"And I beheld, and heard the voice of one eagle flying through the midst of heaven,
saying with a loud voice: Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth....
[Apocalypse (Revelation) 8:13]

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Churchmen have no authority to change Sacred Tradition (Part Three)

Churchmen have no authority to change Sacred Tradition (Part Three)
From the Writings of Roman Catholic Popes, Councils, Saints, and Theologians
 Part Three

“Indeed, the extent and depth of the teaching of the Second Vatican Council call for a renewed commitment to deeper study in order to reveal clearly the Council’s continuity with Tradition, especially in points of doctrine which, perhaps because they are new, have not yet been well understood by some sections of the Church.”
 (Ecclesia Dei, 1988) Pope John Paul II

Modernist John Paul II admitted there were new doctrines
yet what does the Catholic Church say concerning the ability

of any church member to change what has been already infallibly taught? Let us further examine: 

FRANCISCO SUAREZ, S.J. (1548-1617)
"Et hoc secundo modo posset Papa esse schismaticus, si nollet tenere cum toto Ecclesiae corpore unionem et coniunctionem quam debet, ut si tentat et totem Ecclesiam excommunicare, aut si vellet omnes Ecclesiasticas caeremonias apostolica traditione firmatas evertere. (De Charitate, Disputatio XII de Schismate, sectio 1) ["And in this second way the Pope could be schismatic, if he were unwilling to be in normal union with the whole body of the Church, as would occur if he attempted to excommunicate the whole Church, or, as both Cajetan and Torquemada observe, if he wished to overturn the rites of the Church based on Apostolic Tradition."] "If [the pope] gives an order contrary to right customs, he should not be obeyed; if he attempts to do something manifestly opposed to justice and the common good, it will be lawful to resist him; if he attacks by force, by force he can be repelled, with a moderation appropriate to a just defense." (De Fide, Disp. X, Sec. VI, N. 16) POPE PAUL IV (1559-1566) "If ever it should appear that any bishop, even one acting as an Archbishop, Patriarch, or Primate, or a Cardinal of the Roman Church, or a legate, or even the Roman Pontiff, whether prior to his promotion to cardinal, or prior to his election as Roman Pontiff, has beforehand deviated from the Catholic faith or fallen into any heresy, We enact, we decree, we determine, we define: Such promotion or election in and of itself, even with the agreement and unanimous consent of all the Cardinals, shall be null, legally invalid, and void. "It shall not be possible for such a promotion or election to be deemed valid or to be valid, neither through reception of office, consecration, subsequent administration, or possession, not even through the putative enthronement of a Roman Pontiff himself, together with the veneration and obedience accorded him by all. Such promotion or election shall not through any lapse of time in the foregoing situation be considered even partially legitimate in any way.... Each and all of the words, as acts, laws, appointments of those so promoted or elected -- and indeed, whatsoever flows therefrom -- shall be lacking in force, and shall grant no stability and legal power to anyone whatsoever. "Those so promoted or elected, by that very fact and without the need to make any further declaration, shall be deprived of any dignity, position, honor, title, authority, office, and power.... Therefore, it is permitted to no one to impair this page of Our approval, renewal, sanction, statute, wills of repeal, of degrees, or to go contrary to it by a rash daring deed. If anyone, moreover, will have presumed to attempt this, he will incur the wrath of Almighty God an of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul." (Cum ex apostolatus officio, February 16, 1559, sec. 9, apud "Fontes Iuris Canonici," 1971) Two popes, Innocent III and Paul IV, both vigorous defenders of papal authority, together with many theologians, admitted the principle that a pope, in his personal capacity, can defect from the Faith or become a heretic; that when the fact of defection becomes manifest, such a pope automatically (ipso facto) loses his office and authority; and that such a pope should be resisted. What is even more significant is that in his Cum ex apostolatus officio, Paul IV even perceives the possibility of a Protestant being elected to the throne of Peter. He says that in such a case, the pope's acts would be automatically void, and he would not be the pope, even if he had been accepted and obeyed as true Pope by the whole Church. This papal document shows the mind of the Church on this matter. In such a case, Paul IV is calling upon Catholics to resist such a "pope" with all their might. ST. FRANCIS DE SALES (1567-1622)
"Now when [the Pope] is explicitly a heretic, he falls ipso facto from his dignity and out of the Church, and the Church must either deprive him, or, as some say, declare him deprived, of his Apostolic See." (A Catholic Controversy, 1596) JOHN OF ST. THOMAS (1589-1644) THEOLOGIAN, A SUCCESSOR OF ST. THOMAS AQUINAS
"I - Can a pope be deposed? Answer. Yes, because Catholics are obliged to separate themselves from heretics, after the heretics have been warned (Titus 3:10). Also, an heretical pope puts the whole Church in a state of legitimate self-defense. But the pope must be warned first, as officially as possible, in case he would retract. Also his heresy must be public, and declared as officially as possible, to prevent wholesale confusion among Catholics, by their being bound to follow. "II - By whom must he be officially declared a heretic? Answer. Not by the cardinals, because although they may elect a pope, they cannot depose one, because it is the Universal Church that is threatened by an heretical pope, and so the most universal possible authority of the Church can alone depose him, namely a Church council composed of a quorum of all the Church's cardinals and bishops. These would be convoked not authoritatively (which the pope alone can do), but among themselves. "III - By what authority would a Church Council depose the Pope? [John of St. Thomas here adopts the solution laid out by another famous Dominican theologian, Giacomo Tommaso de Vio Cardinal Gaetani (Cajetan) (1469-1534). The Church's deposition of the pope would fall not upon the pope as pope, but upon the bond between the man and his papacy. John of St Thomas confirms this conclusion from the Church's Canon Law, which states in several places that God alone can depose the pope, but the Church can pass judgment on his heresy.] On the one hand not even a Church council has authority over the pope. On the other hand, the Church is obliged to avoid heretics and to protect the sheep. Therefore, just as in a conclave, the cardinals are the ministers of Christ to bind this man to the papacy, but Christ alone gives him his papal authority, so the Church council would be the ministers of Christ to unbind this heretic from the papacy by their solemn declaration, but Christ alone, by his divine authority over the pope, would authoritatively depose him. In other words, the Church council would be deposing the pope not authoritatively from above, but only ministerially from below." ST. ALPHONSUS LIGUORI, C.S.S.R. (1696-1787) BISHOP AND DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH
"If ever a pope, as a private person, should fall into heresy, he would at once fall from the pontificate. If, however, God were to permit a pope to become a notoriously and contumacious heretic, he would by such fact cease to be pope, and the apostolic chair would be vacant." (Verita della Fede, Pt. III, Ch. VIII.9-10) JOHN HENRY CARDINAL NEWMAN (1801-1890)
"It is not a little remarkable that, though historically speaking the fourth century is the age of the doctors, illustrated as it is, by the Saints Athanasius, Hilary, the two Gregories, Basil, Chrysostom, Ambrose, Jerome, and Augustine (and all those saints bishops also, except one, nevertheless in that very day the divine tradition committed to the infallible Church was proclaimed and maintained far more by the faithful than by the episcopate.... "I mean still, that in that time of immense confusion the divine dogma of Our Lord's divinity was proclaimed, enforced, maintained, and (humanly speaking) preserved, far more by the Ecclesia docta ("the taught Church" -- the faithful) than by the Ecclesia docens ("the teaching Church" -- the Magisterium); that the body of the Episcopate was unfaithful to its commission, while the body of the laity was faithful to its baptism.... "On the one hand, then, I say that there was a temporary suspension of the functions of the Ecclesia docens. The body of bishops failed in their confession of the faith. There was weakness, fear of consequences, misguidance, delusion ... extending itself into nearly every corner of the Catholic Church. (The Arians of the Fourth Century, 1833) "...Though dogmatic statements are found from time to time in a Pope's Apostolic Letters, etc., yet they are not accounted to be exercises of his infallibility if they are said only obiter -- by the way, and without direct intention to define. A striking instance of this sine qua non condition is afforded by Nicholas I [858-867], who, in a letter to the Bulgarians, spoke as if baptism were valid, when administered simply in the Lord's Name, without direct mention of the Three Persons, but he is not teaching and speaking ex cathedra, because no question on this matter was in any sense the occasion of his writing. The question, asked of him was concerning the minister of baptism, -- viz., whether a Jew or Pagan could validly baptize; in answering in the affirmative, he added obiter, as a private doctor, says Bellarmine, "that the baptism was valid, whether administered in the name of the three Persons or in the name of Christ only" (De Romano Pontifice, Lib. IV, Cap. 12). (Infallibility and Conscience) DOM PROSPER LOUIS PASCAL GUERANGER (1805-1875) THEOLOGIAN
"When the shepherd turns into a wolf, it behooves the flock to defend itself in the first place. Doctrine normally flows from the bishops down to the faithful people, and subjects should not judge their chiefs. But, in the treasure of revelation, there are certain points that every Christian necessarily knows and must obligatorily defend." (L'anne liturgique - Le temps de la septuagesime, 1932) FR. HENRY IGNATIUS DUDLEY RYDER (1837-1907) THEOLOGIAN AND SUPERIOR OF THE BIRMINGHAM ORATORY SUCCESSOR AND STUDENT OF JOHN HENRY CARDINAL NEWMAN "It has always been maintained by Catholic theologians that for heresy the Church may judge the Pope, because, as most maintain, by heresy he ceases to be Pope. There is no variance on this head amongst theologians that I know of, except that some, with Turrecremata and Bellarmine, hold tha by heresy he ipso facto ceases to be Pope: whilst others, with Cajetan and John of St. Thomas, maintain that he would not formally [as opposed to materially] cease to be Pope until he was formally deposed. "The privilege of infallible teaching belongs only to an undoubted Pope; and on the claims of a doubtful, disputed Pope the Church has the right of judging. No single example can be produced of a Pope whose orthodoxy and succession ws undoubted upon whom the Church pretended to sit in judgment.... During a contested Papacy the state of things approximates to that of an interregnum. The exercise of active infallability is suspended." (Catholic Controversy, 6th ed., Burns & Oates, pp. 30-31) FRANCIS XAVIER WERNZ, S.J. (1842-1914) SUPERIOR GENERAL OF THE JESUITS & RECTOR OF THE PONTIFICAL GREGORIAN UNIVERSITY AT ROME AND FRANCOIS D'ASISE VIDAL Y BARRAQUER (1868-1943) CARDINAL
Finally, one cannot consider as schismatics those who refuse to obey the Roman Pontiff because they would hold his person suspect or, because of widespread rumors, doubtfully elected (as happened after the election of Urban VI), or who would resist him as a civil authority and not as pastor of the Church. (Wernz-Vidal, Ius Canonicum [Rome: Gregorian University, 1937], Vol. VII, p.398 VENERABLE POPE PIUS IX (1846-1878)
"I am only the pope. What power have I to touch the Canon?" In response to requests that he add the name of St. Joseph to the Canon of the Mass. "If a future pope teaches anything contrary to the Catholic Faith, do not follow him." Letter to Bishop Brizen "The opinion according to which the pope, in virtue of his infallibility, is an unlimited and absolute Sovereign, supposes a totally erroneous conception of the dogma of papal infallibility. Thus, as the [First Vatican Council] declared in clear and explicit terms, and as the nature of things itself shows, this infallibility is confined to that which is proper to the supreme pontifical Magisterium, which in truth coincides with the limits of the infallible Magisterium of the Church generally, which is limited by the doctrine contained in Sacred Scripture and Tradition, as by the definitions already pronounced by the Magisterium of the Church. ("A Collective Declaration of the German Bishops," confirmed by Pope Pius IX) TWENTIETH OECUMENICAL (DOGMATIC) COUNCIL, VATICAN I (1869-1870)
"Neque enim Petri successoribus Spiritus sanctus promissus est, ut eo revelante novam doctrinam patefacerent, sed ut eo assistente traditam per apostolos revelationem seu fidei depositum sancte custodirent et fideliter exponerent. (Constitutio Dogmatica Prima de Ecclesia Christi [Pastor Aeternus], cap. 4, "De Romani Pontificis Infallibili Magisterio") [For the Holy Spirit was promised to the successors of Peter not so that they might, by His revelation, make known some new doctrine, but that, by His assistance, they might religiously guard and faithfully expound the revelation or Deposit of Faith transmitted by the Apostles.] "The question was also raised by a Cardinal, 'What is to be done with the Pope if he becomes a heretic?' It was answered that there has never been such a case; the Council of Bishops could depose him for heresy, for from the moment he becomes a heretic he is not the head or even a member of the Church. The Church would not be, for a moment, obliged to listen to him when he begins to teach a doctrine the Church knows to be a false doctrine, and he would cease to be Pope, being deposed by God Himself. "If the Pope, for instance, were to say that the belief in God is false, you would not be obliged to believe him, or if he were to deny the rest of the creed, 'I believe in Christ,' etc. The supposition is injurious to the Holy Father in the very idea, but serves to show you the fullness with which the subject has been considered and the ample thought given to every possibility. If he denies any dogma of the Church held by every true believer, he is no more Pope than either you or I; and so in this respect the dogma of infallibility amounts to nothing as an article of temporal government or cover for heresy." [Address at the First Vatican Council by Archbishop Purcell, of Cincinnati, Ohio, on the infallibility of the Pope as defined at the Council.] In drafting the definition of the Dogma of Infallibility in 1869, the periti of Vatican Council I actually discovered that more than forty popes had preached personal doctrinal errors in preceding centuries, though not in an infallible context. The Council Fathers, having re-affirmed what the Church had always taught that it was necessary for salvation to be in union with the Bishop of Rome and that he who rejected his authority could not hope to be saved, went on to reason that therefore the Pope could not err or lead his flock astray, for in that case the faithful might, on certain occasions, find themselves in the position of having to follow him into his error. As no one is ever bound to an evil act, this would be an absurdity. At this point the Council had to define also the limits of infallibility, and lay down the precise conditions that must be satisfied for a pronouncement to be ex cathedra. Clearly the Council was aware that obedience to the Pope -- only relatively infallible -- could not under all circumstances be identified with obedience to God, Who alone is the Source of all Truth and Holiness. Not only was the Infallibility of the Pope defined at the Vatican Council, but also the limits and extent of this Infallibility. To put it another way, the Council laid down also the fact that outside these limits the Pope remained capable of erring and was not entitled to command blind obedience.
Father Hesse: A Conversation, "Tradition vs Modernism" 

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