22 March 2019

Ad Multos Annos!!!

I don't know whether there are any fissures at all in the heavy plate-armour surrounding PF's fortified self-certainties; if there are, he must several times have wondered whether it really was a smart move to dispense with the services of Gerhard Cardinal Mueller ... there is an edifying English proverb to the effect that it is better to keep one's "enemy" inside one's tent p***ing out than to have him outside p***ing in. But PF's repertoire of old English proverbs may be limited.

His Eminence's Statement of Faith was, I think, the first substantial act of Magisterial guidance during this arid pontificate. Catholics thank him for it.

But now there has appeared another such!

It became clear that Bishop Athanasius Schneider was being leaned on by the Congregation for Bullying to stay in Kazhakstan and support his local footie team against the Scots rather than gallivanting round the world. He did exactly this, and with great success ... the massed and woad-painted Clans were thoroughly humiliated ... and his Lordship, freed from the tyranny of airports, has been able to spend time on researching and writing.

I commend ... how could I not ... the fine treatise by Bishop Athanasius about heretical popes (and much else).

Readers of this blog will immediately discern that his arguments, evidence, exempla, and conclusions are exactly those which I have regularly deployed here. So you will not be surprised that I am feeling quite up-beat.

Bishop Athanasius has rightly emphasised the importance of the Honorius case (above those of other errant popes) in making clear beyond any question that (1) popes can err; (2) such popes can be formally and Magisterially condemned for heresy; and (3) such popes do not ipso facto by their heresy lose their position.

When something has happened, this proves it can happen. 

Do-it-yourself depose-a-pope may be emotionally satisfying but it is not an option for grown-ups in a real world.


frjustin said...

That English proverb may have had its origin in the vigorous language of the English bible, which unblushingly renders the word without asterisks: "him that pisseth against the wall" (1st Kings 14:10).

However its more recent use is by that connoisseur of English proverbs, that pious American president, Lyndon B. Johnson: "It’s probably better to have him inside the tent pissing out, than outside the tent pissing in",regarding FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, as quoted in The New York Times (31 October 1971).

Unknown said...

I wonder if those who believe Francis is not the pope have any idea what would happen if he were to be declared such by his cohort. What, actually, would happen? How would yet another candidate be chosen? Would Francis be 'retired' or just told to get out? Would the cardinals elect another man just like him? Is the pool so tainted that we're better off with the devil we know?

Bishop Schneider is truly a voice for sanity. History is a very long story, and if we read history carefully we see Christ Jesus is at the helm of His Church. Is the problem now that we refuse to suffer Francis? Bishop Schneider has said before, and repeats in his long treatment of popes, that we must endure. The future will heal the past.

Lurker #59 said...

Yes. It is a very dangerous road to move from recognizing that, in fact, the Emperor has no clothes, to no longer treating the Emperor as Emperor based on private judgment. His naked self will still have you dragged to prison.

That doesn't mean that one has to sit around and do nothing or worst still complement his flabbiness on his choice of finery. Besides, those that so greatly wish to immediately move to install a new emperor are not noticing that a great many of those next in line to the throne are equally as naked as the day that they were born.

What to do? Well for starters, know the Faith, live the Faith, and pass it on. Build it up on your own family, your own social circles, your own parish, your own city, etc. where one's abilities and stations in life are. The Faith doesn't fall from the lips of a Pope, as if he were some oracle. He is only its steward. All of us, from laymen to Pope have a solum duty to conform and to be formed by the Faith. If we put on and wear the armor of Faith, it becomes readily apparent who is prancing around naked and who is not.

Let me put it this way...if you have better clothing than the Emperor, will that not shame him into putting something on?

Aqua said...

And still, no one deals with the elephant in the Vatican. Named Emeritus. Just pretend it is normal. Ignore the old man who can’t seem to find appropriate non-Papal garb or suitable off-site quarters in all of Rome.

The heresy is not the point. I would expect nothing less under these conditions. Heresy is a symptom. It is not the core problem.

Where is Emeritus Contemplative Pope authorized in Scripture or Tradition?

1569 Rising said...


I was always under the impression that the famous "Enemies in the tent....." statement was uttered by the late President Lyndon Baines Johnson, talking about his rivals for the Senate seat in Texas.

But, that doesn't mean he thought of it first.

Lady Jane Perdue said...

I agree. Taking the long view of history does not preclude taking prudent and courageous Catholic action within our sphere of influence, as you so admirably demonstrate, Father.

E sapelion said...

I wonder what are these 'fortified self-certainties' of which you write?
I have not known a previous pope to speak so much of the mistakes he has made, and to apologise for his errors.

Thomas said...

It strikes me that we shouldn't really say that Catholics believe 'the Pope is infallible', but rather than papal teaching is infallible under certain conditions. It is not the man but the teaching that is without error when a pope solemnly defines some point of the core content of the Apostolic Tradition. Of course, that means that in those circumstances the individual must be given some grace pertaining to his unique office in the Church in order to carry out his job of confirming the brethren in the one, true faith. But infallibility is not an infused charism of the person, nor even, as such, of the office he holds, exalted though that is and due such great respect and obedience in all things but sin (heresy is a sin). Infallibility,it seems to me, is a divinely guaranteed characteristic of the teaching given by the man in that office in those circumstances. Does that sound right? I'm more than happy to be corrected if it's wrong.

JoeTownsend said...

Surely the remarks about urinating in tents come from Araby? Impoverished
as Britain is now we don't live in tents, yet.

The Saint Bede Studio said...

Perhaps the College of Cardinals or the bishops have no authority in Scripture or Tradition to depose a Pope. Bishop Scheider explains this quite clearly. Is this the role of these Colleges? No. So let us not consider this further. But perhaps it is the role of the College of Cardinals and the bishops to define more clearly the role of the Supreme Pontiff and to put into place clear guidelines of what is expected of the Bishop of Rome. AND what is not to be tolerated from him.

I suppose some would object "No one would agree on this". The role of the Bishoo of Rome is a more important topic for a Synod than what has been held thus far in this Pontificate. The Pope is not required to use microphones, have a twitter account, give press interviews, have his daily sermons published etc. He ought, however, involve the College of Cardinals in his teaching office in a way that is not just nominal. The Pope is not a super-human or demigod. Let his Office be venerated but his teaching and praxis guided by those who elected him. A Council of Eight Cardinals has little value unless it is elected by the College of Cardinals itself. The Church cannot afford another rogue Pope, ruling by whim.