He is risen !
N° 248 – October 2023
Director : Frère Bruno Bonnet-Eymard
«RARELY has the Catholic Church called herself into question to such an extent,” exclaimed Jean-Marie Guénois in Le Figaro commenting on The Instrumentum Laboris that was published on June 20, 2023 in anticipation of a session held in Rome from October 4 to 23 as part of the synod “For a Synodal Church: Communion – Participation – Mission”. This document was drafted at the mid-term-point of this ‘fantastic’ three-year universal consultation process with the ‘People of God’ launched by Pope Francis. After a first phase at the level of the Bishops’ Conferences of the whole world and a second marked by debates within the seven continental ecclesial assemblies, a synthesis report was prepared from their seven reports and sent to Rome It constitutes the text of this instrumentum laboris.
This document was not meant to influence the final decisions that will be adopted by Pope Francis at the end of this synodal process, which is unprecedented since Vatican II. It was, however, intended to provide a framework and direction for the discussions of the two final Roman sessions (October 2023 et 2024). It is very remarkable to find in the text written by the anonymous authors of The Instrumentum, the major themes that Pope Francis has constantly addressed in his homilies, speeches and writings. “The fundamental requests are not a surprise,” Jean-Marie Guénois points out. “They confirm all that Pope Francis has emphasised throughout his pontificate.” This means that the pastoral practice of the Holy Father, sustained with incredible energy over the last ten years, that is, since his accession to the throne of Saint Peter, has already made a deep impression on people’s minds to the point of having become, over the years, a well-established doctrine, perfectly coherent in its various components. This doctrine would inevitably lead the Church to her total ruin had she not the promises of Our Lord that the gates of Hell will not prevail against her.
A PROGRESSIVIST MUTATION OF THE CHURCH.
In his Book of Accusation against the supposed Catechism of the Catholic Church, the catechism that was published in 1993 by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, then Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, under the authority of Pope John Paul II, Father de Nantes, our Founder, recalled the very exact definitions of the Church. Provided, of course that these be retained, they constitute, in themselves, a bulwark, both canonical and dogmatic, against all forms of heresy and schism.
For instance, in order to thwart the Lutheran-Calvinist heresy, the Church of the Counter-Reformation, at the end of the Council of Trent, defined herself as “a perfect, visible, and hierarchical society, founded by Jesus Christ, whose members adhere to the same doctrine in submission to the same Roman authority, in the hope of gaining eternal life through the grace of the sacraments. Pope Pius XII completed this canonical definition with this other profoundly dogmatic, allegorical, and spiritual definition, that of the ‘mystical body of Christ.’ This took place on June 29, 1943 and was applauded throughout the world. The Holy Spirit was the ‘uncreated Soul’ of this social Body and its hierarchy was the ‘created soul,’ wholly dependent on Christ, its Founder and supreme Head,” from Whom she received this order: “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptised will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned.” (Mk 16:15-16)
After the Ascension, the poor Galileans whom Jesus had chosen as Apostles were overwhelmed by this order, paralysed as they were by the fear of reprisals from the Jews. “Ten days later, however, when they were shut up in the Upper Room, the Holy Spirit descended upon them, as Our Lord had foretold,” our Father explained. “It happened at the time and in the way He had foretold, and the Apostles were transformed by an intimate force. The Holy Spirit penetrated them, stirred their emotions and inflamed them with love. The proof: they opened the doors and went out, they began to preach and this has not stopped until today. This was an absolutely decisive step [...]. Saint Peter, who did not match up to Jesus, had to succeed Him and he did so.”● It is in this way that, from century to century, the Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ has spread under the impulse of the Holy Spirit Who distributed His gifts of two kinds.
First of all, the Holy Spirit distributes His gifts of power to the Pope, the bishops and even the priests so that they have the strength to exercise their hierarchical functions. “They are instituted to command us, to preach to us, to instruct us, to feed us (…). They have a power of the Holy Spirit, an assistance of the Holy Spirit that will never fail them, even if they are sinners, even if they are unworthy.”● The same Holy Spirit distributes above all and to everyone His gifts of charity. In order that there may be holiness, so that love may burn throughout the Church, the Holy Spirit distributes His gifts to everyone but not according to a hierarchy. “Charity is much more important than anything else.”●
Nevertheless, in the midst of the Apostles, as the Acts of the Apostles notes with as much discretion as precision (Ac 1:14), stood the Blessed Virgin, Mother of Our Lord, as a powerful Mediatrix, a model of faith, a source of constant energy. Her role was not to command the Apostles, but to encourage them, first of all in anticipation of Pentecost. “She is a strong woman, a wise woman; She has wisdom because She is accompanied, She has someone, Her advocate, as Jesus said, Her Paraclete, Her perpetual assistant, Her intimate friend, Her counsellor, the source of Her inner strength, and this is the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Holy Trinity.”● “The Holy Spirit, Who had come upon the Virgin Mary on the day of the Annunciation to cover Her with His shadow and to take Her under His powerful protective wings (Lk 1:35), had taken the form of a dove on the day of the Baptism of Jesus (Lk 3:22). On the day of Pentecost, however, there was no ‘form’ of a dove, since Mary was there, in Person, communicating to the Apostles the Love, the Light and the Purity radiating from Her Immaculate Heart in the form of ‘tongues that seemed as of fire’ (Ac 2:3) and giving them total confidence.”●
That is the great mystery of the Church. The Blessed Virgin is the Temple of the Holy Spirit, and it is in Her Immaculate Heart that the Paraclete, announced by Jesus, manifests His omnipotence. That is why the Blessed Virgin is said to be the personification of the Church who reciprocally ended up exalting the holiness and therefore the beauty of divine Mary.
“From the dogma of the divine Motherhood proclaimed by the Council of Ephesus in 431, to that of the Immaculate Conception defined by Blessed Pius IX in 1854 and confirmed by the Immaculate Conception in Person at Lourdes on March 25, 1858, fourteen centuries have elapsed. Throughout that time, vying with one another, the Fathers of the Church, theologians and poets have hailed in Mary the perfect but true, real and substantial ideal of a created wisdom, virgin, spouse and mother, blessed among all women, predestined by the loving will of God alone, a creative, espousing, and fruitful will. God established Her as the guardian, or even better, the Safeguard of the Church and of Christians. It is the Most Blessed Virgin Who saves us from the mirages of the Antichrist by crushing his head. That is why it is said: ‘She alone will vanquish all the heresies in the whole world.’ ” (Point 16)
It was in 1917 that, in the council of His Holy Trinity, God our Father decided to send His Most Holy Mother into the sky of Fatima to come to the aid of the Church, and to prepare the return of His Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Fatima is not simply a Message. It is an Apocalypse – that is, a Revelation – and even a Gospel: a Good News. Jesus wants His Most Holy Mother to precede. He wants to give Her everything, to lead everything to Her, to Her Immaculate Heart, to receive everything from Her, to give everything to Her, so that She Herself may distribute Her blessings, all Her graces to all. From Fatima, in Portugal, the Blessed Virgin exercises a true regency, a mediation to ensure the salvation of souls, of nations and, ultimately and above all, of the Church. Yet, the Church does not want this mediation since she is caught up in the temptation to rally to the spirit of the world.
The bishops of the whole world who had been called together in a Council from 1962 to 1965, under the strict authority of John XXIII and then of Paul VI, underwent a first and prodigious experience of a ‘synodal Church’. At the end of tumultuous debates in which all opinions, including those most clearly heretical, were freely heard and discussed without the slightest censure, the Fathers, wearied of fighting to save souls from going to Hell and to win them for Heaven, voted by overwhelming majorities, in the name of a Spirit, although bereft of the slightest infallible authority, for a unilateral peace with the world that is in the clutches of Satan and whom they pledged to serve henceforth. Worse still, they recognised the social freedom of each person in matters of religion, a practical act of apostasy that was confirmed in person by Paul VI in the insane proclamation of the ‘cult of man.’ The crux of this revolution was a mutation of the Church, enacted mainly by the dogmatic constitution Lumen Gentium, which relegated the Blessed Virgin to a mere ‘subordinate’ role.
With the expression ‘lumen gentium’ the Church of Vatican II underlines the service she intends to render to the world in its secular progress. No longer concerned only with the salvation of souls – and in truth today she is no longer concerned with this at all – she wants to diffuse “a force of generosity, of freedom, of brotherhood that will help men to transform the world.” She moreover presents herself as a ‘People of God’, a democratic presentation of a People that “is established as fully living, entirely illuminated, sanctified, gathered together even before the hierarchy intervenes in the least, by means of a direct, invisible, gratuitous, unexpected, unlimited action of the Holy Spirit!” This presentation in turn allowed for the overthrow of the said Hierarchy, in particular through the introduction of ‘collegiality’, a subversive principle that undermines all forms of authority.
For the proponents of Collegiality, “it was intended to depersonalise authority in a collectivist and parliamentary sense,” our Father wrote. “Previously, the Pope was the supreme and immediate Head of everyone, the bishops and the faithful alike. Each bishop, subject to the Pope, was Pastor of a territory and of the people who lived there.”● The Constitution Lumen Gentium was supposed to make the episcopal College the preeminent reality, since the innovators wanted the power of the bishops to extend over the universal Church and no longer for each bishop strictly over his diocese and his particular flock; this power was to be exercised under the so-called ‘collegial’ mode. This is what our Father objected to: “No ecclesiastical power in the Church is specifically collegial. In fact, in the Church, there are only personal powers, exercised by each minister, Pope or bishop, in a free and responsible manner.”●
This collegiality resulted in a weakening of the power of each bishop, who was deliberately overinvolved in the Synod and especially in Bishops’ Conferences. This hierarchical level created from scratch without the slightest traditional foundation was soon to take precedence over their personal and responsible authority. On the other hand, the laity, constituted as a “people of gods”, were to experience an irresistible ‘promotion’. Straightaway, the Council considered them as ‘prophets, priests and kings’ on account of their baptism! An exaggerated dignity was thus conferred on them. It would give them the same rank in authority and even in power as the priest who has received the Sacrament of Holy Orders! This dignity would, de facto, confer on them a very specific and immense mission. “Not only must they fulfil their own ministries in the Church, making the most of their ‘secularity’, but in the world, they must also ‘build the temporal order and direct it to God through Christ’. Build the world and bless the tower of Babel!” There is no need to dwell on the dramatic consequences of such a promotion: the senseless pride of the laity dominating everything in the parishes, the priests being asked to stand aside and to obey. Ultimately, at the first vindictive denunciation from their flock, they are ill-defended by their own bishops.
On the contrary, “a difference of nature will always exist between the hierarchical Priesthood and the faithful. The former has received from the Sacrament of Order the power of teaching, consecrating and sanctifying, and governing in the place of the Lord and the latter is primarily only the beneficiary of such a ministry;” our Father explained. “Therefore, there is in no way a ‘priesthood’ of the laity, taken as a whole or individually. There is no priesthood to be had on the cheap nor, a fortiori, a priesthood that is distinct from, equal or superior to that of the priests. This can be seen in the fact that the specific character of the priestly ministry is to be effective ‘ex opere operato’ by virtue of the ontological power itself which has been conferred and whatever the value of the man who exercises it, while the value of the worship of the faithful depends on their state of sanctifying grace and on the measure of their moral virtues that keep them united to Christ.”●
Nothing can change this, since the advocates of the purportedly necessary reformation of the Church are intent on using the innumerable disorders on the part of certain clerics against the liberating Law of chastity. Today it provides them with the ‘providential’ pretext to pursue the ‘great leap forward’ of the ‘cultual revolution’ initiated by the Second Vatican Council.
POPE FRANCIS IS WHOSE SUCCESSOR?
Paul VI, John Paul II, and Benedict XVI were all intellectual ‘doctrinary’ popes, that is, concerned with developing and imposing their own doctrines on the whole Church as a teaching. Paul VI sought the illusory glory of presiding over this Movement for the Spiritual Animation of Universal Democracy (MASDU) and of drawing the whole Church behind him into it by transposing his Christian religious preaching into terms of profane humanism. John Paul II had the intellectual goal of achieving “the synthesis of the old Religion and of contemporary Atheism,” that is, “their final fulfilment in living Man, rich in possessions and in existence, brought to completion in the feeling of the sacredness of his existence and in the glory of his freedom.” With this Pope, our Father said, it was ‘overexcitement’ especially with young people, but transitory. For his part, Benedict XVI’s great ambition was to impose his dialectic, a Modernist German dialectic, in order to rationalise the mysteries of the Catholic Faith, the ancient representations of which supposedly did not make any sense to modern man.
With Pope Francis, it is different, or seemingly so.
Since his election to the pontificate on March 13, 2013, he has presented himself with ease and authority as a pope who has kept the heart of a true shepherd, one who knows his sheep, who loves them and knows how to talk to them. To be convinced, it suffices to reread one of his very first speeches, very spontaneous, absolutely charming, apparently worthy of a John Paul I, delivered in Saint Peter’s Square on the occasion of the Angelus of March 17, 2013: “This mercy is beautiful! I remember, when I had only just become a bishop in the year 1992, the statue of Our Lady of Fatima had just arrived in Buenos Aires and a high Mass was celebrated for the sick. I went to hear confessions at that Mass. Almost at the end of the Mass I stood up, because I had to go and administer a Confirmation. An elderly woman approached me, humble, very humble, and over eighty years old. I looked at her, and I said, ‘Grandmother’ (...) ‘do you want to make your confession?’ ‘Yes’, she said to me. ‘But if you have not sinned…’ And she said to me: ‘We all have sins...’ ‘But perhaps the Lord does not forgive them’. ‘The Lord forgives all things’, she said to me with conviction. ‘But how do you know, Madam?’ ‘If the Lord did not forgive everything, the world would not exist’. I felt an urge to ask her: ‘Tell me, Madam, did you study at the Gregorian [University]?’, because that is the wisdom which the Holy Spirit gives: inner wisdom focused on God’s mercy. Let us not forget this word: God never ever tires of forgiving us! “Well, Father what is the problem?” Well, the problem is that we ourselves tire, we do not want to ask, and we grow weary of asking for forgiveness. He never tires of forgiving, but at times we get tired of asking for forgiveness. Let us never tire, let us never tire! He is the loving Father Who always pardons, Who has that heart of mercy for us all. And let us too learn to be merciful to everyone. Let us invoke the intercession of Our Lady Who held in Her arms the Mercy of God made man.”
What a delightful speech! Yet it is curious all the same that a simple member of the faithful finds herself obliged to remind her bishop of the effects of original sin which require souls, at all ages of life, to approach the tribunal of confession to confess their sins which cause so much pain to God, to express sincere contrition and to receive, through the power of the priest granted by Our Lord and handed down from generation to generation by apostolic succession, the forgiveness of the Church. Furthermore, if this old woman asked to go to confession, it was undoubtedly attracted, urged, inspired by the Blessed Virgin, by Our Lady of Fatima visiting the Argentine capital. The Pope mentions Her in passing, but without showing her much respect, even though she is the protagonist of this scene.
In his homily on May 23, 2013, on the occasion of the profession of faith of the bishops of the Italian Bishop’s Conference, Pope Francis was able to say words to them that were both paternal and fraternal, warm, comforting and in keeping with the dignity of their priestly ministry. In short, in an equally pastoral spirit: “Yes, being Pastors means believing every day in the grace and strength that come to us from the Lord despite our weakness, and wholly assuming the responsibility for walking before the flock, relieved of the burdens that obstruct healthy apostolic promptness, hesitant leadership, so as to make our voice recognisable both to those who have embraced the faith and to those who ‘are not [yet] of this fold’ (Jn 10:16). We are called to make our own the dream of God, Whose house knows no exclusion of people or peoples, as Isaiah prophetically foretold in the First Reading (cf. Is 2:2-5).”
“For this reason being Pastors also means being prepared to walk among and behind the flock; being capable of listening to the silent tale of those who are suffering and of sustaining the steps of those who fear they may not make it; attentive to raising, to reassuring and to instilling hope. Our faith emerges strengthened from sharing with the lowly. Let us therefore set aside every form of arrogance, to bend down to all whom the Lord has entrusted to our care. Among them let us keep a special, very special, place for our priests. Especially for them may our heart, our hand and our door stay open in every circumstance. They are the first faithful that we bishops have: our priests. Let us love them! Let us love them with all our heart! They are our sons and our brothers!”
Here again, his sermon is a paternal and delightful, full of solicitude for the bishops, their priests and the faithful, especially for those who find it difficult to follow... but just what is this “dream of God, Whose house knows no exclusion”?
POPE FRANCIS’ DREAM.
Actually it is the dream of Pope Francis, whose heart has gradually revealed itself to be that of a bad shepherd motivated by an infinite, undisciplined, disordered, even anarchic love for the flock committed to his care – especially for the bad sheep who are happy to receive caresses and encouragement instead of good and salutary admonitions. In advance, without ever indicating the conditions, the Pope assures his flock of God’s mercy that he will end up extending in the name of his own goodness, but without the slightest authority, to all sinners, heretics and schismatics of all dissident Christian denominations, and finally to the whole world. This brought him, the Vicar of Christ, to sign on an equal footing with the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Ahmad Al-Tayyeb, the Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Harmonious Coexistence, on October 4, 2019 in Abu Dhabi. This led him to publish an encyclical on October 3, 2020, which is an unprecedented ‘monument’, “because it is intended not to be Catholic. The first two words are taken from Saint Francis of Assisi: ‘Fratelli tutti ,’ but without appealing to the love of the Heart of Jesus-Mary which, for Saint Francis, is the source of this universal brotherhood,” Brother Bruno wrote.●
Yet, at the heart of this encyclical, we find love, and even an ecology – it must be stressed – that is very relational. “No one can experience the true beauty of life without relating to others, without having real faces to love. This is part of the mystery of authentic human existence. Life exists where there is bonding, communion, fraternity; and life is stronger than death when it is built on true relationships and bonds of fidelity.” This authentic love impels everyone to ‘come out of himself’, to go beyond the restricted circles of his initial relationships, to go to the ‘peripheries’, to constantly forge new relationships with others in order to, in the end, welcome everyone, love everyone, desire the good of all and devote himself to it.
Pope Francis is not so much preoccupied with freedom, which leads to individualism and which he disapproves of, nor even equality, which is more theoretical than real, but he is concerned with fraternity. It is this “openness in love” that would incite everyone to reach “those whom I do not naturally consider a part of my circle of interests. Every brother or sister in need, when abandoned or ignored by the society in which I live, becomes an existential foreigner, even though born in the same country.”
Thus this authentic love blossoms first of all within a community of relationships from which it gradually can and must experience an openness that must lead to a universal fraternity based on the value and dignity recognised for each person, on a solidarity that does not forget to take care of the fragile members of our families, of our society, of our people, and against which borders of any kind must not be interposed.
“If every human being possesses an inalienable dignity, if all people are my brothers and sisters, and if the world truly belongs to everyone, then it matters little whether my neighbour was born in my country or elsewhere. My own country also shares responsibility for his or her development, although it can fulfil that responsibility in a variety of ways. It can offer a generous welcome to those in urgent need, or work to improve living conditions in their native lands by refusing to exploit those countries or to drain them of natural resources, backing corrupt systems that hinder the dignified development of their peoples.”
Hence Pope Francis’ incredible compassion for migrants, beyond all ecological prudence, all political wisdom, and all Catholic charity. This empathy led him to make his first trip, on July 8, 2013, to the island of Lampedusa. It then inspired him the folly of travelling to the island of Lesbos on April 16, 2016 from where he brought twelve migrants, all of whom were Muslims, back with him in his plane, and quite recently, of travelling to Marseille.
Here we have the marvellous, the prestigious Catholic brotherly love as though it were dismembered, that is, cut off from its Source – Jesus Christ, His Sacred Heart and the Cross. It is diverted from its end: the conversion and salvation of poor sinners through the universal mediation of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. It has been transformed into a universal secular and Masonic fraternity, at the service of which the Church, only seriously mentioned at the very end of the document, should be confined. “It is not a question of preaching the Faith, morality, the practice of our holy religion. That is courageous; it is assisted by Our Lord, and is thus beneficial,” our Father wrote in 1996 during his exile in Hauterive. “On the other hand, for us Christians to preach fine theories to all men without making them abandon their errors and without summoning them first to convert is to practice ourselves a liberalism, a naturalism, that is contrary to our faith. Jesus said: ‘Without Me you can do nothing.’ So, if these people who are listening to you do not come to the true Faith, they will not reach fraternal charity, even if you dress it up as a ‘communion between persons’! And if you, in preaching to them this ever so beautiful ‘communion’ in such shimmering clothes, you will accomplish nothing, and you will be punished on the last day for having been ashamed of Him before men.”●
One State has nevertheless showed distain for Pope Francis’ dream of universal fraternity by reminding him of the realities, the political duties to which its own citizens must first submit before wanting to make ‘buddy-buddy’ with the whole world: the People’s Republic of China. The Vatican submitted itself to an agreement that concedes to the China a determinative, if not decisive, right of scrutiny in the appointment of bishops who now derive their power of jurisdiction from both the Vicar of Christ and the Vicar of Satan, that is, the General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party!
Thus this project of universal brotherhood in which Pope Francis includes the Church as a mere element of a worldwide organisation, makes the Mystical Body of Christ subservient to the World. It leads him to no longer wanting to distinguish between what is in the Church from what is outside of her. Yet it so happens that by virtue of her divine constitution itself, the Church remains even today an obstacle to this project of universal brotherhood. Hence this will, sixty years after the Second Vatican Council, to continue her reformation in order to open her even more widely, if possible, to this new supposed evangelical spirit, to adapt her to these universal fraternal bonds and to make her “a family among families.” “This is the Church,” according to Pope Francis, she is, “open to bearing witness in today’s world, open to faith hope and love for the Lord and for those whom He loves with a preferential love. A home with open doors. The Church is a home with open doors.” (Fratelli tutti, no. 276)
This project is perfectly in keeping with the spirit of the Second Vatican Council. Once it has been accepted in principle that any illuminist can reform the Church at will to make it conform to his own conception, according to Father Congar’s progressivist teaching, there is no longer any limit. An initial reformation calls for others, and so on, until total destruction.
If John Paul II and especially Benedict XVI endeavoured to maintain their great work of the Second Vatican Council by exercising a prudent reformism according to a ‘hermeneutic of continuity,’ this is not the case for Pope Francis. Nothing deters him from pursuing this dream of a universal brotherhood, as he clearly showed in his apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, dated November 24, 2013, to which he explicitly gave a “programmatic significance”.
A PLANNED DESTRUCTION OF THE CHURCH.
The first chapter of this text is devoted to the necessary “reform of the Church in her missionary outreach,” to “the Church’s missionary transformation,” with reference to the “continual reformation” of the Church initiated by the Second Vatican Council and Paul VI. “I hope that all communities will devote the necessary effort to advancing along the path of a pastoral and missionary conversion which cannot leave things as they presently are (...). The renewal of structures demanded by pastoral conversion can only be understood in this light: as part of an effort to make them more mission-oriented, to make ordinary pastoral activity on every level more inclusive and open, to inspire in pastoral workers a constant desire to go forth and in this way to elicit a positive response from all those whom Jesus summons to friendship with Himself.” The Holy Father went through the various ‘ecclesial structures’ encouraging them all to undertake “self-renewal” and in particular the diocesan Church.
“The bishop must always foster this missionary communion in his diocesan Church, following the ideal of the first Christian communities, in which the believers were of one heart and one soul (cf. Ac 4:32). To do so, he will sometimes go before his people, pointing the way and keeping their hope vibrant. At other times, he will simply be in their midst with his unassuming and merciful presence. At yet other times, he will have to walk after them, helping those who lag behind and – above all – allowing the flock to strike out on new paths.● In his mission of fostering a dynamic, open and missionary communion, he will have to encourage and develop the means of participation proposed in the Code of Canon Law, and other forms of pastoral dialogue, out of a desire to listen to everyone and not simply to those who would tell him what he would like to hear. Yet the principal aim of these participatory processes should not be ecclesiastical organisation but rather the missionary aspiration of reaching everyone.” (no. 31)
There is nothing more evangelical, apparently, than this pastoral image given to the bishop, that of a shepherd at the head or in the midst of his flock or even behind to help those who are struggling to keep up. In reality, however, nothing could be more revolutionary than such words. Here we find the classic contradiction in which the reformers systematically place themselves when they claim to make the Church ‘take a leap forward’ by making her take ‘a step backwards’ – in this case a step of two thousand years. They maintain that they are renewing with the lost ideal – no doubt by lack of fidelity – of the first Christian communities, but in fact, they impose their own ideal on their contemporaries, an ideal for which they can claim no foundation in Tradition. “The idyllic memory of the early community of Jerusalem (Acts of the Apostles 2:42; 4:32-35; 5:12-16) cannot be taken as a definition of the Church of the centuries, without misuse,” our Father wrote in his Third Book of Accusation.
Is this ideal that the Pope describes around the key words of ‘communion’, ‘mission’ and ‘participation’ not already that of a ‘synodal Church’ that does not yet dare to speak its name?
How could it be that in certain circumstances a bishop would be well-advised to ‘walk behind the flock’ on the grounds that “the flock strikes out on new paths”?● What does this mean? No. 119 of the Exhortation seems to give the explanation: “In all the baptised, from first to last, the sanctifying power of the Spirit is at work, impelling us to evangelisation. The people of God is holy thanks to this anointing, which makes it infallible ‘in credendo’. This means that it does not err in faith, even though it may not find words to explain that faith. The Spirit guides it in truth and leads it to salvation. As part of His mysterious love for humanity, God furnishes the totality of the faithful with an instinct of faith – sensus fidei – which helps them to discern what is truly of God. The presence of the Spirit gives Christians a certain connaturality with divine realities, and a wisdom which enables them to grasp those realities intuitively, even when they lack the wherewithal to give them precise expression.”
The ‘people of God’ is presented here as holy, absolutely perfect, infallible, democratic, with elusive contours, endowed with an innate and collective instinct for faith that the Holy Spirit would directly and assuredly grant them, with or without the necessary mediation of the Hierarchy, outside the perfectly defined boundaries of the solemn or ordinary Magisterium, by the sole grace of Baptism. This ‘pure’ illuminism is not Catholic and does not correspond to the sensus fidei, in its traditional sense. The faithful’s ‘sense of the Faith’ is the sense of acceptance of the truths of the faith “which was received at Baptism as a supernatural reason and conscience. It is incapable under normal circumstances of discovering anything new and still less of teaching it, but it is capable of being filled with enthusiasm for the words of a member of the Teaching Church,” our Father specified in 1996 in the manuscript that we published in 2008 under the title Vatican II Auto-da-fe. Pope Francis, however, has the Second Vatican Council on his side and even the supposed Catechism of the Catholic Church published in 1993. In it our Father rightly identified this first heresy of “an abusive extension of the indefectibility and infallibility of the Church in her head, in her pastors and in her people,” and denounced it in his Third Book of Accusation.
On this basis, everything begins to become clear about Pope Francis’ project of reformation, when we read the section devoted to the proclamation of the Gospel by the ‘People of God’ (cf. nos. 111 to 134). When speaking about the ‘Good News’, the Pope evokes all sorts of things: the joy that every baptised person is purportedly called to make known to all, this salvation that God brings about and that the Church joyfully proclaims and which is intended for all. He does not fail to emphasise the evangelising power of popular devotion. Yet he says nothing about the actual content of the Gospel, about its call to conversion, to do penance, to receive the Sacraments in order to imitate and follow Jesus, right to the cross, and finally to gain Heaven and escape Hell. He says nothing about these things. What is most incredible is that this wonderful and ideal mission of evangelisation to which we are all allegedly called, whatever our state of grace, is apparently taking place in the absence of the Hierarchy. In all these developments, there is not the slightest mention of religious, priests, bishops, or any institution of the Church.
So we might as well say that it is evangelisation without the Church. Our Father understood well the motive behind it: “The great reason for the hushed or overt animosity spread everywhere against the visible, historical and hierarchical society of the Church is the exaltation of the Gospel, but of the Gospel ‘according to the Spirit.’ It is Good News, a Message of liberation, joy and hope that must be proclaimed to all men if their lives are to succeed (...). Each one builds his own Church, creates his own community, without anyone imagining the need for the one Church as a mediation between God and men. There is no longer any need for a Magisterium, nor for worship, nor for ecclesiastical government. The institution is outdated.”● Our Father wrote this fifty years ago!
Consequently, the Holy Father recommends that lay people, who “are, put simply, the vast majority of the people of God”, and women in particular, be given more space within the particular Churches “to speak and to act”, which presupposes combating “excessive clericalism” (cf. nos. 102-104).
Here we have the seeds of clericalism, denounced as the principal evil from which the Church is currently suffering, and which Pope Francis blames for the innumerable, much publicised disorders that sully her. When speaking to the Jesuits in Ireland on August 25, 2018, he dared to declare: “Behind this tragedy of violence, especially when it reaches vast proportions and gives rise to a great scandal – think of the case of Chile and here in Ireland or the United States – there is a situation of the Church marked by elitism and clericalism: a failure of closeness to the People of God. Elitism and clericalism promote all kinds of abuses. And sexual abuse is not the foremost. The primary one is the abuse of power and conscience.”● The Pope was speaking of alleged disorders of an unbridled clericalism for which the ‘synodal Church’ will supposedly provide a remedy. Just what is a ‘synodal Church?
A SYNODAL CHURCH.
It was undoubtedly in a speech delivered on October 17, 2015, on the occasion of the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Synod of Bishops, that Pope Francis personally explained the most explicitly what he means by a ‘synodal Church.’ He himself has recently stressed the importance of this text: “When, on the 50th anniversary of the creation of the Synod, the theologians prepared a letter for me, which I signed, it was a good step forward.” (Speech of October 4, 2023)
He resumes this key idea that “the people of God is holy thanks to this anointing, which makes it infallible ‘in credendo’.” He again invokes the sensus fidei which, according to him, would prevent “a rigid separation between an Ecclesia docens and an Ecclesia discens, since the flock likewise has an instinctive ability to discern the new ways that the Lord is revealing to the Church.” Then, he concludes that “a synodal Church is a Church which listens, which realises that listening ‘is more than simply hearing.’ It is a mutual listening in which everyone has something to learn. The faithful people, the college of bishops, the Bishop of Rome: all listening to each other, and all listening to the Holy Spirit, the ‘Spirit of truth’ (Jn 14:17), in order to know what He ‘says to the Churches’ (Ac 2:7).”
The synodal way would therefore begin with listening to the People of God, and if it culminates with listening to the Bishop of Rome, it is indeed the Synod of Bishops that is “only the most evident manifestation of a dynamism of communion which inspires all ecclesial decisions (...). Through the Synod Fathers, the bishops act as authentic guardians, interpreters and witnesses of the faith of the whole Church, which they need to discern carefully from the changing currents of public opinion.” Then the Holy Father concludes in an ‘apotheosis’ this delirious illuminism whereby the People of God is made king: “We ask the Holy Spirit first of all for the gift of listening: to listen to God, so that with Him we may hear the cry of His people; to listen to His people until we are in harmony with the will to which God calls us.”
Pope Francis therefore has in his sights the personal power of the bishops, which he intends to weaken by “valuing” more highly the “organs of communion” that assist them (the presbyteral council, the college of consultors, chapters of canons and the pastoral council) and in such a way that these “organisations keep connected to the ‘base’ and start from people and their daily problems.”
The Pope also has in his sights the exercise of his own power. Yet here he proceeds with well-calculated steps, knowing that he is personally bound by the divine constitution of the Church, and in particular by the very words of Our Lord, who appointed Saint Peter as the head of the Apostles to confirm his brethren in the faith.
He recalls that “the Bishop of Rome, who is called to speak as ‘pastor and teacher of all Christians’, not on the basis of his personal convictions, but as the supreme witness of the fides totius Ecclesiae, is ‘the guarantor of the obedience and the conformity of the Church to the will of God, to the Gospel of Christ, and to the Tradition of the Church.’ ” There is, however, no explicit mention in Pope Francis’ speech of the exorbitant, extraordinary, personal power that he possesses which enables him to deliver solemn and infallible teachings, when he deigns to have recourse to it. He thus intentionally renounces his title of ‘Vicar of Christ’. No doubt it reminds him in a way that is too authoritarian, not synodal enough, that he is the sovereign and supreme head of His one Church and that he derives his power from Our Lord and from Him alone, unlike the other bishops and especially unlike any schismatic patriarch; hence the systematic use of the title of ‘Bishop of Rome’ or the expression ‘Petrine ministry.’
These are nothing more than terminological subterfuges to introduce a reform of the exercise of the papal ministry: “I am persuaded that in a synodal Church, greater light can be shed on the exercise of the Petrine primacy. The Pope is not, by himself, above the Church; but within it as one of the baptised, and within the College of Bishops as a Bishop among Bishops, called at the same time – as successor of Peter – to lead the Church of Rome which presides in charity over all the Churches.”
Pope Francis does not say anything further, but in the meantime he wants certain responsibilities incumbent on the Pope to be transferred to the provinces, to the ecclesiastical regions, to the particular councils and especially to the Bishop’s Conferences. “The hope expressed by the Council that such bodies would help increase the spirit of episcopal collegiality has not yet been fully realised.” Our Father himself acknowledged in January 1972, with regard to collegiality, that the battle was not over. “We are halfway there, part of the way. In a synodal Church, as I have already stated, ‘it is not appropriate for the Pope to replace the local episcopates in the discernment of all the problems that arise in their territories. In this sense, I feel the need to move forward in a salutary ‘decentralisation’.” Yet, is this declared decentralisation for the benefit of the Bishop’s Conferences not a diplomatic way of relieving a cumbersome and paralysing Curia against which Pope Francis has never concealed his personal animosity and distrust to the point of having subjected it to a plan of reform as soon as he ascended the throne of Saint Peter?
REFORMING THE CURIA.
The cardinals had spoken at length about this in 2013, during the general congregations that preceded the conclave: It was supposed that Rome, the Curia, could not remain in their present state. “Pope Francis was chosen for his reputation as a man of action, authoritarian, who knew how to manage a huge diocese, that of Buenos Aires. He received this mandate when he was elected: to reform the governance of the Catholic Church, and he is working to do so” explained Isabelle de Gaulmyn in 2017.● In fact, as early as April 8, 2013, he appointed a council of cardinals, all chosen from outside the Curia, to help him. This was the famous C9. The outcome of its works was the promulgation by Pope Francis on March 19, 2022 – the Solemnity of Saint Joseph chosen to highlight the importance of the text – of the apostolic constitution Predicate evangelium “on the Roman Curia and its service to the Church in the world.”
It was the constitution Immensa Æterni Dei adopted by Sixtus V in 1588 that laid the modern foundations of the Roman Curia. It organised in a permanent and coherent way all the services, offices, commissions of cardinals and congregations charged with assisting the Supreme Pontiff on the one hand in the exercise of his ministry over his diocese and over the universal Church, and on the other hand in the administration of the Papal States. In 1908, Saint Pius X adopted the constitution Sapienti Consilio, which reduced the number of congregations from twenty to eleven. It considerably simplified and clarified the procedures, and re-established the jurisdiction of the Roman Rota with a view to establishing a clear distinction between the exercise of administrative and judicial functions within the Curia. Following the Second Vatican Council, Paul VI promulgated the constitution Regimini Ecclesiæ Universæ in 1967 and John Paul II Pastor Bonus in 1988. So with Pope Francis, in less than sixty years, the Roman Curia has undergone its third general reform, compared to only two in the previous four centuries.
In its preamble, the constitution is once again based on the premise that the Church has received the mandate of the Lord Jesus to preach the Gospel. This involves her required missionary conversion in order to renew herself “in the image of the mission of love of Christ Himself”.
Thus, the Dicastery for Evangelisation has been placed at the top of the list of the sixteen ministries of the Curia and receives the distinguished honour of being presided over by the Supreme Pontiff in person (cf. art. 54). By way of marching orders, it presents an entire project “for the inculturation of the Good News of Jesus Christ in different cultures and ethnic groups and for their evangelisation” (art. 56, §1). It is obvious, however, that not a word is said, no role is reserved for the Blessed Virgin, Who has nevertheless become over the centuries the Mother of Evangelisation of modern times with the innumerable shrines that She has chosen for Herself to attract poor souls weighed down by their miseries and sins, but humbly asking for grace and mercy to convert and lead a better life. This silence is all the more offensive given that it is specifically the task of this dicastery “to erect international sanctuaries” and to “promote an overall pastoral activity of sanctuaries, as the central driving forces of permanent evangelisation” (art. 56, §2), many of which are dedicated precisely to Our Lady by a very special will of our dearest Heavenly Father.
Is not this promotion of this “overall pastoral activity” more like a takeover, a control placed on the devotion and enthusiasm that the good faithful people show in favour of the Blessed Virgin in the privileged shrines dedicated to Her? The Holy Father’s pilgrimage to the shrine of Fatima on August 5, 2023 is yet another striking proof of this. In fact, in his address to the throng of pilgrims who came to acclaim him with enthusiasm, he purely and simply passed over in silence the slightest words spoken by Our Lady during Her apparitions in 1917. In the very place where God made known His will to have devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary established, the Holy Father contented himself with emphasising the role of the Blessed Virgin as someone Who merely ‘accompanies’. In other words, he assigned to Her a subordinate role, in line with chapter 8 of Lumen Gentium, and granted Her nondescript titles such as “the Virgin ‘Who leaves in a hurry’, whenever there is a problem” or “the attentive Virgin!” so that he did not have to mention any of Her glorious privileges. That is the tip of the tail of the Devil who is bruising Her heel. She, however, will crush his head!
The Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith is relegated to second place. In a letter dated July 1, 2023, Pope Francis bluntly explained to its new Prefect, Archbishop Victor Manuel Fernandez, what he now expects from the former Holy Office: “The central purpose [of your task] is to guard the teaching that flows from the faith in order to give reasons for our hope, but not as an enemy who critiques and condemns.”
These words, which were deliberately made public, are appalling. By formally forbidding the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith from seeking, prosecuting and condemning errors, Pope Francis acts as a guarantor of all the heresies that abound in the Church. He presents himself a priori as the defender, the protector and therefore the accomplice of all the heretics who are bringing about the death of the Church today. This apparent liberalism is actually a frightful injustice committed against all the bishops and priests, who are ready to teach sacred doctrine on the sole condition that they themselves be maintained, supported with kindness and firmness in the strict line of orthodoxy. “The whole question is whether the Church of all time was acting rightly, and with justice and charity when she systematically forbade all heresy and schism?’ our Father wrote in 1973 to Paul VI in his Book of Accusation dated March 27 and 28. “It was a supreme law that assured, confirmed and protected her Faith: that every error, every attack upon dogma, morals, the liturgy or the Sacraments, upon the institutions of the Church, was followed up and repressed, without any exception. The Faith had to be guaranteed, preserved and upheld by law – the law of the Church and the law of the Catholic State.”
Pope Francis thinks exactly the opposite: “The Dicastery over which you will preside in other times came to use immoral methods. Those were times when, rather than promoting theological knowledge, possible doctrinal errors were pursued. What I expect from you is certainly something very different.” What the Holy Father is clearly expecting is no longer the defence of the dogma of the Faith, without which all evangelisation is absolutely vain and without which one cannot please God. “We need theology to be attentive to a fundamental criterion: to consider that all theological notions that ultimately call into question the very omnipotence of God, and His mercy in particular, are inadequate.” It is precisely in order to thwart such theological insanity that simply denies the possible damnation of sinners that, in Her apparition on July 13, 1917 at Fatima, the Blessed Virgin showed Hell to Lucy, Francisco and Jacinta. Not only demons, but also the souls of the damned were, and still are today and for eternity, plunged in this “ocean of fire”.
“We need a way of thinking which can convincingly present a God Who loves, Who forgives, Who saves, Who liberates, Who promotes people and calls them to fraternal service.” The Good God loves and forgives all of us, His feeble and sinful creatures, to the point of having sent His Son to us to die on the Cross in ransom for our sins. As a last resort, He also sent us His Most Holy Mother in the sky of Fatima to announce that He wants to establish devotion to Her Immaculate Heart in the world. Yet is the Holy Father ready to teach both love of the Cross – which is foolishness in the eyes of men – and love of the Immaculate Heart, the secret to obtaining it? He never teaches this to the faithful of the Church.
Thus the dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith is neutralised so that the new principle of synodality may be given the freedom to govern the higher institutions of the Church. For from the outset, the preamble to the Constitution Predicate Evangelium affirms that the life of communion gives the Church “a face of synodality”. This would involve a listening to one another “in which everyone has something to learn. Faithful people, College of Bishops, Bishop of Rome: one listening to the other; and all listening to the Holy Spirit, the ‘Spirit of truth.” In this reciprocal listening, the Curia does not have to interpose itself between the Pope and the bishops, but must “rather place itself at the service of both, according to the forms proper to the nature of each.”
The principle is therefore clearly stated and imposed by Pope Francis and gives rise to very concrete rules for modifying the functioning of curial institutions in the direction of a general lowering of their authority, so that from institutions of government they become institutions of support, collaboration and service. This is the spirit of this reform, which is expressed in several points.
The first point establishes “intradicasterial” and “interdicasterial” ‘meetingitis’ as the general rule. A system of discussion will be established in this very insidious way. Through this system, the dicasteries will neutralise each other and only consensus decisions without force, without authority will ultimately result from it.
The second point gives a broader remit to the Bishop’s Conferences, which are referred to sixty times in the Constitution. Help and assistance to be furnished to the Bishop’s Conferences, collaborative work, on proposal or after consultation with the same Bishop’s Conferences are now incessantly repeated as a leitmotif when it comes to the powers assigned to the various dicasteries and the important issues they are called upon to deal with. It is a complete reversal of authority at the very top of the Church in favour of these clamorous and impotent parliamentary assemblies, which are only good for producing all sorts of mediocrity and even heresies.
The third point is centred on the omnipresence of the laity. “By virtue of his baptism, every Christian is a missionary disciple ‘to the extent that he or she has encountered the love of God in Christ Jesus.’ It is impossible not to take this into account in updating the Curia. Its reform must therefore provide for the participation of lay men and women, including in roles of government and responsibility.” As a result, it is now explicitly stipulated that a dicastery may be presided over by a faithful, whether man or woman.
All these measures will have no other effect than to reinforce the general feeling of insecurity among the officials of the Curia, to undermine their stability in their office as well as their independence from the Supreme Pontiff, who has become all-powerful to reform the Church. He will be powerless, however, at God’s hour, to put the Church back on an even keel. He will be impeded from doing so by the mafias of the Bishops’ assemblies and others who will have ended up infiltrating all the institutions of the Church in the name of the participation of all the baptised in the life of the Church. This is well explained in the Instrumentum Laboris that was methodically followed by the participants in the Synod on the Synodality of the Church held at Rome (October 4-23, 2023).
THE SYNOD ON THE SYNODALITY OF THE CHURCH.
The Instrumentum laboris constantly refers to synodality, describes certain of its characteristics, but is careful not to give a precise definition. Eventually, though, we come to understand that the synodal Church is a spirit, a method, a ministerial organisation of charisms, marked by a total non-separation of the powers of order, teaching and government. It follows the three endlessly repeated priorities of ‘communion’, ‘mission’ and ‘participation’. Its sole and real aim is the complete and radical annihilation of every form of authority within the Church.
A synodal Church can be defined as the antithesis of a hierarchical and monarchical Church. It is no longer merely the pyramid of her Hierarchy turned upside-down. It is the completion of the process initiated in 1964 with the adoption of the principle of ‘collegiality’, the first devastating blow dealt to the Church, to achieve the ‘participation’ of everyone, of all the baptised “in the life of the Church and in her mission.”
“A synodal Church is founded on the recognition of a common dignity deriving from Baptism, which makes all who receive it sons and daughters of God, members of the family of God, and therefore brothers and sisters in Christ, inhabited by the one Spirit and sent to fulfil a common mission (...). Baptism thus creates a true co-responsibility among all the members of the Church, which is manifested in the participation of all, with the charisms of each, in the mission of the Church and the building up of the ecclesial community.” A synodal Church “desires to be humble, and knows that it must ask forgiveness and has much to learn,” especially in its relations “with the other Churches and ecclesial communities, to which we are united by the bond of one Baptism (...).”
So much for the spirit of a synodal Church, which is “a listening Church (...). For many, the great surprise was the experience of being listened to by the community, in some cases for the first time, thus receiving a recognition of their unique human worth that testifies to the Father’s love for each of His sons and daughters.” It is a Church of encounter and dialogue, a Church, open and welcoming, where everyone feels welcome and can participate in the “conversation in the Spirit.” This is illuminism at its worse. It is “a shared prayer with a view to communal discernment.”
In concrete terms, the ‘dynamic’ articulates three stages. The first is devoted to each person taking the floor. Others listen in the knowledge that “each one has a valuable contribution to offer.” In the second, once again each person takes the floor “not to react to or counter what they have heard, reaffirming their own position, but to express what from their listening has touched them most deeply.” Finally, the third and final step is to “identify the key points... to build a consensus” convinced that “the Lord is the cornerstone that will allow the ‘construction’ to stand” and that “the Spirit, the master of harmony, will help to move from cacophony to symphony.”
So much for the method of this ‘conversation in the Spirit’. This entirely new synodal consultation carried out on a global level has been discovered after two thousand years of the existence of a Church still in its infancy. She is finally beginning to understand what Our Lord expects of her and her ministers. This ‘conversation in the Spirit’ will have to be implemented at all levels before any decision can be taken. Yet, in all this talk and chatter, what about the Faith, doctrine, Tradition, the laws of the Church, Catholic discipline, etc.?
All this falls absolutely outside the scope of this ‘conversation in the Spirit’ in which the adherents of what the Holy Father terms ‘neo-Pelagianism’ will probably not be welcomed to participate. He describes them as “those who ultimately trust only in their own powers and feel superior to others because they observe certain rules or remain intransigently faithful to a particular Catholic style from the past. A supposed soundness of doctrine or discipline leads instead to a narcissistic and authoritarian elitism, whereby instead of evangelising, one analyses and classifies others, and instead of opening the door to grace, one exhausts his or her energies in inspecting and verifying.” (Evangelii gaudium, no. 94) As for those who say: “We have always done it this way,” Pope Francis condemns them without appeal: “These words are poisonous in the life of the Church.”●
Practically speaking, we and those who would like to bear witness to Our Lord to the point of remaining “intransigently faithful” to the Catholic Faith – by reason of its “divine perfection” – taught to them by a Church that the Holy Father considers to be from a bygone era, will feel of their own excluded from today’s synodal Church which considers those who are supposedly deprived of the light of the ‘Spirit’ to be self-excommunicated.
The method must now lead to a new organisation of the ministries. This was the crux of the discussions in the Synodal Assembly in Rome last autumn 2023.
In the first place, The instrumentum laboris reaffirms without the slightest authority the principle of equality between ‘ordained ministers’: bishops, priests, deacons, on the one hand, and on the other, ‘baptismal ministers’: all lay people who receive their mission directly from Christ through baptism. “There is a clear call to overcome a vision that reserves any active function in the Church to ordained Ministers alone (Bishops, Priests, Deacons), reducing the participation of the Baptised to a subordinated collaboration. Without diminishing appreciation for the Sacrament of Orders, ministries in a synodal horizon are understood from a ministerial conception of the entire Church.” No, this principle of equality “ends in the destruction of religious elites and in the systematic paralysis of the great spiritual influences,” our Father explained in 1972. This is not surprising. “The ‘sensational appearance of charisms at Vatican II’ that Cardinal Suenens imposed and Congar praised was purely theoretical because it denied every preliminary condition of holiness, all mystical and moral superiority. It gave power to everyone over everything, which thus led to fighting all real superiority and paralysing all influence and every benefit of one for the others. Equality killed ‘edification’!”●
What is more, today The instrumentum laboris makes a clear demand for creating new ministries “to provide the means and opportunities for women’s effective participation in theological reflection and in discernment and decision-making bodies.” With this presence of women to command everywhere in parishes and bishoprics, we are certainly heading for tragedies. In any case, this feminine presence already poses many difficulties that The instrumentum laboris cannot conceal: “The contributions received during the first phase note that tensions with the ordained Ministers arise where the dynamics of co-responsibility and shared decision-making processes are absent.”
Next, The instrumentum laboris raises the question of the reform of the ministry of the episcopate in order to integrate the principle of ‘collegiality’ with the broader principle of ‘synodality’ and to reconcile the hierarchical constitution of the Church with this synodality of Satan. We are at the crux of this revolution that Pope Francis has been preparing for ten years now. It is a question of resuming the battle of collegiality, where it left off in 1964, in order to pursue and bring it to completion!
Bishops would be required to participate in the synodal process both when each of them “initiates, guides, and concludes the consultation of the People of God entrusted to him” and when assembled “they exercise the charism of discernment (...) in Bishop’s Conferences, in continental Assemblies, and especially in the Synodal Assembly.” It should be noted that the Council is not mentioned and this is certainly not an oversight. A revolution is therefore being prepared and the bishops are already being strongly urged to experience this synodal process with “a radical trust in the action of the Spirit in the life of their communities, without fear that the participation of everyone need be a threat to their ministry of community leadership.” Some openly demand a “ ‘less exclusive’ exercise of the Bishops’ role” whereas “others have expressed doubts and fear the risk of drift if left to the processes of political democracy.”
That is the fatal word pronounced to deny the reality, of course, as Pope Francis regularly does this in his recommendations on synodal discussions, convinced that everyone can discuss whatever, even to support theses that are clearly heretical or contrary to the laws of the Church, such as the blessing of same-sex couples. There is nothing to worry about: as long as prayer is not forgotten and everyone is listened to with interest and benevolence, the Holy Spirit, or rather ‘the Spirit’, is present and takes care of the rest, that is to say, to start from the diversity of ideas in order to ensure unity and harmony among all, but with no concern for the Truth! It is totally heretical! It is completely crazy! This is indeed the idea of the Holy Father who repeated it again on the plane, on September 4, 2023, on his return trip from Mongolia, about the way in which each synodal session will be organised: “This is not a television program where we talk about everything. No. There is a religious moment, a moment of religious exchange. In the introductions to the synod, there will be three to four minutes for three speeches and then there will be three to four minutes of silence for prayer. Then three more, and prayer. Without this spirit of prayer, there is no synodality. That would be politics, parliamentarism. The synod is not a parliament.”
Yet what does Our Lord Jesus Christ think of all this?
“SPIRIT! ARE YOU HERE?”
In the Paul VI Hall where the Synod sessions take place around round tables, Jesus is no more a protagonist than His Blessed Mother was at Fatima, for His Vicar seems to have completely forgotten Him. This is at least what emerged from his speech at the opening of the Synod session on October 4. He did not mention Him once, whereas he referred to the Holy Spirit fifty-one times. “I like to say that the Synod is not a parliament; it is something else. The Synod is not a gathering among friends to resolve some current problems or to give opinions; it is something else. Let us not forget, brothers and sisters, that we are not the protagonist of the Synod: it is the Holy Spirit. If the Spirit is in our midst to guide us, it will be a good Synod. If there are other ways of going about things, based on human, personal or ideological interests, it will not be a Synod, but more of a parliamentary meeting, which is another thing. A Synod is a journey that the Holy Spirit makes. You have been given a few patristic texts that can assist us in the opening of the Synod. They are taken from Saint Basil, who wrote that fine treatise on the Holy Spirit. Why? Because it is necessary to understand this reality, which is not something easy.” This ‘reality’ may not be easy to understand, but in the Pope’s eyes it may have the singular advantage of drawing this synodal assembly towards a certain spirit, that of the schismatic orthodox confessions!
Here again, it is our Father who gives us the key to understanding the Holy Father’s true intentions. In his Third Book of Accusations drawn up in 1993, he wrote against the dogmatic relativism shown by the supposed Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) on the subject of the filioque, out of “ecumaniac sycophancy”: “Our CCC fails to appreciate this all-important Trinitarian theology which makes it clear that the missions of the Word and of the Holy Spirit are not conjoined or identical, but are complementary in their succession and subordination. According to our pure Catholic Faith and its explicit Latin expression, the Holy Spirit acts by following Jesus Christ in all things, in accordance with the laws and progress of evangelisation always directed and realised by Him through the Apostles and Heads of the Church, who are invested with His Power.
“Orthodox (schismatic) theology, on the other hand, allows for much more freedom (spontaneity) in conceiving the works of the Spirit which, while they are doubtless entirely dependent on the invisible Father, are freed from the strict visible and historical limitations of Jesus Christ’s work and mission and from ‘Jesus Christ spread and communicated’ (Bossuet), namely His Church. The Greek outlook favours this ‘spontaneity’.”
In this synod, the Holy Father is undoubtedly inviting all the participants to such spontaneity, totally attentive to a ‘Spirit’, but emancipated from the work of Jesus Christ. He wants them all – bishops, priests, pope, cardinals, but also religious and lay men and women – to play, together and joyfully, at being the ‘people of God’ to relive in full freedom, equality and fraternal communion the experience of the first Christians and to rediscover the idea supposedly lost by the “Western Church” (sic!) of synodality.
This is the stage we have reached in this synodal process, which began in 2021 and will end in 2024 or 2025 with a new Apostolic Exhortation in which the Holy Father alone will ultimately take – paradoxically, this remains our hope! – the decisions for the whole Church. There is no point dwelling on the details, which are by definition hypothetical, of what he will decide. On the other hand, the baneful principles of a synodal Church have already been laid down over the last ten years, and we will certainly suffer the consequences, firstly because the Blessed Virgin has been outrageously and conspicuously side-lined. Yet it is impossible to dissociate the Church from the Blessed Virgin in order supposedly to better reform her, without violently lacerating and destroying her. This is what we now need to understand.
In Letter to My Friends No. 204 of May 13, 1965, our Father wrote: “The Church is a community of faith, formed by the authoritative work of the Infallible Magisterium: that is precisely what distinguishes this human society from all others, namely, that it rests solely on the sacred bond of ecclesiastical faith. Outside the hierarchy, rival or enemy authority can only be schismatic or heretical: the frontiers of the Christian People are firstly and visibly those of the Faith as taught by the Hierarchy and openly held by the faithful. This shows the necessity, the dignity and the responsibility of our Pastors: the whole being, life, order and beauty of the Catholic Communion are the effect of their ministry, totally unalloyed – a light in the darkness. Beyond the visible frontiers of God’s Church, I concede that multitudes may be invisibly drawn by the resounding Word of God or even directly enlightened by it. That, however, does not change such an order, and the hierarchy has nothing to learn from ‘Others’, because they, the bishops, alone interpret the Word of Jesus under the infallible assistance of the Holy Spirit. All those whom God attracts come to the Church as to the source of Light itself. Such a doctrine as we profess, makes the whole fate of the Church depend on the dogmatic, moral and traditional teaching of the Pope and the Bishops.”
The first conclusion is above all to emphasise the chain of logical and foreseeable consequences that this synodal reform of the Church would entail if it were to be confirmed by the Pope, which remains hypothetical. It would mean the continuation of desacerdotalisation, and and declergification within the Church herself: mission instead of the Mass! The ‘ministry’ of the laity instead of the priest. Above all, this new hierarchy composed of collegial assemblies at the parish, diocesan, national and universal levels, in which this ‘conversation in the Spirit’ would be practiced, would toll the death knell of the truth of the Catholic Faith. True Faith would cease to be taught authoritatively by a hierarchy which alone enjoys the gifts of the Holy Spirit to perform such a function. All points of Catholic doctrine and ecclesiastical discipline could be freely discussed democratically, collegially, collectively, under the impulse of a spirit that can only be Satan’s, controlled by small and well-organised active minorities speaking with one voice. As a result, the most sectarian partisanship, compromise, the frenzy of change, error and finally heresy would systematically prevail over virtue, the spirit of sacrifice and penance, truth, Tradition, and finally on faith as a whole. A synodal Church would nullify every form of authority, obliterate every form of clear boundary between truth and error and annihilate every community of faith. The consequence of this would be total confusion between those who are in the Church and those outside it. In short, this would mean the disintegration, the destruction of the Church: open to all today, she would no longer have any reason to exist tomorrow.
The second conclusion is not hypothetical. It is not a judgement, but the objective and reasoned statement of the fact that Pope Francis clearly and knowingly expressed solidarity with the heresies, schisms and scandals that our Father had denounced against Cardinal Ratzinger, the promoter of the supposed catechism published in 1993, against John Paul II and especially against Paul VI, with whom the parallel is striking. Very different from Paul VI in terms of character, Pope Francis, imbued with his dream of universal brotherhood, is amplifying Paul VI’s ideal of a movement for the animation of universal democracy (MASDU). This is Pope Francis’ personal heresy, “the transposition into humanistic terms of the wonders of Grace, the Mysteries of Filial Adoption and the Communion of Saints,” our Father wrote to Paul VI in his Book of Accusation. He added: “You have despoiled the Church of the gifts bestowed on her by Christ in order to adorn with them the whole ‘civilised’ mankind of today.”
This heresy leads to schism. First, an affective schism evidenced by Pope Francis’ open contempt for Catholics faithful to the Church’s traditional faith. He calls them, for example, “backwardists” or accuses them of having “the dead faith of the some of the living”. Then, there is the effective schism against the Church herself, as witnessed by the trip that he made to Canada in 2022. He went there to ask forgiveness for what he later described as the “genocide” that the holy missionaries allegedly committed against the native populations for whom they had devoted their entire lives for the salvation of their poor souls. Finally, this synod that the Holy Father is conducting shows that he no longer clearly discerns the priesthood, or even the Church.
What should be done? Prepare a new Book of Accusation against the Pope for heresy, schism and scandal? It is absolutely pointless.
Since Pope Francis makes common cause with Popes Paul VI, John Paul II and Benedict XVI, which is beyond doubt, he personally becomes the object of the accusations that our Father levelled against them during his lifetime. So we who claim to be disciples of Father de Nantes are entitled, without further proceedings, to denounce Pope Francis in this baneful project of a synodal Church, which is leading her to her ruin. We thus denounce his error, reject his dream of a synodal Church, pray and make sacrifices for him to obtain his conversion. He remains the Holy Father!
Yet if anyone today becomes convinced that the Pope is a heretic must openly accuse him of it. “In remaining silent while he is in a state of inward rebellion against the Pope,” our Father explained, “he puts himself into peril of damnation for, if he should be wrong, he is cutting himself off from the Pope and hence from the Church. If he is right, he fails in his obligation of charity by not warning his brethren.”● This extraordinary duty is incumbent upon every bishop who is convinced of the Pope’s heresy and schism. “A bishop, who is also a successor of the Apostles, a member of the teaching Church, a confrere of the Bishop of Rome and, like him, ordained for the common good of the Church, must break his communion with him as long as he has not proved himself faithful to the responsibilities of his supreme pontificate.” Fifty-eight years after the end of the Second Vatican Council, without the slightest opposition from anyone, apart from the remarkable exception of our Father, is there still to be found in the Church a bishop whose faith is sufficiently alive to rise up and wage a real Counter-Reformation fight that would commit him not only to addressing dubia to the attention of the Holy Father, but to level a canonical accusation of heresy, schism, and scandal at him?
Today, our hope is the Immaculate Heart of Mary, “the Safeguard of the Church and of Christians.” To pray for the Pope, to pray for his conversion, is first of all to embrace the reparatory devotion. A devotion that does not distance us from our Counter-Reformation fight, because the Pope, many bishops and priests do not want this devotion, even though God ordains it. Our Father was very impressed by this will of God expressed by Our Lady at Fatima on June 13, 1917. “God wishes to establish in the world devotion to My Immaculate Heart.”
Let us pray much for the Holy Father and resolutely embrace this reparatory devotion to the Immaculate Heart Whose triumph will prevent the gates of Hell from prevailing over our Mother Church!
Brother Pierre-Julien of Divine Mary.
Vespers sermon, August 15, 1993
Sermon of Father Georges de Nantes, August 24, 1980
Sermon of Father Georges de Nantes, August 24, 1980
The Acts of the Apostles 1:14
All these with one accord devoted themselves to prayer, together with the women and Mary the Mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.
Excerpt from a meditation of Father Georges de Nantes, May 19, 1991
The Gospel According to Saint Luke 1:35
The Angel said to Her: “The Holy Spirit will come upon You, and the power of the Most High will overshadow You; therefore the Child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God.
The Gospel According to Saint Luke 3:22
The Holy Spirit descended upon Him in bodily form, as a dove, and a voice came from Heaven: “You are My beloved Son; with Whom I am well pleased.”
The Catholic Counter-Reformation no.°315, January 1999
light of the nations
Catholic Counter-Reformation no. 52, January 1972
Catholic Counter-Reformation no. 52, January 1972
Catholic Counter-Reformation no. 55, April 1972
Father de Nantes uses the term ecology in its etymological sense, i.e., ecology involves devoting oneself to the physical and spiritual prosperity of one’s family, in which the fate of each member depends on all. To get a clearer understanding of what this implies, we invite you to study these points from the 150 Points of the Phalange:
Let us remind readers that, etymologically, ecology concerns the physical and spiritual prosperity of one’s family
Georges de Nantes, Vatican II, Auto-da-fe, He is Risen, no. 71a, p. 9
A more literal translation of this phrase is “because the flock has a sense of smell that allows it to discover new paths”. The English translator censors this hitherto unknown “sense of smell”, found in other translations. For example, in Italian “…perché il gregge stesso possiede un suo olfatto per individuare nuove strade; and in French: “le troupeau lui-même possède un odorat pour trouver de nouveaux chemins”
According to the original text, here the translation should read: “the flock itself has a sense of smell for finding new paths”? See the explanation in the previous pop-up.
Catholic Counter-Reformation no. 52, January 1972
La civiltà cattolica [fr. Ed.] 0918 , p. 15
Pouvoirs – 162. 2017, p. 35 and seq.
Father J. Masson, S.J., invented the expression “inculturated Catholicism” in 1964. It was not until fifteen years later before the term inculturation was used with its present-day meaning, although it remains a rather fluid concept in the thinking of many. The first use of the term inculturation should probably be attributed to the 32nd Congregation of the Society of Jesus, December 1974 to April 1975. Likewise, the term seems to have been first introduced to the 1977 Synod of Bishops on catechesis by Father Peter Arrupe, the then Superior General of the Jesuits. Pope John Paul II adopted it in his 1979 Apostolic Letter Catechesi Tradendae, and by this very fact, gave it an authoritative value.
The 1985 synod, which celebrated the 20th anniversary of the closing of the Second Vatican Council, spoke of ‘inculturation’ as "the intimate transformation of authentic cultural values through their integration in Christianity in the various human cultures". Our Father commented: “Do not seek to understand this barbarous word (inculturation). It is one of these new gadget words to say the same thing as the puerile ‘aggiornamento’, now become ridiculous and odious through abuse. So, these priggish pedants have invented a scientific sounding word, ‘inculturation’. It is simply an even more profound disorder: ‘The Church takes on from every culture whatever she finds to be positive therein. Even so, ‘inculturation’ is something other than a simply external adaptation: it signifies an “intimate transformation of authentic cultural values by means of integrating them in Christianity and rooting Christianity in the various human cultures.’ All these efforts so as no longer to convert nor even civilise anyone! It is pitiful, and cause for righteous anger.”
Speech of October 9, 2021 with reference to No. 33 of Evangelii Gaudium
Catholic Counter-Reformation no. 26, April 1972
The Catholic Counter-Reformation no. 69, June 1973, p. 11