Recently I fell into an email correspondence with two Catholics who are concerned about what is happening in Tradition. They went straight to the heart of the matter by saying that there is too much splitting and bickering among the faithful. What solutions do my correspondents offer? One takes the “I want to get along” approach while the other takes the Sedevacantist (SV) approach.
The bickering is the sad but the inevitable consequence of our fallen nature. It is the why we split that is of greater significance and concern. The why is because of the “differences” held by the various groups within Catholicism.
The questions to consider are:
1) Are the splits justifiable?
2) Are the two approaches acceptable?
The first approach, while appearing charitable, has a time bomb attached to it. Ignoring differences and attempting to work together with those who have a different take on the perennial Teaching is Ecumenism. It always leads to Religious Indifferentism, a heresy that was condemned by the Church but is today alive and well. Look at the attached Golden Rule poster that is promoted by the (Catholic!?) Scarboro Missions (Scarboro Missions is a Society of Canadian Catholics, priests and laity). In an effort to prove that all religions contain elements of truth and are therefore salvific, Jesus, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, is demoted to the level of a prophet or a founder of a religious movement and is placed on par with heretics and devils. Therefore, the Golden Rule offers a different Doctrine. Notice also that Christianity (Conciliar Novus Ordo and Protestantism) forms an integral part of the circle (that is planned to be collapsed into one world religion).
To warn of the danger of being indifferent to “differences”, I showed the Golden Rule poster to a Conservative Novus Ordo family of 13 children several years ago. The parents had nothing to say. They had long abandoned the adherence to Catholic Traditional Teaching. The children, between the ages of 5 to 30 years, had no idea that there was anything wrong. They were so thoroughly poisoned by the Conciliar new religion that they accepted the message without any reaction whatsoever and failed to recognize the blasphemy it promoted. Or, if they noticed that something was off, they feigned ignorance.
Ignoring or side-stepping “differences” has always been a temptation for Catholics. For example, one of the differences between the Resistance and the SSPX is that the former will not accept the Vatican II new theology while the latter claims that 95% is acceptable. To give another example, Luther wanted a different Church (married clergy, divorce, etc) and so, under the pretext of reforming Church abuses, he split Europe (and the world) by revolutions (history books call them “religious wars” to poison the young minds against religion) and paved the way for the greatest Revolution of all – Vatican II.
The second approach, while appearing more decisive, has the proud “non serviam” attached to it. Many a Catholic who declared himself the judge of the Pope ended up in heresy and in schism.
Whether we like it or not, an inferior cannot remove a superior. So, for example, however evil a father of a family may be, he still remains the father. The same applies to a political leader: However evil a leader may be, he is still a leader. In fact, the Church always taught that evil leaders are permitted by God as punishment for people’s disobedience (usually apostasy). For example, when a man claimed that he killed King Saul, and even though Saul was evil and justifiably deserved death, David had the man executed because David understood that God alone makes and unmakes Kings and that no one should claim to have killed God’s anointed.
Further, whether we like it or not, lay people (inferiors) do not have the authority to judge a pope (a superior). They have the duty to oppose error and heresy, but they cannot judge him. For example, the High Priest who had Christ crucified did not lose Office through the consensus of the followers of Christ. He crucified Christ and remained in Office until God took him out. The same applies to the current Pope. He will continue to plague the faithless Catholics (and the world) until he is judged and removed by God (God may well use a future Pope or a college of bishops to remove a bad Pope). And we do not have to worry – only pray that God hasten the day – because we have God’s promise that “the gates of hell will not prevail”.
Further, both correspondents are forgetting that God granted to angels and to men Free Will and that He honours it. The most resplendent of all angels used his Free Will and ended up the most depraved of all angels. And he will remain an angel for all eternity – a fallen angel! And what did God say of one of the most fortunate of men who chose to give into his own Free Will: “It were better for him, if that man had not been born”.
However strange or distasteful it may seem to us, God does want us to make use of our Free Will. God does not want mindless robots in Heaven!
To give a practical example, if a laborious job must be done, will you not ask people you can count on to help you? In other words, you want to be with people who will order their free will to coincide with yours. Or, to give a more dramatic example, if you go to battle, will you not want men you can trust to fight alongside you? Will you trust the cowards and the lukewarm to support you? If we men require good “will” from other men, why should God expect any less?
This view may seem simplistic, but are we not to be as little children, docile to the Will of God?
Both correspondents write that these “splits” are discouraging. The fact is that many Traditionalists are losing faith precisely because of these splits. These splits are all part of the demonic agenda to confuse and depress the Catholics to the point that they will give up on Truth and will compromise. The current SSPX is co-operating with this agenda. So did the other Traditional groups who joined the Conciliar Church. I do not wish to be unkind to my correspondent, but the SV option is another means used to split the remaining faithful.
Yes, the situation is serious. But the situation has often been serious. Someone once said: “The Roman Catholic Church has often been dangerously close to extinction”. But the Church is STILL there. Also remember that the Church militant is a part of the Church Triumphant and the Church Suffering. So we are not alone!
We Catholics have survived many a tight spot, and, God willing, we will get through this one too. We have to remember that the survival of the Church is God’s business; staying faithful to the true Faith is our business.
We should also realize that we are living in the winnowing days. Again, this is nothing new. In the days of Gideon, the faithful Jews were also winnowed to a small number. God seems to work with small numbers. He chose Judith to save her people. He used David to undo his enemies. He raised Athanasius to break a pernicious heresy. He used a humble Poverello to restore the faith of the rich and poor alike.
So, rather than to add to the destructive splitting and bickering, our goal is to remain faithful to the perennial Teaching of the Church. Let us remain faithful to our founder, Archbishop Lefebvre. He was wise. He was not a “reformer” in the sense of bringing in a different Teaching. The Archbishop did not want to differ in any way from what was taught before Vatican II. He remained a Roman Catholic! And the Resistance priests and faithful are likewise trying not to differ in any way from what has always been taught. They are Roman Catholics! It is precisely for this reason that they cannot ignore differences nor can they become SV.
So, watch out for differences and keep the Faith!
Pax et Bonum
Sister Constance TOSF
You might also want to review this page, an example of Modernism at its best …