The Remnant Petitions Pope Francis: Change Course, Or Quit

The Remnant Petitions Pope Francis: Change Course, Or Quit December 11, 2015


It’s come to this.

Back on The Feast of the Immaculate Conception, and corresponding with the start of the Year of Mercy, The Remnant  issued an “urgent” appeal, asking Pope Francis to change his ways, or if that’s not possible, then to resign the Petrine office. They’re hoping for 1,000,000 signatures.

From The Remnant:

Your Holiness:


A growing number of Catholics, including cardinals and bishops, are coming to recognize that your pontificate, also the result of an unexpected election, is likewise causing grave harm to the Church. It has become impossible to deny that you lack either the capacity or the will to do what your predecessor rightly observed a pope must do: “constantly bind himself and the Church to obedience to God’s Word, in the face of every attempt to adapt it or water it downand every form of opportunism.”

Quite the contrary, as shown in the annexed libellus, you have given many indications of an alarming hostility to the Church’s traditional teaching, discipline and customs, and the faithful who try to defend them, while being preoccupied with social and political questions beyond the competence of the Roman Pontiff. Consequently, the Church’s enemies continually delight in your pontificate, exalting you above all your predecessors. This appalling situation has no parallel in Church history.

Last year, speaking of Pope Benedict’s resignation, Your Holiness declared that if you felt incapable of exercising the papacy “I would do the same.” On the first anniversary of Benedict’s resignation, you called upon the faithful to “join me in prayer for His Holiness Benedict XVI, a man of great courage and humility.”

With no little trepidation, being under the gaze of the One who will judge us all on the Last Day, we your subjects respectfully petition Your Holiness to change course for the good of the Church and the welfare of souls. Failing this, would it not be better for Your Holiness to renounce the Petrine office than to preside over what threatens to be a catastrophic compromise of the Church’s integrity?

“Catastrophic compromise.” Uh huh.

Click the link to read the whole appeal, if you care to. Interestingly, it seems that none of the usual suspects (i.e., Pewsitter, Rorate Caeli, etc) have linked to or acknowledged this appeal/petition. Hmm. Wonder why? [UPDATE: I stand corrected – I’ve been told Pewsitter did link – I checked both pages of headlines the day I posted this, and didn’t see it. Normally they have links for several days beyond the original post. Mea culpa.]

Because it’s ridiculous?

This is John Kerry-esque: They were against papal resignations (Pope Benedict XVI’s) before they were for them.

Image Source: Zebra48bo [Creative Commons] via Wikimedia

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  • Bemused

    Oh FFS. I’ve disagreed with various Popes over various things, but it takes a lot of gall to suggest that the Pope resign because you and your 5 friends don’t like him very much.

    • Chris Ferrara

      Yes, that’s what it’s all about. We don’t “like” Francis, so we suggested he resign.

      For goodness sake! Must everything be conducted on the level of emotion these days? Does no one consider evidence—the kind of evidence that prompted a high-ranking curial official to tell Edward Pentin that Francis poses a serious risk to the Church’s teaching on faith and morals?

      Do you have any idea how many priests who celebrate the New Mass have contacted the Remnant to tell us that we are right on target, including those who have signed (most in pectore for fear of reprisal)?

      Do you have any idea how many priests, bishops and cardinals agree that this pontificate is an unmitigated disaster, including the former curial official whose open letter was just published in the German journal Focus, also anonymously for fear of reprisal. And this was no dissenter from Catholic doctrine but a defender of it!

      As for the Remnant’s “five friends,” several thousand have already signed from literally all over the world, and the document has been translated into French, Italian, German, Polish, Rumanian, and Russian, with a Latin version on the way.

      Do the signatories really expect Francis to resign in response to this petition? If you believe that, then you haven’t a clue as to why it was written.

      • Bemused

        Well, given the epic tantrum you’ve thrown, I’d say that you definitely seem to act within the premise that everything must be conducted on the level of emotion.

        You claim several thousand supporters who are influential but don’t want to name themselves (the lurkers support me in email!), which is a tad unconvincing (and also less than .001% of Catholics). Truly convicted people should be willing to risk the Pope tut-tutting at them.

        • Phil Steinacker

          Your response to the previous commenter avoids dealing with anything he said. His comment is NOT emotion. If you have something serious to say, then refute his points, if you can (you cannot).

          Thank you for revealing your dispositions. It’s clear you have no clue what’s happening in the Church, and that your arguments (such as they are) are ultramontanist papalotry.

          I’m sure Pope Francis appreciates your blind (and dumb) loyalty.

          • Bemused

            Chris said he had many many supporters and he couldn’t/wouldn’t name them, Since it is not generally considered a good idea to hack someone’s email in order to determine who these anonymous supporters are, there is no way to refute his statement. This mysterious but un-named support may exist or it may not, but it isn’t exactly a convincing argument in and of itself. The “thousands” of people he claims have signed the petition are a minuscule portion of the church. You can probably find as many Catholics who think that mass should only be celebrated in Aramaic or that the face of Jesus has appeared on their breakfast toast. He states that he does not believe his petition will cause the Pope to resign, therefore the point must either be to rile up the people who share his point of view or to inform the Pope of how unhappy his minuscule community is. This is an unnecessary endeavor as that portion of the body Church is already riled and it would be impossible for the Pope to not know that some of his more traditionalist flock are unhappy and uncomfortable with having some of their complacency challenged. Therefore, he is clearly only sending the petition to make himself feel better at “having done something”, which is a position of emotion rather than logic.

            As for blind loyalty to any Pope… *laughs*

          • JohnCalla

            There are a variety of reasons to support the petition even if you know the pope isn’t going to take it seriously. Of course, the louder the voice, the more effective it is. So go sign the petition.

          • Bemused

            Nah, Francis was duly elected to be Pope. Just because he places emphasis on different parts of Catholic teaching than his most recent predecessors did doesn’t make him not the Pope. It isn’t like he has a bunch of illegitimate kids from several mistresses, convinced his predecessor to abdicate by pretending to be God, or bought the Papacy.

          • OpenMinded

            No, he has done something far worse: embrace and promote heresy. Jews don’t need Jesus? Worship at Mosques? Atheists go to heaven? Divorced and remarried receive Communion? Receive blessings from Protestants? Support the naming of a square in Rome after Luther?

            Wake up. Your blindness is astounding.

          • Bemused

            You understand that the Church’s position for the last 50 years is that non-Christians (including atheists) can be saved? That divorced people still can’t get Communion, but there was a decent theological reason to have the discussion? That the Counter-Reformation was good for the Church, even if the other outcomes of Luther’s protest weren’t? None of this is new stuff.

          • StillOpenMinded

            You understand that the Church’s teaching does not change, correct? “The Counter-Reformation was good for the Church.” Wow. So five million+ people leaving the Faith and following a notorious heretic to Hell is good for the Church. That’s astounding and outrageous. Atheists (particularly those that are unbaptized) cannot be saved based on objective Catholic dogmatic teaching.

            Your comments that non-Catholics can be saved is directly in opposition to the Council of Florence. In your perverted view of the Faith, Jews do not need Jesus. We can worship at Mosques.

            The fact that the Faith has been systematically degraded for the past 50 years does not make such degradation acceptable in even the least degree.

          • Bemused

            The Church was massively corrupt and needed the wake up call for internal reform. Obviously the move to Protestantism wasn’t the best. (The Church doesn’t teach that all Protestants are going to hell, JSYK).

            You are one of those people who doesn’t accept Vatican II, aren’t you.

          • StillOpenMinded

            Yeah, the existing corruption is how we got Vatican II, not how the corruption was fixed. This is plain to anyone with even a remote understanding of the Faith and good will.

            The Church does not teach that Protestants are going to hell? What Church are you referring to? Surely not the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church teaches that heretics (e.g. those who “protest” against the faith) descend into Hell.

            Pope Eugene IV, Council of Florence, “Cantate Domino” 1441, “The Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes, and preaches that all those who are outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans but also Jews or heretics and schismatics, cannot share in eternal life and will go into the everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless they are joined to the Church before the end of their lives…”

            Show many the infallible Catholic document which says that the Church teaches otherwise. I’ll be waiting.

          • Bemused

            First of all, there are only 2 statements considered ex Cathedra infallible and both of them are Marian.

            If, however, you are looking for the Magistarium, the Vatican II teachings fall within that category.

            Lumen Gentium (1964), parts 15 and 16: …”Those also can attain to salvation who through no
            fault of their own do not know the Gospel of Christ or His Church, yet sincerely
            seek God”… (a short quote, the passages are a bit long).

            Unitatis Redintegratio (1964), section 3: “For men who believe
            in Christ and have been truly baptized are in communion with the Catholic Church
            even though this communion is imperfect.”

            Since you do not believe in Vatican II, it seems probable that you yourself are not in perfect communion with the Church, so you might yet have cause to be grateful for the Unitatis Redintegratio.

          • StillOpenMinded

            I assume you are confused. Your comment about infallibility is wrong. Here is the Church’s (infallible) teaching on how to determine infallibility:

            Pope Pius IX, Vatican Council I, Session 4, Chap. 4:
            “… the Roman Pontiff, when he speaks ex cathedra, that is, [1] WHEN CARRYING OUT
            through the divine assistance promised him in blessed Peter, operates with that
            infallibility with which the divine Redeemer wished that His Church be instructed in
            defining doctrine on faith and morals; and so such definitions of the Roman Pontiff from
            himself, but not from the consensus of the Church, are unalterable. But if anyone
            presumes to contradict this definition of Ours, which may God forbid: let him be

            There are three factors which determine infallibility. Those factors have been met many, many, many times by Popes throughout history. Whoever told you there are only two instances in 2,000 years is completely.

            Also, you have yet to establish that those persons who promulgated Vatican II are authentic, valid popes and not heretics.

            Are you actually claiming that Jews do not know who Jesus Christ is? The level of denial you modernists embrace is astonishing to witness.

          • Bemused

            Thanks, but I am not confused. Only two statements have been definitively declared ex-cathedra. If you want to get into a theological argument about each and every thing that a Pope has said over the last 2000 or so years, I’m sure there are theologians who are available for that discussion (probably in academia). If you want to bring back a new list after you are done (probably in several hundred years), you should certainly feel free to do so.

            I do not need to establish that those persons who promulgated VII are authentic, valid, and not heretics. I can lean on tradition. It is you who choose to throw those accusations against the Church Hierarchy. And, again, I’m sure that there are those who are available for that discussion, but as I recall, the last time that discussion occurred, the Church did not change it’s position and some schismatics left in a huff. I hope you have as much success in that discussion as seems likely and will await your change in the Church with exactly as much trepidation as seems necessary. Have a good day!

          • StillOpenMinded

            So now you choose to be willfully blind?

            2 Thess. 2:10-12 “…because they receive not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. Therefore God shall send them the operation of error, to believe lying. That all may be judged who have not believed the truth, but have consented to iniquity.”

            Quite telling of your good will and love of the truth. It’s interesting to note that you are now trying to only focus on “ex-cathedra” but are suddenly silent about infallibility. Ex cathedra simply means “from the chair” of St. Peter. It’s explicitly discussed in Vatican I–which apparently is not infallible according to your view. Let’s pause on that for a moment. Vatican I declared how Catholics can know what teachings are infallibile, but (according to you) that declaration was not infallible so we cannot really know when something may be infallible or not. Makes perfect sense.

            I’m still in shock that you will speak with arrogance and simultaneously claim that there are only two infallible teachings of the Catholic Church. Please immediately discard whatever source you have relied on, it’s garbage and not Catholic. Your understanding of Catholic Tradition is seriously lacking, that much is 100% clear.

            The completely false view you offer would render infallible teachings as questionable including, but not limited to, the Trinity, Jesus as True God and True Man, No Salvation Outside the Church, the necessity of water baptism etc. etc. It’s modernists like you that have ushered in this age of extreme relativism.

            Here are simple questions for you:

            1. Is the Solemn Magisterium infallible?
            2. Is the Ordinary Magisterium infallible?
            3. Is the Universal Magisterium infallible?

          • Bemused

            1. Your terminology is an imprecise mess, especially for someone who is apparently relying on very specific definitions in order to support their points. Ex Cathedra was part of my first post re infallibility. Vatican I (and theology based on Vatican I) delineated the different kinds of Magistarial teachings more precisely, so if one is post-Vatican I (which is clearly the case), one should use the more precise post-Vatican I terminology rather than generalizing infallibility into a catch-all term.

            2, This has strayed quite far from the original discussion.

            3. Your understanding of what is and what is not Catholic appears to be questionable given your discarding of Vatican II. I don’t think my sources are the problem.

            Given our differences regarding the acceptability of modern theology, I do not think either of us is likely to convince the other of our correctness.

          • StillOpenMinded

            You can run from the truth, but your fleeing won’t stop it from being the truth.

            It’s your terminology that is a mess as I’ve clearly demonstrated. Your understanding of Catholic theology as related to infallibility is directly relevant to the original topic about calls for, among other things, resignation of Antipope Fracis given his ridiculous, un-Catholic conduct.

            Calls for resignation are ridiculous. This type of evil does not willingly resign. Regarding him for what he is (a heretic) would be far more useful for the faithful.

            It was at that point you stayed your double talk about only two infallible teachings existing. That’s clearly false.

            The truth is that your acceptance of V2 and its Antipopes shows that it is YOU who posseses a questionable understanding of Catholic teaching as V2 had led to attempted evisceration of the faith so disgustingly personified by Bergoglio. This heretic had the audacity to attack traditional Catholic “fundamentalism” while simultaneously esteeming Islam, saying Jews shouldn’t be converted, etc. And you follow him while thinking you are in line with Catholic teaching? I deeply urge you to wake up, your soul depends on it.

          • Bemused

            Ah, the cry of the Schismatic. “I am more Catholic than the Church! The Church is run by heretics and I am the only one who truly understands!” I imagine that it is lonely and angry in your theological house and I hope that you are able to work your way through your schismatic beliefs to achieve peace and return to communion and community within the Church at some point.

          • StillOpenMinded

            I, too, hope you cease your denial of truth and embrace the true Faith. Your absence of direct responses speaks clearly enough about your current errenous position. Whether I win this internet debate is irrelevant. Your soul is far more important.

          • Scaevola

            “Willfully blind” must mean “still disagrees with me”

        • Chris Ferrara

          Epic trantrum? Really? Is that how you read the comments I have made here? This is yet another appeal to emotion rather than reason.

          • Bemused

            No, the petition itself. Also apparently you didn’t read the past the first sentence.

        • James

          Only a micron of humanity was found at Calvary.

          • Bemused

            I suspect that Chris is not Christ.

          • James

            “Befuddled” would be a more appropriate moniker.

      • Scaevola

        “There are dozens of us! Dozens!”

  • Chris Ferrara

    The Remnant is not “against papal resignations,” which are always possible, as my own article in The Remnant made clear and as Boniface VIII solemnly declared, but rather against the novelty of the “Emeritus” Pope who does not resume his former status but still calls himself “Holiness,” keeps the papal name and coat of arms, and says he renounces only the active exercise of the office while retaining its passive function of prayer. (Yes, of course, Francis is the validly elected Pope, despite the confusion of having a “passive” ex-Pope in residence at the Vatican).

    If a Pope is harming the Church, as many believe Francis is, then his resignation (a la Pope Celestine, whose bad governance was harming the Church), would be the right thing to do, just as Saint Catherine of Siena suggested to Gregory XI if he would not use his power to govern rightly.

    • Jude

      I signed the petition.

    • StillOpenMinded

      “Francis is the validly elected Pope”… says who? Catholic teaching is clear that heretic cannot become nor remain Pope. I constantly see the hypocrisy of these false traditionalists, simply shake my head, and pray for them. Deep confusion. They impliedly call antipope Francis a heretic, but lack the courage (and grace) to explicitly do so. Instead, they ask a heretic to resign. They ask a heretic to follow Catholic teaching.

      Hey, Chris, wake up. You’re educated enough on this subject to know that Bergoglio is not Catholic–neither in word nor in deed. I don’t understand why you obstinately deny this reality under the false auspices of being faithful. The request for resignation is not an act of faith. Rather, it is lukewarmness. Take a real stand.

  • tj.nelson

    I’m curious as to why Rorate and Pewsitters has ignored this as well. Looks as if I was one of the first major news sites to link to this online initiative.


    • barnabus

      You’re a major news site?

      • tj.nelson

        Glad you liked it!

        • Phil Steinacker

          He didn’t say he liked it; he merely challenged your self-description as a MAJOR news site.

          You’re a real comedian.

          • tj.nelson

            He had a LOL when he first posted – I thought he was laughing with me. Oh well.

  • Guest

    Both PewSitter and Remnant have advanced and promoted the schismatic group known as SSPX. For that reason, they lost most credibility.

    Patheos is inherently heretical, though. Patheos should be avoided like the plague…or, put another way, Patheos should be avoided like a Pope Francis Encyclical.

    • tj.nelson

      Larry’s the worst.

      Hi Lar!

      • LarryD

        Hi Ter! I am the worst. You know it.

        • tj.nelson

          I’m the wind beneath your wings though.

          • LarryD

            Did you ever know that you’re my hero?

    • Mara319

      I agree with everything you said. Everything. Remnant is sympathetic to the break-away semi-schismatic SSPX and Patheos is pathetically and inherently heretical. They balance and deserve each other.
      God bless you, Guest. Happy Gaudete Sunday.

  • tj.nelson

    Pewsitter’s linked to this. You ARE in cahoots! Never thought I’d live to see the day. Are you over 65? You must be. I bet you are the one sending them all the Cher news, aren’t you? Cher calls Trump a Nazi! Cher says Cruz is an apostate! Cher quits blogging after 10 years!

    • LarryD

      Now that you’ve learned our secret, expect a visit from the Vatican’s Witness Protection & Relocation Program.

      • tj.nelson

        I knew you’d make it big at Patheos! I knew you’d be the success that you are.

  • Trog


  • James

    You are incorrect that the petition has not had links at other sites. I found out about it from Eponymous Flower and at Pewsitter, if I’m not mistaken. Your statement here simply bespeaks the gamesmanship, contrariness and narcissism of neo-Catholicism, on its knees before ecclesiastics who shovel codswallop for their own personal justification. The pastoral practice of the smirk, the smile. The superiority of the knowing glance and the condescension of the disingenuous secular transcendental materialist is no substitute for the Gospel of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
    Withdraw your head from the sixties and wake up.

    • LarryD

      I’ve updated my post re: Pewsitter. Thanks!

  • OakesSpalding

    Pewsitter did indeed link to the petition in the headline section. And as you know, they’re now linking to your post (not in the headline section) with the title “Patheos says PewSitter ignored the petition for His Holiness to step down.”

    • LarryD

      I’ve updated my post – thank you.

  • StillOpenMinded

    Larry, the only thing you are correct about is that a call for “Pope” Francis’ resignation is ridiculous. It’s without question that this type of evil will not willing remove himself from his fraudulent assumption of the Seat.

    Other than that, your attempt at being Catholic is failing. If you had any fidelity whatsoever, you would spend time educating people about how the Faith is under mortal attack from within. Oh wait…maybe that’s “too serious” for your website. It’s all lollipops and cupcakes here. Shocking to witness the emptiness of some who label themselves as Catholics. Start reading authentic Papal documents and realize the staggering amount of heresy these so-called Catholic hierarchy embrace and spread.

    • Scaevola

      Has there been a time when a username was more ironic?

      • StillOpenMinded

        Being open minded to new, better, or more persuasive information does not preclude one from possessing firm opinions based on current information. That’s commonsense. Noticeable absent from your comment is any substantive response. Unsurprising. All you have is ad hominem, a tactic which speaks volumes.

        • Scaevola

          “All you have is ad hominem”
          Rather, all I’ve *provided*. Nor is it ad hominem when what is expressed is not meant to be an argument. As it is, it’s (merely) an accurate comment.

          The burden of proof lies on the small minority of outliers who claim there is an “evil” which has “fraudulently assumed” the seat of Peter, not on the great majority who assent to the normal/normative procedures of the hierarchy in the election of a Pope, and who assent to the teachings of that Pope (which are in line with papal tradition). Note well that, if we’re pointing fingers about insufficient argumentation, you haven’t provided any reason for such a bold and quite-possibly calumnious claim.

          Nor is one a Catholic by one’s actions, or by how well they uphold the doctrines of their faith. One is a Catholic by baptism, pure and simple. It’s quite possible to be an awful Catholic, but, having been baptized, a person cannot fail at *being* Catholic, at having an indelible mark on the soul. (This is a striking error for one who is so free with calling out others’ heresies.)

          • StillOpenMinded

            You’re wrong. I tell you this in charity. If you use ad hominem, it’s quite clear you lack any good argument or you wouldn’t employ logical fallacies.

            Let’s examine two of your absolutely false statements:

            1. “One is a Catholic by baptism, pure and simple.” No, one BECOMES Catholic by water baptism but does not remain so unless, having attained the age of reason, they persevere in the Faith and avoid mortal sin.

            2. “It’s quite possible to be an awful Catholic, but, having been baptized, a person cannot fail at *being* Catholic, at having an indelible mark on the soul.” False. Utterly false. If a person obstinately departs from even one point of Faiths, that person becomes a heretic and is automatically cut off from the Church and will on the path to Hell. Leo XIII made that explicitly clear and totally refutes your statement:

            Satis Cognitum (#9), June 29, 1896: “No one who merely disbelieves in all (these heresies) can for that reason regard himself as a Catholic or call himself one. For there may be or arise some other heresies, which are not set out in this work of ours, and, if anyone holds to a single one of these he is not a Catholic.”

            This supports my original point that Antipope Francis certainly is not Catholic. Anyone who understands Catholic teaching should understand that his explicit and repeated heresies cut him off.

          • Scaevola

            Oof. That’s a lot of text. However, I’m still not seeing any argument for the extraordinary claim that the validly-elected pontiff of the Church is a formal heretic (and for the extraordinary assertions of his evil and fraud, which are calumnious when they are as unsubstantiated as they are here). Which is ironic for one who harps on my supposed lack of logic.

            (I’ll do you one better w/regard the amount of text–be warned!)

            Speaking of which, since we’re willing to get pedantic with the whole material-logic thing: An ad hominem is an attack on personal character (or other attribute) in place of a refutation of the other’s argument. However, you offered no argument, merely unsupported assertions. Therefore, lacking an argument to refute, my comment could not have been an ad hominem. boom syllogism

            All of this is irrelevant, though. I’ll allow that you’ve conceded to have no proof for your claims, both since you didn’t offer any in your reply to my calling for it, and since you only attacked a side-point in that reply.

            As for that attack:

            1. You are claiming that the indelible mark of Baptism, which sets apart the Catholic from all non-believers, can be washed away by one’s own sinfulness. The Tridentine teaching of an “indelible mark” has been warped to mean “indelible* (*except in cases where mortal sin is committed)”. There are apparently no Catholics in Hell (and, by this reasoning, no bishops or priests either–for why should their not-actually-indelible soul-mark be less delible than another sacrament’s?)

            2. For starters, you misattributed your quote–it’s actually from St Augustine’s De Haeresibus, which is itself quoted by Leo. This leads me to believe you didn’t actually pull directly from the source (helpfully found on the Vatican’s own website). What furthers me in that inference is the fact that the context of Satis Cognitum shows Leo to be speaking of unity with the visible body of the Church merely. The beginning of the paragraph with your quote explicitly references the practice of excommunication, which (unless the pre-Vatican II Catholic Encyclopedia be full of damnable heresy too) does not negate a person’s being Christian (“since his baptism can never be effaced”–hmm interesting), but simply exiles them from Christian society and the spiritual benefits thus conferred.

            Therefore, the language the Pope uses would be best interpreted in the light of the clear doctrine of the Church as meaning that heretics cannot call themselves Catholic in the public sphere, since such a claim would be to scandalously imply a fullness of unity with the *doctrine* (NB not the *body*) of the Church when that unity is in fact lacking. That is, they should not identify as fully Catholic when they deny the beliefs their own baptism enjoins upon them. Surely you don’t hold the false (heretical?) belief that an excommunication causes the excommunicant to completely cease being a Catholic? Surely you don’t think that we are made Catholic by our own actions (i.e. the will’s assent to articles of faith)?

            3. The above are actual arguments. I’m taking your assertions and showing them to be invalid. For your part, you have presented all of one piece of support–an appeal to authority, which I show through context to be an invalid one (and thus fallacious–oh dear!). Please spare me the rhetoric about having good arguments, and actually use them instead.

          • StillOpenMinded

            Based on your comments and “likes” elsewhere on the comments associated with this article, it’s quite clear you’ve seen some of the arguments I’ve already made on the topic of Bergoglio’s heresies. So your feigned ignorance is not believable. The reliance on personal insults thus is, in fact, ad hominem and quite unbecoming of someone purporting to be Catholic.

            Now, let’s turn to the rest of the garbage you so carelessly spread.

            First, your statements about the indelible mark of Baptism amount to you offering the stench of a red-herring. It is irrelevant. Your statement “One is a Catholic by baptism, pure and simple” is simply wrong. Your further implication, suggestion, statement that amount to ‘once Catholic, always Catholic’ is heretical. It’s pure heresy, as we will see.

            The fact that Baptism leaves an indelible mark on the soul has nothing whatsoever to do with whether that person always remains a Catholic. Period. Show me ANY infallible teaching that says otherwise. In contrast, below is the repeated, clear and undeniable fact that a heretic is NO LONGER a member of the Catholic. That is not just limited to his public persona but to the deepest regions of the soul.

            It’s quite simple really: if those who have been baptized, deny the teachings of the Church, they are no longer Catholic though they bear the mark of Baptism on their soul.

            Trent you mention?

            Pope Paul III, Council of Trent, Sess. 6, Chap. 11: “…the grace of justification, although received, is lost not only by infidelity, whereby even faith itself is lost…”

            The Catholic Church is ONE in Faith. It’s a mark of the Church. You deny this apparently. Here are numerous other infallible teachings that heretics ARE NOT CHRISTIANS (not members of the mystical Body known as the Catholic Church). Read each one of these very carefully so you know how totally empty your position is in reality. After reading these, I expect you can provide direct refutations of infallible teachings since you state that you are in possession of the “clear doctrine of the Church.”

            Pope Eugene IV, Council of Florence, “Cantate Domino,” 1441, ex cathedra: “The Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and preaches that all those who are outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans but also Jews or heretics and schismatics, cannot share in eternal life and will go into the everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless they are joined to the Church before the end of their lives.”

            Pope Eugene IV, Council of Florence, “Cantate Domino,” 1441: “Therefore the Holy Roman Church condemns, reproves, anathematizes and declares to be outside the Body of Christ, which is the Church, whoever holds opposing or contrary views.”

            Pope Pius XII, Mystici Corporis Christi (# 22): “As therefore in the true Christian community there is only one Body, one Spirit, one Lord, and one Baptism, so there can be only one faith. And therefore if a man refuse to hear the Church let him be considered – so the Lord commands – as a heathen and a publican. It follows that those who are divided in faith or government cannot be living in the unity of such a Body, nor can they be living the life of its one Divine Spirit.

            Pope Pius XII, Mystici Corporis Christi (# 23), June 29, 1943: “For not every sin, however grave it may be, is such as of its own nature to sever a man from the Body of the Church, as does schism or heresy or apostasy.

            Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum (# 9), June 29, 1896:
            “The practice of the Church has always been the same, as is shown by the unanimous teaching of the Fathers, who were wont to hold as outside Catholic communion, and alien to the Church, whoever would recede in the least degree from any point of doctrine proposed by her authoritative Magisterium.”

            Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum (# 10), June 29, 1896:“For this reason, as the unity of the faith is of necessity required for the unity of the Church, inasmuch as it is the body of the faithful, so also for this same unity, inasmuch as the Church is a divinely constituted society, unity of government, which effects and involves unity of communion, is necessary jure divino (by divine law).”

            Pope Leo X, Fifth Lateran Council, Session 11, Dec. 19, 1516:“For, regulars and seculars, prelates and subjects, exempt and non-exempt, belong to the one universal Church, outside of which no one at all is saved, and they all have one Lord and one faith.”

            Pope Innocent III, Eius exemplo, Dec. 18, 1208: “By the heart we believe and by the mouth we confess the one Church, not of heretics, but the Holy Roman, Catholic, and Apostolic Church outside of which we believe that no one is saved

            Oh, and how about comments of the Doctors of the Church? Yes, they also refute you–St. Robert Bellarmine particularly crushes your false view.

            St. Francis De Sales (17th century), Doctor of the Church: “Thus we do not say that the Pope cannot err in his private opinions, as did John XXII; or be altogether a heretic, as perhaps Honorius was. Now when he [the Pope] is explicitly a heretic, he falls ipso facto from his dignity and out of the Church…”

            St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice, II, 30:
            “A pope who is a manifest heretic automatically (per se) ceases to be pope and head, just as he ceases automatically to be a Christian and a member of the Church. Wherefore, he can be judged and punished by the Church. This is the teaching of all the ancient Fathers who teach that manifest heretics immediately lose all jurisdiction.”

            Interesting–St. Robert explicitly teaches that a heretic CEASES TO BE A CHRISTIAN. What about the indelible mark of Baptism? Why is this not mentioned whatsover? Because it is totally irrelevant to whether someone REMAINS a member of the Body of Christ.

            Second, your arrogance is on full display with your comments about Leo XIII. Yes, my argument is based on an appeal to authority. That authority is infallible. It is the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. That’s how Catholics should reason.

            Your comment amounts to straw man. You’re dodging the issue. The fact that the quote originated from St. Augustine is irrelevant for the purposes of our discussion. It is quote by Leo XIII and used in the exact way to mean precisely what I say: heretics are not Catholic. Have you actually read the document? Leo XIII is absolutely clear–there is absolutely NO mention of this public v. private distinction you offer. It makes no sense.

            Here is Leo XIII again (directly before the quote which “troubles” you so greatly): “The practice of the Church has always been the same, as is shown by the unanimous teaching of the Fathers, who were wont to hold as outside Catholic communion, and alien to the Church, whoever would recede in the least degree from any point of doctrine proposed by her authoritative Magisterium. Epiphanius, Augustine, Theodoret, drew up a long list of the heresies of their times. St. Augustine notes that other heresies may spring up, to a single one of which, should any one give his assent, he is by the very fact cut off from Catholic unity”

            Your nonsense about invisible unity, etc. etc. is just that: nonsense. Heretics are cut off. Period. They are cut off in a way that puts them on the road to Hell. If you want to call that visible, invisible, etc. is irrelevant. Show me the infallible teachings which support any of the nonsense you spew forth.

            I have no idea whether you are Catholic. As stated above, you appear to embrace heresy. If you continue to do so, then you certainly are not Catholic as I have clearly explained. Yes, a person’s free will and obedience to the commands of Christ and His Church certainly determines whether that person remains a member of His Body.

          • Scaevola

            Your calling my statement ad hominem doesn’t make it such. Willing doesn’t make an argument. My syllogism stands. If it would be easier to lord it over me if it was in fact an attack in place of an argument, I obviously cannot sway your will otherwise.

            If the indelible mark of Baptism is not the mark of belonging to Christ’s mystical body, I don’t know why it would stick around after a mortal sin. I suppose the “new man” in Christ which we are made by baptism is only conditional on our own action, and that we can change ourselves back into the old man whenever we want. We weren’t made new men, it only overshadowed us, like snow upon—anyway.

            Have I denied the oneness of faith? Hardly. We are all saved in Christ by the merits of His redemptive suffering, which merits are bestowed through baptism. One Lord, One Churh, One Body, One baptism. I think that your animus is showing here. (Especially since you mix up the grace of justification with the grace by which we are redeemed from original sin. To be a Christian is to have the latter, not necessarily the former)

            You’ve proof-texted a number of popes, though I’m not sure the context supports you. After all, my earlier point stands, and if anything is stronger—you’ve confused membership in the Body of Christ, by which all baptized are by essence Christian (if not by profession), with membership in her visible body. I want a clear statement that shows my valid distinction is put to rest, that excommunication really truly undoes the ontological change which occurs in baptism.

            Heresy destroys visible unity by introducing a plurality of belief which tries to claim the same name as the orthodox belief. This is why it’s so condemned. But to utterly reject heretics as members of the Catholic Church is not the same as saying they no longer bear the mark of Baptism which defines them in nature as Christians.

          • StillOpenMinded

            The inconsistencies of your position are glaring. Hopefully, you are of good will and can recognize the truth. First, despite my requests, I notice you offer NO citation to ANY infallible teaching of the Church. In contrast, I offer several. Your only response is the baseless assertion that they are “out of context.” The absence of ANY support for your position reveals it to be totally empty.

            Next, let’s examine just how inconsistent and illogical your views are in light of Church teaching.

            1. “you’ve confused membership in the Body of Christ, by which all baptized are by essence Christian (if not by profession), with membership in her visible body.” Anyone reading (of good will) will instantly recognize that this statement is ridiculous. I am confusing membership in the Body of Christ with membership in her visible body? It is you that is confused.

            It’s very simple: you are either a member of the Body of Christ or you are not. This absurd, third position of not being a member of the Body but still being a member of the Body in “essence” is totally without any foundation. I expect a DIRECT quote to the Magisterium to support such an outlandish view. Here is Pius XII further eviscerating your view:

            Pope Pius XII, Mystici Corporis (# 22), June 29, 1943: “Actually only those are to be numbered among the members of the Church who have received the laver of regeneration and profess the true faith.”

            How much more clear can it be? Having the Faith is essential to being Catholic. Heretics reject the faith and thus TOTALLY cease being Catholic. NOWHERE does ANY Pope ever teach your view that Baptism ensures that a person ALWAYS remains a Catholic. The fact that a mark remains on a baptized person’s soul is irrelevant to whether they are still Catholic. It is analogous to saying a gang member’s tattoo ensure they are always a gang member because a mark on their skin bears such testimony–which is obviously not true.

            The upshot of your absurd position is that a portion of the Mystical Body of Christ will reside in Hell for eternity. Total nonsense. You are one of the misguided people Pope Gregory alludes to:

            Pope Gregory XVI, Summo Iugiter Studio (# 2), May 27, 1832: “Finally some of these misguided people attempt to persuade themselves and others that men are not saved only in the Catholic religion, but that even heretics may attain eternal life.”

            Let me guess: he didn’t really mean that…it’s out of context…the mark of Baptism secures their salvation…*insert other completely unsupported equivocation*…

            2. “Especially since you mix up the grace of justification with the grace by which we are redeemed from original sin. To be a Christian is to have the latter, not necessarily the former.” Once again, it is YOU who mixes/confuses items. No one is talking about mortal sin in general. This is a red-herring. Obviously, Baptism places one in a regenerated AND justified state.

            We are talking about the sin of heresy. Heresy severs a person from the Body of Christ via Divine Law–this is how the Unity of the Faith is preserved. This is the unbroken teaching of the Church. Quick question: do you agree that “the grace by which we are redeemed from original sin” is solely obtained through water baptism?

            3. The time has come for you to provide SOME proof for your assertions regarding this “invisible” Church you speak about. Hopefully, you won’t offer the heretical notion that one can be in a part of the Soul of the Church but not a part of the Body of the Church.

            Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum (# 3), June 29, 1896: “For this reason the Church is so often called in Holy Writ a body, and even the body of Christ… From this it follows that those who arbitrarily conjure up and picture to themselves a hidden and invisible Church are in grievous and pernicious error… It is assuredly impossible that the Church of Jesus Christ can be the one or the other, as that man should be a body alone or a soul alone. The connection and union of both elements is as absolutely necessary to the true Church as the intimate union of the soul and body is to human nature. The Church is not something dead: it is the body of Christ endowed with supernatural life.”

            Pope Eugene IV, Council of Florence, ex cathedra:
            “… no one, even if he has shed blood in the name of Christ, can be saved, unless he has remained in the bosom and unity of the Catholic Church.”

            You should immediately abandon your heretical views.

            4. Regarding Bergoglio, he is certainly a heretic in word and deed. No formal declaration is required. It is a matter of Divine Law. A manifest heretic immediately ceases to be Catholic. A non-Catholic cannot become nor remain a Pope. Equally problematic, Bergoglio is likely not even a valid priest. Consequently, he could not be a valid Bishop, Cardinal, or rule over the Vatican city-state which is a sacerdotal monarchy (a priest-king). This is why he resides in the guest house.

            His specific heresies include:

            1. Denial of the Papacy, Unity of Church, and that there are non-Christian Martyrs.

            See Francis’ November 30, 2014 responses to questions from journalists on the return flight from Turkey. In those response he asserts that uniatism is “outdated” and that non-Christian martyrs cry out “‘We are one! We already have unity, in spirit and in blood.’”

            As I have cited extensively, Church unity is ONE and there only Catholic martyrs. This is Catholic teaching.

            2. Further Denial: There are Muslim Martyrs.

            See Francis’ September 21, 2014 “Homily” in “Mother Teresa Square” in Tirana, Albania: “Recalling the decades of atrocious suffering and harsh persecutions against Catholics, Orthodox and Muslims, we can say that Albania was a land of martyrs: many bishops, priests, men and women religious, laity, and clerics and ministers of other religions paid for their fidelity with their lives.”

            3. Jews Do Not Need Jesus.

            Francis has repeatedly taught that conversion of Jews is not necessary. This denies the necessity of Christ. This denies the Council of Florence’s infallible teaching that Jews are lost absent conversion.

            4. Bergoglio is an Apostate.

            He regularly participates in non-Catholic worship. He has prayed in Mosques, received blessings from Protestants, prayed in synagogues. I could literally cite dozens of examples of these acts if you disbelieve.

            Pope Pius XI condemned this conduct in Mortalium Animos. The “Apostolic See has never allowed its subjects to take part in assemblies of non-Catholics.”

            There is plenty more, but even one of the points above is sufficient.

          • Scaevola

            lol I’m done. You’re right—I don’t have some handy reactionary apologetics website to cut-and-paste papal quotes from. (And I don’t confuse mere quantity for actual argument.) And I haven’t the time for any more self-righteous anathemizing. I hope you feel gratified. A win is Pyhrric if it both fails to convince the interlocutor (all self-satisfied claims of “clarity” and “plainness of meaning” notwithstanding—you sound like a YEC), and which closes him off to whatever truth you do have.

            I’ll bow out with two thoughts—thank God we aren’t counted Catholic by how well we know our Church’s doctrine, since then even you may well not be saved; 2) thank God as well that the lost sheep doesn’t cease to belong to the Good Shepherd simply by virtue of being lost.

          • StillOpenMinded

            Oh, OK so you have no argument. Exactly what I said from the beginning. Amazing. You are one of those people who parade around VII nonsense, promote modernism, and lack ANY sort of support for their assertions–while still having the audacity to claim the other person is not making a sufficient argument though not actually refuting a single thing presented.

            Then, ironically, you claim to be closed off even though I presented the arguments in a simple, straightforward manner, never attacked you, etc.–just simply exposed your erroneous reasoning and lack of support.

            This offends you. Think about that long and hard. Someone presents the truth to you and you are offended. Speaks volumes.

            Go run away now and find your buddy Bemused. Just stop spreading heretical trash. Thanks.

          • Scaevola

            Oh and another thing

            I did look through your other posts here, and I couldn’t find any support for the things which I earlier said I couldn’t find support for. So, yeah.

          • StillOpenMinded

            You didn’t look much then. I provided some examples of Bergoglio’s heresies which I can do again.

            However that exercise is futile if you don’t even believe that a heretic ceases to be Catholic. Let’s correct that error first.

          • Scaevola

            Let’s not be simplistic in our definitions. Catholic can mean multiple things: set apart as redeemed through the sacrament of Baptism; this plus membership in the visible body of the Church; this plus perfect formal adherence to all revealed doctrines of the Faith; this plus sainthood. There are other possible definitions, but it suffices that Catholic names both the external membership and the internal membership in Christ, a membership inherently baptismal (since this is the means by which He has ordained all men come to Him).

            Heretics lose Catholicity up to that second definition. As heretics must, by definition, begin as members of the faith (i.e., if you aren’t baptized you cannot be a heretic), they possess the indelible mark of baptism, meaning they indelibly and unchangeably belong to Christ. Do they belong to Him even after death? Why else is it worse for the baptized to suffer hell, and why worse again for those confirmed, and yet more so for those ordained into His priesthood?

            I do believe that a heretic is not a Catholic, insofar as “Catholic” is being taken to mean a member in good standing of the visible Church who professes at least in word full assent to the revelation She safeguards. I’m simply not going to cede that that’s the only definition of Catholic which is valid, nor will I cede that the pontifical quotes given were meant to go much farther than this meaning of the word. Otherwise you’re in the laughable position of claiming that popes have repeatedly said that excommunication repeals an indelible mark. (I think that part of that lack of ceding on my part is because my snark hunt led me to see that you take a dim view of the legitimacy of recent Vatican-related happenings, like the 2nd Vatican Council–to say nothing of the repeated calumnies of the current Pope. Which leads me all the way back–there has been an utter failure here to provide persuasive evidence which can in any way justify the bluster, and others in the past I’ve encountered with this view (who actually gave reasons) I have similarly found unconvincing.)

          • StillOpenMinded

            Your unsupported definitions of what it means to be “Catholic” are without merit. They are actually heretical. I address and refute these in my other post along with more information about why Bergoglio is objectively a heretic.

            I expect specific responses not double-talk and speculation. Citations to infallible Magisterial teachings would be nice to hear from someone asserting themselves to be Catholic.

  • What I thought when I read this……..

  • LarryD

    Civility has long gone home, so I’m shutting the combox down soon. Discuss all you want somewhere else – there will be no calling Pope Francis a heretic in my house.

    • StillOpenMinded

      LarryD where exactly was civility lost? You mean it went away when the truth was presented? Pretty convenient. You, too, have nothing to say of substance so you willfully suppress the truth. Bergoglio is not the Pope. He is a heretic. A heretic who you promote but cannot defend.

      • LarryD

        there will be no calling Pope Francis a heretic in my house.
        Just checking if I really truly wrote that. Yep, I did.

        Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, StillOpenMinded. Good bye!!