to make "exceptions" to the binding precepts of the Divine Positive Law and the Natural Law, and neither does John Sidney McCain III.
Oh, some have written to me in fits of histrionics that I should not point any of this out, that it is "too important" to defeat Barack Hussein Obama and Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., than it is to be so "unrealistic" and so "short-sighted" as to judge John McCain and Sarah Palin by the absolute truths of a Catholic Faith that they do not hold. Ah, yes, the inconvenience of truth. We're supposed to keep silent about truth in order to enable the career of confused Americanists who are to govern in such a way as to retain power just as they campaign in such a way as to acquire it. No sale. Truth matters. God is a majority of one, and He does not tailor His immutable truth to suit the exigencies of electoral campaigns. Why do we?
Sarah Palin on Social Issues:
GIBSON: Embryonic stem cell research, John McCain has been supportive of it.
PALIN: You know, when you're running for office, your life is an open book and you do owe it to Americans to talk about your personal opinion, which may end up being different than what the policy in an administration would be. My personal opinion is we should not create human life, create an embryo and then destroy it for research, if there are other options out there... And thankfully, again, not only are there other options, but we're getting closer and closer to finding a tremendous amount more of options, like, as I mentioned, the adult stem cell research. Sarah Palin Answers Questions on Abortion, page 7
Comment and Analysis: In contradistinction to Senator McCain, Governor Palin takes a correct position in opposition to embryonic stem cell research. She does so, however, as a matter of "personal opinion" that might not wind up being "what the policy in an administration would be." Her correct opposition to embryonic stem cell research is not a "personal opinion." However, she is incapable--or unwilling--to articulate why her position is correct, and seems to be unwilling or unable to admit that her position, if true, as we know it to be, is not an opinion at all but a truth that binds the consciences of all men at all times and in all circumstances on the face of this earth. She "finessed" the issue by saying, in effect, "Yes, this my "opinion, but the McCain administration's position may be different." Once again, you see, we have our national discourse corrupted, coarsened, if you will, by constant advertences to the subjectivism of "opinion."
Conciliarism's "Reconciliation" to the Religiously Indifferentist Civil State
Mind you, to point this out is not to beat up on Sarah Heath Palin, whose candidacy is being used by pro-abortion groups to claim that the McCain-Palin ticket is the "worst one ever" for the cause of "women's rights," part of a cynical game played by the advocacy groups of the naturalist "left" and the naturalist "right" to generate donations and to exercise influence in the midst of elections and then in public policy debates. The devil uses the "conflict" between the false opposites of the naturalist "left" and the naturalist "right" to convince people that they must make "compromises" in order to "do something" to "win," thereby convincing otherwise well-meaning people that it is those who insist on an adherence to all of God's truths who are the problem and not those whose minds are steeped in the anti-Incarnational and semi-Pelagian errors of Modernity.
No, to point all of this out is to try to explain, yet again, that there is no short-cut, nondenominational or interdenominational way to retard the evils of the day. We must pray and work for the restoration of Christendom. Catholicism is the one and only foundation of personal and social order, and we cannot--we must not--try to convince ourselves or others that those who are steeped in confusion will do anything other than add to confusion over the course of time as they reaffirm their fellow citizens that fundamental moral truths are just matters of "opinion." This does far, far more harm to souls and thus to social order than any hideous piece of legislation that might be passed by the United States Congress.
Well, because overt evil can be recognized, denounced and opposed as such. Subtle evils, ones that are difficult for even well-meaning people steeped, perhaps unknowingly, in the subjectivism of Protestantism and Judeo-Masonry to recognize and accept, accustom people to accept lies or half-truths (which are whole lies) as the foundation of social order--or at least the foundation of some "respite" from the evils of the day, evils that can be retarded only by the conversion of souls away from the habit of sin and to states of Sanctifying Grace as members of the Catholic Church.
The average Catholic does not recognize this as so because conciliarism has itself corrupted the sensus Catholicus in the souls of so many Catholics as it has presented various apostasies as being in accord with the Catholic Faith. Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI believes in and constantly extols the "separation of Church and State, usually doing so in the context of what he calls a "healthy secularism" or a "healthy laicism," something he reaffirmed on his airplane flight from Rome to France for a pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes:
"It seems evident to me that laicism is not in contradiction with the faith," the Pontiff said. "I would even say that it is a fruit of the faith, since the Christian faith was, from the beginning, a universal religion and therefore, did not identify itself with a state but was present in all states.
"Politics, the state, were not a religion, but a profane reality with a specific mission, and both should be mutually open."
What "seems evident" to Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI as not in "contradiction with the faith" is indeed a direct contradiction of Catholic Social Teaching as it was enunciated clearly by pope after pope prior to the death of Pope Pius XII nearly fifty years ago now. Admitting, as many of these popes did in their various encyclical letter, that Holy Mother Church will accommodate herself to the actual realities of modern governments in order to fulfill her magisterial and sanctifying offices, the Catholic Church has never conceded the licitness of the separation of Church and State as a matter of principle and has insisted from time immemorial that the civil state has a duty to recognize her as the true religion and to help man in the pursuit of his Last End. Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI rejects this, which is why the likes of John McCain and Sarah Heath Palin have little chance, humanly speaking, of being liberated from the cloud of subjectivist errors in which they live and move and have their very naturalist being.
For Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI to be correct, each of the following papal statements have to be wrong and/or dismissed as "time-conditioned" statements of truth that lose their binding force in light of the "changed" circumstances in which "modern men" find themselves, a heretical view that is contrary even to natural reason and has been condemned by the authority of the Catholic Church as an attack upon the very immutable nature of God Himself, as has been demonstrated on this site time and time again (if you've seen these quotes before, you can simply scroll down to the next paragraph of my text, although they are worth reviewing yet again);
Since the divine clemency has placed Us, Whose merits are not equal to the task, in the high watch-tower of the Apostolate with the duty of pastoral care confided to Us, We have turned Our attention, as far as it has been granted Us from on high, with unceasing care to those things through which the integrity of Orthodox Religion is kept from errors and vices by preventing their entry, and by which the dangers of disturbance in the most troubled times are repelled from the whole Catholic World.
Now it has come to Our ears, and common gossip has made clear, that certain Societies, Companies, Assemblies, Meetings, Congregations or Conventicles called in the popular tongue Liberi Muratori or Francs Massons or by other names according to the various languages, are spreading far and wide and daily growing in strength; and men of any Religion or sect, satisfied with the appearance of natural probity, are joined together, according to their laws and the statutes laid down for them, by a strict and unbreakable bond which obliges them, both by an oath upon the Holy Bible and by a host of grievous punishment, to an inviolable silence about all that they do in secret together. But it is in the nature of crime to betray itself and to show itself by its attendant clamor. Thus these aforesaid Societies or Conventicles have caused in the minds of the faithful the greatest suspicion, and all prudent and upright men have passed the same judgment on them as being depraved and perverted. For if they were not doing evil they would not have so great a hatred of the light. Indeed, this rumor has grown to such proportions that in several countries these societies have been forbidden by the civil authorities as being against the public security, and for some time past have appeared to be prudently eliminated.
Therefore, bearing in mind the great harm which is often caused by such Societies or Conventicles not only to the peace of the temporal state but also to the well-being of souls, and realizing that they do not hold by either civil or canonical sanctions; and since We are taught by the divine word that it is the part of faithful servant and of the master of the Lord's household to watch day and night lest such men as these break into the household like thieves, and like foxes seek to destroy the vineyard; in fact, to prevent the hearts of the simple being perverted, and the innocent secretly wounded by their arrows, and to block that broad road which could be opened to the uncorrected commission of sin and for the other just and reasonable motives known to Us; We therefore, having taken counsel of some of Our Venerable Brothers among the Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church, and also of Our own accord and with certain knowledge and mature deliberations, with the plenitude of the Apostolic power do hereby determine and have decreed that these same Societies, Companies, Assemblies, Meetings, Congregations, or Conventicles of Liberi Muratori or Francs Massons, or whatever other name they may go by, are to be condemned and prohibited, and by Our present Constitution, valid for ever, We do condemn and prohibit them.
Wherefore We command most strictly and in virtue of holy obedience, all the faithful of whatever state, grade, condition, order, dignity or pre-eminence, whether clerical or lay, secular or regular, even those who are entitled to specific and individual mention, that none, under any pretext or for any reason, shall dare or presume to enter, propagate or support these aforesaid societies of Liberi Muratori or Francs Massons, or however else they are called, or to receive them in their houses or dwellings or to hide them, be enrolled among them, joined to them, be present with them, give power or permission for them to meet elsewhere, to help them in any way, to give them in any way advice, encouragement or support either openly or in secret, directly or indirectly, on their own or through others; nor are they to urge others or tell them, incite or persuade them to be enrolled in such societies or to be counted among their number, or to be present or to assist them in any way; but they must stay completely clear of such Societies, Companies, Assemblies, Meetings, Congregations or Conventicles, under pain of excommunication for all the above mentioned people, which is incurred by the very deed without any declaration being required, and from which no one can obtain the benefit of absolution, other than at the hour of death, except through Ourselves or the Roman Pontiff of the time. (Pope Clement XII, In Eminenti, April 28, 1738.)
Therefore since the Holy Spirit has made you bishops to govern the Church of God and has taught you concerning the unique sacrament of human salvation, We cannot neglect our duty in the face of these evil books. We must arouse the enthusiasm of your devotion so that you, who are called to share in Our pastoral concern join together to oppose this evil with all energy possible. It is necessary to fight bitterly, as the situation requires, and to eradicate with all our strength the deadly destruction caused by such books. The substance of the error will never be removed unless the criminal elements of wickedness burn in the fire and perish. Since you have been constituted stewards of the mysteries of God and armed with His strength to destroy their defenses, exert yourselves to keep the sheep entrusted to you and redeemed by the blood of Christ at a safe distance from these poisoned pastures. For if it is necessary to avoid the company of evildoers because their words encourage impiety and their speech acts like a cancer, what desolation the plague of their books can cause! Well and cunningly written these books are always with us and forever within our reach. They travel with us, stay at home with us, and enter bedrooms which would be shut to their evil and deception.
Since you have been constituted ministers of Christ for the nations, in order to make holy his Gospel, exert yourselves and do everything in your power both by word and example to cut down the shoots of falsehood. Block up the corrupt springs of vice. Sound the trumpet in case as their leader you have to account for the souls who are lost. Act according to the position you hold, according to the rank with which you are vested, and according to the authority which you have received from the Lord. In addition, as nobody could or should avoid sharing in this sadness and insofar as there is one common reason for everyone to grieve and to help in this great crisis of faith and religion, call to your aid when it is necessary the time-honored piety of Catholic leaders. Explain the cause of the Church's sorrow and arouse its beloved sons who have always served it well on many occasions to bring their help. Since they do not carry the sword without cause, urge them with the united authority of state and of priesthood, to vigorously rout those accursed men who fight against the armies of Israel.
It is principally your duty to stand as a wall so that no foundation can be laid other than the one that is already laid. Watch over the most holy deposit of faith to whose protection you committed yourselves on oath at your solemn consecration. Reveal to the faithful the wolves which are demolishing the Lord's vineyard. They should be warned not to allow themselves to be ensnared by the splendid writing of certain authors in order to halt the diffusion of error by cunning and wicked men. In a word, they should detest books which contain elements shocking to the reader; which are contrary to faith, religion, and good morals; and which lack an atmosphere of Christian virtue. We manifest to you Our great happiness in this matter that most of you, following the apostolic customs and energetically defending the laws of the Church, have shown yourselves zealous and watchful in order to avert this pestilence and have not allowed the simple people to sleep soundly with serpents. (Pope Clement XIII, Christianae Republicae, November 25, 1766.)
When they have spread this darkness abroad and torn religion out of men's hearts, these accursed philosophers proceed to destroy the bonds of union among men, both those which unite them to their rulers, and those which urge them to their duty. They keep proclaiming that man is born free and subject to no one, that society accordingly is a crowd of foolish men who stupidly yield to priests who deceive them and to kings who oppress them, so that the harmony of priest and ruler is only a monstrous conspiracy against the innate liberty of man.
Everyone must understand that such ravings and others like them, concealed in many deceitful guises, cause greater ruin to public calm the longer their impious originators are unrestrained. They cause a serious loss of souls redeemed by Christ's blood wherever their teaching spreads, like a cancer; it forces its way into public academies, into the houses of the great, into the palaces of kings, and even enters the sanctuary, shocking as it is to say so.
Consequently, you who are the salt of the earth, guardians and shepherds of the Lord's flock, whose business it is to fight the battles of the Lord, arise and gird on your sword, which is the word of God, and expel this foul contagion from your lands. How long are we to ignore the common insult to faith and Church? Let the words of Bernard arouse us like a lament of the spouse of Christ: "Of old was it foretold and the time of fulfillment is now at hand: Behold, in peace is my sorrow most sorrowful. It was sorrowful first when the martyrs died; afterwards it was more sorrowful in the fight with the heretics and now it is most sorrowful in the conduct of the members of the household.... The Church is struck within and so in peace is my sorrow most sorrowful. But what peace? There is peace and there is no peace. There is peace from the pagans and peace from the heretics, but no peace from the children. At that time the voice will lament: Sons did I rear and exalt, but they despised me. They despised me and defiled me by a bad life, base gain, evil traffic, and business conducted in the dark." Who can hear these tearful complaints of our most holy mother without feeling a strong urge to devote all his energy and effort to the Church, as he has promised? Therefore cast out the old leaven, remove the evil from your midst. Forcefully and carefully banish poisonous books from the eyes of your flock, and at once courageously set apart those who have been infected, to prevent them harming the rest. The holy Pope Leo used to say, "We can rule those entrusted to us only by pursuing with zeal for the Lord's faith those who destroy and those who are destroyed and by cutting them off from sound minds with the utmost severity to prevent the plague spreading." In doing this We exhort and advise you to be all of one mind and in harmony as you strive for the same object, just as the Church has one faith, one baptism, and one spirit As you are joined together in the hierarchy, so you should unite equally with virtue and desire. (Pope Pius VI, Inscrutabile, December 25, 1775.)
For how can We tolerate with equanimity that the Catholic religion, which France received in the first ages of the Church, which was confirmed in that very kingdom by the blood of so many most valiant martyrs, which by far the greatest part of the French race professes, and indeed bravely and constantly defended even among the most grave adversities and persecutions and dangers of recent years, and which, finally, that very dynasty to which the designated king belongs both professes and has defended with much zeal - that this Catholic, this most holy religion, We say, should not only not be declared to be the only one in the whole of France supported by the bulwark of the laws and by the authority of the Government, but should even, in the very restoration of the monarchy, be entirely passed over? But a much more grave, and indeed very bitter, sorrow increased in Our heart - a sorrow by which We confess that We were crushed, overwhelmed and torn in two - from the twenty-second article of the constitution in which We saw, not only that "liberty of religion and of conscience" (to use the same words found in the article) were permitted by the force of the constitution, but also that assistance and patronage were promised both to this liberty and also to the ministers of these different forms of "religion". There is certainly no need of many words, in addressing you, to make you fully recognize by how lethal a wound the Catholic religion in France is struck by this article. For when the liberty of all "religions" is indiscriminately asserted, by this very fact truth is confounded with error and the holy and immaculate Spouse of Christ, the Church, outside of which there can be no salvation, is set on a par with the sects of heretics and with Judaic perfidy itself. For when favour and patronage is promised even to the sects of heretics and their ministers, not only their persons, but also their very errors, are tolerated and fostered: a system of errors in which is contained that fatal and never sufficiently to be deplored HERESY which, as St. Augustine says (de Haeresibus, no.72), "asserts that all heretics proceed correctly and tell the truth: which is so absurd that it seems incredible to me." (Pope Pius VII, Post Tam Diuturnas, April 29, 1814.)
Nor can We predict happier times for religion and government from the plans of those who desire vehemently to separate the Church from the state, and to break the mutual concord between temporal authority and the priesthood. It is certain that that concord which always was favorable and beneficial for the sacred and the civil order is feared by the shameless lovers of liberty.
But for the other painful causes We are concerned about, you should recall that certain societies and assemblages seem to draw up a battle line together with the followers of every false religion and cult. They feign piety for religion; but they are driven by a passion for promoting novelties and sedition everywhere. They preach liberty of every sort; they stir up disturbances in sacred and civil affairs, and pluck authority to pieces. (Pope Gregory XVI, Mirari Vos, August 15, 1832.)
But, although we have not omitted often to proscribe and reprobate the chief errors of this kind, yet the cause of the Catholic Church, and the salvation of souls entrusted to us by God, and the welfare of human society itself, altogether demand that we again stir up your pastoral solicitude to exterminate other evil opinions, which spring forth from the said errors as from a fountain. Which false and perverse opinions are on that ground the more to be detested, because they chiefly tend to this, that that salutary influence be impeded and (even) removed, which the Catholic Church, according to the institution and command of her Divine Author, should freely exercise even to the end of the world -- not only over private individuals, but over nations, peoples, and their sovereign princes; and (tend also) to take away that mutual fellowship and concord of counsels between Church and State which has ever proved itself propitious and salutary, both for religious and civil interests.
For you well know, venerable brethren, that at this time men are found not a few who, applying to civil society the impious and absurd principle of "naturalism," as they call it, dare to teach that "the best constitution of public society and (also) civil progress altogether require that human society be conducted and governed without regard being had to religion any more than if it did not exist; or, at least, without any distinction being made between the true religion and false ones." And, against the doctrine of Scripture, of the Church, and of the Holy Fathers, they do not hesitate to assert that "that is the best condition of civil society, in which no duty is recognized, as attached to the civil power, of restraining by enacted penalties, offenders against the Catholic religion, except so far as public peace may require." From which totally false idea of social government they do not fear to foster that erroneous opinion, most fatal in its effects on the Catholic Church and the salvation of souls, called by Our Predecessor, Gregory XVI, an "insanity,"2 viz., that "liberty of conscience and worship is each man's personal right, which ought to be legally proclaimed and asserted in every rightly constituted society; and that a right resides in the citizens to an absolute liberty, which should be restrained by no authority whether ecclesiastical or civil, whereby they may be able openly and publicly to manifest and declare any of their ideas whatever, either by word of mouth, by the press, or in any other way." But, while they rashly affirm this, they do not think and consider that they are preaching "liberty of perdition;"3 and that "if human arguments are always allowed free room for discussion, there will never be wanting men who will dare to resist truth, and to trust in the flowing speech of human wisdom; whereas we know, from the very teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ, how carefully Christian faith and wisdom should avoid this most injurious babbling." (Pope Pius IX, Quanta Cura, December 8, 1964.)
55. The Church ought to be separated from the .State, and the State from the Church. -- Allocution "Acerbissimum," Sept. 27, 1852. (Condemned Proposition in The Syllabus of Errors, 1864.)
As a consequence, the State, constituted as it is, is clearly bound to act up to the manifold and weighty duties linking it to God, by the public profession of religion. Nature and reason, which command every individual devoutly to worship God in holiness, because we belong to Him and must return to Him, since from Him we came, bind also the civil community by a like law. For, men living together in society are under the power of God no less than individuals are, and society, no less than individuals, owes gratitude to God who gave it being and maintains it and whose everbounteous goodness enriches it with countless blessings. Since, then, no one is allowed to be remiss in the service due to God, and since the chief duty of all men is to cling to religion in both its teaching and practice-not such religion as they may have a preference for, but the religion which God enjoins, and which certain and most clear marks show to be the only one true religion -- it is a public crime to act as though there were no God. So, too, is it a sin for the State not to have care for religion as a something beyond its scope, or as of no practical benefit; or out of many forms of religion to adopt that one which chimes in with the fancy; for we are bound absolutely to worship God in that way which He has shown to be His will. All who rule, therefore, would hold in honor the holy name of God, and one of their chief duties must be to favor religion, to protect it, to shield it under the credit and sanction of the laws, and neither to organize nor enact any measure that may compromise its safety. This is the bounden duty of rulers to the people over whom they rule. For one and all are we destined by our birth and adoption to enjoy, when this frail and fleeting life is ended, a supreme and final good in heaven, and to the attainment of this every endeavor should be directed. Since, then, upon this depends the full and perfect happiness of mankind, the securing of this end should be of all imaginable interests the most urgent. Hence, civil society, established for the common welfare, should not only safeguard the wellbeing of the community, but have also at heart the interests of its individual members, in such mode as not in any way to hinder, but in every manner to render as easy as may be, the possession of that highest and unchangeable good for which all should seek. Wherefore, for this purpose, care must especially be taken to preserve unharmed and unimpeded the religion whereof the practice is the link connecting man with God.
Now, it cannot be difficult to find out which is the true religion, if only it be sought with an earnest and unbiased mind; for proofs are abundant and striking. We have, for example, the fulfillment of prophecies, miracles in great numbers, the rapid spread of the faith in the midst of enemies and in face of overwhelming obstacles, the witness of the martyrs, and the like. From all these it is evident that the only true religion is the one established by Jesus Christ Himself, and which He committed to His Church to protect and to propagate. . . . To exclude the Church, founded by God Himself, from the business of life, from the making of laws, from the education of youth, from domestic society is a grave and fatal error (Pope Leo XII, Immortale Dei, November 1, 1885.)
There are others, somewhat more moderate though not more consistent, who affirm that the morality of individuals is to be guided by the divine law, but not the morality of the State, for that in public affairs the commands of God may be passed over, and may be entirely disregarded in the framing of laws. Hence follows the fatal theory of the need of separation between Church and State. But the absurdity of such a position is manifest. Nature herself proclaims the necessity of the State providing means and opportunities whereby the community may be enabled to live properly, that is to say, according to the laws of God. For, since God is the source of all goodness and justice, it is absolutely ridiculous that the State should pay no attention to these laws or render them abortive by contrary enactments. Besides, those who are in authority owe it to the commonwealth not only to provide for its external well-being and the conveniences of life, but still more to consult the welfare of men's souls in the wisdom of their legislation. But, for the increase of such benefits, nothing more suitable can be conceived than the laws which have God for their author; and, therefore, they who in their government of the State take no account of these laws abuse political power by causing it to deviate from its proper end and from what nature itself prescribes. And, what is still more important, and what We have more than once pointed out, although the civil authority has not the same proximate end as the spiritual, nor proceeds on the same lines, nevertheless in the exercise of their separate powers they must occasionally meet. For their subjects are the same, and not infrequently they deal with the same objects, though in different ways. Whenever this occurs, since a state of conflict is absurd and manifestly repugnant to the most wise ordinance of God, there must necessarily exist some order or mode of procedure to remove the occasions of difference and contention, and to secure harmony in all things. This harmony has been not inaptly compared to that which exists between the body and the soul for the well-being of both one and the other, the separation of which brings irremediable harm to the body, since it extinguishes its very life (Pope Leo XIII, Libertas, June 20, 1888.)
From this it may clearly be seen what consequences are to be expected from that false pride which, rejecting our Saviour's Kingship, places man at the summit of all things and declares that human nature must rule supreme. And yet, this supreme rule can neither be attained nor even defined. The rule of Jesus Christ derives its form and its power from Divine Love: a holy and orderly charity is both its foundation and its crown. Its necessary consequences are the strict fulfilment of duty, respect of mutual rights, the estimation of the things of heaven above those of earth, the preference of the love of God to all things. But this supremacy of man, which openly rejects Christ, or at least ignores Him, is entirely founded upon selfishness, knowing neither charity nor selfdevotion. Man may indeed be king, through Jesus Christ: but only on condition that he first of all obey God, and diligently seek his rule of life in God's law. By the law of Christ we mean not only the natural precepts of morality and the Ancient Law, all of which Jesus Christ has perfected and crowned by His declaration, explanation and sanction; but also the rest of His doctrine and His own peculiar institutions. Of these the chief is His Church. Indeed whatsoever things Christ has instituted are most fully contained in His Church. Moreover, He willed to perpetuate the office assigned to Him by His Father by means of the ministry of the Church so gloriously founded by Himself. On the one hand He confided to her all the means of men's salvation, on the other He most solemnly commanded men to be subject to her and to obey her diligently, and to follow her even as Himself: "He that heareth you, heareth Me; and he that despiseth you, despiseth Me" (Luke x, 16). Wherefore the law of Christ must be sought in the Church. Christ is man's "Way"; the Church also is his "Way"-Christ of Himself and by His very nature, the Church by His commission and the communication of His power. Hence all who would find salvation apart from the Church, are led astray and strive in vain.
As with individuals, so with nations. These, too, must necessarily tend to ruin if they go astray from "The Way." The Son of God, the Creator and Redeemer of mankind, is King and Lord of the earth, and holds supreme dominion over men, both individually and collectively. "And He gave Him power, and glory, and a kingdom: and all peoples, tribes, and tongues shall serve Him" (Daniel vii., 14). "I am appointed King by Him . . . I will give Thee the Gentiles for Thy inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for Thy possession" (Psalm ii., 6, 8). Therefore the law of Christ ought to prevail in human society and be the guide and teacher of public as well as of private life. Since this is so by divine decree, and no man may with impunity contravene it, it is an evil thing for the common weal wherever Christianity does not hold the place that belongs to it. When Jesus Christ is absent, human reason fails, being bereft of its chief protection and light, and the very end is lost sight of, for which, under God's providence, human society has been built up. This end is the obtaining by the members of society of natural good through the aid of civil unity, though always in harmony with the perfect and eternal good which is above nature. But when men's minds are clouded, both rulers and ruled go astray, for they have no safe line to follow nor end to aim at. (Pope Leo XIII, Tametsi Futura Prospicientibus, November 1, 1900.)
Just as Christianity cannot penetrate into the soul without making it better, so it cannot enter into public life without establishing order. With the idea of a God Who governs all, Who is infinitely wise, good, and just, the idea of duty seizes upon the consciences of men. It assuages sorrow, it calms hatred, it engenders heroes. If it has transformed pagan society--and that transformation was a veritable resurrection--for barbarism disappeared in proportion as Christianity extended its sway, so, after the terrible shocks which unbelief has given to the world in our days, it will be able to put that world again on the true road, and bring back to order the states and peoples of modern times. But the return of Christianity will not be efficacious and complete if it does not restore the world to a sincere love of the one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. In the Catholic Church Christianity is Incarnate. It identifies itself with that perfect, spiritual, and, in its own order, sovereign society, which is the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ and which has for Its visible head the Roman Pontiff, successor of the Prince of the Apostles. It is the continuation of the mission of the Savior, the daughter and the heiress of His Redemption. It has preached the Gospel, and has defended it at the price of its blood, and strong in the Divine assistance and of that immortality which has been promised it, it makes no terms with error but remains faithful to the commands which It has received, to carry the doctrine of Jesus Christ to the uttermost limits of the world and to the end of time, and to protect it in its inviolable integrity. Legitimate dispenser of the teachings of the Gospel It does not reveal itself only as the consoler and Redeemer of souls, but It is still more the internal source of justice and charity, and the propagator as well as the guardian of true liberty, and of that equality which alone is possible here below. In applying the doctrine of its Divine Founder, It maintains a wise equilibrium and marks the true limits between the rights and privileges of society. The equality which it proclaims does not destroy the distinction between the different social classes It keeps them intact, as nature itself demands, in order to oppose the anarchy of reason emancipated from Faith, and abandoned to its own devices. The liberty which it gives in no wise conflicts with the rights of truth, because those rights are superior to the demands of liberty. Not does it infringe upon the rights of justice, because those rights are superior to the claims of mere numbers or power. Nor does it assail the rights of God because they are superior to the rights of humanity. (Pope Leo XIII, A Review of His Pontificate, March 19, 1902.)
That the State must be separated from the Church is a thesis absolutely false, a most pernicious error. Based, as it is, on the principle that the State must not recognize any religious cult, it is in the first place guilty of a great injustice to God; for the Creator of man is also the Founder of human societies, and preserves their existence as He preserves our own. We owe Him, therefore, not only a private cult, but a public and social worship to honor Him. Besides, this thesis is an obvious negation of the supernatural order. It limits the action of the State to the pursuit of public prosperity during this life only, which is but the proximate object of political societies; and it occupies itself in no fashion (on the plea that this is foreign to it) with their ultimate object which is man's eternal happiness after this short life shall have run its course. But as the present order of things is temporary and subordinated to the conquest of man's supreme and absolute welfare, it follows that the civil power must not only place no obstacle in the way of this conquest, but must aid us in effecting it. The same thesis also upsets the order providentially established by God in the world, which demands a harmonious agreement between the two societies. Both of them, the civil and the religious society, although each exercises in its own sphere its authority over them. It follows necessarily that there are many things belonging to them in common in which both societies must have relations with one another. Remove the agreement between Church and State, and the result will be that from these common matters will spring the seeds of disputes which will become acute on both sides; it will become more difficult to see where the truth lies, and great confusion is certain to arise. Finally, this thesis inflicts great injury on society itself, for it cannot either prosper or last long when due place is not left for religion, which is the supreme rule and the sovereign mistress in all questions touching the rights and the duties of men. Hence the Roman Pontiffs have never ceased, as circumstances required, to refute and condemn the doctrine of the separation of Church and State. Our illustrious predecessor, Leo XIII, especially, has frequently and magnificently expounded Catholic teaching on the relations which should subsist between the two societies. "Between them," he says, "there must necessarily be a suitable union, which may not improperly be compared with that existing between body and soul.-"Quaedam intercedat necesse est ordinata colligatio (inter illas) quae quidem conjunctioni non immerito comparatur, per quam anima et corpus in homine copulantur." He proceeds: "Human societies cannot, without becoming criminal, act as if God did not exist or refuse to concern themselves with religion, as though it were something foreign to them, or of no purpose to them.... As for the Church, which has God Himself for its author, to exclude her from the active life of the nation, from the laws, the education of the young, the family, is to commit a great and pernicious error. -- "Civitates non possunt, citra scellus, gerere se tamquam si Deus omnino non esset, aut curam religionis velut alienam nihilque profuturam abjicere.... Ecclesiam vero, quam Deus ipse constituit, ab actione vitae excludere, a legibus, ab institutione adolescentium, a societate domestica, magnus et perniciousus est error." (Pope Saint Pius X, Vehementer Nos, February 11, 1906.)
But it is not only within her own household that the Church must come to terms. Besides her relations with those within, she has others with those who are outside. The Church does not occupy the world all by herself; there are other societies in the world., with which she must necessarily have dealings and contact. The rights and duties of the Church towards civil societies must, therefore, be determined, and determined, of course, by her own nature, that, to wit, which the Modernists have already described to us. The rules to be applied in this matter are clearly those which have been laid down for science and faith, though in the latter case the question turned upon the object, while in the present case we have one of ends. In the same way, then, as faith and science are alien to each other by reason of the diversity of their objects, Church and State are strangers by reason of the diversity of their ends, that of the Church being spiritual while that of the State is temporal. Formerly it was possible to subordinate the temporal to the spiritual and to speak of some questions as mixed, conceding to the Church the position of queen and mistress in all such, because the Church was then regarded as having been instituted immediately by God as the author of the supernatural order. But this doctrine is today repudiated alike by philosophers and historians. The state must, therefore, be separated from the Church, and the Catholic from the citizen. Every Catholic, from the fact that he is also a citizen, has the right and the duty to work for the common good in the way he thinks best, without troubling himself about the authority of the Church, without paying any heed to its wishes, its counsels, its orders -- nay, even in spite of its rebukes. For the Church to trace out and prescribe for the citizen any line of action, on any pretext whatsoever, is to be guilty of an abuse of authority, against which one is bound to protest with all one's might. Venerable Brethren, the principles from which these doctrines spring have been solemnly condemned by Our predecessor, Pius VI, in his Apostolic Constitution Auctorem fidei (Pope Saint Pius X, Pascendi Dominci Gregis, September 8, 1907.)
But, on the contrary, by ignoring the laws governing human nature and by breaking the bounds within which they operate, the human person is lead, not toward progress, but towards death. This, nevertheless, is what they want to do with human society; they dream of changing its natural and traditional foundations; they dream of a Future City built on different principles, and they dare to proclaim these more fruitful and more beneficial than the principles upon which the present Christian City rests.
No, Venerable Brethren, We must repeat with the utmost energy in these times of social and intellectual anarchy when everyone takes it upon himself to teach as a teacher and lawmaker - the City cannot be built otherwise than as God has built it; society cannot be setup unless the Church lays the foundations and supervises the work; no, civilization is not something yet to be found, nor is the New City to be built on hazy notions; it has been in existence and still is: it is Christian civilization, it is the Catholic City. It has only to be set up and restored continually against the unremitting attacks of insane dreamers, rebels and miscreants. omnia instaurare in Christo. (Pope Saint Pius X, Notre Charge Apostolique, August 15, 1910.)
Let the Princes and Rulers of peoples remember this truth, and let them consider whether it is a prudent and safe idea for governments or for states to separate themselves from the holy religion of Jesus Christ, from which their authority receives such strength and support. Let them consider again and again, whether it is a measure of political wisdom to seek to divorce the teaching of the Gospel and of the Church from the ruling of a country and from the public education of the young. Sad experience proves that human authority fails where religion is set aside. The fate of our first parent after the Fall is wont to come also upon nations. As in his case, no sooner had his will turned from God than his unchained passions rejected the sway of the will; so, too, when the rulers of nations despise divine authority, in their turn the people are wont to despise their human authority. There remains, of course, the expedient of using force to repress popular risings; but what is the result? Force can repress the body, but it cannot repress the souls of men. (Pope Benedict XV, Ad Beatissimi Apostolorum, November 1, 1914.)
When, therefore, governments and nations follow in all their activities, whether they be national or international, the dictates of conscience grounded in the teachings, precepts, and example of Jesus Christ, and which are binding on each and every individual, then only can we have faith in one another's word and trust in the peaceful solution of the difficulties and controversies which may grow out of differences in point of view or from clash of interests. An attempt in this direction has already and is now being made; its results, however, are almost negligible and, especially so, as far as they can be said to affect those major questions which divide seriously and serve to arouse nations one against the other. No merely human institution of today can be as successful in devising a set of international laws which will be in harmony with world conditions as the Middle Ages were in the possession of that true League of Nations, Christianity. It cannot be denied that in the Middle Ages this law was often violated; still it always existed as an ideal, according to which one might judge the acts of nations, and a beacon light calling those who had lost their way back to the safe road.
There exists an institution able to safeguard the sanctity of the law of nations. This institution is a part of every nation; at the same time it is above all nations. She enjoys, too, the highest authority, the fullness of the teaching power of the Apostles. Such an institution is the Church of Christ. She alone is adapted to do this great work, for she is not only divinely commissioned to lead mankind, but moreover, because of her very make-up and the constitution which she possesses, by reason of her age-old traditions and her great prestige, which has not been lessened but has been greatly increased since the close of the War, cannot but succeed in such a venture where others assuredly will fail. (Pope Pius XI, Ubi Arcano Dei Consilio, December 23, 1922.)
Every true and lasting reform has ultimately sprung from the sanctity of men who were driven by the love of God and of men. Generous, ready to stand to attention to any call from God, yet confident in themselves because confident in their vocation, they grew to the size of beacons and reformers. On the other hand, any reformatory zeal, which instead of springing from personal purity, flashes out of passion, has produced unrest instead of light, destruction instead of construction, and more than once set up evils worse than those it was out to remedy. No doubt "the Spirit breatheth where he will" (John iii. 8): "of stones He is able to raise men to prepare the way to his designs" (Matt. iii. 9). He chooses the instruments of His will according to His own plans, not those of men. But the Founder of the Church, who breathed her into existence at Pentecost, cannot disown the foundations as He laid them. Whoever is moved by the spirit of God, spontaneously adopts both outwardly and inwardly, the true attitude toward the Church, this sacred fruit from the tree of the cross, this gift from the Spirit of God, bestowed on Pentecost day to an erratic world.
In your country, Venerable Brethren, voices are swelling into a chorus urging people to leave the Church, and among the leaders there is more than one whose official position is intended to create the impression that this infidelity to Christ the King constitutes a signal and meritorious act of loyalty to the modern State. Secret and open measures of intimidation, the threat of economic and civic disabilities, bear on the loyalty of certain classes of Catholic functionaries, a pressure which violates every human right and dignity. Our wholehearted paternal sympathy goes out to those who must pay so dearly for their loyalty to Christ and the Church; but directly the highest interests are at stake, with the alternative of spiritual loss, there is but one alternative left, that of heroism. If the oppressor offers one the Judas bargain of apostasy he can only, at the cost of every worldly sacrifice, answer with Our Lord: "Begone, Satan! For it is written: The Lord thy God shalt thou adore, and Him only shalt thou serve" (Matt. iv. 10). And turning to the Church, he shall say: "Thou, my mother since my infancy, the solace of my life and advocate at my death, may my tongue cleave to my palate if, yielding to worldly promises or threats, I betray the vows of my baptism." As to those who imagine that they can reconcile exterior infidelity to one and the same Church, let them hear Our Lord's warning: -- "He that shall deny me before men shall be denied before the angels of God" (Luke xii. 9).(Pope Pius XI, Mit Brennender Sorge, March 17, 1937.)
It gives Us, Venerable Brethren, an inward strength, a heavenly joy, for which We daily render to God Our deep and humble thanks, to see in every region of the Catholic world evident signs of a spirit which boldly faces the gigantic tasks of our age, which with generous decision is intent on uniting in fruitful harmony the first and essential duty of individual sanctification, and apostolic activity for the spread of the Kingdom of God. From the movement of the Eucharistic Congresses furthered with loving care by Our predecessors and from the collaboration of the laity formed in Catholic Action towards a deep realization of their noble mission, flow forth fountains of grace and reserves of strength, which could hardly be sufficiently prized in the present time, when threats are more numerous, needs multiply and the conflict between Christianity and anti-Christianism grows intense.
At a moment when one is forced to note with sorrow the disproportion between the number of priests and the calls upon them, when one sees that even today the words of Our Savior apply: "The harvest indeed in great, but the laborers are few" (Saint Matthew ix. 37; Saint Luke x.2), the collaboration of the laity in the Apostolate of the Hierarchy, a collaboration indeed given by many and animated with ardent zeal and generous self-devotion, stands out as a precious aid to the work of priests and shows possibilities of development which justify the brightest hopes. The prayer of the Church to the Lord of the Harvest that he send workers into his vineyard (cf. Saint Matthew ix. 37; Saint Luke x.2) has been granted to a degree proportionate to the present needs, and in a manner which supplements and completes the powers, often obstructed and inadequate, of the priestly apostolate. Numbers of fervent men and women of youth obedient to the voice of the Supreme Pastor and to the directions of their bishops, consecrate themselves with the full ardor of their souls to the works of the apostolate in order to bring back to Christ the masses of peoples who have been separated from Him.
To them in this moment so critical for the Church and for mankind go out Our paternal greeting, Our deep felt gratitude, Our confident hope. These have truly placed their lives and their work beneath the standard of Christ the King; and they can say with the Psalmist: "I speak my words to the King" (Psalm xliv. 1). "Thy Kingdom come" is not simply the burning desire of their prayer; it is besides, the guide of their activity. (Pope Pius XII, Summi Pontificatus, October 10, 1939.)
This is, of course, just a partial listing of the constant teaching (God cannot contradict Himself, ladies and gentlemen; the Catholic Church can never be spotted by any taint of error or contradiction) of the Catholic Church on the absolute necessity of the civil state recognizing her as the true religion and of the Social Reign of Christ the King that such a recognition makes possible. Sure, as has been noted on this site most repeatedly, Holy Mother Church must make concessions to the actual realities of a given situation where she is favored with the protection of the law, doing so without ever conceding the nonexistent validity of the separation of Church and State and without ever once relenting in teaching her children what the correct doctrine is and exhorting them to plant the seeds for the restoration of the Catholic City. Pope Leo XIII made this point clear in Longiqua Oceani, January 6, 1895:
Yet, though all this is true, it would be very erroneous to draw the conclusion that in America is to be sought the type of the most desirable status of the Church, or that it would be universally lawful or expedient for State and Church to be, as in America, dissevered and divorced. The fact that Catholicity with you is in good condition, nay, is even enjoying a prosperous growth, is by all means to be attributed to the fecundity with which God has endowed His Church, in virtue of which unless men or circumstances interfere, she spontaneously expands and propagates herself; but she would bring forth more abundant fruits if, in addition to liberty, she enjoyed the favor of the laws and the patronage of the public authority. (Pope Leo XIII, Longiqua Oceani.)
A system of civil governance that fosters conditions that are inimical to man's last end is bound to degenerate over the course of time into a such a state of lawlessness that a "state religion" will be imposed by the brute force of the the civil state, namely, that of statism itself, the worship of the state and of its leaders as omniscient and omnipotent. The antidote to this is not found in any naturalistic philosophy, such as libertarianism or conservatism, but in Catholicism alone. There is no way--as in no way--to retard the evils caused by the separation of Church and State wrought by Protestantism and Judeo-Masonry and their actual, concrete expressions in the American and French Revolutions except by planting the seeds for the conversion of men and their nations to the Social Reign of Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen.
Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI does not believe this. Must he? Yes. Once again, please consult
The Binding Nature of Catholic Social Teaching.
Yes, indeed, Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI is steeped in the subjectivism of Modernism even as he denounces the "dictatorship of relativism." Having rejected the sure guide of Scholasticism for the Modernism of the New Theology that was critiqued and denounced by Pope Pius XII in Humani Generis, August 12, 1910, the currently reigning antipope cannot see how he contradicts himself by holding to a view of the nature of dogmatic truth that is opposed to even natural reason and how his efforts to present condemned propositions as consonant with the Catholic Faith, itself an exercise in subjectivism, is destined to solidify the hold that relativism has on the minds of men.
This subjectivism of Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI was on full display as he explained in the interview conducted with him by reporters on his airplane from Rome to France the reasons why he issued Summorum Pontificum, July 7, 2007:
EN ROUTE TO PARIS, SEPT. 12, 2008 (Zenit.org).- An allowance for the celebration of Mass according to the 1962 Missal is in no way a return to the past, but rather an expression of pastoral concern, says Benedict XVI.
The Pope affirmed this today en route to France; he gave a brief press conference on the plane, answering four questions previously submitted by the journalists selected to be in the press corps accompanying the Holy Father.
The Pontiff said it is "groundless" to fear that "Summorum Pontificum" -- which opened the way for a wider celebration of the Mass according to the 1962 Missal -- is a regression.
"This 'motu proprio' is simply an act of tolerance, with a pastoral objective, for people who have been formed in this liturgy, who love it, know it and want to live with this liturgy," he said. "It is a small group, given that it presupposes a formation in Latin, a formation in a certain culture. But it seems to me a normal demand of faith and pastoral concern for a bishop of our Church to have love and tolerance for these people and permit them to live with this liturgy."
"There is no opposition whatsoever between the liturgy renewed by the Second Vatican Council and this liturgy," Benedict XVI continued. "Each day, the Council fathers celebrated Mass according to this old rite and, at the same time, have conceived a natural development for the liturgy in all of this century, since the liturgy is a living reality that develops and that conserves its identity in its development."
"Therefore, there are certainly distinct accents, but a fundamental identity that excludes a contradiction, an opposition between the renewed liturgy and the preceding liturgy," the Pope affirmed. "I think that there is the possibility of mutual enrichment. It's clear that the renewed liturgy is the ordinary liturgy of our times."
The Protestant and Masonic Novus Ordo, that abomination in the eyes of God that has so many sacrileges and blasphemies, both "approved" and "unapproved" by conciliar officials, is "the renewed liturgy that is the "ordinary liturgy of our times." I agree with this statement. The "renewed liturgy" is indeed the "ordinary liturgy" of our times of apostasy and betrayal. Absolutely. The Novus Ordo worship service reaffirms man in the spirit of the world. It is offensive to God and is thus antithetical to the Catholic Faith, being an effort to make the worship of God, Who lives outside of time and space, conditioned by the subjective circumstances in which men find themselves at this present time (as I pointed out in G.I.R.M. Warfare).
The modernized version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition that was promulgated by Angelo Roncalli/John XXIII is "simply an act of tolerance" for "people who have been formed in this liturgy, who live it, know it and want to live with this liturgy." So much for the "restoration," huh? Please spare me the canard that "the 'pope' just has to say these things." No one has to say anything he does not believe is true. One either makes statements he believes, or one is lying. It is that simple.
"There is no opposition whatsoever between the liturgy renewed by the Second Vatican Council and this [the 1962] liturgy...the Council fathers...have conceived a natural development for the liturgy in all of this century, since the liturgy is a living reality that develops and conserves its own identity in its development." This is not what Joseph "Cardinal" Ratzinger wrote in the foreword to the French language edition of the late Monsignor Klaus Gamber's The Reform of the Roman Liturgy:
What happened after the Council was something else entirely: in the place of liturgy as the fruit of development came fabricated liturgy. We abandoned the organic, living process of growth and development over centuries, and replaced it--as in a manufacturing process--with a fabrication, a banal on-the-spot product. Gamber, with the vigilance of a true prophet and the courage of a true witness, oppose this falsification, and thanks to his incredibly rich knowledge, indefatigably taught us about the living fullness of a true liturgy. As a man who knew and loved history, he showed us the multiple forms and paths of liturgical development; as a man who looked at history form the inside, he saw in this development and its fruit the intangible reflection of the eternal liturgy, that which is not the object of our action but which can continue marvelously to mature and blossom if we unite ourselves intimately with its mystery.
"There is no opposition whatsoever between the liturgy renewed by the Second Vatican Council and this [the 1962] liturgy...the Council fathers...have conceived a natural development for the liturgy in all of this century, since the liturgy is a living reality that develops and conserves its own identity in its development." This not what those who planned the Protestant and Masonic Novus Ordo service believed:
Let it be candidly said: the Roman Rite which we have known hitherto no longer exists. It is destroyed. (Father Joseph Gelineau, who worked with Annibale Bugnini's Consilium, Quoted and footnoted in the work of a Father John Mole, who believed that the Mass of the Roman Rite had been "truncated," not destroyed. Assault on the Roman Rite)
Certainly we will preserve the basic elements, the bread, the wine, but all else will be changed according to local tradition: words, gestures, colors, vestments, chants, architecture, decor. The problem of liturgical reform is immense. (Archbishop Karol Wojtyla, 1965, Quoted and footnoted in Assault on the Roman Rite. This has also been noted on this site in the past, having been provided me by a reader who had access to the 1980 French book in which the quote is found.)
We must strip from our Catholic prayers and from the Catholic liturgy everything which can be the shadow of a stumbling block for our separated brethren that is for the Protestants." (Annibale Bugnini, L'Osservatore Romano, March 19, 1965.)
"[T]he intention of Pope Paul VI with regard to what is commonly called the Mass, was to reform the Catholic liturgy in such a way that it should coincide with the Protestant liturgy.... [T]here was with Pope Paul VI an ecumenical intention to remove, or at least to correct, or at least to relax, what was too Catholic in the traditional sense, in the Mass, and I, repeat, to get the Catholic Mass closer to the Calvinist mass" (Dec. 19, 1993), Apropos, #17, pp. 8f; quoted in Christian Order, October, 1994. (Jean Guitton, a close friend of Giovanni Montini/Paul VI., and quoted in The Latin Mass Magazine in 1994..)
The same awareness of the present state of the world also influenced the use of texts from very ancient tradition. It seemed that this cherished treasure would not be harmed if some phrases were changed so that the style of language would be more in accord with the language of modern theology and would faithfully reflect the actual state of the Church's discipline. Thus there have been changes of some expressions bearing on the evaluation and use of the good things of the earth and of allusions to a particular form of outward penance belonging to another age in the history of the Church. (General Instruction to the Roman Missal, Paragraph 15. Here is an admission that the texts of ancient tradition were being changed so that they "would be more in accord with the language of modern theology." What is modern theology, you ask? Modernism, thank you. How can anyone claim that tradition was preserved when the revolutionaries admit that they changed it in light of "modern theology" and the "actual state of the Church's discipline," no less to disparage, as I have noted in other articles and in my own G.I.R.M. Warfare, practices of "outward penance" that are said, quite arrogantly, "to belong to a different age in the history of the Church"?)
"There is no opposition whatsoever between the liturgy renewed by the Second Vatican Council and this [the 1962] liturgy...the Council fathers...have conceived a natural development for the liturgy in all of this century, since the liturgy is a living reality that develops and conserves its own identity in its development." These statements are lies. Lies. Lies. Lies that are presented to make the "toleration" of the modernized version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition "acceptable" to those who are, like Ratzinger/Benedict himself, committed to the "liturgical renewal" wrought by the "Second" Vatican Council and its aftermath.
Courageous priests, men who different about the extent of the crisis facing the Church and who acted in different ways in response to that crisis, rejected the Novus Ordo service as an abomination, refusing to offer it even once or ceasing to offer it at some point in their priestly lives. If Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI is correct about the "doctrinal exactitude" of the Protestant and Masonic Novus Ordo service, you see, then each of the following priests had to be wrong for rejecting that service, each had to be mistaken about cleaving to the Immemorial Mass of Tradition: Father Martin Stepanich, O.F.M., S.T.D., Father Harry Marchosky, Father Thomas Ross, Father John Roach, Father Hugh Wish, Monsignor Raymond Ruscitto, Father Gommar DePauw, Monsignor Graham Walters, Father Frederick Schell, S.J., Father Karl Pulvermacher, O.F.M., Cap., Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer and the priests of the Society of Saint John Mary Vianney of Campos, Brazil (before their "regularization" in late-2001), Father Robert Fidelis McKenna, O.P., Father John Fenton, Father Leo Carley, Father Francis LeBlanc, Father Paul Schoonbroodt, among so many others. It cannot be that they were right and that Ratzinger/Benedict is correct. The late Bishop de Castro Mayer wrote a scathing analysis of the Novus Ordo in a
letter to Giovanni Montini/Paul VI just two months before the new "Mass" was instituted universally in the structures of the counterfeit church of conciliarism on November 30, 1969, the First Sunday of Advent. Was he wrong?
It is no wonder, my friends, that the likes of John McCain and Sarah Palin must wander about their lives steeped in subjectivism. How can they have a ghost of a chance, humanly speaking, to know authentic truth when the man who presents himself as the Vicar of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ on earth reaffirms them in the naturalistic errors upon which the modern civil state is founded and when he, that false "pope," makes war about the nature of dogmatic truth constantly as he utters falsehoods declaratively as being consonant with the truth?
Falsehoods, whether uttered with sincerity by confused people or in calculated manner by those who are insincere, are never the foundation of any kind of "reform." Those who think that the next conciliar "pontiff" will be "different" are deluding themselves as the next conciliar "pontiff" will be steeped in the errors of conciliarism, from which absolutely nothing good can come. Then again, if one has convinced himself that things are "different" in "this election" and that there is indeed "hope" for the future despite the fact that the naturalists of the "left" and the naturalists of the "right," whatever their differences on the degrees of statism and war mongering they accept, believe in the erroneous naturalistic, anti-Incarnational, religiously indifferentist and semi-Pelagian principles upon which the modern civil state is founded, then it is no wonder that so many "conservative" Catholics believe "things" will get "better" in the future as the false principles of conciliarism continue to seve as the rotten foundation of worship and pastoral praxis. Those who believe in these errors can produce no true temporal good or eternal good as what they believe is repugnant to the peace and prosperity of eternity.
No, "we" are not going to resolve this crisis. That task has been entrusted by Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of His Most Blessed Mother.
We can aid in the work of the fulfillment of Our Lady's Fatima Message by making reparation for our sins and those of the whole world, being mindful of the fact that our sins caused her Divine Son to suffer unspeakable horrors in His Sacred Humanity during His Passion and Death and that they caused her, our Co-Redemptrix, Mediatrix and Advocate, to suffer those Seven Swords of Sorrow to be thrust through and through her Immaculate Heart. Each Rosary of reparation we pray can help to bring about the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Don't ever doubt this fact at all, my friends.
Let us resolve to stand by the foot of the Holy Cross each day with Our Lady, who is present mystically at every offering of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Let us resolve once and for all to cleave only to true bishops and to true priests who make no concessions to conciliarism or to the nonexistent legitimacy of its false shepherds no matter what calumny comes our way by so doing. Let us be committed to the "inconvenience of truth," if you will, as we make no concessions to the errors of Modernity in the world or Modernism as institutionalized in the counterfeit church of conciliarism.
And let us take heart, yes, once again, from this words of Pope Pius XI, contained in Quas Primas, December 11, 1925:
We may well admire in this the admirable wisdom of the Providence of God, who, ever bringing good out of evil, has from time to time suffered the faith and piety of men to grow weak, and allowed Catholic truth to be attacked by false doctrines, but always with the result that truth has afterwards shone out with greater splendor, and that men's faith, aroused from its lethargy, has shown itself more vigorous than before.
No prayer we offer, no sacrifice we make, no daily chore we do for the greater honor and glory and love of the Most Holy Trinity is wasted if we offer it up to Him through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.
May we be willing to suffer--and suffer much--for the inconvenience of God's Holy Truths contained in the Deposit of Faith as His consecrated slaves through His Most Blessed Mother's Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart.
Viva Cristo Rey! Vivat Christus Rex!
Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us!
Saint Joseph, Patron of Departing Souls, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saints Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, pray for us.
See also: A Litany of Saints
Isn't it time to pray a Rosary now?