My learned and generous friend, Professor Bill Tighe, points me to an aricle in The Remnant headed "Is there still a Pope in Rome?"
I commend it to you. My hesitancy regards its title.
There certainly is still a Pope in Rome.
There is only one pope in Rome.
His (assumed) name is Francis.
He is still possessed of the fulness of pontifical power, even though he has freely chosen, for the time being, to place that power IN SUSPENSE.
It is the duty of each and every Christian in the world to be in full communion with him.
There is just one snag. Instead of performing the role placed in his hands by his Master, he has retired to his 'snug' in the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where he spends all his time looking at old episodes of Sex in the City.
We Brits know that it would be much better for him (and for us and for the world) if, instead, he devoted all those long hours to a careful study of Fawlty Towers, followed by Father Ted..
Does it matter how we retired clergy spend our time ... and what we say when, interminable bores that we are, we begin yet another rambling observation with the phrase "When I was pope ..."?
I fear that it might do. Do I need to tell you that there are some rather unpleasant people around, not least in the Congregation for Bishops?
It is vitally important that we give these crooks ... and the trainee crooks whom they advance ... no opportunity to claim that we are Sedevacantists.
I am not joking. As they get more and more frustrated ...
What exactly does in mean to be in full communion with him? Why is it my duty? Where in the common, accessible, public prayer life of the Church can answers to these questions be found?
Dear Father. After his election ,where The Bishop of Rome chose to live was, to ABS at least, an indicator of his Papal plan. It was there that the Vatican Two revolutionaries met daily to successively formulate their plans and strategies to ditch the carefully crafted schemas (which were quite splendid and easy to understand, requiring no outside hermeneutics of continuity) and substitute their own schemes.
He is a revolutionary and he prolly feels comfortable in the old haunts (spiffed up to the tune of millions of euros, of course) of Domus Sanctae Marthae.
Regarding your second question, check Denzinger, n. 3060.
It means to recognize his jurisdiction. So, if Pope Francis names a new bishop to your diocese, Stephen, that man really is your Bishop, endowed with sacred authority by Christ and by the Church. So, if he dispenses a Catholic man from the prohibition of marrying a non-baptized woman, the marriage is valid.
You and all of us must at the same time, first of all and above all, hold and profess the Catholic Faith, which is "everything that the Holy Catholic Church believes, teaches and proclaims to be REVEALED BY GOD".
Notice that the dear Bishop of Rome scrupulously steers clear of formal and binding pronouncements on what has in fact been revealed, and is found in the Depositum Fidei.
Dear Father. None of his actions ought be shocking. Pope Francis is the autocratic apotheosis of Vatican Two.
I accept that a man can be Pope, and still be malicious, or greedy, or have some other defect. He still would have free will, after all. But people also need to accept that whether there is an interegnum, or if someone said to be Pope is actually an anti-pope, or that the person whom I accept as Pope may be the wrong one alltogether is also possible. None of that is "sede-vacantism" I am just mentioning all of this to keep matters clear. I do not have my own theories or alternative choices regarding the Supreme Pontiff. I just accept whomever everyone else accepts. It is the safest way.
However, I must take strong exception to your choice of Father Ted as acceptable viewing for Christians. Surely, this must be anathema! You would be much safer drawing amusement from All Gas and Gaiters. Now, THAT is fit viewing for a Christian! (Although, sadly, most episodes have been lost.)
Our Lord commissioned the pastoral role of Peter based on faith and love of Him. See Aquinas. Peter do you love me? He did not commission mere mortal fallen human flesh......he did not create a papal tranny....a Jesuit trick.....the 13th rule of Loyola on following the mind of the church...."The white you see is black if the hierarchical church so decides it."
A learned Dominican expositor of the theology of St Thomas Aquinas once quipped that to the Thomistic tradition 'blind obedience' made as much sense as blind learning. Aquinas would have had no truck with Ignatius' 'white is black'. He agreed that we owed obedience, but we did not have to pretend to ourselves that a bad decision was a good one; rather, we should offer up our disappointment as a penance. The Code of Canon Law still says the same things, namely that the prudential decisions of the hierarchy do not bind in the internal forum.
Thank you, Father H., for mentioning, in the midst of matters most serious, the delightful Fawlty Towers. I have been much tempted to despair of late, but now, with scenes from FT running through my mind, I am fortified to laugh and to carry on.
Manuel, do correct me if I am wrong, but what you directed me to seems to have little correlation to any thing said as public prayer. The collect for the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter, for example, is rather specific about what is to be believed regarding Matthew 16,16. "Grant, we pray, almighty God, that no tempests may disturb us, for you have set us fast on the rock of the Apostle Peter's confession of faith." Now, you may not object to the thought that some dogma is and can be outside of liturgical prayer; but that approach flies in the face of the "lex orandi, lex credendi" axiom. If people don't pray it, why and how would one expect them to believe it?
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