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Quiet thunder in Argentina

This profile of Cardinal Bergoglio first appeared in The Catholic Herald on October 7 2005

By on Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Pope Francis prior to his election  (Photo: CNS)

Pope Francis prior to his election (Photo: CNS)

José Mariá Poirier explains why the self-effacing Archbishop of Buenos Aires may well be the next pope

What a surprise: it turns out that the main opponent to the unstoppable Joseph Ratzinger in the April conclave was none other than the severe, shy figure of the Archbishop of Buenos Aires. The revelation comes in the “secret diary” of one of their colleagues in the Casa Santa Marta – a cardinal’s account of the election published recently in an Italian magazine.

The spotlight the news has placed on Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio – whether or not it is true – will be agony for this notoriously media-shy Jesuit, whose face will have gone even redder with the speculation by vaticanisti that Bergoglio should now be seen as the leading contender to replace Benedict XVI when his time comes: the first Jesuit, and the first Latin American, in Church history to occupy the See of St Peter.

For Bergoglio’s enemies, the revelation will come as no surprise. It only proves, they will say, what we thought all along: that behind all that humility what Bergoglio really cares about is ambition.

But for almost everyone else it does seem remarkable that a relatively obscure South American cardinal should have been an obstacle in the path of the great German theologian and former prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. The “secret diary” suggests that Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, the former Archbishop of Milan and the standard-bearer for the progressive cardinals, asked not to be taken into consideration for reasons of age and health. His votes (around 40, according to the diary) went instead to Bergoglio, who was seen as the best hope for those who wanted, for whatever reason, to stop Ratzinger. Although the Bergoglio vote was not enough to stop Ratzinger, it prevented the German sweeping the board in the first two rounds.

Bergoglio as Pope? Perhaps it is not so surprising. There was much talk, in John Paul II’s final years, that his successor should be a Latin American; the feeling was widespread that the continent’s hour was near. Bergoglio would be a safe bet: at 69 he is relatively young, and comes with many virtues: he is austere, doctrinally solid, and with a proven track record in Church governance, as Jesuit provincial, then auxiliary bishop and Cardinal Archbishop of Buenos Aires.

Bergoglio’s star shone in Rome when he replaced Cardinal Edward Egan as relator for the September 2001 synod after the Archbishop of New York had to dash back to his traumatised city. The Argentinian moved easily and with great confidence into the role, leaving a favourable impression as a man open to communion and dialogue.

But there is little else in public view, the modest glimpses of Bergoglio only serving to heighten his enigmatic profile. The newspapers have rightly stressed that he is modest, dressing mostly as a simple priest; that he always travels on the bus or metro rather than by taxi or with a chauffeur; and that he regularly travels to the furthest ends of his three million-strong diocese, preferably to visit the poor.

And then, of course, there is that Trappist silence. His press secretary, a young priest, spends his time interpreting what the Cardinal does not say. The other part of his job is to turn down, on Bergoglio’s behalf, interviews or invitations to write articles. The Archbishop of Buenos Aires has almost no published work, and seems to become less visible with each passing year.

When he does speak, however – in the annual Te Deums preached from the cathedral – it is dramatic. Bergoglio thunders like an Old Testament prophet; the government quakes in its boots.

What is certain is that he is not loved by most of his Jesuit companions. They remember him as their provincial during the violence of the 1970s, when the army came to power amid a breakdown in the political system after the death of General Peron. Apart of the Church in Argentina was involved in the theology of liberation and opposed the military government. Bergoglio was not. “After a war,” he was heard to say, “you have to act firmly.”

He exercised his authority as provincial with an iron fist, calmly demanding strict obedience and clamping down on critical voices. Many Jesuits complained that he considered himself the sole interpreter of St Ignatius of Loyola, and to this day speak of him warily.

The secular clergy of his diocese, however, love their archbishop. As auxiliary bishop in Buenos Aires in the 1990s, he managed always to be with his priests, keeping them company through crises and difficulties and showing his great capacity for listening sympathetically (I have heard many stories of Bergoglio spending hours with elderly sick priests.) He also continued to show his option for the poor by encouraging priests to step out into the deep in intellectual and artistic areas: Bergoglio has never hidden a passion for literature.

Ironically, it is the same Bergoglio who, as Jesuit provincial, demanded absolute obedience and political neutrality, as the Archbishop of Buenos Aires wants his priests to be “out on the frontiers”, as he puts it. 

Cardinal Bergoglio regularly travels to the furthest ends of his three million-strong diocese to visit the poor. He wants them in the neediest barrios, in the hospitals accompanying Aids sufferers, in the popular kitchens for children.

To take one example: when, last year, a number of young people died in a fire in a rock club tragedy, Bergoglio went to their aid in the middle of the night, arriving before the police and fire service, and long before the city authorities. Since the tragedy, one of his auxiliaries has a ministry to the family and friends of the victims, and has not been backward in criticising the government for its response to the tragedy.

Bergoglio is admired as being far from the powers of this world, indifferent to his media image, preoccupied by 

the future of society, and a man looking always for new forms of social solidarity and justice in a country where 15 per cent are unemployed and thousands rummage through the bins at night looking for something to eat.

The media do not punish him for his silence, but speak of him with awe and respect. Many, including agnostic critics of the Church, regard him as the most credible social leader in a country in which, it ought to be said, politicians, union leaders and businessmen are regarded with considerable scepticism.

Where do his political sympathies lie? Certainly not on the Left. Those who know him best would consider him on the moderate Right, close to that strand of popular
 Peronism which is hostile to liberal capitalism. In the economic crisis of 2001-2002, when Argentina defaulted on its debt, people came out on to the streets and supermarkets were looted, Bergoglio was quick to denounce the neo-liberal banking system which had left Argentina with an unpayable debt.

The same people who would say he was apolitical would be quick to add that he can move pieces along with the best chess-player. Soon after his appointment to lead his diocese he appointed six new auxiliary bishops, all people well-known to him and loyal. His style of government is discreet, but decisive.

A chemist by training, born to a working family of 
Italian origin in a traditional middle-class quarter of Buenos Aires, he was for many years in charge of the formation of young Jesuits.

He is without doubt the strong man of the Argentinian Church, almost certain to be elected president of the bishops’conference at its next meeting.

With his suave manners and gentle voice, Bergoglio is not a theologian or an outstanding intellectual nor a polyglot (although he can cope with foreign languages), but he moves in all milieux securely and ably, especially in Rome.

Whenever I have met him, I have been struck by his astonishing paucity of words – even more remarkable in an Argentinian – and his hieratic gestures, but also by his intelligent gaze, his obvious spirituality, and his constant preoccupation with the poor.

If he were Pope? Everything suggests that his approach would be above all pastoral, which is what a number of the cardinals were looking for in the conclave. He would govern the Curia with a sure hand, as he does his diocese. He would likely take a firm stand with the powerful of this world. But the modern-day media demands on the papacy would be a torture for this most retiring of Church leaders. 

José Mariá Poirier is editor of the Argentinian Catholic magazine Criterio

  • Ronk

    you’ve proven yourself a troll so i will ignore you.

  • Gresu

    Ronk, I’m a cradle Catholic that has lived through the changes of Vatican II. I’ve seen many Catholic Churches gutted out and refurbished to look like white washed tombs because of the modern liturgies. The most heart breaking of all is the loss of obedience to Holy Mother the Church. Confusion with the new teachings added to the miseries of Catholic people who sought assistance and found it lacking within. Ronk, I’m a traditional Catholic which means I believe in all that was taught before Vatican II council. It was not wrong then and is not wrong now. All that I believe is rooted in the revelations of Jesus Christ taught to the first bishops, the Apostles. I found that a good guide is that anything true is not knew and anything new is not true. Today begins the Passiontide. The crucifix and statues will be covered as signs of the Catholic Church mourning Our Lord’s Passion. Pope St. Leo exhorts us to participate in the Cross of Christ, in order that we also may do something which will unite us to what He has done for us, for as the Apostle says, ‘if we suffer with Him, we shall be glorified with Him’. I carry the burden to grieve for those in the new religion fabricated by Vatican II. Many say it is too late for them to renounce it. I pray that it is not and therefore I risk such as I have here in opening up discussion with you. Obedience to the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church is not easy, therefore many are not traveling it. Traditional Catholics are feared and hated. Friends and family members separate themselves from traditional Catholics. When I witnessed the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered by a legitimate priest 5 years ago, I never returned to the novus ordo missae (contrived by protestants, BTW). Christ’s Church will never be destroyed as promised and the total truth is witnessed in the True Mass. We believe what we pray and we pray as we believe.

  • AlanP

    If “religious liberty” means that the State (including in Catholic countries) should permit all its citizens to practise their religion, including non-Christian ones, then I support religious liberty 100%. If the Catholic Church were ever to go back on that principle, I would not wish to remain. And if the Catholic Church at one time opposed that principle, then it was wrong to do so, and thank God it has changed.

  • Gresu

    AlanP – Does God make mistakes? Are you saying, “oh thank God, God can be corrected?” God speaks through the Pontiffs. AlanP – God is an interposing force and not an IMposting force. Our Creator respects free will. Even though he fashioned each person to follow Him, each person must freely accept Him or reject Him. Vatican II forced Catholic countries to change their laws to accommodate ‘religious liberty’. Soon after birth controlling, divorces and aborting babies became perfectly acceptable. Now, countries are imploding because of lack of people. Disobedience is a grave matter and when will man accept that God’s ways always surpass humanistic thinking? Acknowledge how very successful are the communists and the freemasons who are connivingly accomplishing their desire to destroy the Catholic Faith without wars, concentration camps and without blood shed,(except of course the blood of the murdered babies in the womb not unacceptable to conciliarists).

  • AlanP

    Of course God does not make mistakes, but men can. We have to remain true to our (informed) conscience, and it is intrinsic to my very being that I totally believe in religious liberty (provided others are not harmed by any particular practice). If I did not believe that, I could hardly complain about, for example, the oppression of Christianity in certain countries. I was never a member of the Church when its official line was against religious freedom (as set out by Pius IX). I find that people who insist on strict adherence to all Papal pronouncements are somewhat selective as to which ones to choose, when there is any suggestion of contradiction between them. Basically, you dislike the idea of religious liberty, so you select pronouncements which accord with that view, and ignore those which do not.

  • AlanP

    Pope Francis is just as legitimate a Pope as any other, and you are picking and choosing which Popes to follow and which not to. This is “private judgement”, which is supposed to be a Protestant tendency, is it not?

  • Gresu

    AlanP – The basic principle of being a Catholic is to form our conscience according to the teachings of the Apostolic Church Christ established. When Pontiffs speak, they speak the words of Christ. They have the infallible spirit to not err on matters of faith and morals. Individuals put their souls at great risk to oppose the Magisterium. Legitimate Pontiff writings are not in contradiction to Sacred Tradition – all that has been handed on since the time of Jesus Christ. Pontifical/ex cathedra pronouncement are for our safety, and not to create confusion. Vatican II has put this basic principle on its head and has created protestant/heretical concepts. Please, find a Baltimore Catechism. He is not a complicated God, but only to those who fabricate their own morality and the modern claimed Catholic Church lets the People of God get away with it. Read the encyclicals that oppose ‘the claimed right to print and practice what is contrary to the Faith’. Notice how the Pontiffs speak. Their words are life giving.

  • Gresu
  • GrahamCombs

    It is difficult not to see some parallels, superficial though they may be, between the Holy Father and the President of the United States. The “low profile,” the lack of a “paper trail,” … It has been my sad experience that those who talk most about “remembering the poor,” reign over economic decline and more poverty, not less. Of course what this has to do with doctrine and the Magistereum of Holy Mother Church I couldn’t say.

  • AlanP

    But not everything that Popes say is classed as infallible. In fact there has been only one indisputably infallible teaching (the Assumption) since infallibility itself was defined in 1870. I know that some people claim that various other pronouncements are infallible, but I suspect that what they are really saying is that they would LIKE them to be. I note you use the phrase “legitimate Pontiff writings”; could it be that you decide for yourself which are legitimate and which are not? You more or less admit that you regard Vatican II as illegitimate. If Vatican II contradicts previous teachings on religious liberty, then so much the better. As Cardinal Heenan said, it is people who have rights, even the right to speak error. Otherwise it is a recipe for tyranny, as history proves.

  • Gresu

    AlanP By legitimate I mean “in regards to Sacred Tradition” that is that it can be found in the Catholic Church past pronouncements and is doctrine previously taught by past Popes and Ecumenical Councils. What is considered novelty is not true!

    “Ex cathedra” is defined
    thus by Vatican Council I: “when [the Pope] in discharge of the office of
    pastor and teacher of all Christians, by virtue of his supreme Apostolic
    authority, defines a doctrine regarding faith or morals to be held by the
    universal Church.”

    Vatican Council I, Session
    4, Chapter 4 – “The Infallible Teaching Authority of the Roman Pontiff”

    Dogmatic Theology, Vol. II, Christ’s Church, Newman Press:
    Westminster, 1957, pp. 108-119

    A suggested book:
    Catholic Ideals in Social Life, Father Cuthbert OSFC
    PAGE 2.. the (Catholic} Church
    is bound to no particular system or government…..all these things belong to the temporal order of the world..but it represents the working out of a divine
    order of the world in its temporal aspect.
    The Church has to do directly with the spiritual and eternal..The
    Apostolic Church intervenes in temporal affairs to secure eternal truths…Her one object is to make manifest to men the personality of Jesus Christ and to insist that all circumstances of His teaching shall be maintained. The development of this is to secure that laws are in harmony with the Gospels.

    To maintain that all religions and beliefs are acceptable is to imply that Jesus Christ wasted His time to reveal the true Faith. Why would he have suffered a horrific and cruel dying on the Cross is the final analysis is that man-made religions of the world would be acceptable?

    Where would the true Church of Jesus Christ be today if the Apostles and their successors merely tried to promote the ‘good’ found in these false religions? If allowed to spread and teach heresy, it will ultimately lead to atheism.

    Cardinal Heenan would be hard pressed to back his statement with Sacred
    Scripture and Sacred Tradition.

  • AlanP

    You say that it is not possible for true popes to contradict each other. No doubt you could give examples of such contradictions (for example on the question of religious liberty). What I want to ask you is this: in the case of such a contradiction, why do you assume that the earlier pope is correct and the later one wrong? Why could it not be the other way round? Does it not boil down to which particular teaching you prefer?

  • AlanP

    If, as you say, “the (Catholic} Church
    is bound to no particular system or government…..all these things belong to the temporal order of the world”, why was it right in the 19th century for the Church to urge governments to deny all non-Catholics to practise their religion, except to preserve public order? This is what certain Islamic states do today, for example Saudi Arabia. You cannot legitimately criticise the Saudis for banning Christianity, if you also demand the banning of all non-Catholic religions elsewhere.

  • Gresu

    Alan P

    1. Catholics pray the “Act of Faith”…….I believe these and all the truths which the Holy Catholic Church teaches, because Thou hast revealed them, Who canst neither deceive nor be deceived.

    2. Truth does not change. Truth is the same yesterday, today and
    tomorrow. Run from them who spout new meanings of dogma and doctrines, or better to speak loudly against it. The Apostolic Church and the Magisterium the teaching Authority of Christ’s Church is on a firm foundation.

    3. Protestants choose what they want to believe and that is why there are over forty thousand different denominations. God designed the Mystical Body of Christ, His bride without spot or wrinkle to be salt and light. Catholics stand on a firm foundation when they refer to the Pontiffs who are God’s spokeperson on earth. God never deceives. See the many references the papal pronouncements have in their teachings, The Pontiffs reference themselves as “We”, joining in with their predecessors to teach what has always existed.

    4. We submit our wills, step out in Faith and ask Our Blessed Mother, the Mother of the Redeemer to assist us.
    5. Did you know there were 17 illegitimate council and 41 antipopes in the history of the Catholic Church?

    6. Read:

  • Gresu

    The church does not have temporal authority to ban. Holy Mother the Church intervenes or interposes by teaching the Kingship of Christ and the Social Rights of Our Divine Lord. People for the most part are uncatechized and prefer their relativistic, situational and humanistic ethics. See how they suffer.

    The group you speak about does not believe or worship the Triune God and
    consider any outside themselves to be infidels.

    In the “Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of
    Jesus” we pray for their conversion.

  • Gresu

    Catholics who practice their faith as they ought will be charitable to the poor according to the principles of Holy Mother the Church and not according to marxist principles that always fail. A sledge hammer is not needed to force kindness and giving when a person loves God and His Mother.

  • GrahamCombs

    With all due respect, what are those principles for responding to the poor? Here in the US the Bishops Conference has been silent as this recession grinds on and grinds down millions of us. In fact, the Conference could not come to “an agreement” on what to say during its major meeting in January of this year. Questions arise. I have no doubt that the Holy Father’s actions subsequent to his election were not mere populist gestures but consistent with a life of living his vocation. But… But… populist gestures and talk of the poor have too often been a red flag on what comes next, what is actually done. The bishops may well be conflicted but they also may be intimidated by a president and his followers. That’s my concern. Whatever the speculation, the silence is real. So is the struggle and the suffering as a man totally unsuited for the office of President of the United States continues to create uncertainty and perpetuate a recession and is greeted by Catholic silence.

  • AlanP

    Those “illegitimate” councils and “antipopes” are the ones you happen to disagree with. We all, in a sense, “choose what we want to believe”. We all have our personal preconceptions, which we should strive to overcome in arriving at the truth. Presumably you regard Vatican II as “illegitimate”, but for me it ended some objectionable things about Catholicism.

  • Gresu

    Than you must now admit that you are a modernist, a conciliarist. You are not and care not to be a Catholic. Yes, the Vatican II Council intended to be a ‘wide umbrella’ claiming salvation is possible in any church, and in any practice. No AlanP, we do not all “in a sense choose” our own morality. Our Creator knows what is best for our safety and happiness. It is discoverable only in obedience to immutable truth taught in the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.

  • Gresu

    Don’t forget it was the claimed ‘Catholic’ vote that elected and re-elected this president. What they have in common is ‘change’ —- Just as the U S bishops have gotten away with turning the Catholic Church on its head with changes, the Obama administration follows the lead by destroying the nation with changes.

  • AlanP

    But we do all choose. You choose to reject (I assume) the teachings of Vatican II, at least insofar as, in your opinion, they contradict earlier teachings, though I would talk in terms of “development of doctrine”. A conciliarist, as I understand it, is one who advocates the bishops having some say in determining teaching. You may regard that as heresy, but the Pope certainly seems to accept it, and only today Archbishop Peter Smith was strongly calling for more say for the bishops. Is he a heretic, then?

  • Gresu

    AlanP – the Catholic Church is a contradiction to the other man made denominations. It is not easy to be the Mystical Body of Christ and follow the infallible Magisterium. The modern man however, desires to be their own god
    never considering the consequences of other people’s lives by their choices. Conciliarists are the post Vatican two “People of God” who practice a new religion fabricated by those within who turned their back on Sacred Tradition. Conciliarists are sheep with untamed passions. Suffering for the sake of their soul and others is as remote as flying to the moon on their own accord. Yes, God gave us free will to accept Him and His Church or to reject Him and the Church Christ established. He is not an imposing God.

  • Gresu

    Brad, the bible was given to the world by the Catholic Church. The Vicar of Christ is the personal representative of Christ on earth. He is the only one with an infallible spirit. A legitimate pope does not err in matters of faith and morals. Protestants and conciliarists/claimed Catholics are confused about the infallible Magisterium due to the contradictions of the Vatican II Council 1962 to 1965. This council implemented ‘changes’ for the Catholic Church to blend in with the world and seeks to destroy the principles of Catholicism in order to unite the world to a one world order church.

  • Atheologian

    Spot-on, AlanP. The infallibility of the assumption is based on the ‘fact’, not on the interpretation of a human-elected human pontiff who is just another human after all, with all the strengths & weaknesses of humanity. The belief that the Pope is totally infallible is not only heresy, but also blasphemy against God, because it elevates the Pope to godlike status. ONLY God is infallible.

    Gresu, I don’t know which sect or cult you belong to, but your claim to authority seems to suggest that you are some sort of antipope, perhaps, or a latter day prophet railing for a totalitarian state.

    Actually, Vatican II sees ‘The Church’ as a pinnacle of faith, the roof of the building. The walls & stairs are represented by all other faiths, which are all valid paths insofar as they lead towards the realisation of ‘The True Faith’.

    Anyway, loss of faith is justified, if the church, its magisterium or officials are found to be in a state of sin. I don’t need to elaborate on this, but I can declare loss of faith in a sinful church, & I can declare it anathema.

    Atheologian, MATh, BATh

  • Atheologian

    Thomas, you have made the most relevant point of anyone here. Any Christian has the right to carry out priestly duties & dispense sacraments in the name of Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit. Priesthood is not necessary for the carrying out of priestly duties, although local communities are encouraged to elect their own bishops, share their wealth, & help out other communities.

    Jesus did not found the Church of Rome (or any of its offshot Protestant or post-Reformation subsidiaries, including the Counter-Reformed Church of Rome) which had already effectively excommunicated itself from the Christian Church in the 9th Century (another Pope Benedict, I believe), & fell further into the state of blasphemy with the fiction of the Filioque. Neither Peter nor Paul established the Church of Rome, for that matter.

    A few token gestures of humility do not make a saint, especially when done by the clique-elected figurehead of a fascist-collaborator organisation that could do well to re-examine itself under the terms of Corinthians. The Church of Rome doesn’t even include the Didache in its canon (if it does, then that’s news to me), which is not surprising: it can’t even live up to the simple demands of the apostolic teachings.

    The ‘True Church’ is The Kingdom of God on Earth, The Body of Christ in Humanity, a vehicle for Theosis, which is manifested on a mundane level as a cooperative democracy. She is not an edifice, state, or juridical dictatorship.

    (What is SSP?)

    Atheologian, MATh, BATh

  • Atheologian

    Brother Tom, I looked up Society of St. Paul, so know I have a better idea.

    The fact that you are a priest who is raising such a fundamental question makes your point even more relevant.

    The ‘Primitive Church’ is what is needed, one in which ‘Elders’ are there because of their virtue, rather than their membership of the club.

    What Christians need to do, en masse & regardless of denomination, is denounce & indict corrupt, perverted & unapostolic members of the clergy, strip them of their rank (however high that may be), force them out of office, & shun them until they repent & show themselves worthy of being reaccepted into communion.

    But I doubt the ‘cattle class faithful’ will ever wake from their Orwellian stupor to do such a thing.

    Meanwhile, genuine Christians will continue to abandon a misnamed ‘catholic’ church which will neither listen to its people or actually do anything to purge itself of the evil within & BE SEEN to actually be doing something.

    Atheologian, MATh, BATh

  • Atheologian

    Correction: it was Pope Nicholas I

  • Thomas Poovathinkal SSP

    Respecting, Loving and Praying for the Central authority of The Church and going with it most vital.

    SSP=Society of St.Paul, a Religious congregation founded by Blessed , James Alberione, an Italian Priest

    Fr.Thomas Poovathinkal SSP, Society of St.Paul

    28-B, Chatham Lines, Allahabad – 211002,


    AND your person?

  • Atheologian

    From an RC background, with all the falsehoods of infant baptism & the other coercive ‘sacraments’, I am a qualified Theologian (M.A.Th/B.A.Th Hons in the 1st Class) who as a result of being so well informed utterly rejects all the so-called ‘churches’ based upon the false, unbiblical doctrine/dogma of the triune god, especially what I consider to be the extremely sinful church of Rome (on its own terms).

    My beliefs are now probably closer to that of the Gospel of Thomas or Arya Nagarjuna’s Mulamadhyamikakarika.

  • Julie S

    HOW could the saints be “dead”. as you say, when Jesus said that His followers, will never die, but live forever if they believe in Him? This means that the saints are very much alive in the presence of God- remember at the transfiguration of Jesus, the disciples saw Elijah and Moses with Jesus? Were’nt they dead? Well they appeared alive to the disciples and Peter was going to make tents for them!! We do pray to them, because they are alive and ask for their intercession before God as they are closer to Him now they are with Him and we want to get there too!! So they can help us so much, even more than the prayers of those who are here on earth -which we ask for and that doesn’t mean we are worshiping fellow Christians here below either!!

  • Gresu

    Religious liberty has been condemned by Pontiffs:

    Religious liberty was condemned by Pope Pius VII in Post Tam Diuturnas,

    by Pope Gregory XVI in Mirari Vos,

    by Pope Pius IX in Quanta Cura, and by Pope Leo XIII in Libertas Praestantissimum.

    Religious liberty also contradicts the royalty of Jesus Christ in society as expressed in Quas Primas of Pope Pius XI, and the constant attitude and practice of the Church with regard to civil society.

  • Paul Gerard

    I have to agree with you Gresu; we obviously have been hijacked by progressivist and modernists since Vat II. The older I get – the more embeded protestant damage I see

    Nothing of the Catholic faith is being taught in the schools, and very few who call themselves catholics below a certian age even bother darkening church doors.

    Increasing numbers of those remain don’t know the faith, infact they have acquired a solidly Protestant mentality – focused on “charity” and “community” – its just become a social club where you meet-up once a week,

    Belief in the Real Presence is old hat – and the churches are now treated like cattle sheds with little silence or respect or reverence infront of God’s tabernacle.

    The salvitic action of the Mass is no longer understood. The notion of the Mass being the source and summit of the faith is a foreign concept to many -they simply do not know what that means and where the doctrine came form.

    You’ll have modernists who retort that this is a “hysterical over reaction” – yet they can’t point to anything that refutes these observations. They’re only answer that ” the world has changed” .

    That is the only point on which you can agree

    Archbishops continue to claim that the church has been revitalised – well where is it?

    Many Vat II clerics no longer believe in the Real Presence – like one who told me that “all that has changed- it’s been replaced with Supper of the Lord because we don’t want that Bloody Sacrifice stuff here mate”!

    Large numbers of Catholics no longer know what that the theology of the Mass is, it’s simply a Protestant style community gathering – and this has been led by many terrible priests.

    These modern unCatholic priests and Bishops have encouraged this fellowship mentality – while others appear out of habit to Sunday Mass, with a disposition of complete boredom. They don’t respond like they are in front of the King of the Universe – instead it’s a boring “imposition on the weekend schedule”.

    Confession is a forgotton sacrament, because no one sins anymore.

    Maybe a schism is where this will finish with Francis fuelling the self destruction with “who am I to judge” and “we’re focused too much on abortion and sex”.

    The candy cotton Catholics love Pope Francis for he feeds their modernist “fresh views” of Catholicism.

    Out with old, in the the new flim-flam.

    These cotton candy Catholics are completely ignorant of the faith but now they’re being surveyed. – to help the Church change its teaching to fit in wirh the new modern liberal mentality.

    With Francis “every one is saved” – and ” you can’t judge”; so mortal sin is O.K!

    Now with Francis’ message, you don’t need to follow God’s law – because everyone goes to heaven – even those who deny God’s existance effectively repudiating commandments 1-3.

    The ten commandments are defunct, so what was Christ’s offering of HIs body and blood for – don’t need it any more.

    There appears to be very few Catholics remaining loyal to the ordinances of old!

    It is now unquestionably a protestant institution – highly subjective – you believe what ever you want.

    As Pope Benedict said in 2010 – the Church is meant to be a heumaneutic of continuity – not rupture.

    So what do loyal Catholics do, join the SSPX? -

    Alas they too seem to have lost the plot and become fractious and crazy.

    “The gates of Hell will not prevail “- Well I can see Satan walking up the drive-way and taking a lot of ignorant, unformed and modernist Catholics with him..

    May God help us, and Holy St Michael defend what’s left.

  • Gresu

    Sedevacantism is the only loving option in these times if one loves Christ, His Virgin-Blessed Mother, and His Church. Sedevacantists defend all the truths Holy Mother the Church teaches without exception and compromise.

    The gates of Hell prevailed at Vatican 2 Council.

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