Pope Benedict adds more evidence that he doesn’t consider himself retired, nor does he think it possible

The failed partial abdication of Pope Benedict was rendered invalid by Canon 188, due to Benedict’s SUBSTANTIAL ERROR of attempting to establish an “expanded petrine ministry.” This substantial error is grounded in his idea that a pope cannot ever really resign/retire, because the papal coronation indelibly anoints the pontiff in a distinct way, which is different from, and more profound than, the priestly or episcopal ordination/consecration. I will review the proof set of this error in a moment.

Last week, news broke about a new book, a collection of essays, released to mark the 70th birthday of Cardinal Müller. Pope Benedict wrote the Forward to the book in the form of a letter to the cardinal. The whole thing is certainly worth reading HERE, with references to Rahner, von Balthasar, Paul VI, and a lot of words about himself, which if you have any doubt that Benedict was part of the problem all along, it’s on full display here. Then there is one sentence faintly trashing the Novus Ordo. There is also praise for Müller, for having “defended the clear traditions of the faith, but in the spirit of Pope Francis you also sought to understand how they can be lived today.”

Ugh. Yeah.

But there is also a part that addresses the future role of the cardinal in his ministry, which continues on despite the loss of his “office.” Does that sound familiar?

Addressing Müller, Benedict said, “your five-year commission at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has expired, so you do not have a specific office anymore, but a priest and certainly a bishop and cardinal is never simply retired,” which is why he must continue to “publicly serve the faith.” HERE

Here is the full passage in the original German:

Dein Fünf-Jahres-Auftrag für die Glaubenskongregation abgelaufen.
So hast Du zwar kein bestimmtes Amt mehr inne, aber ein
Priester und erst recht ein Bischof und Kardinal ist nie einfach im
Ruhestand. Darum kannst und wirst Du auch in Zukunft aus dem
inneren Wesen Deines priesterlichen Auftrags und Deines theologiGrußwort schen Charismas heraus weiterhin öffentlich dem Glauben dienen. HERE

Francesca Romana over at Rorate renders it this way:

In the meantime, your five-year contract in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the faith has expired. Thus you no longer have a specific charge, yet a priest and above all a bishop and cardinal, never retires. For this reason you can and will be able to serve the faith publically also in the future, starting from the heart of your sacerdotal mission and theological charism. HERE

The most common translation of the underlined text I can come up with seems to be:

“Thus you no longer have a specific office, but a priest and even more so a bishop and cardinal is never simply retired.”

To which one must ask, in terms of Logical Progression: What are your thoughts about EVEN MORE SO A POPE, Your Holiness?

We need to look back at the words of Benedict in his speeches around the time of his failed partial abdication, because his idea of a prelate never really retiring certainly extends to the papacy, in his mind, which is a really big deal. And if a pope thinks he can’t really retire, but there are a bunch of reasons why he needs to appear retired, then he better make up some believable story, while scheming to maintain a portion of the ministry, because his conscience won’t allow him to fully resign.  Obviously, I’ve written quite a lot about this in the past several months. There is a link to a longer essay at the end of this post, but I’m reproducing much of it here.

The real smoking gun was Benedict’s final general audience of 27 February 2013, where he exposes his erroneous notion of the indelible nature of the papacy. In doing so, he directly contradicts previous statements where he claimed he was “renouncing”, “leaving”, and would then be Pontiff “no longer, but a simple pilgrim”.  Remember, at this point he knew his plan had worked; his resignation had been “accepted” by the world, and the conclave had been called. This is the lens through which we must evaluate the entire situation, in order to see the obvious Substantial Error that we have before us: (My emphesis and comments)

Here, allow me to go back once again to 19 April 2005 (Ratzinger’s elevation to the papacy). The real gravity of the decision was also due to the fact that from that moment on I was engaged always and forever by the Lord. Always – anyone who accepts the Petrine ministry no longer has any privacy. He belongs always and completely to everyone, to the whole Church. In a manner of speaking, the private dimension of his life is completely eliminated. I was able to experience, and I experience it even now, that one receives one’s life precisely when one gives it away. Earlier I said that many people who love the Lord also love the Successor of Saint Peter and feel great affection for him; that the Pope truly has brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, throughout the world, and that he feels secure in the embrace of your communion; because he no longer belongs to himself, he belongs to all and all belong to him.

The “always” is also a “for ever” – there can no longer be a return to the private sphere. ( the papal coronation indelibly anoints the pontiff in a distinct way, which is different from, and more profound than, the priestly or episcopal ordination/consecration). My decision to resign the active exercise of the ministry does not revoke this. (He can’t make it any more obvious than this. The indelibility of the papal ministry is irrevocable – Benedict thinks he is pope forever, but now exercising only part of the Petrine ministry)I do not return to private life, to a life of travel, meetings, receptions, conferences, and so on. I am not abandoning the cross, but remaining in a new way at the side of the crucified Lord. I no longer bear the power of office for the governance of the Church, but in the service of prayer I remain, so to speak, in the enclosure of Saint Peter. Saint Benedict, whose name I bear as Pope, will be a great example for me in this. He showed us the way for a life which, whether active or passive, is completely given over to the work of God. HERE

In order to read this any other way, you literally have to deny the meaning of the words, “always, forever, does not revoke, remaining in a new way, I remain.”

This interpretation, that Benedict attempted a bifurcated papacy, was confirmed by Abp. Ganswein when he dropped the bombshell of an “Expanded Petrine Ministry.” These were not off the cuff remarks, but rather a formal, well-prepared speech on Benedict’s papacy, given at the Greg in Rome, 20 May 2016:

Archbishop Gänswein…said that Pope Francis and Benedict are not two popes “in competition” with one another, but represent one “expanded” Petrine Office with “an active member” and a “contemplative.”

“Therefore, from 11 February 2013, the papal ministry is not the same as before,” he said. “It is and remains the foundation of the Catholic Church; and yet it is a foundation that Benedict XVI has profoundly and lastingly transformed during his exceptional pontificate.”

He said that “before and after his resignation” Benedict has viewed his task as “participation in such a ‘Petrine ministry’. (Not in its “Office”, the governance of the Church in the world, but in its “essentially spiritual nature”, through prayer and suffering.)

“He left the Papal Throne and yet, with the step he took on 11 February 2013, he has not abandoned this ministry,” Gänswein explained, something “quite impossible after his irrevocable acceptance of the office in April 2005.“ (Do you see how this echoes Benedict’s erroneous idea of the papal coronation being an irreversible event, creating an indelible/irrevocable mark on the recipient forever? It’s exactly the same idea Benedict put forth in his final general audience).

“Therefore he has also not retired to a monastery in isolation but stays within the Vatican — as if he had taken only one step to the side to make room for his successor and a new stage in the history of the papacy.” With that step, he said, he has enriched the papacy with “his prayer and his compassion placed in the Vatican Gardens.” HERE

You can find a more complete rendering of all this HERE.

Now that Antipope Bergoglio has enshrined his blasphemous heresy in the AAS as part of the “Authentic Magisterium,” perhaps a few more people will be looking at the situation with eyes to see. His heresy continues, and continues to worsen, in no small part because he enjoys none of the supernatural protection of a true pontiff. Not that his election is rendered invalid by means of his heresy, but rather that his election never took place, because Benedict’s resignation was invalid.

Already four months ago we found out that this position is amazingly popular, although you would never know it from what’s out in the public domain. A stunning 72% of respondents at the Saint Louis Catholic poll believe Benedict is still pope, with Bergoglio pulling in only 16% HERE. The main reason you don’t hear more people openly supporting this truth is the same reason the bishops and cardinals are almost entirely silent: Fear of losing rank, income, security, readership, donations, etc. It’s foolish fear, because they are risking a far worse fate by keeping silent than any worldly punishment they might receive by speaking up.

The reason only a tiny number of traditional Catholics think Bergoglio is pope is because that’s where the weight of the evidence leads. You will in fact be joining an overwhelming majority when you accept this. Not that you should believe something because it’s popular, on the contrary, popularity has no bearing on truth. But it does help knowing that you’re not alone, you’re not crazy.

Don’t be gaslighted into accepting Antipope Bergoglio any longer.

 

29 thoughts on “Pope Benedict adds more evidence that he doesn’t consider himself retired, nor does he think it possible

  1. A Bishop can and does retire. The Bishop of Rome could also retire, except that he is not just the “Bishop of Rome”. He is primarily and first anointed “Peter”, upon whom Christ built His Church. He is the successor of a very important person. Peter cannot stop being Peter. He will be Peter until death. There cannot be two (or more) Peters, each assuming their own favored portions of the person of Peter. There will always be just one Peter, in full.

    And that is why I agree with you, acknowledging the gravity, that Joseph Ratzinger is still Peter. He does not get to become the contemplative Peter, while giving up the active and governing Peter to a stronger, younger alter ego. That is an innovation without precedent or authority. The Office requires one person, not many.

  2. Your statement: “with references to Rahner, von Balthasar, Paul VI, and a lot of words about himself, which if you have any doubt that Benedict was part of the problem all along, it’s on full display here” is, in the context of the current crisis, extraordinarily important. Far too many well intentioned people are still laboring under the misapprehension that Ratzinger was a “bulwark” against Modernism in the Church, whereas the exact opposite is actually true.

    This fog of misapprehension may be starting to lift. Certainly, with the appearance on Sandro Magister’s blog (sadly, not yet available in English) in the last two days of several entries that raise the issue of Ratzinger’s role in the current crisis in no uncertain terms, the debate can be said to be entering the mainstream.

    I have translated the critique of Ratzinger by Antonio Livi (eminent philosopher, former member of Opus Dei) which appeared on Magister’s blog two days ago–with additional documentation and commentary added. This material extends over two blog posts which, until there is any other English translation, is the only one available. I believe these are excellent resources going forward:

    Heresy, Thy Name Is Benedict. Or Ratzinger.

    More Ratzinger, Modernism, and Livi – with Legal Input!

    1. I did find the Magister and Levi commentary in English somewhere… Repubblica, I think. There can be no doubt that Ratzinger never fully recanted his modernism, as became clear through the various innactions of his pontificate. How can a pope conclude that “my authority stops at that door” if he doesn’t even test the theory? He could have been the one to restore the integrity of the Church, but he couldn’t bring himself to do it.

      1. Dear docmx001, First off I thank you for the update (below), of which I was not aware. Yet printed in the NC Reporter, I have to question it’s authenticity. That having been said, allow me to address your comment concerning Benedict’s statement about his authority which will touch on the authority of the NCR later on.

        There are two statements with which, I would hope, you won’t disagree. The first are Our Lady’s words at Akita that “the work of Satan will infiltrate even into the Church SUCH THAT one will see Cardinals opposing Cardinals and Bishops against Bishops”. Secondly, Sr. Lucia wrote to Fr. (Msgr.?) Caffarra, when he was instructed to establish the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, that Satan’s FINAL battle against Our Lord would be over Marriage and the Family. Of course, it was Cardinal Ratzinger who stated that the Message of Our Lady at Akita is essentially the same as the Third Secret.

        Now, in the past few years we have seen very plainly the words of Our Lady at Akita coming true. And over what do we see the main split between Cardinals and Bishops? Certainly, over Marriage and the Family. And who is the primary human (visible) agent in bringing about that split so visible today? I doubt that anyone would deny that it is Francis.

        It should be added that other human elements, agents if you will, Satan has used are the Masons and the Communists, who have their “ways” of controlling things, and especially the press/media.

        The conclusion is inevitable if we are to believe Akita and Sr. Lucia: Somehow, in some way, Satan is influencing Francis, either directly or indirectly. Yet, Satan didn’t just enter the Church at the “election” of Bergoglio. He was there for a long time prior to it.

        The point I am trying to make is that those agents of Satan have been at work in the Vatican for a long time, and it was these agents with whom Benedict had to deal. But it cannot be denied that those agents ape their Boss, insofar as they can, in remaining invisible. And when the enemy is not seen, it is most difficult to deal with him. Indeed, through their occult activities, they are able to being about great damage and in many ways. I ask you, docmx001, and everyone else, therefore, to give the benefit of the doubt to Benedict when he says that he had lost all his authority. Not only that, I am convinced that most of the modernism he is said to have spouted can be attributed to those in control and ought to be questioned, especially in his later years as Pope. I speak from my own experience here, for I am dealing with precisely the same situation, although on a much smaller scale. What has been happening to me is exactly what has happened to Benedict, namely, that he had been rendered absolutely ineffective, through the enemies within. I bring this out in my Thesis on Benedict mentioned below.

        But another circumstance cannot be ignored, a circumstance I will put in the form of a question: How can anyone “clean house” when he doesn’t even know who the “bad guys” are? Many time those closest to him are his worst enemies, but they are able to put on a good, a very good show of being a friend (Benedict’s Butler for example). There is also the common shortcoming of superiors that they are so keen on their closest aids that they fail to see their defects, and so dependent upon those around them that they are taken for granted and never analyzed with so many other matters their (the superiors’) mind. In any case, the enemy is very cunning and most are “invisible” such that it is impossible to know they are enemies. Such is the case in the Vatican, but what about in the rest of the Church? How many “out there” are going to be know with certainty to be avowed enemies of God and His Church? Again, as I argue in my Thesis (please read my post below), this is precisely why Benedict renounce the Exercise of the Office. The task of cleaning things up was humanly speaking impossible. However, in doing what he did, he was able to bring the real enemies into sight for ALL to see. It then belongs to the Faithful to outright reject the imposters. Unfortunately, Satan has such a hold on souls that it is impossible even to get the Faithful to see that Francis is really not Pope.

        To underestimate the deceits of the Devil is most dangerous. His nature is above ours and we are no match for his intellect. We must be on alert at all times so as not to be deceived by him. Let me leave you with the words of Cardinal Cerejeira (Patriarch of Lisbon and much involved with the Fatima apparitions) at the opening of a tour of the Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Our Lady of Fatima across Italy in 1959: “It is an apocalyptic hour for the world. These are frightening winds from hell which are blowing, and the elect themselves are allowing themselves to be carried away.” I believe this was nothing less than prophetic. God bless you and Our Lady protect you always.

      2. Father, I respect everything you say here, and I am well aware of your work and your writings in this area for many years. In addition, I firmly believe that Akita and Fatima are unfolding before our eyes. I will comment further tomorrow. Thank you.

  3. I know that as pope he was still quoting Teilhard explicitly re “cosmic transubstantiation” and I believe he used that phrase publicly even as “emeritus.” His factotum Gaenswein has said that he and Bergoglio are on the same page theologically, and I see no reason to doubt that. The differences are differences of personal style and strategy, certainly not of doctrine.

    1. Hello Mark, Could you provide a quote and the source thereof concerning Emeritus’ use of de Chardin’s “cosmic transubstantiation”? If you cannot, you had better keep quiet, for you risk serious calumny. As I mentioned below, those who denigrate Benedict are really doing Satan’s work, and helping to keep the fake Pope to continue his plan of sending souls to hell. If you are a SEDE, then you had better read the book “True or False Pope” by Salza and Siscoe and humble yourself. And may I ask, what are your credentials for making such theological judgments concerning one of the best minds in the world?

  4. Dear Author of “Pope Benedict adds more evidence that he doesn’t consider himself retired, nor does he think it possible”

    Please excuse me for not being familiar with NON VENI PACEM. I found the “Reply” box and without knowing your formalities just wished to make a reply.

    The only way to look at Pope Benedict’s Renunciation is through the lens of the Fatima Third Secret still not revealed, which, of course, poses problems since it hasn’t been revealed yet. However, I have written a Thesis showing “that”, “how” and why Benedict actually retained the Papacy. The purpose was to keep the Petrine Office from the hands of one under the control of Satan. If anyone cannot see that Bergoglio is definitely being used by Satan, he is blind. But if someone under the control of Satan were to have OFFICIAL control of the Mystical Body of Christ, the promise of Christ to Peter at Caesaraea Philippi would have been void and made a mockery of. My Thesis has shown that it is not so much the Infallibility of the Pope that is under attack, but the very existence of the Church, the Indefectibility of the Church, and it was Benedict who was a secondary instrument in the hands of Almighty God who “stole” the Petrine Office from Satan. If anyone is interested in my Thesis he can email me at frdbelland@netsecape.com.

    Let it be said and the possibility not be denied that even Benedict can be converted from his initial modernist stance. Indeed, by his very actions while active as Pope he demonstrated his regard for tradition and the true Faith. The reading of the Third Secret, to which Benedict was privy, is such that, as Fr. Malachi Martin had said various times, would bring lines of repentants to Confessional. Any attempt to disgrace Benedict is only the work of Satan making sure that Bergoglio remains recognized as “Pope”, when he is truly an anti-Pope. And by the way, if Benedict is so modernist, why, just why, was he not only so opposed by the real modernists but even hated?

    God bless and Our Lady protect you all. Please pray for Benedict first and foremost, but don’t forget to pray for Bishop Bergoglio as well.

    1. Dear Father Belland,

      I have been attending the Traditional Latin Mass here in the Philippines for almost 15 years. I also used to acknowledge Jorge Bergoglio to be the Pope till I learnt from articles by Father Paul Leonard Kramer, Mr. Antonio Socci, and Miss Ann Barnhardt that Bergoglio is an antipope and that Benedict XVI is the one and only living Pope. As a matter of fact, there are Traditionalist Catholics here in my country who privately acknowledge Bergoglio to be an antipope and Benedict XVI to be the one and only living Pope. I am also interested in your Thesis. I have been trying to e-mail Your Reverence for several times already but I always get a failure notice. My e-mail address is jccanda@yahoo.com.

      Thank you, Father, and please pray for me.

  5. Dear Fr. Belland and docmx001:
    While you’re at it, could you also reconsider Our Lady’s messages to Melanie Calvat at La Salette? I believe that earlier than Akita and Fatima, Our Blessed Mother had already warned of the apostasy at La Salette. Melanie was persecuted for revealing them and was shuttled back and forth through the dioceses of Europe and Greece in an attempt to suppress her. La Salette missionaries do not even consider her revelations credible, yet they believe the Blessed Virgin did appear to her, as approved by the Church. What’s with that?
    Thank you and God bless you throughout 2018.

  6. Dear dcomx001, After a closer reading of your article above, I feel obliged to make a few more comments. First of all your judgment about the false theology of Benedict: “The failed partial abdication of Pope Benedict was rendered invalid by Canon 188, due to Benedict’s SUBSTANTIAL ERROR of attempting to establish an ‘expanded petrine ministry.’ This substantial error is grounded in his idea that a pope cannot ever really resign/retire, because the papal coronation indelibly anoints the pontiff in a distinct way, which is different from, and more profound than, the priestly or episcopal ordination/consecration. I will review the proof set of this error in a moment.

    1. a. The title of your article appears to indicate that you do not believe that Benedict is Pope. But by citing Canon 188, you must admit that Benedict is truly still, in fact according to the true nature of the Papacy, the only Pope, for by his “substantial error” he invalidated his resignation. Any attempt to hold an illicit Conclave would make the “election” of anyone as “Pope” invalid! To hold that he isn’t currently Pope, (unless you agree with his error such that with Francis a valid Pope, Benedict is also Pope), and then applying Canon 188 to his “substantial error” position concerning the Papacy,resulting in his “failed partial abdication” is a bit hypocritical to say the least–a violation of the principle of non-contradiction!. The only conclusion that can be had from your position is that Benedict was not Pope before his resignation, in which case you would have to consider the See Vacant before the “election of Francis”, since you believe Francis is Pope.

    1. b. But you must prove Benedict to be a liar, then, when he asserts that his renunciation was indeed valid on various occasions. This would be practically speaking impossible, unless you can prove that his renunciation was invalid for some other reason than “substantial error”. On the other hand I have shown in my analysis of the Official Latin text of Benedict’s renunciation announcement, as well as the philosophical examination of the nature of the Petrine Office, that Benedict’s renunciation is valid, and is not setting up a Diarchy. If you are going to maintain that he isn’t Pope or that he is in error I challenge you to refute my Thesis.

    2. Again, you seem to ridicule the statement of Benedict when he stated to Cardinal Muller: “so you do not have a specific office anymore, but a priest and certainly a bishop and cardinal is never simply retired….” What Benedict is referring to here is the indelible character which every Priest, Bishop and usually Cardinal have as a result of their Ordination and Consecration. This is traditional teaching, and it used to be the case, before VCII, that Bishops ruled their Diocese until they died, their ring signifying their marriage to the Diocese. And it was most common for Priest as well to remain Pastor in his Parish until he passed away. To mock this quote is to do a disservice to truth itself.

    There is much more I could say about your disingenuous statements concerning and interpretations of Benedict’s words at his 27 February Audience, but I will only warn you to be careful, because you are boarding on yellow journalism to promote your own opinion. If you wish me to elaborate, I will be more than happy to do so–publicly!

    With prayers,
    Father Belland

    1. Father,

      1.a. Being new to the blog, I can see how the title of the post might seem to indicate I think Francis is pope. I do not. As should be abundantly clear in the balance of the essay, I think Benedict is still pope, due to his idea of creating a bifurcated papacy being Substantial Error, rendering his abdication being invalid as a result.

      1.b. Assessing whether or not Benedict is a liar would depend a great deal on his motives, which touches on the original points you made in your first comment. On the one hand, his claim to retaining the papal vesture was that there were no black cassocks available the time. That’s obviously a boldface lie that, though perhaps unrelated, calls into question a great many things.

      2. I wasn’t ridiculing anything. I was drawing a parallel between his statement to Muller and his idea from the 27 Feb Audience of seperating the office (munus) from the ministry, as later echoed by Ganswein three years later. It’s another clue, and it perfectly reflects the earlier mindset. The strongest evidence from both Benedict and Ganswein is that acceptance of the papacy ALSO confers a distinct indelible character that is irrevocable, which is FALSE.

      And yes, I would like to understand how my commentary consists of “disingenuous statements.” You’re free to disagree, and I invite rational dialogue, but please do show me where I’ve been “disingenuous.”

      I have sent you a private email requesting your thesis.

  7. Dear docmx001m, My apologies for not reading your whole post, however, I am more confused than before which confusion should be cleared up before I proceed further. It seems to be the case that when people speak about Benedict bifurcating or attempting to creating a diarchy, the assumption is usually that Benedict actually resigned despite his intention to bifurcate and hence Francis is the real Pope. This is the way I was understanding your essay, and was a bit upset by the time I was 2/3 of the way through. I just thought the rest of it was more of the same.

    Now, what I understand you to be saying is that Benedict made a theological error, was attempting to set up a diarchy, which is impossible, and because he had this intention he retained the Papacy and the following Conclave was invalid. Hence Francis is not Pope, but Benedict is. So, what you are trying to do in your article it to show how Benedict actually bifurcated, i.e., was theologically in error, and hence remained Pope in light of Canon 188. Please let me know if this is your reasoning, or if there is more do indicate what I’ve left out of this general picture. Once I know I correctly understand your thinking, I can reply accordingly. Thanks, docmx001, and God bless you.

    1. Father, your second paragraph is correct. You make a small imprecision when you state, “Benedict actually bifuracted”, because he didn’t actually bifurcate the papacy, because this is impossible. You may have misspoke there.But yes, his attempt to do this by bifurcation is exactly the Substantial Error which caused him to retain the papacy in full, rendered the abdication invalid, which then obviously rendered the subsequent conclave/election of Bergoglio invalid.

      1. Thanks, docmx001, for the validation of my understanding. Being involved an another project at this point, I will make my intended responses tomorrow. However, just a remark on my inexact statement in the second paragraph. I was actually referring to Benedict’s intention, i.e., it was not an accident or a mistake on his part but something he willed, rather than an actuality, for as you indicate bifurcation is impossible. In judging an action as being seriously sinful or illegal or erroneous, I take it to mean that the willingness to commit the affront is meant. When such is attributed to Benedict, it is the intention that is referred referred to.

        I should also let you know that I have dyslexia, and have a “knack” for inverting numbers, letters, and even words. I do check what I’ve written, but I don’t always catch everything; thus the misspelling, “bifuracted”.
        God bless, Father Belland

      2. his attempt to do this by bifurcation is exactly the Substantial Error which caused him to retain the papacy in full, rendered the abdication invalid, which then obviously rendered the subsequent conclave/election of Bergoglio invalid.

        Basically the same, but I would just put the steps in a different order: (1) attempts abdication through bifurcation which is a Substantial Error, (2) this Substantial Error renders abdication invalid, which (3) causes him to retain the papacy, which in turn (4) renders Francis’ election invalid.

      3. Dear c matt, please see my 1/8/18 10:22 reply in concerning your comment about Benedict bifurcating. I hope this will relieve you of any misconceptions about Benedict’s intentions. My reply is a very brief summary of what I have argued in my thesis. If you are interested, do not hesitate to email me for a copy. God bless and Our Lady protect you always.

  8. Dear docmx001,

    With this comment I wish to express once more my sincere apologies for my rash judgment and harshness toward what I though was your stance concerning Benedict, all due to my not reading the last couple paragraphs of your essay. I will add that I am truly pleased that you are making the effort to present the reality of Benedict’s Papacy to the Faithful so confused today. May the Immaculate Heart of Mary strengthen you and guide you in standing firm in the truth of what your presenting.

    In proceeding with my “correction” so to speak I must acknowledge something which is necessary in these circumstances, but which I am not in the habit of doing nor do I like doing it. In studying for the Priesthood I was privileged to spend three years studying Latin under Fr. Foster at the Gregorian University in Rome. Fr. Foster was considered one of the world’s foremost Latinists in Rome before he retired, teaching at the Gregorian as well as working as a translator in the Secretary of State Office in the Vatican. As such he was very acquainted with the use of Latin (especially the Subjunctive Mood) for diplomatic purposes, and I learned much from him in this matter. It should be added that the use of the Subjunctive in the Italian language can and is also used in the same way as the Latin, it being the primary “offspring” of Latin.

    So let me begin with Dom Gänswein’s comments at the presentation of the new biography of Benedict and your analysis of them.

    (From actual article above) Archbishop Gänswein…said that Pope Francis and Benedict are not two popes “in competition” with one another, but represent one “expanded” Petrine Office with “an active member” and a “contemplative.”
    “Therefore, from 11 February 2013, the papal ministry is not the same as before,” he said. “It is and remains the foundation of the Catholic Church; and yet it is a foundation that Benedict XVI has profoundly and lastingly transformed during his exceptional pontificate.”
    He said that “before and after his resignation” Benedict has viewed his task as “participation in such a ‘Petrine ministry’. (Not in its “Office”, the governance of the Church in the world, but in its “essentially spiritual nature”, through prayer and suffering.)

    “He left the Papal Throne and yet, with the step he took on 11 February 2013, he has not abandoned this ministry,” Gänswein explained, something “quite impossible after his irrevocable acceptance of the office in April 2005.“ (Do you see how this echoes Benedict’s erroneous idea of the papal coronation being an irreversible event, creating an indelible/irrevocable mark on the recipient forever? It’s exactly the same idea Benedict put forth in his final general audience).

    “Therefore he has also not retired to a monastery in isolation but stays within the Vatican — as if he had taken only one step to the side to make room for his successor and a new stage in the history of the papacy.” With that step, he said, he has enriched the papacy with “his prayer and his compassion placed in the Vatican Gardens.”

    Now I will give my translation from the Italian and my comments on that text, which hopefully clarify what Dom Gänswein actually said.

    Paragraph 4
    (My Translation from the Italian)

    “As during the times of Peter, also today the Church, One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic continues having one legitimate Pope. And still, after three years from that step [Benedict’s renunciation], we are/we may be living with two successors of Peter among us – who are not in a competitive relationship with each other, and yet both with an extraordinary presence! We would be able to add that the spirit of Joseph Ratzinger has previously already marked in a decisive way the long pontificate of Saint John Paul II, whom he faithfully served for nearly a quarter of a century as the Prefect of the Congregation of the Faith. Many continue to perceive even today this new situation as a kind of state of exception willed by God.”

    (Fr. B. comments) A little grammar here might help to understand my comments. My Italian Grammar textbook Da Gapo provides a good distinction between the Indicative and Subjunctive moods “The Indicative [mood] states facts and conveys both certainty and objectivity. The Subjunctive [mood], on the other hand expresses not facts but attitudes, assumptions, possibilities, conditions to be desired or deplored.”

    Another Italian Grammar textbook Italian For You says it much better: “The Subjunctive mood (modo congiuntivo), used in Italian much more than in English or French, expresses an action or a state not as a fact, but as a possible, probable, uncertain or expedient and, most frequently, depending on another action or state expressed or understood. It is therefore used especially in subordinate clauses which depend on principal clauses—hence the name congiuntivo, the mood which joins two actions or states, when one wishes to convey an impression, an opinion or some conception of the mind, but never a fact.”

    In this paragraph Dom Gänswein is stating absolutely that there is only one legitimate Pope as has always been the case in the Church since the times of St. Peter, but without mentioning who is really Pope. At this point Benedict’s Secretary seems to contradict what he said at first by seemingly saying that “we are living with two successors of Peter”. However, with a diplomacy that I consider shrewd and ingenious, Dom Gänswein, forms his sentence in such a way as to be able to use a word that can have two meanings, namely, the Italian word “viviamo”. This can mean either “we are living” (Indicative mood) or “we are seemingly/apparently living/as it were living” (Subjunctive mood) “with two successors of Peter among us”. I have no doubt whatsoever that Dom Gänswein intends the latter meaning. Of course, Benedict and Francis are not in competition with each other; Benedict is doing what he intended to do, which is to pray and do penance and at the same time maintaining the Papacy, while Francis is doing what he was supposedly elected to do. And if there is only one Pope as initially stated alongside an anti-Pope, there is no doubt that each one has “an extraordinary presence”. Next the Prefect of the Papal Household compares the spirit of Joseph Ratzinger with the long Pontificate of Pope John Paul II, or rather with the spirit of Pope John Paul II concerning his Pontificate. In other words, just as John Paul II was determined, despite his debilitating health—a limitation from within him preventing him from fully performing his duties, not to abandon the Papacy, so is Pope Benedict determined, despite the difficulties (diabolical disorientation) within the Vatican—a limitation from outside his person preventing him from doing his job properly, not to abandon the Papacy. It is a very subtle way of indicating that he is imitating John Paul II, but in a different way. It is an “exceptional” situation “willed by God” Who indicated to Benedict through uncontrollable circumstances, given that the conditions in the Vatican were such as to prevent Benedict from doing what was good and just as well as forcing him to do what was evil and unjust. What Dom Ganswein means by saying that “many perceive” this state as willed by God is a bit of a mystery.

    Paragraph 19

    “From the election of his successor Francisco on the 13th of March 2013 there are therefore not two Popes, but in fact an expanded ministry – with an active member and a contemplative member. On account of this Benedict XVI has renounced neither his name nor his white soutane. For this reason the proper appellative with which he is addressed is still today “Holiness”; and on account of this, furthermore, he has not withdrawn into an isolated monastery, but to the interior of the Vatican – as if he had taken only one step aside to make room for his successor and a new stage in the history of the Papacy which he, with this step, has enriched with the “central” station for his prayer and his compassion in the Vatican Gardens.”

    (Fr. B. comments) In Paragraph 19, fifth from the end of Dom Gänswein’s talk, he stresses once again that “there are therefore not two Popes, but in fact an expanded ministry….” That ministry belongs to Benedict, not to Francis and it is an addition to the other possible “ministries” which have existed in the past, two of which were stressed at the beginning of his talk.

    1. Pope John Paul II, a Pope incapacitate by illness;
    2. Pope Gregory VII, a Pope in exile;
    These can be added:
    3. Pope Caius, a Pope in hiding;
    4. Pius VII, a Pope in captivity;
    Finally there is the added ministry:
    5. Benedict XVI, a Pope voluntarily, but due to circumstances making it impossible for him to function justly, reduced to a religious.

    In stating that the expanded ministry has an active and a contemplative member, Dom Gänswein is saying that they both belong to Benedict, the contemplative being what he is able to do through prayer and penance, which is the special case of exercise of Office regarding sanctifying, the exercise that he retained as I explained elsewhere in my Thesis; or it could be said that he is also the potentially active member—if and when the opportunity appears—for Benedict to un-retire from the exercise of the Office with regard to teaching and governing. In this same paragraph we see the use of “as if” with the Subjunctive (“come se avesse”) where Benedict while taking up residence “steps aside [as if] to make room for his ‘successor’”—the conveyance of an impression and not a reality.

    I trust these comments are sufficient to show that what Dom Gänswein is saying is that Benedict is the one and only Pope of the Catholic Church. I have shown with my analysis of the – 7 –
    Latin Version of his renunciation that such is what Benedict’s renunciation amounted to. Benedict, himself by his dress, his name, and by his constant reiteration of renouncing only the ministry sees himself as the one Pope. And finally, Archbishop Gänswein has publicly stated that there is only one Pope and that the result of Pope Benedict’s renunciation is only that of an expansion of the ministry of the Papacy. I am positive that this is the reality which the Faithful—Prelates, Priests and Faithful should be concerned about. As for how to go about it, I think it would be well to attempt to meet with those prelates who are known to be concerned, Cardinal Burke, Bishop Schneider and to ascertain what would be the best way to handle the situation.

    Allow me to conclude with the following vision, very rarely referred to but I think is most fitting for
    what is being treated here. It seems that from many corners, including from good and well intentioned
    people, Pope Emeritus Benedict receives undeserved almost vitriolic criticism. Having been the Prefect for the Congregation of the Defense of the Faith it cannot but be that Benedict knows what the traditional teaching of the Church is. And with all his really heroic efforts to bring the Church back to
    tradition, it seems that in Charity he should be given the benefit of the doubt.

    Actually, in thinking about Benedict undergoing this suffering, I couldn’t help but imagine the scene
    described by Sr. Lucia:

    “One day we spent our siesta down by my parents’ well. Jacinta sat on the stone
    slabs on top of the well. Francisco and I climbed up a steep bank in search of wild
    honey among the brambles in a nearby thicket. After a little while, Jacinta called out to
    me:
    “’Didn’t you see the Holy Father?’
    “’No.’
    “’I don’t’ know how it was, but I saw the Holy Father in a very big house, kneeling
    by a table, with his head buried in his hands, and he was weeping. Outside the house,
    there were many people. Some of them were throwing stones, others were cursing him
    and using bad language. Poor Holy Father, we must pray very much for him.’”

    One wonders if it is legitimate to ask whether this vision refers to the “big house” in which Pope
    Emeritus Benedict now resides.

    This first part of my intended commentary will suffice for the time being; I will finish in another post, perhaps tomorrow. God bless you .

      1. Dear docmx001, Here is the second half of my reply to the attribution of “bifurcating” to Benedict But first could you let me know whether you received my email containing my thesis? After I sent it I found a copy of it still in the “Draft Box”. And with all the problems I’ve been having with my email (another request after yours was returned when sent to my email but he also sent his request through the blog), I’d just like to know if you did receive it; you might try frdbelland@aol.com to email me with your acknowledgment.

        (docms001 commentary) The “always” is also a “for ever” – there can no longer be a return to the private sphere. ( the papal coronation indelibly anoints the pontiff in a distinct way, which is different from, and more profound than, the priestly or episcopal ordination/consecration). My decision to resign the active exercise of the ministry does not revoke this. (He can’t make it any more obvious than this. The indelibility of the papal ministry is irrevocable – Benedict thinks he is pope forever, but now exercising only part of the Petrine ministry)

        (Fr. B. replies) What is quoted above does not do justice to what was really said by Benedict. By the fact that the in the commentary an interpretation of Benedict’s mind, namely that he believes in an indelible anointing is conferred by the Papal Coronation, is totally gratuitous without adding the next sentence (My decision….) But furthermore, it is by the acceptance of the Papacy after the election of a Cardinal by the Cardinals in the Conclave is that by which God confers the Papal Office/the Supreme Power if Jurisdiction—not the Papal Coronation. When he says “My decision….” he is talking about his resignation of the “EXERCISE” of the Petrine Office or the “exercise of the ministry” proper to the Office—which his renouncement of the exercise “does not revoke”. This is an unmistakable indication that he has not resigned the Office and hence considers himself Pope, yes, but his “per sempre” only means that he “continues” in the Office as long as he holds the Office. To interpret this “per sempre” to mean something more it to attribute to Benedict something which one cannot prove he truly believes. The goes on to say that “I no longer BEAR the power of office for the governance of the Church”. But again here he is not saying he no longer has the power of the Petrine Office; rather he is indicating only the “exercise” of the Office regarding the governing of the Church. For in the Italian he uses the word “porto”, which can mean “carry”, “bear”, OR “carry out” according to my PRACTICAL SCHOLASTIC EDITION, Italian Dictionary. It is in this latter sense that he uses the word “porto”

        (docms001 quoting Benedict) I am not abandoning the cross, but remaining in a new way at the side of the crucified Lord. I no longer bear the power of office for the governance of the Church, but in the service of prayer I remain, so to speak, in the enclosure of Saint Peter. Saint Benedict, whose name I bear as Pope, will be a great example for me in this. He showed us the way for a life which, whether active or passive, is completely given over to the work of God.

        (Fr. B. replies) What Benedict is saying here is that he has placed himself in an official way is a situation that is analogous to Pope Gregory VII in exile or Pope Caius in hiding. They both held the Petrine Office, but were unable to exercise that Office due to circumstances. It must be admitted that what Benedict did looks like there was an effort to bifurcate, split the Papacy between two men. But we must remember that Benedict is no slouch. He was Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith for about 25 years, he was recognized as a scholar and I don’t think anyone could accuse him of NOT knowing the Teachings of the Church. (Even the fact that some accuse him of being a heretic do so precisely because they hold that he knows the Teachings of the Church.) But Benedict renounced the “exercise” of the Petrine Office regarding Teaching and Governing, though not Sanctifying as I show in my final Summary of Benedict’s Renunciation, and considers himself as POPE. That it “looks” like bifurcating, or trying to set up a diarchy, could be because he was dissimulating in order not to resign the Office. For, if he had resigned the Office Satan would then have official control of the Church, which would make a mockery of Christ’s promise to Peter at Caesareae Philippi. It is becoming more and more evident today than it was when Benedict “resigned”, and I firmly believe that it was what was said in the Third Secret that made him realize that he had to retain the Petrine Office. And if this is the case, there is no way that he would intent to bifurcate, or set up a diarchy. It is also why he can say that he was completely free in his resignation; that is, he was told to resign the Papacy, but he didn’t—he freely kept the Petrine Office, and by dissimulating a “shared Papacy” those who did believe in the modern theological teaching of the “Bologna School” could not really complain. It should be noted that in certain situations it is lawful to “dissimulate”, especially during war, and we certainly are in a spiritual war today. But. St. Thomas also defends Christ when, asked by his disciples on the road to Emmaus to stay, he feigned going farther; there was nothing wrong with what Christ did.

      2. docmx001, I just noticed (1/8/18 4:33 p.m.) that c matt caught the email problem. Yes, my email is frdbelland@netscape.net. That’s why John Christian had problems. Hopefully, there weren’t others who tried that address. I don’t know how many times I type that address without a problem, but I must confess that I’m certainly not perfect. God bless and Our Lady protect you all, bloggers and commentators, at Non Veni Pacem.

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