5 Jun 2017

Why does Father Paul Kramer still maintain that Francis is not the true pope?

by Jonathan Ekene Ifeanyi
Father Paul Kramer, his long-time friend late Father Nicholas Gruner, and Cardinal Martino holding Father Kramer’s book, The Suicide of Altering the Faith in the Liturgy, during the Fatima: Your Last Chance Conference, held in Rome in 2012.
“εἰ ἀλήθειαν λέγω, διὰ τί ὑμεῖς οὐ πιστεύετέ μοι; ὁ ὢν ἐκ τοῦ θεοῦ τὰ ῥήματα τοῦ θεοῦ ἀκούει: διὰ τοῦτο ὑμεῖς οὐκ ἀκούετε, ὅτι ἐκ τοῦ θεοῦ οὐκ ἐστέ.”
           
—“If I say the truth, why do you not believe me? He that is of God, heareth the words of God. Therefore you hear them not, because you are not of God.” (John 8: 46-47).

Recently, I decided to search the internet to see what Catholic bloggers and writers think about Fr. Paul Kramer’s position that Francis is a false pope. I was just disappointed by almost all I read. More disappointing—and indeed, terrifying—is the fact that the mass majority of Catholics the world over simply don’t give a damn about the matter; they don’t understand that there is a very serious problem, and simply don’t care to understand. As for those who seem to care, among all the sites I consulted—with the exception of the Sedevacantists who of course hold Fr. Kramer’s position but cause confusion by their “all are invalid” propaganda—scarcely could I find anyone giving a serious consideration to what this priest has been shouting to the Catholic world since 2013 when the current war against Catholicism officially began. There is no zeal to seek the truth; rather, I could see mere expressions of sentiments. The common teaching of great saints and holy doctors such as St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Jerome, St. Cyprian, St. Athanasius, St. Robert Bellarmine, St. Alphonsus Liguori, St. Antoninus, Pope Innocent III, etc., and indeed, of the magisterium of the Church—that a manifest heretic is not a Christian and cannot be pope—is completely pushed aside by people who parade themselves as “Catholic traditionalists.” Interestingly, they seem to be doing so because they “fear” that acknowledging this teaching would automatically make them Sedevacantists—meaning, logically, that all the saints just mentioned were in fact Sedevacantists and therefore must be avoided!  

In this piece, I intend to show why Fr. Kramer maintains that Francis is not a valid pope: What he stated at the onset, and what he still maintains till date, which no one has actually been able to contradict. My position is that if he speaks the truth, we must not only listen, but also join his crusade. If we ignore him merely because we feel he’s just an ordinary priest—as in fact I observe many are doing—or because we are afraid of the truth, we shall definitely be punished for that. “If I say the truth, why do you not believe me?” Our Lord asked the Jews. “He that is of God, heareth the words of God. Therefore you hear them not, because you are not of God.” (John 8: 46-47). The men at the Vatican who imposed Bergoglio on all of us are very serious in their firm resolve to destroy Catholicism. They have a very serious agenda which must be countered, and we—and no other people—are the ones to do this. Let’s finally be done with all the excuse-making and wilful blindness; these matters are serious!

To start with, we note that Fr. Kramer initially accepted Francis as a valid pope, which of course shows he has no personal issue with him but is only striving to keep the Faith, which is simply his duty as a priest of Christ. As I pointed out in my article, How Pope Ratzinger messed up the papacy!, “the fact that Bergoglio is indisputably a public heretic has been Father Kramer’s major reason for rejecting the current “pontificate”. The other idea of some mafias wanting to force Benedict XVI to resign is simply not a fiction as well, but it’s just secondary.” Being a cautious priest, his rejection of Francis came later only as a result of Francis’ teaching of “explicit and clear heresy flatly contradicting the infallibly defined dogma of the Catholic Faith.” And what dogma exactly?

On November 28, 2013, Fr. Kramer announced on his Facebook page that he rejects Francis’ claim to the papacy due to manifest heresy found in his (then newly-published) “Apostolic Exaltation” EvangeliiGaudium. He wrote:

"“Pope” Francis in Evangelii Gaudium n. 247: “We hold the Jewish people in special regard because their covenant with God has never been revoked”. This text is an explicit profession of heresy, directly opposed to the solemn dogmatic definition of Pope Eugenius III and the Ecumenical Council of Florence, and the doctrine taught by the supreme magisterium of Pope Benedict XIV in Ex Quo Primum, set forth repeatedly and explicitly citing the definition of Florence, to wit, that the Mosaic covenant has been “revoked” and “abrogated”. I have been saying for years that when a “pope” will officially teach explicit and clear heresy flatly contradicting the infallibly defined dogma of the Catholic faith, then you will know that he is the false pope prophesied in many Church approved prophecies and Marian apparitions. St. Robert Bellarmine, St. Alphonsus Liguori, St. Antoninus and Pope Innocent III all teach that when the pope demonstrates himself to be a manifest heretic, i.e. a plainly manifested public heretic, he ceases to be pope (or, if already was a public heretic he was invalidly elected) because he is not a Catholic — not a member of the Catholic Church. Bellarmine explains that the Roman Pontiff is the visible head of the Church, and the head is a member. One who is not a member cannot be the head, and therefore the election to the supreme pontificate of a public heretic is canonically null & void. The heresy of Bergoglio in no. 247 is such a clear cut case of manifest, public heresy, expressed in stark, unequivocal terms, that it can be said without doubt that if this proposition of no. 247 is not manifestly heretical, then nothing else can be said to be so. It is morally impossible that one who manifestly displays such clearly expressed contempt for a defined dogma of faith by plainly denying it, can be believed to validly hold the office of Roman Pontiff. St. Francis of Assisi foretold of the un-canonically elected pope who would not be “a true pastor but a destroyer”. Bergoglio plainly fits the description."

Here, we shall consider the following questions:

1        Is it true that no. 247 of Francis’ Evangelii Gaudium is an explicit profession of heresy, as Fr. Kramer says — “directly opposed to the solemn dogmatic definition of Pope Eugenius III and the Ecumenical Council of Florence, and the doctrine taught by the supreme magisterium of Pope Benedict XIV in Ex Quo Primum, etc.—that the Mosaic covenant has been “revoked” and “abrogated””?

2        Can we demonstrate how the text opposes any of the solemn dogmatic definitions of the Church? If so, what then can be the consequence of this?

3        Is it truly the teaching of the Church that “when the pope demonstrates himself to be a manifest heretic, i.e. a plainly manifested public heretic, he ceases to be pope (or, if already was a public heretic he was invalidly elected) because he is not a Catholic — not a member of the Catholic Church”?

4        Did St. Francis of Assisi prophesy that there would be an un-canonically elected pope who would not be “a true pastor but a destroyer”?

For question number one, here, in block quotes, is the entire paragraph 247 of Francis’ 51,000-word mammoth exhortation Evangelii Gaudium:

247. We hold the Jewish people in special regard because their covenant with God has never been revoked, for “the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable” (Rom 11:29). The Church, which shares with Jews an important part of the sacred Scriptures, looks upon the people of the covenant and their faith as one of the sacred roots of her own Christian identity (cf. Rom 11:16-18). As Christians, we cannot consider Judaism as a foreign religion; nor do we include the Jews among those called to turn from idols and to serve the true God (cf. 1 Thes 1:9). With them, we believe in the one God who acts in history, and with them we accept his revealed word.

In fact, no. 247 above is not all. Francis goes on, in numbers 248 and 249:

248. Dialogue and friendship with the children of Israel are part of the life of Jesus’ disciples. The friendship which has grown between us makes us bitterly and sincerely regret the terrible persecutions which they have endured, and continue to endure, especially those that have involved Christians.

249. God continues to work among the people of the Old Covenant and to bring forth treasures of wisdom which flow from their encounter with his word. For this reason, the Church also is enriched when she receives the values of Judaism. While it is true that certain Christian beliefs are unacceptable to Judaism, and that the Church cannot refrain from proclaiming Jesus as Lord and Messiah, there exists as well a rich complementarity which allows us to read the texts of the Hebrew Scriptures together and to help one another to mine the riches of God’s word. We can also share many ethical convictions and a common concern for justice and the development of peoples.

No. 247 above,—as well as 248 and 249—just as Fr. Kramer stated, is an official teaching of explicit and clear heresy flatly contradicting the infallibly defined dogma of the Catholic Faith. Francis teaches that the “covenant” God made with the Jews “has never been revoked”, and blatantly misquotes the Scripture (Rom 11:29) to support his teaching. This text is filled with heresy and error, failing to distinguish today’s religion of “Judaism” with the Judaism of the Old Covenant, which ceased with the establishment of the Catholic Church on Pentecost Sunday. It is in the coming of the Messiah and the founding of the One True Catholic Church that God has remained faithful to His promises, so Francis’ misuse of Sacred Scripture—already perpetrated by John Paul II—to bolster his position is nothing short of sickening.

In the Old Testament, Jeremiah prophesied as follows: “Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers, when I took them by the hand...But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them; and I will write it upon their hearts; and I will be their God and they shall be my people...for I will forgive their iniquity and I will remember their sin no more.” (Jer. 31:31-34). Ezekiel also prophesied: “I will sprinkle clean water upon you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleanliness, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. A new heart I will give you, and a new spirit I will put within you: and I will take out of your flesh the heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.” ((Ezekiel 36: 25-26).

Jesus Christ is the manifestation of this new covenant. The new covenant was made for all the nations of the world and not for Israel alone—hence the Church founded by Christ is a Catholic (meaning universal) Church. When Israel rejected and crucified Christ, the Jewish people renounced the covenant and were rejected by God as the chosen people. God then transferred, at the same time, the privileges and responsibilities of the covenant relationship to His new chosen people, the Catholic Church. Christ’s activities fulfilled God’s covenant with Abraham and Israel. By the Sacrament of Holy Communion, Jesus instituted the new covenant during the Last Super when He said: “This is the chalice, the new covenant in my blood, which shall be shed for you”: “Hic est calix in novum testamentum in sanguine meo, qui pro vobis fundetur.” (Luke 22: 20). Therefore, the blood of Jesus, shed on the cross, is the fulfilment of the new covenant. The Old Covenant was “revoked” and New Covenant made when Christ opened the kingdom to the gentiles and offered His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity for the redemption of humanity.

St. Paul makes it clear, in the Letter to the Hebrews, that Christ’s New Covenant has made obsolete the former one. “For if the blood of goats and of oxen, and the ashes of an heifer being sprinkled, sanctify such as are defiled, to the cleansing of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who by the Holy Ghost offered himself unspotted unto God, cleanse our conscience from dead works, to serve the living God? And therefore he is the mediator of the New Testament: that by means of his death, for the redemption of those transgressions, which were under the former testament, they that are called may receive the promise of eternal inheritance. ...For Jesus is not entered into the holies made with hands, the patterns of the true: but into heaven itself, that he may appear now in the presence of God for us.” (Heb. 9: 13-15, 24). 

Today’s Jews—who do not believe in Christ but believe that the Messiah is yet to come!—are not “the people of the covenant.” Their religion, in fact, did not originate from the Judaism of the Old Covenant but was established by Annas and Caiaphas in 33 AD, and hence is indeed a “foreign religion.” It is not the faith of the Catholic Church in any way, nor that of Abraham. St. Paul, himself a Jew, writes: “Know ye therefore, that they who are of Faith, the same are children of Abraham. And the scripture, foreseeing, that God justifieth the Gentiles by faith, told unto Abraham before: In thee shall all the nations be blessed. ...For you are all the children of God by faith, in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptised in Christ, have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek...For you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you be Christ’s, then are you the seed of Abraham, heirs according to the promise.” (Gal 3:7-8; 26-29). Today’s Jews who do not believe in Christ are not among these heirs of Abraham. As Our Lord told the Jews of His day: “...you shall die in your sins. For if you believe not that I am he, you shall die in your sin”“Dixi ergo vobis quia moriemini in peccatis vestris: si enim non credideritis quia ego sum, moriemini in peccato vestro.” (cf. John 8: 24).  Worshipping a god that is not the Most Holy Trinity, today’s Jews must turn and convert to the worship of the One True God, otherwise, says Our Lord, they will die in their sin.

Again, Our Lord warned the Jews who would reject Him: “Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people yielding its fruit”: “ideo dico vobis, quia auferetur a vobis regnum Dei, et dabitur genti facienti fructus eius.” (Matt. 21:43). St. John, an apostle of Christ—and also a Jew—writes: “Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ. He is the Antichrist who denies the Father and the Son”: “Quis est mendax, nisi is, qui negat quoniam Jesus est Christus? Hic est Antichristus, qui negat Patrem, et Filium.” (1 John 2:22).

Therefore, Francis’ teaching that “We hold the Jewish people in special regard because their covenant with God has never been revoked” is a blatant profession of heresy; and his statement that “God continues to work among the people of the Old Covenant” (meaning today’s Jews) is a blatant lie. God does not “work” among a people who reject His only begotten Son as the Messiah, but rather prepares a punishment for them.

According to late Mr. John Vennari, in his article “Pope Francis and the Old Covenant”:

“We should not be surprised, however, when Pope Francis says of today’s Jews, “their covenant with God has never been revoked.” He has always been an ecumenical prelate. In December of 2012, he celebrated Hanukkah with Argentine Jews in Buenos Aires.

“Further, as Cardinal Bergoglio, he co-authored the 2010 book On Heaven and Earth with his friend Rabbi Abraham Skorka. Here is what then-Cardinal Bergoglio said about Vatican II’s treatment of this topic: “There is a phrase from the Second Vatican Council that is essential: it says that God showed Himself to all men and rescues, first of all, the Chosen People. Since God is faithful to his Promise, He did not reject them. The Church officially recognizes that the People of Israel continue to be the Chosen People. Nowhere does it say, ‘You lost the game, now it is our turn’. It is a recognition of the people of Israel. That, I think, is the most courageous things from Vatican II on the subject.”

“When Cardinal Bergoglio notes that nowhere does Vatican II say of today’s Jews: “you lost the game, now it’s our turn,” he is referring to the doctrine that the Old Covenant is superseded by the new; and that Vatican II appeared to alter this teaching. By rejoicing in this new approach, Bergoglio effectively rejects Our Lord’s words to the Jews noted earlier, “Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people yielding its fruits.”(Matt. 21:43).

“It is the true doctrine of supersession on which the Catholic based its traditional teaching that the Jews were the “once-chosen people,” but the Chosen People no longer. We see an example of this in Pope Pius XI’s Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, a liturgical prayer issued simultaneously in 1925 with his encyclical Quas Primas. The prayer reads in part, “Turn Thine eyes of mercy towards the children of that race, once Thy chosen people: of old they called down upon themselves the Blood of the Savior; may It now descend upon them, a laver of redemption and of life.”” 

Quite unfortunate to note: Good John Vennari knew all this and yet regarded Francis as a valid pope!

So then, question number 2: Can we demonstrate how the text opposes any of the solemn dogmatic definitions of the Church? If so, what then can be the consequence of this?

Yes, we can.  The doctrine of the supersession of the Old Testament by the New is a universal and perpetual doctrine of the Catholic Church. It is a defined article of the Catholic Faith—i.e. a solemn, dogmatic definition. The solemn Profession of Faith of the Ecumenical Council of Florence under Pope Eugene IV, (1441, ex cathedra), says the following:

“The Holy Roman Church ... firmly believes, professes, and teaches that the matter pertaining to the Old Testament, of the Mosaic law, which are divided into ceremonies, sacred rites, sacrifices, and sacraments, because they were established to signify something in the future, although they were suited to the divine worship at that time, after Our Lord’s coming had been signified by them, ceased, and the sacraments of the New Testament began; ... All, therefore, who after that time observe circumcision and the Sabbath and the other requirements of the law, it (the Roman Church) declares alien to the Christian faith and not in the least fit to participate in eternal salvation, unless someday they recover from these errors.”

Again, Pope Benedict XIV reiterated this dogma in his encyclical Ex Quo Primum:

“The first consideration is that the ceremonies of the Mosaic Law were abrogated by the coming of Christ and that they can no longer be observed without sin after the promulgation of the Gospel.” (Ex Quo Primum, # 61)

Again, Pope Eugene IV, Council of Florence, 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 ...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...

As already mentioned, the above declaration of the Ecumenical Council of Florenceas well as Benedict XIV's Ex Quo Primum and that of Eugene IVis simply a dogma. And what is a dogma? A dogma is what has been infallibly defined by the Catholic Church. The dogma of the Faith is known by the solemn, infallible definitions of the magisterium of the Church. “Dogma is the name given to a proposition that is proclaimed with all possible solemnity either by the Roman pontiff or by an ecumenical council. A dogma is a revealed truth that the Roman Catholic church solemnly declares to be true and to be revealed; it is most properly an object of faith. Vatican I declared that the pope, when he teaches solemnly and in the area of faith and morals as the supreme universal pastor, teaches infallibly with that infallibility that the church has.” (Encyc. Brit., 2014). The word infallible means “cannot fail”. Therefore the dogmatic definitions of the Faith, solemnly defined by the Church, cannot fail. Again: “Dogma (for all who receive it) is an affirmation which it is sinful to deny, or to change, or to ignore. ...From Nicaea onwards formulated dogma is accompanied by anathemas,” says the Encyclopaedia Britannica. (EncycBrit. Vol. 7; 1955, pp. 501-502).

In 1870 the First Vatican Council solemnly and infallibly defined the infallibility of solemn dogmatic definitions. So we now know what the Faith is, what the dogma of the Faith is, by the solemn, infallible, dogmatic definitions. Men can fail; lay people can fail; priests can fail; bishops can fail; cardinals can fail; and even the pope can fail in matters which do not involve his charism of infallibility, as history has shown us with more than one pope. For example, 42 years after his death, Pope Honorius I was condemned by the Third Council of Constantinople (680 AD) for aiding and abetting heresy, precisely for supporting the doctrine of “one will in Christ”, and that condemnation was confirmed by Pope Leo II in 682, (who stated that Honorius “allowed the immaculate faith to be stained” by teaching not “in accord with apostolic tradition.”) and repeated by later popes. Note, however, that Pope Honorius wasn’t even a manifest heretic, yet he was anathematized. He wasn’t the originator of the heresy. The heretics were the Monothelites—Sergius and co—and Honorius was condemned together with them. And why? The anathema of the Third Council of Constantinople read, after mentioning the chief Monothelites, “and with them Honorius, who was Prelate of Rome, as having followed them in all things.” Furthermore, the Acts of the Thirteenth Session of the Council state, “And with these we define that there shall be expelled from the holy Church of God and anathematized Honorius who was some time Pope of Old Rome, because of what we found written by him to [Patriarch] Sergius, that in all respects he followed his view and confirmed his impious doctrines.” The Sixteenth Session adds: “To Theodore of Pharan, the heretic, anathema! To Sergius, the heretic, anathema! To Cyrus, the heretic, anathema! To Honorius, the heretic, anathema! To Pyrrhus, the heretic, anathema!”
           
But according to Bellarmine, “Here the fact must be remarked upon that, although it is probable that Honorius was not a heretic, and that Pope Hadrian II was deceived by corrupted copies of the Sixth Council, which falsely reckoned Honorius was a heretic, we still cannot deny that Hadrian, with the Roman Council, and the whole Eighth Synod sensed that in the case of heresy, a Roman Pontiff can be judged.” Hence Pope Leo II’s letter of confirmation of the Third Council of Constantinople interprets the council as intending to criticize Honorius not for error of belief, but rather for “imprudent economy of silence”. Leo's letter states: “We anathematize the inventors of the new error, that is, Theodore, Sergius, ... and also Honorius, who did not attempt to sanctify this Apostolic Church with the teaching of Apostolic tradition, but by profane treachery permitted its purity to be polluted.” The New Catholic Encyclopedia notes: “It is in this sense of guilty negligence that the papacy ratified the condemnation of Honorius.”  

The point we’re trying to make here is the fact that even a pope, as a private person, can fail. But the solemn dogmatic definitions of the Faith, defined by the Pope, or the Pope together with all the bishops in a Council of the Church—such as the above definition of the Ecumenical Council of Florence under Pope Eugene IV regarding the Jews—cannot fail. Everything, therefore, must be judged by these definitions that cannot fail. As Fr. Nicholas Gruner once put it during the era of John Paul II, in response to “new Catholic doctrines” which surfaced since Vatican II and which simply contradict or at least “revise” the solemn dogmatic definitions: “The infallible definitions are the unchanging standard by which one measures every doctrine, just like a 36-inch yardstick is the unchanging standard for measuring a yard. We don’t suddenly decide that the new standard for measuring a yard is a 35-inch stick. Everything in the Faith must be measured against the yardstick of infallible definitions. Even the pronouncements of the popes must be measured and weighed against this standard.” (The Fatima Crusader, Summer 2001, Issue 67, p.48).

Fr. Gruner further stated: “Solemn definitions, by necessity, must say “this is the Catholic Faith” and therefore, by strict logical implication, also say, “those who say the opposite are anathema”—meaning, they are cut off from the Faith and the Church. In other words, you must believe this in order to be saved. So by necessity, the definitions also must state or imply that those who don’t believe this are condemned.” (Ibid. p.49)

In his article, “Defection from the Faith & the Church - Faith , Heresy, and Loss of Office - An Exposé of the Heresy of John Salza & Robert Siscoe Part I (Revised and amplified),” Fr. Kramer quotes Pope St. Pius X who makes this very clear “in Question 200”:

“Whoever would not believe in the solemn definitions of faith or would doubt them, would sin against faith; and remaining obstinate in unbelief, would no longer be a Catholic, but a heretic.” (“Chi non credesse alle definizioni solenni del Papa, o anche solo ne dubitasse, peccherebbe contro la fede, e se rimanesse ostinato in questa incredulità, non sarebbe più cattolico, ma eretico.”).

“Heretics are not only those who stubbornly doubt or deny any solemn definitions,” writes Fr. Kramer, “but the same Pontiff teaches that they are heretics who refuse to believe any truth revealed by God which the Catholic Church teaches as “de fide”: “Gli eretici sono i battezzati che ricusano con pertinacia di credere qualche verità rivelata da Dio e insegnata come di fede dalla Chiesa cattolica” (Q. 228).”

Therefore, from the perspective of Catholic doctrine, the consequence of the above teaching of Francis is that he is indeed a notorious heretic, already separated from the Body of Christ, and indeed, accursed—and likewise all those who know his blatant heresies but refuse to reject and denounce him.

Question number 3: Is it truly the teaching of the Church that “when the pope demonstrates himself to be a manifest heretic, i.e. a plainly manifested public heretic, he ceases to be pope (or, if already was a public heretic he was invalidly elected) because he is not a Catholic — not a member of the Catholic Church”?

The answer is a resounding YES. To start with, when Fr. Kramer first stated that a manifest—and not a secret—heretical pontiff loses his office ipso facto, not only did many “traditional Catholics” not believe him, some in fact ridiculed him. But that attitude now seems to have abated only because Raymond Cardinal Burke—a high-ranking prelate—has now acknowledged the same fact! In an interview with Catholic World Report, Burke, a canon lawyer, said: “If a pope would formerly profess heresy, he would cease, by that act, to be the pope. It’s automatic.” (See: “If a Pope would formally profess heresy, he would cease, by that act, to be the Pope. It’s automatic”. (Raymond Cardinal Burke).). 

So YES, it is the teaching of the Church that a manifestly heretical pope automatically ceases to be pope, and is not a member of the Church. A manifest heretic is a formal heretic in the external forum—this is quite unlike a formal heretic in the internal forum, that is, an occult or secret heretic. There are two kinds of heresies—material heresy and formal heresy. On the one hand, a material heresy, or the matter of heresy, is a belief that is contrary to a defined dogma—a belief quite contrary to what a Catholic must accept with divine and Catholic Faith.  The matter of heresy exists in the intellect and can be present with innocent ignorance, or with sinful pertinacity in the will. 

On the other hand, a formal heresy, or form of heresy—what renders an erroneous belief formally heretical—is pertinacity in the will.  When a person knowingly rejects a dogma of the faith, or when he wilfully doubts a defined dogma, he is guilty of formal heresy in the internal forum (the realm of conscience).  And since heresy is contrary to faith, a person who wilfully disbelieves a single article of faith immediately loses all supernatural faith.  Just as one mortal sin removes all supernatural charity (grace) from the soul, so too a single heresy removes all supernatural faith. St. Thomas Aquinas writes: “Just as mortal sin is contrary to charity, so is disbelief in one article of faith contrary to faith. Now charity does not remain in a man after one mortal sin. Therefore neither does faith, after a man disbelieves one article… Therefore it is clear that such a heretic with regard to one article, has no faith in the other articles, but only a kind of opinion in accordance with his own will”. (ST. Pt II-II, Q. 5, A. 2).

A man who is guilty of the sin of heresy immediately loses all supernatural faith; and since faith is the foundation of the supernatural life, when faith is lost, so too are the theological virtues of hope and charity, which, along with faith, unite a man to the soul of the Church.  Therefore, when one loses the faith—the foundation of the supernatural life—he is completely severed from the soul of the Church. 

BUT—unlike what some Sedevacantists teach—the loss of faith does not, in and of itself, sever a man from the body of the Church.  A mortal sin against faith does not, in and of itself, sever a man from the body of the Church.  And if the man who loses the faith happens to be pope, he does not thereby lose his office.  This is a crucial point that is often missed by even the most learned defenders of the Sedevacantists’ position. Formal heresy in the internal forum only severs a man from the soul of the Church.  It requires formal heresy in the external forum to sever a man from the body of the Church, and formal heresy in the external forum is declared heresy by the proper authorities—i.e. a Church Council.

However, before such a declaration a person who is guilty of a formal heresy in the external forum is already automatically severed from the body of the Church, that is, he is ipso facto excommunicated, or rather, he automatically excommunicates himself. This is simply the official teaching of the Catholic Church and anyone who doesn’t believe it is simply in grave error. Just like apostasy and schism, the sin of heresy per se has the intrinsic effect of separating the heretic from the Church by itself, without any ecclesiastical censures; and is distinguished from other sins which do not by their very nature separate the sinner from the body of the Church. For these other sins, for other grave offenses the sinner can only be separated from the Church by a sentence of excommunication incurred or inflicted by legitimate ecclesiastical authority. But a heretic is automatically separated from the Church by his own heresy. This is the infallible teaching of the universal magisterium of the Church which must be believed de fide divina et Catholica under pain of heresy. As Pope St. Pius V teaches in the Roman Catechism:

“Heretics and schismatics are excluded from the Church, because they have defected (desciverunt) from her and belong to her only as deserters belong to the army from which they have deserted."; whereas those who have not left the Church by defecting, but are excluded from the Church by excommunication, are "cut off by her sentence from the number of her children and belong not to her communion until they repent.” (Quoted by Fr. Kramer in the article cited above).

If a baptised person expresses an opinion in conflict with Catholic dogma, it is plain that the material element of heresy is present: error in the intellect contrary to the Catholic Faith. But of course it does not yet follow that the sin of heresy has been imputably committed, or that the person in question is in fact a heretic. From the position of Canon Law a single question must be asked: does the person realise that his opinion conflicts with Catholic teaching? If he does, he is canonically deemed to be a heretic. Canon 1325 defines a heretic as a baptised person, still calling himself a Christian, who “pertinaciously denies or doubts any of the truths which must be believed with divine and Catholic faith.” And the word “pertinaciously” is understood by canonists to mean that the person is conscious of the conflict between his opinion and the Church's teaching.

In Francis, then, we see this “pertinacity” in action. For instance, before writing his scandalous “Evangelii Gaudium” was he unaware of the dogmatic definition of Eugenius III and the Ecumenical Council of Florence, and the doctrine taught by the supreme magisterium of Pope Benedict XIV in ExQuo Primum,—that the Mosaic covenant has been “revoked” and “abrogated”? Of course, he was aware, and he is still aware—just as he was equally aware of Church teaching regarding reception of Holy Communion before writing his blatantly heretical Amoris Laetitia, which explains why he obstinately and pertinaciously refused and still refuses to answer the Dubia of the Four Cardinals. As Edward Pentin explained—the seriousness of the campaign against the four cardinals—in his interview with Regina Magazine:

“The Pope’s reaction, of going so far as to question the cardinals’ mental state, has been read as a manifestation of his own anger at having his agenda taken off course. And instead of taking the four cardinals at their word (they have said they are acting primarily out of charity towards the Holy Father, justice and deep pastoral concern), they are seen as adversaries. I understand he has also been working behind the scenes to ensure his agenda is not thwarted. From strategically placed articles in L’Osservatore Romano to equivocations from those who publicly criticized the Dubia when asked if the Pope had asked them to do so, Francis has been acting, as one observer put it, like a “behind-the-scenes political lobbyist.” In the three weeks after the dubia were published, the Pope gave three interviews to the world’s media, each of them aimed at legitimizing his position while denigrating his critics.”

We see this same pertinacity in virtually all his evil works. “The heresy of Bergoglio in no. 247 (of Evangelii Gaudium) is such a clear cut case of manifest, public heresy, expressed in stark, unequivocal terms”, says Fr. Kramer, “that it can be said without doubt that if this proposition of no. 247 is not manifestly heretical, then nothing else can be said to be so.”

The word “manifest” means “flagrant, obvious”. Hence a manifest heretic is that heretic whose heresies are simply “flagrant and obvious to all”— flagrant meaning “so obviously inconsistent with what is right or proper as to appear to be a flouting of law or morality”; it applies to offences or errors so bad that they can neither escape notice nor be condoned. This is exactly what we see in Francis—who is never afraid to teach boldly and publicly deadly errors that contradict the Church’s solemn, dogmatic teachings. His heresies are simply manifest and he is just proud of that.

About such a manifest heretic, then, St. Robert Bellarmine writes, in his work “On the Roman Pontiff” (De Romano Pontifice, lib. II, cap. 30.):

“The fourth opinion is that of Cajetan, for whom (de auctor. papae et con., cap. 20 et 21) the manifestly heretical Pope is not “ipso facto” deposed, but can and must be deposed by the Church. To my judgment, this opinion cannot be defended. For, in the first place, it is proven with arguments from authority and from reason that the manifest heretic is “ipso facto” deposed. The argument from authority is based on St. Paul (Titus, c. 3), who orders that the heretic be avoided after two warnings, that is, after showing himself to be manifestly obstinate — which means before any excommunication or judicial sentence. And this is what St. Jerome writes, adding that the other sinners are excluded from the Church by sentence of excommunication, but the heretics exile themselves and separate themselves by their own act from the body of Christ. Now, a Pope who remains Pope cannot be avoided, for how could we be required to avoid our own head? How can we separate ourselves from a member united to us?

“This principle is most certain. The non-Christian cannot in any way be Pope, as Cajetan himself admits (ib. c. 26). The reason for this is that he cannot be head of what he is not a member; now he who is not a Christian is not a member of the Church, and a manifest heretic is not a Christian, as is clearly taught by St. Cyprian (lib. 4, epist. 2), St. Athanasius (Scr. 2 cont. Arian.), St. Augustine (lib. de great. Christ. cap. 20), St. Jerome (contra Lucifer.) and others; therefore the manifest heretic cannot be Pope.”

Again, he writes:

“...the Holy Fathers teach unanimously not only that heretics are outside of the Church, but also that they are “ipso facto” deprived of all ecclesiastical jurisdiction and dignity. St. Cyprian (lib. 2, epist. 6) says: “We affirm that absolutely no heretic or schismatic has any power or right”; and he also teaches (lib. 2, epist. 1) that the heretics who return to the Church must be received as laymen, even though they have been formerly priests or bishops in the Church. St. Optatus (lib. 1 cont. Parmen.) teaches that heretics and schismatics cannot have the keys of the kingdom of heaven, nor bind nor loose. St. Ambrose (lib. 1 de poenit., ca. 2), St. Augustine (in Enchir., cap 65), St. Jerome (lib. cont. Lucifer.) teach the same.

“Pope St. Celestine I (epist. ad Jo. Antioch., which appears in Conc. Ephes., tom. I, cap. 19) wrote: “It is evident that he [who has been excommunicated by Nestorius] has remained and remains in communion with us, and that we do not consider destituted [i.e. deprived of office, by judgment of Nestorius], anyone who has been excommunicated or deprived of his charge, either episcopal or clerical, by Bishop Nestorius or by the others who followed him, after they commenced preaching heresy. For he who had already shown himself as deserving to be excommunicated, could not excommunicate anyone by his sentence.”

“And in a letter to the clergy of Constantinople, Pope St. Celestine I says: “The authority of Our Apostolic See has determined that the bishop, cleric, or simple Christian who had been deposed or excommunicated by Nestorius or his followers, after the latter began to preach heresy shall not be considered deposed or excommunicated. For he who had defected from the faith with such preachings, cannot depose or remove anyone whatsoever.”

“St. Nicholas I (epist. ad Michael) repeats and confirms the same. Finally, St. Thomas also teaches (S. Theol., II-II, q. 39, a. 3) that schismatics immediately lose all jurisdiction, and that anything they try to do on the basis of any jurisdiction will be null.”

He concludes (in the Fifth Opinion):

“Therefore, the true opinion is the fifth, according to which the Pope who is manifestly a heretic ceases by himself to be Pope and head, in the same way as he ceases to be a Christian and a member of the body of the Church; and for this reason he can be judged and punished by the Church. This is the opinion of all the ancient Fathers, who teach that manifest heretics immediately lose all jurisdiction, and outstandingly that of St. Cyprian (lib. 4, epist. 2) who speaks as follows of Novatian, who was Pope [i.e. antipope] in the schism which occurred during the pontificate of St. Cornelius: “He would not be able to retain the episcopate [i.e. of Rome], and, if he was made bishop before, he separated himself from the body of those who were, like him, bishops, and from the unity of the Church.” ”

Catholics who are now awaiting the world Cardinals and bishops to denounce Francis are greatly mistaken because, as Fr. Kramer rightly puts it, “It is plainly evident that in our own time, a sort of blindness has fallen upon almost all the bishops of the Latin Church. With a prophetic insight, more than 1,500 years ago St. Vincent described the present condition of the Church today: “if some novel contagion seek to infect not merely an insignificant portion of the Church, but the whole”. Under such circumstances, he says, “the clergy and faithful cannot reasonably be expected to suspend judgment on manifest heresy until the Church pronounces officially, and remain subject to a ravenous wolf and destroyer of souls – quod esset miserrima conditio Ecclesiæ, si lupum manifeste grassantem, pro pastore agnoscere cogeretur. (Bellarminus).”

The Church’s attitude regarding “Catholics” who support manifest heretics like Francis is simply excommunication, as we read in the following:

“Moreover, we determine to subject to excommunication believers who receive, defend or support heretics… If however, he is a cleric, let him be deposed from every office and benefice, so that the greater the fault the greater the punishment. If any refuses to avoid such persons after they have been pointed out by the Church [postquam ab ecclesia denotati fuerint], let them be punished with the sentence of excommunication until they make suitable satisfaction. Clerics should not, of course, give the sacraments of the Church to such pestilent persons nor give them a Christian burial…” (Fourth Lateran Council, Constitution 3, On Heretics. Pope Innocent III. 1215).    

Therefore, it is our collective duty, as Catholics, to recognise exactly what the Church teaches on this very essential matter, then unite and reject as well as denounce Francis and his innumerable poisonous heresies—even if no bishop or cardinal is in support. This is Fr. Kramer’s position.

Question 4: Did St. Francis of Assisi prophesy that there would be an un-canonically elected pope who would not be “a true pastor but a destroyer”?

YES. St Francis of Assisi (whose name Bergoglio intentionally bears in order to mess it up) prophesied: “A Man, not Canonically Elected, will be raised to the Pontificate… In those days Jesus Christ will send them not a true Pastor, but a Destroyer.”

Finally, let us kindly note that John Paul II and Benedict XVIas well as the heretical Second Vatican Councillaid the foundation of Francis’ heresy regarding the Jews, the only difference between them being that the duo never expressed their errors officially as Francis has done. The errors of John Paul II and Benedict XVI in this regard are well documented by Mr. John Vennari in his article: Judaism & the Church: before & after Vatican II, written before Francis' invasion. 

John Paul II, Benedict XVI and Francis praying at the Wailing or Western Wall in Jerusalem.

While both John Paul II and Benedict XVI expressed their heretical opinions in their bad books, scandalous speeches, and by their visits to the synagogue as well as praying at the Western Wall, Francis has now taught this heresy officially. “I have been saying for years that when a “pope” will officially teach explicit and clear heresy flatly contradicting the infallibly defined dogma of the Catholic faith, then you will know that he is the false pope prophesied in many Church approved prophecies and Marian apparitions.” (Fr. Kramer).

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