Saturday, January 24, 2009
The Power of the Rosary
My convertion into tradland reintroduced me to the rosary after an absence of almost 17 years. Although I say the rosary regularly now, I am ashamed to say that I do not say the rosary as I should, which I learnt at my two five-day Ignatian retreats. The spiritually fruitful method what I was thought by my retreat master District Superior of Asia SSPX Rev Fr Daniel Couture almost two years ago was to meditate on each mystery as you say the prayers on each decade. Regretfully, I have been sadly neglectful of that method. However, having said that, I am still amazed at the effectiveness of praying the rosary. I have always heard of the power of prayer, but never have I experienced it concretely myself as much as I have in the past year. Other people always tell me of their own experiences of having their prayer heard, but I myself have never "kept score" of whether my prayers have been answered or not. Mostly it is because I don't really keep track of what I pray and what happens after, and also because nothing really spectacular happened enough for me to take note of.
In the past year itself however, we've seen two successful rosary crusades which has brought about immense change in the world-or at least, one has, and another about to. Trads would know of what I am speaking off. What else but of the first rosary crusade which brought about the Motu Propio Summorum Pontificium within months of the crusade, after years of empty promises from Rome? And the second, said of the SSPX faithful of the intention for the lifting of the 1988 decree of excommunications? I hope that I am not, but do not think, that I am speaking too soon. For within barely a month after the conclusion of the second rosary crusade, religious and secular news services carry news that our Pope has already signed the document that will lift the infamous excommunications and that the public announcement of the decree is imminent. But I will not go on speaking about that. I brought it up more so because I wanted to set the scene for which I am about to write of, of my own personal experience of the power of the rosary.
About two years ago I read of a 54-day rosary novena to our Queen of the Heavenly Rosary. It consists of an unbroken chain of 6 back to back 9-day rosary novena- with 3 novenas said for a petition, and 3 said for thanksgiving, whether or not the petition has been answered or not. However, I was more interested in the fact that single people looking for a soulmate say the rosary novena with great success. Being a trad Catholic does not increase your chances of finding someone to marry, as many trad single Catholics know and will sympathise. Attending a small SSPX chapel where there are more single females than males didn't make it any easier. I was also determined not to get involved with someone who did not agree completely with me on matters of the faith and on the SSPX, knowing that it would require me to compromise painfully. When I bumped into my fiance online last August, who was then only a friend I haven't spoken to in 2 years, and later on finding that we liked each other, we both decided to say the 54-day rosary novena with the intention of finding out if we were meant for each other. Amazingly, things started to progress very quickly, very positively. Within a few short weeks of saying the rosary, things moved forward enough for my darling fiance to decide that it was time for him to visit me in Malaysia. We were very much in love by that time, finding that we were completely in tune with the other spiritually, emotionally and intellectually. By the time the 54 days was up, he was in Malaysia, and we decided to say the second series of rosaries together. And we fell even more deeply in love than ever, finding ever more things that we had in common with each other, sharing dreams, thoughts, the future, even anticipating and finishing each others thoughts and words. In between starting the first and second novenas, so many amazing coincidences just providentially happened to make it possible for us to be together. There were no objections from either sides of the family, nor from our priests. University and work holidays just seem to coincide beautifully. We had my family's blessing for me to go to Australia to meet and stay with my fiance's family for a month for Christmas on very short notice-four days notice to be exact. And at the end of the novena, we were engaged, and to be married in less than six months.
There were so many things that could have been obstacles that kept us apart, and yet, as each threat of an obstacle loomed closer, it just seemed to melt away into nothing. Against so many odds, we managed to find each other over almost 6000km of land and sea. We joke with each other-what if either of us was born in another time and age, if there were no computers or internet, if either one of us spoke another language, if I didn't go to the muslim university that I did(thats another story for another day), or if I never turned trad as a result of it, nor became affiliated with the SSPX, if I never started a blog, if he didn't email me three years ago, or if I never answered - we'd never have met. Any number of things could have gone wrong, and we won't have met nor gotten engaged. Everything in our life happened for a reason, and led us to this-meeting, loving, and marrying. Every good and bad thing that has ever happened in both of our lives had a reason, because it had to happen for providence to move the chess pieces to us meeting. Perhaps it seems a little trite to say those things. Perhaps, it could be said that we wanted to meet somebody so bad that it would have worked anyway. Perhaps. But all of the above seems all the more miraculous to us because we seem to be so perfect for each other.
We still feel a strong sense of wonderment-of how heaven played so strongly a role in bringing us together. It was the rosary novena to Our Lady which brought us so strongly together. Finding each other has reinforced our belief in the rosary and prayer like nothing ever has before. Our prayers stormed heaven, and Our Lady, saying as she did to Fortuna Agrelli, said to us "I can no longer refuse the favor thou dost petition". We can never thank heaven, or Our Lady enough.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
I'm Getting Married!
It's been a long hiatus since the last post. So many things happened in between then and now. For those who do not know, I am engaged to a fellow trad SSPX-er from Australia, and we are getting married on the 30th of May of this year. I'm deliriously happy to have found my soulmate, who emailed me almost three years ago after reading one of my old blog posts which was posted on Angelqueen forum. Finding each other was a journey in providence, as we both early on in our friendship decided to say the 54-day rosary novena for heavenly guidance as to whether we were meant for each other. We are now on our 3rd series of the 54-day rosary novena, and we don't plan to stop even after we are married. Naturally, I will soon be moving to Australia permanently to make my home with my husband-to-be. However, I will try to update my blog periodically after I've settled down and share my perspective as a trad housewife and mother in a modern world. Contratulate us, pray for us, and wish us luck!
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
This is a specially commissioned St Benedict Cross made in 100% pewter by Royal Selangor. Only 200 pcs in existence. This collector's item has beautiful detailing of the corpus Christi and the St Benedict medal in plated chrome, while the rest of the cross is in a matt pewter tone. Ideal as a gift or to wear as a small pectoral cross.
Weighs 0.035kg and approx.3.1 inch (8cm)
Comes in a nice souvenir box.
For orders within Malaysia, please pay to Maybank 562740050222 -WEE ENG CHOO. Email address firstname.lastname@example.org
For international orders, please pay by Paypal to email@example.com or by Western Union.
Shipping within Malaysia and Singapore is free up to 2 pieces. Shipping per order to everywhere else is a flat rate of USD3.
For a wider selection of books, holy cards and crosses, please visit www.Christianbooksmalaysia.com
For orders within Malaysia, please pay to Maybank 562740050222 -WEE ENG CHOO. Email address firstname.lastname@example.org
For international orders, please pay by Paypal to email@example.com or by Western Union.
Shipping within Malaysia and Singapore is free up to 2 books. Shipping per book to everywhere else is a flat rate of USD3.
We welcome large orders. Please contact us for a quote and a discount at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For a wider selection of books, holy cards and crosses, please visit www.Christianbooksmalaysia.com
Monday, June 23, 2008
Superior General's Letter # 72
to Friends and Benefactors
#72: April 14, 2008
Dear Friends and Benefactors,
The motu proprio Summorum Pontificum, which acknowledged that the Tridentine Mass was never abrogated, raises a certain number of questions concerning the future of the relations of the Society of St. Pius X with Rome. Several persons in conservative circles and in Rome itself have made themselves heard, arguing that, since the Sovereign Pontiff had acted so generously and thus given a clear sign of his good will towards us, there would be nothing left for the Society to do but to “sign an agreement with Rome.” Unfortunately, a few of our friends were deceived by such an illusion. We would like to take the opportunity of this Eastertide letter to review once again the principles governing our actions in these troubled times and point out a few recent events which clearly indicate that, basically, nothing has really changed except for the motu proprio’s liturgical overture, so as to draw from all this the necessary conclusions.
The fundamental principle that dictates our action is the safeguard of the faith, without which no one can be saved, no one can receive grace, no one can be pleasing to God, as the First Vatican Council states. The liturgical question is not paramount; it only becomes such inasmuch as it is the manifestation of an alteration of the faith and, consequently, of the worship due to God.
A notable change of orientation took place at Vatican II with regard to the Church’s outlook, especially on the world, other religions, the State, and even itself. These changes have been acknowledged by all, yet not all judged them in the same way. Until now, they were presented as being very profound, even revolutionary. One cardinal at the Council could even speak of “the 1789 Revolution in the Church.
While still a cardinal, Benedict XVI phrased it thus: “The challenge of the sixties was to assimilate the best values expressed in two centuries of ‘liberal’ culture. These are values which, even if they originate outside the Church, can find a place, once purified and corrected, in her vision of the world. This is what was done. 1” In the name of this assimilation, a new vision of the world and its components was imposed: a fundamentally positive vision, which dictated not only a new liturgical rite, but also a new mode of presence of the Church in the world: much more horizontal, and more concerned about social and temporal problems than those of a supernatural and eternal character...
At the same time, the Church’s relationship with the other religions underwent a transformation. Since Vatican II, Rome has avoided any negative or depreciatory observations about other religions. For example, the classic term of “false religions” has completely disappeared from ecclesiastical vocabulary. The words “heretic” and “schismatic,” which used to designate the religions closer to the Catholic Church, have also disappeared, except when they are occasionally employed, especially the term “schismatic,” to label us. The same holds true for the term “excommunication.” The new approach is called ecumenism, and contrary to what everyone used to think, it does not mean a return to Catholic unity, but rather the establishment of a new kind of unity that no longer requires conversion.
Christian denominations are considered under a new light, and this is especially clear for the Orthodox. In the Balamand Declaration, the Catholic Church officially pledged herself to not convert the Orthodox and to collaborate with them. The dogma “outside the Church there is no salvation,” recalled in the document Dominus Jesus, underwent a reinterpretation for the sake of the new vision of things. They could not keep this dogma without broadening the limits of the Church, and this was accomplished by the new definition of the Church given in Lumen Gentium. The Church of Christ is no longer the Catholic Church, it subsists in her. They may say that it subsists only in her, but the fact remains that they claim that the Holy Ghost and this “Church of Christ” act outside the Catholic Church. The other religions are not without elements of salvation... The “Orthodox Churches” become authentic particular churches in which “the Church of Christ” is built.
Obviously, these new views completely disrupted the Church’s relations with the other religions. It is impossible to speak of a superficial change; for what they want to impose on the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ is a new and very profound mutation. John Paul II consequently was able to speak of a “new ecclesiology,” admitting an essential change in the part of the theology that treats of the Church. We simply cannot understand how they can claim that this new understanding of the Church is still in harmony with the traditional definition of the Church. It is new; it is radically different and obliges the Catholic to observe a fundamentally different behavior towards the heretics and schismatics, who have tragically abandoned the Church and scorned the faith of their baptism. From now on they are no longer “separated brethren,” but brothers who “are not in full communion”... and we are “deeply united” by baptism in Christ in an “inamissible” 2 union. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s latest clarification of the word “subsistit” is very revealing on this point. Even as it states that the Church cannot teach novelty, it confirms the novelty introduced at the Council...
Likewise for evangelization: the sacred duty of every Christian to respond to our Lord Jesus Christ’s command is at first upheld: “He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be condemned” (Mk. 16: 15-16). But then it is alleged that this evangelization only concerns the pagans, so that neither Christians nor Jews need be bothered. Very recently Cardinals Kasper and Bertone, addressing the controversy over the new prayer for the Jews, stated that the Church has no intention of converting them.
Add to this the pope’s positions on religious liberty, and we can easily conclude that the combat for the faith has not slackened over these last few years. The motu proprio that introduces the hope of a change for the better in matters liturgical is not accompanied by the logically related measures that should follow in other domains of the Church’s life. All the changes introduced at the Council and in the post-conciliar reforms, which we denounce precisely because the Church had already condemned them, have been upheld. The only difference is that now they claim at the same time that the Church does not change... which amounts to saying that these changes are perfectly in line with Catholic Tradition. This confusion of terminology combined with the assertion that the Church must remain faithful to her Tradition might well be troubling to more than a few. So long as facts do not corroborate this new assertion, we must conclude that nothing has changed in Rome’s intention to pursue the conciliar course despite forty years of crisis, despite vacant convents, abandoned rectories, and empty churches. Catholic universities persist in their divagations, and the teaching of the catechism is uncertain while Catholic schools are no longer specifically Catholic: they have become an extinct species...
For these reasons the Priestly Society of St. Pius X cannot sign an “agreement.” It definitely rejoices at the pope’s desire to reintroduce the ancient and venerable rite of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, yet it also observes the opposition— sometimes very tenacious—of entire bishops’ conferences. Without giving up hope and without impatience, we can see that the time for an agreement has not yet come. This does not prevent us from continuing to hope, nor from following the line of conduct defined in the year 2000. We are still asking the Holy Father to annul the 1988 decree of excommunication because we are convinced that this would be a boon for the Church, and we encourage you to pray for this to happen. But it would be very imprudent and hasty to dash off ill-advisedly in pursuit of a practical agreement that would not be based on the Church’s fundamental principles, and especially the faith.
The new Rosary Crusade we have invited you to join, to pray that the Church recover and resume her bimillennial Tradition, calls for some clarification. This is how we envision it: let everyone pledge to recite daily a rosary at a fairly fixed time of day. Given the number of our faithful and their distribution throughout the whole world, we can be assured that at every hour of the day and night prayerful voices will be ascending to heaven, voices earnestly praying for the triumph of their heavenly Mother and the coming of the reign of our Lord “on earth as it is in heaven.”
+ Bernard Fellay
Menzingen, April 14, 2008
+ Bernard Fellay
Menzingen, April 14, 2008
Tepidity, A Debate, Purgatory and Extreme Unction
My spiritual lethargy came about through many small things. Listening to pop/rock songs. Watching too many movies. Joining in unedifying conversations. Intemperance in food and drink. Fleeing penance and mortification. Very common things that everybody indulges in. But for a Traditional Catholic who is trying to save her soul, I realise-oh so deadly. Already I was falling into bad habits that I thought I was free from. And yet even as I write, I hesitate as to how I'm going to go about giving up all these things which gives me a some measure of pleasure, no matter how fleeting. And yet I know that I must.
I found though, that it helps to talk about this with others. You find that you are not the only one suffering from terrible distractions in thought while attempting to pray, that you no longer feel consolation nor comfort in prayers and meditations. That actually it is very common, and happens to the best of us. It's true that misery loves company. I did feel better after knowing that I wasn't alone in this.
Last night I had a lively conversation/debate on the faith with fellow Catholics. The topic on the effects of the sacraments came up. One of the reasons I stopped reading spiritual books was because I felt that it was a little repetitive-after all, I knew the gist of it-why read more of the same? It was pride that stopped me - I realise now. And last night I found that I didn't know THAT much after all.
We were debating the essentiality of the Message of Fatima. I'm no Fatima expert. What I read was so long ago I'm not sure of many things now. But the debate touched on the objective effect of the sacraments of Confession, Baptism, Communion and Extreme Unction. Now, I had always known that confession washed the soul clean of the guilt of mortal sins, but that the temporal punishment due to sin remains and must be paid in purgatory. I also thought that all souls who went to confession regularly, and died in God's good graces have a good chance of not going to hell, but still have to go to purgatory to repay the temporal punishment due to sin. What I did NOT know was that the sacrament of Extreme Unction remits not only the GUILT due to sin, but also the TEMPORAL PUNISHMENT due to sin. What this means is that when a soul receives the sacrament of Extreme Unction, it need not go to purgatory, but is received immediately into heaven.
The Seventh Means of avoiding Purgatory is Extreme Unction: God Himself has given us a Sacrament, the end of which is to take us directly to Heaven. This Sacrament is Extreme Unction, which according to St. Thomas and St. Albert was instituted especially to obtain for us the grace of a holy and happy death and to prepare us for immediate entrance into Heaven.It is most consoling. What a pity that many people do not know its value, nor treasure the effect of its graces. How blessed and lucky we are as Catholics! Of course, this does not mean we can go about abusing the sacrament by committing sins right and left and just ensuring that we obtain the Last Rites before we die, as protestants are bound to protest.
Many Catholics do not understand this most consoling doctrine, and because they do not understand it, they prepare themselves insufficiently for the reception of Extreme Unction and so lose many of its great graces.
The importance of this is so much overlooked. To think that heaven is within our grasp as long as we pray faithfully and perseveringly that God would give us the grace of a happy death. That we have a God that loves us so much as to institute the Sacraments with such tremendous generosity.
It's so wonderful-I still have a little trouble internalizing it.
Sunday, April 27, 2008
To Say Yes or No: That Is The Question.
You know how sometimes some scruffy-looking guy comes up to you asking for handouts, and most times, you feel that it's a con, and you shoo the person away? Well, maybe we should start thinking this way-that
"...even if a person does get conned, the money was given in God's name and the reward merited by the giver remains the same. It is the con men who will have much to answer for! To ask dishonestly for charity (a gift given for the love of God) is a serious thing - it calls on God to witness what was asked for in His name for a dishonest purpose..."From Patti of RomanCatholics@yahoogroups.com..
Thursday, April 17, 2008
Monday, April 14, 2008
A sermon last Friday by a prominent Muslim cleric and Hamas member of the Palestinian parliament openly declared that "the capital of the Catholics, or the Crusader capital," would soon be conquered by Islam.
The fiery sermon, delivered by Yunis al-Astal and aired on Hamas' Al-Aqsa TV, predicted that Rome would become "an advanced post for the Islamic conquests, which will spread though Europe in its entirety, and then will turn to the two Americas, even Eastern Europe."
"Allah has chosen you for Himself and for His religion," al-Astal preached, "so that you will serve as the engine pulling this nation to the phase of succession, security and consolidation of power, and even to conquests through da'wa and military conquests of the capitals of the entire world.
"Very soon, Allah willing, Rome will be conquered, just like Constantinople was, as was prophesized by our prophet Muhammad," he added.
Al-Astal last June preached how it was the duty of Palestinian women to martyr themselves by becoming homicide bombers.
"The most exalted form of jihad is fighting for the sake of Allah, which means sacrificing one's soul by fighting the enemies head-on, even if it leads to martyrdom," he said in a June 23, 2007 interview.
"When jihad becomes an individual duty, it applies to women too, because women do not differ from men when it comes to individual duties," he said, calling Jews "the brothers of apes and pigs" who should "taste the bitterness of death."
Friday's rant repeated that theme: "Today, Rome is the capital of the Catholics, or the Crusader capital, which has declared its hostility to Islam, and has planted the brothers of apes and pigs in Palestine in order to prevent the reawakening of Islam.
"I believe that our children, or our grandchildren, will inherit our jihad and our sacrifices, and, Allah willing, the commanders of the conquest will come from among them.
"Today, we instill these good tidings in their souls – and by means of the mosques and the Koran books, and the history of our Prophets, his companions, and the great leaders, we prepare them for the mission of saving humanity from the hellfire at whose brink they stand."
Sed libera nos a malo.
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
1) The future Pope Benedict XVI, Joseph Ratzinger, was born in Marktl am Inn, a Bavarian village, on April 16, 1927. The pope was born on Holy Saturday and was baptized that same day. He is one of Josef and Maria Ratzinger's three children. The pope has a brother, Georg. His sister, Maria, is deceased.
2) When the pope was 5, he met a cardinal visiting his town. According to his brother, the young boy came home that day and told his father that he wanted to be a cardinal.
3) After the pope's father retired in 1937, the Ratzingers moved to Traunstein, a town in Bavaria. The pope spent a majority of his childhood in Traunstein, where the family lived in a farmhouse built in the 18th century.
4) Growing up, the pope wasn't interested in sports but loved music and reading. He took piano lessons as a child and still plays today. The pope enjoys playing Mozart and Bach.
5) Along with Jay-Z, David Beckham, and Barack Obama, Pope Benedict XVI was named by Esquire magazine in 2007 as one of the best-dressed men in the world. The magazine named him "Accessorizer of the Year."
6) Vatican Radio gave the pope an iPod nano in 2006 when the radio station celebrated its 75th birthday.
7) The German Army drafted Ratzinger in 1943, but, because of an infected finger, he never learned to shoot. He deserted the Army near the end of the war.
8) Ratzinger entered the seminary at age 12. His studies were put on hold when he was drafted, but he continued them after the war. On June 29, 1951, he was ordained on the same day his brother was.
9) The pope has been seen wearing red loafers. Some speculated that the shoes were Prada; others say they were made by the pope's own cobbler. He has also been photographed wearing Serengeti sunglasses.
10) The Marktl Am Inn house where the pope was born is open to the public. It features exhibits about the pope and his family.
The SSPX have been organizing an underground food parcel relay to help the starving faithful. 99% of it has been distributed with the help of Catholic Zimbabweans at the Post Office.
You can read the original thread here. Please storm heaven for help. Donations can be sent at the address at SSPX District of Africa:
Our Lady of Sorrows Priory
11 Amelia St., Roodepoort
P.O. Box 878, Roodepoort, 1725
Tel: +27 (11) 763 1050
Fax: 0866 72 8789
Cell: 072 545 3304
Fr. Coenraad Daniels (Superior)
Fr. Anthony Esposito
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
A Study Into The Legal Aspects of Homeschooling In Malaysia
Part 1 A Study into the Legal Aspects of Homeschooling in Malaysia
Part 2 A Study into the Legal Aspects of Homeschooling in Malaysia
The links expire in 50 days. So if you can't download, please notify me by leaving a comment and your email. I'll send it by email.
Thursday, April 10, 2008
You'll Find Someone Elseby TinyDancer46
Age of six
He loved her so
He'd let her know
"I love you Grace"
He'd say each day
She'd just laugh
And run away
Till one day
She turned around
And sat with him
On the playground
"I'm sorry Chris
I don't love you
You'll find someone else
Who loves you too"
They met again
They laughed about
The things back then
They began to date
And fell in love
He got the girl
That he'd dreamed of
But when college came
They were far apart
With lives rearranged
"We'll be fine Grace"
But she had doubt
She turned and said
"It won't work out"
"I'm sorry Chris
I can't love you
You'll find someone else
Who loves you too"
In their twenties
They met again
They laughed about
The things back then
He took her hand
They began to dance
Their old romance
Two years later
She became his wife
They'd be together
All of their life
They went on a drive
When it was no longer light
They drove down the roads
Of the starry night
The music came on
She started to sing
He whispered, "Grace
You're my everything"
But then suddenly
In one big flash
As their car crashed
He saw her laying
Down on the ground
He felt his tears
Start rolling down
"Grace..." he cried
She took his hand
"I have to leave...
"I love you so much
It's always been true
But you'll find someone else
And you'll love again too"
"No," he cried
"It's always been you
I don't want someone else
I only want you"
And there on that street
Is where he cried
Hugging his love
As she slowly died
Tuesday, April 01, 2008
Ebay seller giambogna is selling the soul of her friend Kristine Dias for USD18.63 plus 37 cents for shipping. She promises that "Upon the highest bid being reached, the bidder will receive a contract signed by Kristine which will forever and irrevocably hand over her immortal soul." The winning bidder is a godalexander.
You'd have at least thought that the winning bid will go into millions. It IS a soul, after all. But for a measly USD18.63?
People may laugh it off as a inconsequential prank. But these things have real spiritual consequences. There are cases of possession as a result of a pact with the devil. The devil does not take these things lightly, especially a contract where a soul is sold and bought. Rest assured that he will have a say in a contract for human souls.
Our Lord died the most cursed death to save our souls. And people like this don't give a damn. The devil is having a field day. And I foresee another Katrina coming.
Sourced from Rorate-Coeli.blogspot.com
[L'Osservatore Romano:] How is a return to "full communion" possible for excommunicated persons?
[Castrillón:] The excommunication applies only to the four bishops, because they were ordained without the mandate of the Pope and against his will, while the priests are only suspended. The Mass they celebrate is undoubtedly valid, but not licit, and, thus, participation is not advised, unless there are no other possibilities on Sunday. Certainly, neither the priests nor the faithful are excommunicates. I wish, speaking of this, to repeat the importance of a clear knowledge of things in order to be able to judge them correctly.
[L'Osservatore Romano:] Don't you fear that the attempt to wish to bring back to the Church men and women who do not recognize the Second Vatican Council may provoke an aversion among those faithful who instead see Vatican II as a compass for navigation in the barque of Peter, particularly in these times of continuous changes?
[Castrillón:] First of all, the problem regarding the Council is not, in my opinion, as grave as it might seem. In fact, the Bishops of the Fraternity of Saint Pius X, headed by Bishop Bernard Fellay, have expressly recognized Vatican II as an Ecumenical Council and Bishop Fellay reasserted it in a meeting with John Paul II and, more explicitly, in the audience of August 29, 2005, with Benedict XVI. Nor can it be forgotten that Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre signed all Council documents.I believe that their criticism of the Council is related mostly with the clarity of some texts, in the absence of which the path is opened to interpretations not in agreement with Traditional doctrine. The greatest difficulties are of interpretive character and are related even to some gestures of the ecumenical level, but not with the doctrine of Vatican II. It is a matter of theological discussions, which may take place inside the Church, where, in fact, there are several interpretive discussions of the Conciliar texts, discussions which may continue even with the groups which return to full communion.
The second phase of the One-Two-Three Strategy seems to be taking shape.
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
An edited version of the interview was finally published in The Spotlight, a weekly newspaper in Washington, D.C., in its issue of July 18, 1988. The complete and unedited interview is transcribed below.
The Spotlight makes no case for or against the doctrinal positions of Archbishop Lefebvre. We printed the interview for we find his statements of 14 years ago, if read in the light of current events, to be extremely timely.
The world itself we find to be in a state of near collapse and the Catholic Church an institution that was once regarded by friend and foe alike to be changeless, now to be riddled with elements of moral relativism, communism, homosexuality and gross uncertainty. Archbishop Lefebvre speaks out in opposition to these trends. The questions asked of the archbishop are in dark type; his responses in light type.
You have debated and taken part in the deliberations of the second council of the Vatican, have you not?
Did you not sign and agree to the resolutions of this council?
No. First of all, I have not signed all the documents of Vatican II because of the last two acts. The first, concerned with "Religion and Freedom," I have not signed. The other one, that of “The Church in the Modern World”, I also have not signed. This latter is in my opinion the most oriented toward modernism and liberalism.
Are you on record for not only not signing the documents but also on record to publicly oppose them?
Yes. In a book, which I have published in France, I accuse the council of error on these resolutions, and I have given all the documents by which I attack the position of the council - principally, the two resolutions concerning the issues of religion and freedom and "The Church in the Modern World.”
Why were you against these decrees?
Because these two resolutions are inspired by liberal ideology which former popes described to us-that is to say, a religious license as understood and promoted by the Freemasons, the humanists, the modernists and the liberals.
Why do you object to them?
This ideology says that all the cultures are equal; all the religions are equal, that there is not a one and only true faith. All this leads to the abuse and perversion of freedom of thought. All these perversions of freedom, which were condemned throughout the centuries by all the popes, have now been accepted by the council of Vatican II.
Who placed these particular resolutions on the agenda?
I believe there were a number of cardinals assisted by theological experts who were in agreement with liberal ideas.
Who, for example?
Cardinal (Augustine) Bea (a German Jesuit), Cardinal (Leo) Suenens (from Belgium), Cardinal (Joseph) Frings (from Germany), Cardinal (Franz) Koenig (from Austria). These personalities had already gathered and discussed these resolutions before the council and it was their precise aim to make a compromise with the secular world, to introduce Illuminist and modernist ideas in the church doctrines.
Were there any American cardinals supporting these ideas and resolutions?
I do not recall their names at present, but there were some. However, a leading force in favor of these resolutions was Father Murray.
Are you referring to Father John Courtney Murray (an American Jesuit)?
What part has he played?
He has played a very active part during all the deliberations and drafting of these documents.
Did you let the pope (Paul VI) know of your concern and disquiet regarding these resolutions?
I have talked to the pope. I have talked to the council. I have made three public interventions, two of which I have filed with the secretariat. Therefore, there were five interventions against these resolutions of Vatican II.
In fact, the opposition led against these resolutions was such that the pope attempted to establish a commission with the aim of reconciling the opposing parties within the council. There were to be three members, of which I was one.
When the liberal cardinals learned that my name was on this commission, they went to see the holy father (the pope) and told him bluntly that they would not accept this commission and that they would not accept my presence on this com- mission. The pressure on the pope was such that he gave up the idea.
I have done everything I could to stop these resolutions which I judge contrary and destructive to the Catholic faith. The council was convened legitimately, but it was for the purpose of putting all these ideas through.
Were there other cardinals supporting you?
Yes. There was Cardinal (Ernesto) Ruffini (of Palermo), Cardinal (Giuseppe) Siri (of Genoa) and Cardinal (Antonio) Caggiano (of Buenos Aires).
Were there any bishops supporting you?
Yes. Many bishops supported my stand.
How many bishops?
There were in excess of 250 bishops. They had even formed themselves into a group for the purpose of defending the true Catholic faith.
What happened to all of these supporters?
Some are dead; some are dispersed throughout the world; many still support me in their hearts but are frightened to lose the position, which they feel may be useful at a later time.
Is anybody supporting you today (1978)?
Yes. For instance, Bishop Pintinello from Italy; Bishop Castro de Mayer from Brazil. Many other bishops and cardinals often contact me to express their support but wish at this date to remain anonymous.
What about those bishops who are not liberals but still oppose and criticize you?
Their opposition is based on an inaccurate understanding of obedience to the pope. It is, perhaps, a well-meant obedience, which could be traced to the ultramontane obedience of the last century, which in those days was good because the popes were good. However, today, it is a blind obedience, which has little to do with a practice and acceptance of true Catholic faith.
At this stage it is relevant to remind Catholics allover the world that obedience to the pope is not a primary virtue.
The hierarchy of virtues starts with the three theological virtues of faith, hope and charity followed by the four cardinal virtues of justice, temperance, prudence and fortitude. Obedience is a derivative of the cardinal virtue of justice. Therefore it is far from ranking first in the hierarchy of virtues.
Certain bishops do not wish to give the slightest impression that they are opposed to the holy father. I understand how they feel. It is evidently very unpleasant, if not very painful.
I certainly do not like to be in opposition to the holy father, but I have no choice considering what is coming to us from Rome at present, which is in opposition to the Catholic doctrine and is unacceptable to Catholics.
Do you suggest that the holy father accepts these particular ideas?
Yes. He does. But it is not only the holy father. It is a whole trend. I have mentioned to you some of the cardinals involved in these ideas. More than a century ago, secret societies, Illuminati, humanist, modernist and others, of which we have now all the texts and proofs, were preparing for a Vatican council in which they would infiltrate their own ideas for a humanist church.
Do you suggest that some cardinals could have been members of such secret societies?
This is not a very important matter at this stage whether they are or not. What is very important and grave is that they, for all intents and purposes, act just as if they were agents or servants of humanist secret societies.
Do you suggest that these cardinals could have taken up such ideas deliberately or were they given the wrong information or were they duped or a combination of all?
I think that humanist and liberal ideas spread throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. These secular ideas were spread everywhere, in government and churches alike.
These ideas have penetrated into the seminaries and throughout the church. And today the church wakes up finding itself in a liberal straitjacket.
This is why one meets liberal influence that has penetrated all strata of secular life during the last two centuries, right inside the church. Vatican Council II was engineered by liberals; it was a liberal council; the pope is a liberal and those who surround him are liberals.
Are you suggesting that the pope is a liberal even if he has never declared himself to be a liberal?
The pope has never denied that he was (a liberal).
When did the pope indicate that he was a liberal?
The pope stated on many occasions that he was in favor of modernist ideas, in favor of a compromise with the world. In his own words, it was necessary.’to throw a bridge between the church and the secular world.'
The pope said that it was necessary to accept humanist ideas, that is was necessary to discuss such ideas; that it was necessary to have dialogs. At this stage, it is important to state that dialogs are contrary to the doctrines of the Catholic faith. Dialogs presuppose the coming together of two equal and opposing sides; therefore, in no way could (dialog) have anything to do with the Catholic faith.
We believe and accept our faith as the only true faith in the world. All this confusion ends up in compromises, which destroy the church's doctrines, for the misfortune of mankind and the church alike.
You have stated that you know the reason for the decline in church attendance and lack of interest in the church today, which you reportedly attributed to the resolutions of Vatican II. Is that correct?
I would not say that Vatican II would have prevented what is happening in the church today. Modernist ideas have penetrated everywhere for a long time and that has not been good for the church. But the fact that some members of the clergy have professed such ideas, that is to say the ideas of perverted freedom, in that case-license.
The idea that all truths are equal, all religions are the same, consequently, all the moralities are the same, that everybody's conscience is equal, that everybody can judge theologically what he can do - these are really humanist ideas – (the idea) of total license with no discipline of thought whatever which leads to the position that anybody can do whatever he likes. All of this is absolutely contrary to our Catholic faith.
You have said that most of these theological counselors and experts only pretend that they are representing the majority of the people, that in fact the people are really not represented by these liberal theologians. Could you explain?
By 'majority of the people,' I mean all the people who honestly work for a living. I mean the people on the land, people of common sense in contact with the real world, the lasting world. These people are the majority of the people, who prefer traditions and order to chaos.
There is a movement of all these people throughout the world, who are slowly coalescing in total opposition to all the changes that were made in their name, of their religion.
These people of good will and good sense have been so traumatized by these dramatic changes that they are now reluctant to attend church. When they go into a modernist church, they do not meet what is sacred-the mystical character of the church, all that which is reallt covine.
What leads to God is divine and they no longer meet God in these churches. Why should they come to a place where God is absent?
People perceive this very well and the liberal cardinals and their advisers have seriously underestimated the loyalty of the majority to their true faith. How (else) can you explain that as soon as we open a traditional chapel or church, every-body rushes in from everywhere? We have standing room only. The Masses go on all day to accommodate the faithful.
Why? Because they find once again what they need: the sacred, the mystical, the respect for the sacred.
For instance, you would see at the airport different people coming to the priests who were there to meet me, shaking their hands - total strangers. Why? Because where people find a priest, a real priest, a priest that behaves like a priest, who dresses like a priest, they are attracted to him immediately and follow him.
This happens here in the United States, it happens in Europe and everywhere in the world. People in the street coming to greet a priest; they come to congratulate him out of the blue and tell him how glad they are to see a real priest, to tell him how glad they are that there are still some priests.
Do you suggest that clothes and habit make a difference in the quality of the priest?
Habits and clothing are, of course, only a symbol, but it is to what this symbol represents that people are attracted, not, of course, the symbol itself.
Why do you appear to attach such importance to the rituals of the Tridentine Mass?1
We certainly do not insist on rituals just for the sake of rituals but merely as symbol of our faith. In that context, we do believe they are important. However, it is the substance and not the rituals of the Tridentine Mass that has been removed.
Could you be more specific?
The new Offertory prayers do not express the Catholic notion of the sacrifice. They simply express the concept of a mere partaking of bread and wine. For instance, this Tridentine Mass addressed to God the prayer: "Accept O Holy Father, heavenly and eternal God, this immaculate victim which your unworthy servant offers to you, my living and true God to atone for my numberless sins, offenses and negligences." The New Mass says: 'We offer this bread as the bread of life.' There is no mention of sacrifice or victim. This text is vague and imprecise, lends itself to ambiguity and was meant to be acceptable to Protestants. It is, however, unacceptable to the true Catholic faith and doctrine. The substance has been changed in favor of accommodation and compromise.
Why do you appear to attach such importance to the Latin Mass rather than the vernacular Mass approved by Vatican Council II?
First the question of the Latin Mass is a secondary question under certain circumstances. But under another aspect it is a very important question. It is important because it is a way to fix the word of our faith, the Catholic dogma and doctrines. It is a way of not changing our faith because in translations affecting these Latin words, one does not render exactly the truth of our faith as it is expressed and embodied in Latin.
It is indeed very dangerous because little by little one can lose faith itself. These translations do not reflect the exact words of the Consecration. These words are changed in the vernacular.
Could you give me an example?
Yes. For instance, in the vernacular, it is said that "the Precious Blood is for all." When in the Latin text (even the latest, revised Latin text), the text says, "the Precious Blood is for many" and not for all. All is certainly different from many. This is only a minor example that illustrates the inaccuracies of current translations.
Could you quote a translation, which would actually contradict Catholic dogma?
Yes. For example, in the Latin text, the Virgin Mary is referred to as “Semper Virgo," "always virgin.” In all the modern translations, the word "always" has been deleted. This is very serious because there is a great difference between "virgin" and "always virgin." It is most dangerous to tamper with translations of this kind.
Latin is also important to keep the unity of the Church because when one travels - and people travel more and more in foreign countries these days - it is important for them to find the same echoes that they have heard from a priest at home, whether in the United States, South America, Europe or any other part of the world. They are at home in any church. It is their Catholic Mass, which is being celebrated. They have always heard the Latin words since childhood, their parents before them, and their grandparents before them. It is an identifying mark of their faith.
Now, when they go into a foreign church, they don't understand a word. Foreigners who come here don't understand a word. What is the good of going to a Mass in English, Italian or Spanish when no one can understand a word?
But wouldn't most of these people understand Latin even less? What is the difference?
The difference is that the Latin of the Catholic Mass has always been taught through religious instruction since childhood. There have been numerous books on the matter. It has been taught throughout the, ages - it is not that difficult to remember.
Latin is an exact expression, which has been familiar to generations of Catholics. Whenever Latin is found in another Church, it immediately creates the proper atmosphere for the worship of God. It is the distinctive tongue of the Catholic faith, which unites all the Catholics throughout the world regardless of their national tongue.
They are not disoriented or baffled. They say: This is my Mass, it is the Mass of my parents, it is the Mass to follow, it is the Mass of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is the eternal and unchanging Mass. Therefore from the point of view of unity, it is a very important symbolic link; it is a mark of identity for all Catholics.
But it is far more serious than simply a change of tongue. Under the spirit of Ecumenism, it is an attempt to create a rapprochement with the Protestants.
What proof do you have of this?
It is quite evident because there were five Protestants who assisted in the reform of our Liturgy. The archbishop of Cincinnati, who was present during these deliberations, said that not only these five Protestants were present but also they took a very active part in the debates and participated directly in the reform of our Liturgy.
Who were these Protestants?
They were Protestant ministers representing different Protestant denominations who were called by Rome to participate in the reform of our Liturgy which shows clearly that there was a purpose to all this. They were Dr. George, Canon Jasper, Dr. Sheperd, Dr. Smith, Dr. Koneth and Dr. Thurian. Msgr. Bugnini did not hide this purpose. He spelled it out very clearly. He said, “We are going to make an Ecumenical Mass as we have made an Ecumenical Bible."
All this is very dangerous because it is our faith that is attacked. When a Protestant celebrates the same Mass as we do, he interprets the text in a different way because his faith is different. Therefore, it is an ambiguous Mass. It is an equivocal Mass. It is no longer a Catholic Mass.
What Ecumenical Bible are you referring to?
There is an Ecumenical Bible made two or three years ago, which was recognized by many bishops. I do not know whether the Vatican publicly endorsed it, but it certainly did not suppress it because it is used in many dioceses. For instance, two weeks ago, the Bishop of Fribourg in Switzerland had Protestant pastors explaining this Ecumenical Bible to all the children of Catholic schools. These lessons were the same for Catholics and Protestants. And what has this Ecumenical Bible to do with the Word of God?
Since the Word of God cannot be changed, all this leads to more and more confusion. When I think that the archbishop of Houston, Texas will not allow Catholic children to be confirmed unless they go with their parents to follow a 15-day instruction course from the local rabbi and the local Protestant minister.
If the parents refuse to send their children to such instructions, they (the children) cannot get confirmed. They have to produce a signed certificate from the rabbi and the Protestant minister that both the parents and the children have duly attended the instruction and only then can they (the children) be confirmed by the bishop.
These are the absurdities with which we end up when we follow the liberal road. Not only this, but now we are even reaching the Buddhists and the Moslems. Many bishops were embarrassed when the representative of the pope was received in a shameful manner by the Moslems recently.
I do not recall all the specific details, but this incident happened in Tripoli, Libya, where the representative of the pope wanted to pray with the Moslems. These Moslems refused and went about their separate ways and prayed in their fashion, leaving the representative high and dry, not knowing what to do. This illustrates the naiveté of these liberal Catholics who feel that it is enough to es, nd talk with these Moslems and for them to accept immediately a compromise of their own religion.
The mere fact of wanting to have a close relationship with the Moslems for that purpose only attracts the contempt of the Moslems toward us. It is a well-known fact that Moslems will never change anything of their religion; it is absolutely out of the question.
If the Catholics come to equate our religion with theirs, it only leads to confusion and contempt, which they take as an attempt to discredit their religion and not caring about our religion. They are far more respectful of anyone who says that, “I am a Catholic; I cannot pray with you because we do not have the same convictions.” This person is more respected by the Moslems than the one who says that all the religions are the same; that we all believe the same things; we all have the same faith. They feel this person is insulting them.
But doesn't the Koran display moving verses of praise toward Mary and Jesus?
Islam accepts Jesus as a prophet and has great respect for Mary, and this certainly places Islam nearer to our religion than say, for instance, Judaism, which is far more distant from us. Islam was born in the 7th century and it has benefited to some degree from the Christian teachings of those days.
Judaism, on the other hand, is the heir to the system, which crucified our Lord. And the members of this religion, who have not converted to Christ, are those who are radically opposed to our Lord Jesus Christ. For them, there is no question whatever of recognizing our Lord.
They are in opposition to the very foundation and existence of the Catholic faith on this subject. However, we cannot both be right. Either Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Lord and Savior or He is not. This is one case where there cannot be the slightest compromise without destroying the very foundation of Catholic faith. This does not only apply to religions, which are directly opposed to the divinity of Jesus Christ as the Son of God but also to religions, which, without opposing Him, do not recognize Him, as such.
Therefore you are very sure and dogmatic on this point?
Completely dogmatic. For example, the Moslems have a very different way to conceive God than we have. Their conception of God is very materialistic. It is not possible to say that their God is the same as our God.
But isn't God the same God for all the people of the world?
Yes. I believe that God is the same God for the whole universe according to the faith of the Catholic Church. But the conception of God differs greatly from religion to religion. Our Catholic faith is the one and only true faith. If one does not believe in it absolutely, one cannot claim to be a Catholic. Our faith is the one that in the world we cannot compromise in any way. God as conceived by the Moslems says: "When God says to His believers, 'When you go to paradise, you will be a hundred times richer than you are now on earth. This also applies to the number of wives that you have here on earth'." This conception of God is hardly what our Lord and Savior is about.
Why do you attach more importance to Pope St. Pius V than to Pope Paul VI? After all, both are equally pope. Do you not accept the doctrine of papal infallibility? Do you feel that this doctrine applies more to one than the other?
I feel that on the side that Pope St. Pius V wanted to engage his infallibility because he used all the terms that all the popes traditionally and generally used when they want(ed) to manifest their infallibility. On the other hand, Pope Paul VI said himself that he didn't want to use his infallibility.
When did he indicate that?
He indicated this by not pronouncing his infallibility on any matter of faith as other popes have done throughout history. None of the decrees of Vatican II were issued with the weight of infallibility. Further, he has never engaged his infallibility on the subject of the Mass. He has never employed terms that have been employed by Pope St. Pius V when he (Paul VI) decided to allow this new Mass to be foisted on the faithful. I cannot compare the two acts of promulgation because they are completely different.
Has Pope Paul VI ever said that he did not believe in papal infallibility?
No. He never actually said this categorically. But Pope Paul VI is a liberal and he does not believe in the fixity of dogmas. He does not believe that a dogma must remain unchanged forever. He is for some evolution according to the wishes of men. He is for changes that are originated by humanist and modernist sources. And this is why he has so much trouble in fixing a truth forever. In fact, he is loathe to do so personally and he is very ill at ease whenever such cases have arisen. This attitude reflects the spirit of modernism. The pope has never employed his infallibility in the matter of faith and morals to date.
Has the pope stated himself that he was a liberal or modernist?
Yes. The pope has manifested this in the council, which is not a pastoral council. He has also clearly stated so in his encyclical called Ecclesiam Suam. He has stated that his encyclicals would not define matters but he wished that they would be accepted as advice and lead to a dialogue. In his Credo, he said that he did not wish to employ his infallibility, which clearly shows where his leanings are.
Do you feel that his evolution toward dialogue is what allows you not to be in disagreement with the pope?
Yes. From the liberal standpoint they should allow this dialogue. When the pope does not use his infallibility on the subject of faith and morals, one is very much freer to discuss his words and his acts. From my point of view, I am bound to oppose what has taken place because it subverts the infallible teachings of the popes over 2,000 years. I am, however, not in favor of such dialogues because one cannot seriously dialogue about the truth of the Catholic faith. So really this is an inverted dialogue, which is forced upon me.
What would happen if the pope suddenly utilized his infallibility to order you to obey him? What would you do?
In the measure where the pope would employ his infallibility as the successor of St. Peter in a solemn manner, I believe that the Holy Ghost would not allow the pope to be in error at this very moment. Of course, I would heed the pope then.
But if the pope invoked his infallibility to back the changes you so strongly object to now, what would your attitude be then?
The question does not even arise, because, fortunately, the Holy Ghost is always there and the Holy Ghost would make sure that the pope would not use his infallibility for something that would be contrary to the doctrine of the Catholic Church. It is for this very reason that the pope does not employ his infallibility because the Holy Ghost would not allow such changes to take place under the imprimatur of infallibility.
But if this should come to pass?
It is inconceivable, but if it did, the church would cease to exist. That would mean there would be no God, because God would be contradicting Himself, which is impossible.
But isn't the fact that Pope Paul VI occupies the seat of St. Peter enough for you to heed whatever the pontiff as the vicar of Christ on earth asks you to do, just as other Catholics do?
Unfortunately, this is an error. It is a misconception of papal infallibility because since the Council of Vatican I, when the dogma of infallibility was proclaimed, the pope was already infallible. This was not a sudden invention. Infallibility was then far better understood than it is now because it was well known then that the pope was not infallible on everything under the sun.
He was only infallible in very specific matters of faith and morals. At that time, many enemies of the church did all they could to ridicule this dogma and propagate misconceptions. For example, the enemies of the church often said to the unknowing and naive that if the pope said a dog was a cat, it was the duty of Catholics blindly to accept this position without any question.
Of course this was an absurd interpretation and the Catholics knew that. This time the same enemies of the church, now that it serves their purpose, are working very hard to have whatever the pope says accepted, without question, as infallible, almost as if his words were uttered by our Lord Jesus Christ himself.
This impression, although widely promoted, is nevertheless utterly false.
Infallibility is extremely limited, only bearing on very specific cases which Vatican I has very well defined and detailed. It is not possible to say that whenever the pope speaks he is infallible. The fact is that the pope is a liberal, that all this liberal trend has taken place at the Council of Vatican II, and created a direction for the destruction of the church - a destruction which one expects to happen any day.
After all of these liberal ideas have been infiltrated into the seminaries, the catechisms and all the manifestations of the church, I am now being asked to align myself with these liberal ideas. Because I have not aligned myself with these liberal ideas that would destroy the church, there are attempts to suppress my seminaries. And it is for this reason that I am asked to stop ordaining priests.
Enormous pressure is being exerted on me to align myself and to accept this orientation of destruction of the church, a path which I cannot follow. I do not accept to be in contradiction with what the popes have asserted for 20 centuries. Both myself and those who support me obey all the popes who have preceded us, or we obey the present pope. If we do (obey the present pope, i.e. Paul VI), we then disobey all the popes that have preceded us. Finally we end up disobeying the Catholic faith and God.
But as the bishops (of old) obeyed the popes of their days, shouldn't you obey the pope of your day?
The bishops do not have to obey the humanist orders that contradict Catholic faith and doctrine as established by Jesus Christ and all the various popes throughout the centuries.
So then are you deliberately choosing to disobey the present pope?
It has been a soul-searching and painful choice because events have really made it a choice of whom you disobey rather than whom you obey. I am making this choice without doubt or hesitation. I have chosen to disobey the present pope so that I could be in communion with 262 (former) popes.
Your independence has been attributed by several observers to a tradition of Gallicanism.2
On the contrary, I'm completely Roman and not at all Gallican. I'm for the pope as successor of St. Peter in Rome. All we ask is that the pope be, in fact, St. Peter's successor, not the successor of J.J. Rousseau, the Freemasons, the humanists, the modernists and (the) liberals.
Since you have said that these ideas have been widely spread and accepted throughout the world, including within the church, do you not consider you are taking on too much? How do you expect the Society of St. Pius X to counteract such a trend against what would appear overwhelming odds?
I trust our Lord the Saviour. The priests of the Society of St. Pius X trust our Lord and I have no doubt that God is inspiring us all. All those who fight for the true faith have God's full support. Of course, compared to the liberal machine, we are very small. I could die tomorrow. But God is allowing me to live a little longer so that I can help others in fighting for the true faith. It has happened before in the church. True Catholics had to work for the survival of the faith under general opprobrium and persecution from those who pretended to be Catholics. It is a small price to pay for being on the side of Jesus Christ.
When did this happen?
It happened with the very first pope. St. Peter was leading the faithful in error by his bad example of following Mosaic Laws. St. Paul refused to obey this order and led the opposition to it. Paul won out and St. Peter rescinded his error.
In the fourth century. St. Athanasius refused to obey Pope Liberius's orders. At that time, the church had been infiltrated by the ideas of the Arian heresy and the pope had been pressured to go along- with them. St. Athanasius led the opposition against this departure from church doctrine.
He was attacked mercilessly by the hierarchy. He was suspended. When he refused to submit, he was excommunicated. The opposition to the heresy finally built up momentum and at the death of Pope Liberius, a new pope occupied St. Peter's seat and recognized the church's indebtedness to St. Athanasius. The excommunication was lifted. He was recognized as a savior of the church and canonized.
In the seventh century, Pope Honorius I favored the Monotheletism heresy - the proposition that Jesus Christ did not possess a human will and hence was not a true man. Many Catholics who knew the church doctrines refused to accept this and did everything they could to stop the spread of this heresy.
The Council of Constantinople condemned Honorius I in 681 and anathematized him. There are many more examples of this nature when true Catholics stood up against apparent great odds, not to destroy or change the church but to keep the true faith.
I do not consider the odds overwhelming. One of the major aims of our society is to ordain priests - real priests - so that the Sacrifice of the Mass will continue; so that catechisms will continue; so that the Catholic faith will continue. Of course some bishops attack and criticize us. Some try to thwart our mission. But this is only temporary because when all the seminaries will be empty – they are almost empty now - what will the bishops do? Then there will be no more priests.
Why do you think there will be no more priests?
Because the seminaries of today are not teaching anything about the making of a priest; they teach liberal psychology, sociology, humanism, modernism and many other sciences and semi sciences that are either contrary to Catholic doctrine or have nothing whatever to do with church teachings or with what a priest should know. As for Catholic teachings, they are hardly being taught in today's seminaries.
What is being taught in the seminaries today?
For instance, in a New York seminary, theology professors are teaching seminarians that, "Jesus did not necessarily see what the result of His death on the Cross would be;" that: "No one is so thoroughly consistent that he does not say something that disagrees with what he said in the past. This even applies to Jesus;" that, "Joseph may have been the natural father of Christ;” and another professor teaches that: "One psychiatrist recommends extramarital sexual relations as a cure for impotence - I am open in this area and not closed to possibilities.”
Are these statements documented and on record?
Have they been brought to the attention of the hierarchy?
On numerous occasions,
Has the hierarchy made any attempt to stop such similar teachings?
Not to my knowledge.
Do you ever feel alone and isolated?
How can I feel alone when I am in communion with 262 popes and the whole of the Catholic faith? If you mean alone among other bishops, the answer is no. Hardly a day goes by that I (do not) receive some communication from some bishops, some priests, some laymen from different parts of the world expressing support and encouragement.
Why do they not come out publicly and support you?
As I have mentioned previously, many feel that they want to keep their positions in order to be in a position to do something about it should the occasion arise.
Does your stand separate you further from other Christian denominations?
Not at all. Only five days ago, some Orthodox heads came to see me to express their support for our stand.
Why should they express support when in fact you say that you are right and they are in error?
It is precisely because my stand is unequivocal that they support me. Many other Christian denominations have always looked at Rome as something of a stabilizing anchor in a tumultuous world. Whatever happened, they felt, Rome was always there, eternal, unchanging.
This presence gave them comfort and confidence.
Even more surprising are the Islamic leaders who have warmly congratulated me on my stand even though they fully know that I do not accept their religion.
Would not Christian charity try to avoid solidifying differences and divisions that could be healed?
Differences and divisions are part of this world. The unity of the church can only be gained by example and unswerving commitment to our Catholic faith. Charity starts with loyalty to one's faith.
What makes you believe that significant numbers of Orthodox, Protestants or Moslems support you?
Apart from direct, frequent contact these people have made with me, there was, for example, an extensive survey conducted by a reputable newspaper in Paris and they have surveyed members of these various denominations. The result was that far from finding our faith offensive or threatening to them, they admired the unequivocal stand, which we are taking.
On the other hand, they show utter contempt for all those liberal Catholics who were trying to make a mishmash of our Catholic faith as well as their religion.
Has not the pope invited you to be reconciled? Have you accepted this invitation?
I requested to see the pope last August. The pope refused unless I signed a statement accepting unconditionally all the resolutions of Vatican II. I would very much like to see the pope, but I cannot sign resolutions paving the way for the destruction of the church.
How can you be loyal to the church and disobedient to the pope?
One must understand the meaning of obedience and must distinguish between blind obedience and the virtue of obedience. Indiscriminate obedience is actually a sin against the virtue of obedience.
So if we disobey in order to practice the virtue of obedience rather than submit to unlawful commands contrary to Catholic moral teachings, all one has to do is to consult any Catholic theology books to realize we are not sinning against the virtue of obedience.
1 The followers of Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre insist on preserving the so-called Tridentine Mass. This was the Mass (and attendant ritual) that followed upon the Council of Trent (Trento, Italy) and that was pronounced as permanent and irrevocable by Pope St. Pius V in 1570. This is the Mass that Latin Rite Roman Catholics knew for 400 years until the service was rewritten after Vatican Council II (1962-1965).
2 Gallicanism, associated with French Roman Catholicism, was a tradition of resistance to papal authority. There were two aspects of Gallicanism, royal and ecclesiastical. The first asserted the rights of French monarchs over the French Roman Catholic Church; the second asserted the rights of general councils over the pope. Both were condemned as heresies at the First Vatican Council in 1870.
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