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Cardinal Brandmüller on the Tradition of Making Papal Professions of Faith

Cardinal Walter Brandmüller – the former president of the Pontifical Committee for Historical Sciences and one of the four dubia cardinals – has just published an article in German (in Die Neue Ordnung, August issue) in which he discusses an old ecclesiastical tradition – and its exemplified history – of how newly elected popes have made their own professions of Faith.

Under the title “The Pope: Believer; Teacher of the Faithful,” the German prelate reminds the readers that Jesus Christ gave St. Peter the mission of becoming the rock upon which He wanted to build His Church only after St. Peter had made a profession of Faith: “Thou are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.” “Following the profession of Faith of the Apostle, Jesus responds with His unique call to Peter,” as Brandmüller explains. He then continues, saying:

In this light, the foundational significance of Peter’s Faith for the inchoate Church becomes clear. Analogously, this of course also applies for the successor of Peter, the pope. Also the pope is foremost a “listener of the word” (K. Rahner [sic]), a believer, and only as such can he thus be a guarantee and teacher of the Faith for the Church.

The cardinal then explains that the pope himself, though the head of the Church, still is “in organic connection a member of that one body.” In light of these words, Cardinal Brandmüller makes it clear how important it is for the Catholic Church that the pope is himself to be seen actually preserving the authentic Catholic Faith:

If this is the case, then it becomes understandable that it lies in the vital interest of the Church that she can be sure of the genuine, authentic Faith of exactly that man who is the successor of the Prince of the Apostles, Peter, and [thus] carrier of his authority.

Importantly, Cardinal  Brandmüller explains that there is a tradition that goes back to the 5th century that a newly elected pope would communicate his profession of Faith (Professio fidei). The shared “community of the Apostolic Faith” (consortium fidei apostolicae) was the purpose of such professions of faith which took different forms over the course of history. (A personal side remark here: My husband remembers how in Rome once, in the presence of Father John Hardon, S.J., one bluntly forthright cardinal reminded Mother Teresa of Calcutta explicitly that “The basis of unity is truth!”)

Moreover, Cardinal Brandmüller refers to early-medieval documents which show that popes during that period of time had to proclaim a profession of faith before and after their own papal election. This profession of Faith was the basis of the unity between “the pope and the faithful of the Church.” In one such early text (from perhaps the 7th century) called Indiculum Pontificis, explains Brandmüller, “the new pope declares the true Faith as it has been founded by Christ, passed on by Peter, and then transmitted from his successor on to the last, newly elected pope, as he has himself found it in the Church and which he desires now to protect with his own blood.” That Faith includes

the mysteries of the Holy Trinity and of the Incarnation, as well as the additional ‘dogmata‘ [dogmas] of the Church as it had been laid down by the general councils, the constitutiones [constitutions] of the pope, and the respected teachers of the Church.

Additionally, the new pope binds himself to confirm and to preserve all the decrees of his predecessors.  Brandmüller comments upon this last fact, as follows:

It is striking how explicitly – especially in the last paragraph of the text – the strict preservation of the given and now transmitted is being stressed: he [the pope] promises to preserve the canones [canons] and decrees of our popes as divine and heavenly commandments.

Among other declarations or additional formulas (among them condemnations of specific heresies and erroneous teachings), this specific text explicitly mentions that the new pope threatens anyone who aims at contradicting any element of this orthodox Faith and tradition with an anathema (“anathema sit”).

As Cardinal Brandmüller shows, however, this custom has not been kept without interruption, but it can be found as far back as the 15th century. After the Eastern Schism in the 14th century and the further eruptions in the early 15th century, the Church then tried to “re-establish unity” on the eve of the Council of Constance. These newly formulated professions of Faith for the popes were, however, based on an earlier profession of Faith, the Liber Diurnus. At this point, Cardinal Brandmüller quotes and discusses at length this new text and compares it with previous versions of those professions of Faith. An important aspect here to be mentioned is that he says that that new text was to be read aloud on every anniversary of the pope’s coronation so as to remind him of his promises and solemn profession.

The German prelate then concludes that those professions of Faith have always been “reactions to serious, threatening crises of Faith”: that is, “Answers of popes to threats to the genuine Catholic Faith in its changing historical context.”

It is here that we readers might well consider that Cardinal Brandmüller deftly implies that we too might ourselves be again faced with such a crisis, and that such a profession of Faith might be once more a fitting and helpful tool in the preservation of unity within the Catholic Church.

He concludes his learned essay with the following meaningful words:

In a comparable situation – that is to say, in the confusion concerning the right interpretation of the Second Vatican Council – when Bl. Pope Paul VI even had to bemoan, in a review on 30 June 1972, that the smoke of Satan had entered the Church’s interior, he proclaimed with great concern for the truth and the clarity of the Faith at the end of the “Year of Faith” on 30 June 1968 his “Creed of the People of God.” As the first, he thus had given his own personal profession of Faith in front of tens of thousands of faithful which he then presented to the whole Church. This took place at the height of the cultural revolution of 1968 which had profound effects also on the Church. These went so far that there took place – at the German Katholikentag [Catholic Convention] in Essen in the same year – indignant demonstrations against Paul VI’s encyclical Humanae Vitae (25 June 1968) – a magisterial document whose prophetic character and whose providential significance since then are being more and more recognized.

Cardinal Brandmüller then brings his essay to a close with this:

Whoever considers this historical finding in the light of our present time may well ask himself what conclusion could be drawn for the Church of our days.

Since Cardinal Brandmüller is one of the dubia cardinals, the implication is that Pope Francis might do well himself to make such an orthodox and public profession of Faith.

It is worthwhile to remember in this context that it was recently, in June of 2017, that an Italian Monsignor Nicola Bux, in an interview with Edward Pentin, called upon Pope Francis to make exactly such a profession of Faith. Cardinal Brandmüller’s own words seem to resonate in those of Monsignor Bux:

We are in a full crisis of faith! Therefore, in order to stop the divisions now in progress, the Pope [i.e., Pope Francis] — like Paul VI in 1967, faced with the erroneous theories that were circulating shortly after the conclusion of the Council — should make a Declaration or Profession of Faith, affirming what is Catholic, and correcting those ambiguous and erroneous words and acts — his own and those of bishops — that are interpreted in a non-Catholic manner.

Otherwise, it would be grotesque that, while seeking unity with non-Catholic Christians or even understanding with non-Christians, apostasy and division are being fostered within the Catholic Church.

Let us also aptly consider – in light of these loyal proposals – that popes might first make an act of retraction – analogous to the ones humbly made by St. Augustine of Hippo – before they then would proceed to make their own profession of Faith.

It is also noteworthy that Cardinal Brandmüller’s own subtle and polite exploration of this topic comes to the public shortly after Cardinal Raymond L. Burke – one of his dubia colleagues – has explained more explicitly what a possible public fraternal correction of Pope Francis would look like. In a 14 August interview with The Wanderer, Cardinal Burke recently laid out a vision for such action as follows:

Q. Setting aside the question of timing, please explain how the process for the execution of a “formal correction” would proceed should a response to the five dubia not be forthcoming? How is a formal correction officially submitted, how is it addressed within the Church’s hierarchical structure, etc.?

A. The process has not been frequently invoked in the Church, and not now for several centuries. There has been the correction of past Holy Fathers on significant points, but not in a doctrinal way. It seems to me that the essence of the correction is quite simple. On the one hand, one sets forth the clear teaching of the Church; on the other hand, what is actually being taught by the Roman Pontiff is stated. If there is a contradiction, the Roman Pontiff is called to conform his own teaching in obedience to Christ and the Magisterium of the Church.

The question is asked, “How would this be done?” It is done very simply by a formal declaration to which the Holy Father would be obliged to respond. Cardinals Brandmüller, Caffarra, Meisner, and I used an ancient institution in the Church of proposing dubia to the Pope.

This was done in a very respectful way and not in any way to be aggressive, in order to give him the occasion to set forth the Church’s unchanging teaching. Pope Francis has chosen not to respond to the five dubia, so it is now necessary simply to state what the Church teaches about marriage, the family, acts that are intrinsically evil, and so forth. These are the points that are not clear in the current teachings of the Roman Pontiff; therefore, this situation must be corrected. The correction would then direct itself principally to those doctrinal points.

There have been cases, as I mentioned, of the correction of past Roman Pontiffs on non-doctrinal points where cardinals have gone to the Holy Father on one thing or the other such as, for example, matters dealing with administration of the Church.

Another question can also be raised. The Pope is the principle of unity of the bishops and all the faithful. However, the Church is being torn asunder right now by confusion and division. The Holy Father must be called on to exercise his office to put an end to this.

So then, the next step would be a formal declaration stating the clear teachings of the Church as set forth in the dubia. Furthermore, it would be stated that these truths of the Faith are not being clearly set forth by the Roman Pontiff. In other words, instead of asking the questions as was done in the dubia, the formal correction would be stating the answers as clearly taught by the Church.

Let us pray for the three remaining dubia cardinals that they may also receive the sustaining light and strength from God as to what step they should courageously take next, and also when they should do it.

102 thoughts on “Cardinal Brandmüller on the Tradition of Making Papal Professions of Faith”

  1. “I , (Francis), firmly embrace and accept each and every definition that has been set forth and declared by the unerring teaching authority of the Church, especially those principal truths which are directly opposed to the errors of this day. And first of all, I profess that God, the origin and end of all things, can be known with certainty by the natural light of reason from the created world (cf. Rom. 1:19-20), that is, from the visible works of creation, as a cause from its effects, and that, therefore, his existence can also be demonstrated: Secondly, I accept and acknowledge the external proofs of revelation, that is, divine acts and especially miracles and prophecies as the surest signs of the divine origin of the Christian religion and I hold that these same proofs are well adapted to the understanding of all eras and all men, even of this time. Thirdly, I believe with equally firm faith that the Church, the guardian and teacher of the revealed word, was personally instituted by the real and historical Christ when he lived among us, and that the Church was built upon Peter, the prince of the apostolic hierarchy, and his successors for the duration of time. Fourthly, I sincerely hold that the doctrine of faith was handed down to us from the apostles through the orthodox Fathers in exactly the same meaning and always in the same purport. Therefore, I entirely reject the heretical’ misrepresentation that dogmas evolve and change from one meaning to another different from the one which the Church held previously. I also condemn every error according to which, in place of the divine deposit which has been given to the spouse of Christ to be carefully guarded by her, there is put a philosophical figment or product of a human conscience that has gradually been developed by human effort and will continue to develop indefinitely. Fifthly, I hold with certainty and sincerely confess that faith is not a blind sentiment of religion welling up from the depths of the subconscious under the impulse of the heart and the motion of a will trained to morality; but faith is a genuine assent of the intellect to truth received by hearing from an external source. By this assent, because of the authority of the supremely truthful God, we believe to be true that which has been revealed and attested to by a personal God, our Creator and Lord.

    Furthermore, with due reverence, I submit and adhere with my whole heart to the condemnations, declarations, and all the prescripts contained in the encyclical Pascendi and in the decree Lamentabili, especially those concerning what is known as the history of dogmas. I also reject the error of those who say that the faith held by the Church can contradict history, and that Catholic dogmas, in the sense in which they are now understood, are irreconcilable with a more realistic view of the origins of the Christian religion. I also condemn and reject the opinion of those who say that a well-educated Christian assumes a dual personality-that of a believer and at the same time of a historian, as if it were permissible for a historian to hold things that contradict the faith of the believer, or to establish premises which, provided there be no direct denial of dogmas, would lead to the conclusion that dogmas are either false or doubtful. Likewise, I reject that method of judging and interpreting Sacred Scripture which, departing from the tradition of the Church, the analogy of faith, and the norms of the Apostolic See, embraces the misrepresentations of the rationalists and with no prudence or restraint adopts textual criticism as the one and supreme norm. Furthermore, I reject the opinion of those who hold that a professor lecturing or writing on a historico-theological subject should first put aside any preconceived opinion about the supernatural origin of Catholic tradition or about the divine promise of help to preserve all revealed truth forever; and that they should then interpret the writings of each of the Fathers solely by scientific principles, excluding all sacred authority, and with the same liberty of judgment that is common in the investigation of all ordinary historical documents.

    Finally, I declare that I am completely opposed to the error of the modernists who hold that there is nothing divine in sacred tradition; or what is far worse, say that there is, but in a pantheistic sense, with the result that there would remain nothing but this plain simple fact-one to be put on a par with the ordinary facts of history-the fact, namely, that a group of men by their own labor, skill, and talent have continued through subsequent ages a school begun by Christ and his apostles. I firmly hold, then, and shall hold to my dying breath the belief of the Fathers in the charism of truth, which certainly is, was, and always will be in the succession of the episcopacy from the apostles. The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way. I promise that I shall keep all these articles faithfully, entirely, and sincerely, and guard them inviolate, in no way deviating from them in teaching or in any way in word or in writing. Thus I promise, this I swear, so help me God. . .”

    Given by His Holiness Pope St. Pius X

      • After four years of Francis, I would have trouble believing the sincerity of any profession of Faith on his part. He says the Nicene Creed at Mass; maybe he believes it, maybe not.

    • I’d be happy with a renunciation of Communism and a clearly spoken, not slackjawed and mumbling, public recitation of the Apostle’s Creed.

    • In the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, the bishop-elect must make THREE Professions of Faith before he is consecrated bishop.

      On September 2nd, Fr. Andrij Rabij (pronounced Ahn-dree Rah-bee) will be consecrated at St. George’s Cathedral in Kiev, Ukraine. He will return to the U.S. as Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia.

      Please pray for him, that he may receive the Sacrament worthily and be a good and holy bishop.

    • It seems that unless the earthly Church of man repents; by means of a formal correction so as to dispel the heretical teachings that we now hear and see, I would think many graces will continue to be withheld.
      Patience has now become ” the accompaniment of sin” as well, by Church prelates who continue to play with words and give great freedom to the evil one.

      Love is action with clarity, and conviction.

  2. One can take some heart from this. Brandmuller is a Church historian, perhaps the greatest one alive today. He has obviously been exploring the by-ways of the whole matter regarding Bergoglio. Perhaps here we see the outline of what form the public correction will take.

    • Also formidable theologian Fr Aidan Nichols, OP, just made a “heavy” statement about the need to change Canon Law to deal with Bad Popes while they are still in office.
      If Pope Francis had any sense, he would be afraid, very afraid of statements like this from a theologian of Fr Nichols’ stature.

  3. Well beyond time to reinstitute such an oath.
    When Paul VI dispensed with the “Oath Against Modernism” he definitively broke what could be
    termed the “social” contract – but for our purpose we’ll say the “ecclesial contract” between the faithful and the episcopate. That contract smashed, and now eradicated, spells the vaporization not merely of Roman Catholicism, but of authentic religion in the sociological sense. Secular materialism was given carte blanche, and paved the way for the current pontificate which in its
    essence bears no resemblance at all to Roman Catholicism but for the externals.
    This is unsustainable. The contract extinguished there is no binding element – not even faith. Faith in what? The “god of surprises” and the gospel with blank pages?
    Unfinished with blank pages?
    Not even any fine print?
    Who would enter into such a contract?
    The episcopate and the theological academy appear to be venerating the deity found in the mirror.
    The Vatican is in the hands of a gentlemen of limited cognizance, morphed into the ideological
    mumbo-jumbo of personal convenience. Disoriented men are often malicious.
    The ecclesial bond is on the verge of total rupture.
    That said, our God, the Most Holy Trinity, will keep the covenant established in Jesus Christ,
    but the sin committed against His Love for us by the episcopate is unspeakable.
    How dare we tempt His justice with episcopal presumption?
    From “Pastor aeternus,” chapter 4, section 6, of Vatican I:
    “For the holy Spirit was promised to the successors of Peter not so that
    they might, by His revelation, make known some new doctrine, but that, by His
    assistance, they might religiously guard and faithfully expound the revelation
    or deposit of faith transmitted by the Apostles.”
    Time for someone to return to his land of origin.

  4. The “correction” after the dubia letter, according to Cdl Burke:
    “It is done very simply by a formal declaration to which the Holy Father would be obliged to respond”.
    I wonder how would Francis feel himself “obliged” to respond the correction once it has been issued.
    Until now he has chosen to stay dumb and nobody cares. He behaves as if the dubia and the cardinals who raised them don’t exist. The strategy is excellent and successful.

      • Who is able to challenge this strategy ?
        A few cardinals who remained silent regarding the dubia issue? The boldness of Cdl Burke scared them.
        Only the media are and they are 95% on Francis’ side

        • Yeah — the false god Baal had 450 priests, vs. THE 1 True God and his single, rag-tag, unpopular prophet Elijah.
          And who won . . . .?
          “Any man more right than his neighbours constitutes a majority of one”. 🙂

  5. Continue to pray to Our Lord for the mercy of a Pauline Conversion of Pope Francis, as the havoc he is spreading in Christ’s body is not of God.

      • Malachy Bernard, yes indeed where are all the cardinals, arch-bishops and bishops voicing their concerns about this Holy father and his eugenicist ideology (inviting their evil into the Vatican to spout their bile). Where are these prelates who should be resisting the Pope to his face on chapter 8 of A.L.
        Well, too many (German, Argentinian, Brazilian, Belgian , Maltese- to name but a few) are too busy falling over themselves to promulgate heresy to their faithful, it is wickedness. Scratch the surface with these “prelates” and you will find faithless clericalism gone mad.
        Of the original 4 Cardinals RIP Card. Meisner – only 3 are left to challenge this bad pope.
        Anyway, all is not so bad, the Holy Father insisted on a call to confirm his legitimacy as Pope only weeks ago, so he is running scared. (All bullies run when challenged )When was the last time a Pope felt he had to do that???
        The rotting corpse that is the Vatican is presided over by this bad pope and we all need to pray Our Lord, in His mercy, grants this pope a Pauline Conversion.

  6. The words that spring to mind upon reading this are fastidiousness and unction, as if an earthquake would ensue if the truth were to be clearly spoken about the Pope’s failure/refusal to answer the Dubia. To me, while such hesitancy and veiling of meaning may be prudent in order to protect their jobs, it is hardly the language that inspires the faithful who care about such matters. Let us pray that the Holy Spirit gives them more courage and us more understanding and patience.

    • But Michael have we forgotten that Burke and Brandmuller are speaking to all Catholics not just to you and me? So that means both have to speak to all, according to THEIR understanding of the Faith. Imagine the falling away, the schism, that would happen instantly if either of these patient men started blasting away? Most Catholics are not really aware of what’s happening so it would be shocking to hear really blatant, personal criticism.

      YES, I want Cardinals, Bishops and priests who profess to be faithful to come out blazing! But we have to think of what would happen. There are many calls here and on other blogs for direct, frank, even harsh talk because we think the Truth must be spoken no matter what the fall-out. But that is just not the way it can be done now.

      It will be a year soon since the Dubia were sent. In Church history this is a mere blip of time. We must be patient!

      P.S. Michael, I’m not accusing you of having the sentiments I describe (lack of patience etc.) but speaking in general of those who do call for the canons to roar.

      • We have to think of what will happen if they don’t.

        We see at present what is happening, can you imagine how much worse it will be if they do not?
        Don’t try!

        The roar of Satan goes on with great freedom. We need a canon.

      • The schism has been a reality for decades. Denial is no substitute for the charity of the Truth. Patience has been practiced for a protracted interval. There has been no absence of effort to heal the rift. It was the core of John Paul’s and Benedict pontificates — salvage what was good of V2 and maintain unity.
        Unity cannot be maintained with individuals who adhere to a different belief system and who hold you and the perennial Magisterium in manifest contempt — all the while maintaining that they aren’t.
        They are either self-deluded or bold liars.
        Neither of those characteristics makes for a promising outcome.
        Pope Francis does not answer the dubia for one reason. It will show him for what he is. He doesn’t want that.
        An honest man in a position of such authority is humbled by his responsibility. This in neither and honest or humble man and he does not want that to be unambiguously revealed.
        Ambiguity and subterfuge are the modus operandi of his element. It is poison. It must be extricated.

        • Michael wrote: “Unity cannot be maintained with individuals who adhere to a different belief system and who hold you and the perennial Magisterium in manifest contempt — all the while maintaining that they aren’t.”

          This is extremely important to emphasize. El Bergo and the “Progs” have simply a different belief system than Trads and Trad-leaning Magisteriums. Trads just realize this more fundamentally than the others. So many Magisteriums, like Robert Royal and company, good guys all, are (appearing or pretending to be) not “getting it”. Ever and always just a bit more woeful than in their previous interviews, they seem moving in “slo mo” toward understanding what Trads have known for decades. Pretending Progs are Cathoic in any real sense is a massive (shall we say politely) disservice to everyone. Well, most everyone, ahem.


        • Can you imagine Pope Pius XII or XI or X faced with such questions?

          Why, I cannot imagine them but gleefully leaping at the chance to present the teaching of the Church to the whole world!

          Yet this guy finds it something of an insult……

          • Spot on.
            “…gleefully leaping…”
            Because they knew that the teaching of Jesus Christ would bring souls to interior freedom and eternal happiness.
            This gentleman, his sycophants and his cadre do not know.
            They do not believe.
            “I am the Lord your God. Thou shall not have strange gods before me.”
            Atheism is rife within the clergy, religious and the episcopate. They have a pantheon of strange gods. One particularly which they gaze upon in the mirror.
            That is the sad reality.

        • He had me convinced 4 years ago he is a liar, a deceiver and a snake in the grass, so he’s already blown his cover; not just to me, but to millions.

          • His nature was manifest the moment he walked out onto the balcony.
            Nevertheless, there are a lot of people who need their ears tickled and their concupiscence excused. A willing audience and a numerous fan club. Fan clubs make miserable and fraudulent churches.

      • I would love to see the Cardinals come out blasting. Do you think any regular Catholic has even heard of any of them, Amoris Laetitia, or the Dubia? Do you think if they did hear that would even care? Most Novus Ordo Catholics are now really Protestants as they generally act like that in their moral behavior according to surveys.
        You can be patient Barbara. That’s good. I choose to be both angry and patient.

        • I make forays out into Novus Ordo-land regularly to help with faith formation and the like in a near and very troubled parish. A number of teenagers and some parents have come to me asking about the dubia and what’s going on. Most of these are committed but woefully catechized. So the news is out. People know something’s going on.

          • Yes, I’m sure some know something. Do you know whether they think what is happening is good or bad. Most of my kids think Pope Francis is a good guy. Why? His permissiveness is very appealing to those Catholics who don’t practice their faith.

          • Same was true for many on the Titanic, too. “By Jove, the engines have stopped, eh? Well, well. Another brandy here, please.”

            As then, so now: reality is about to break on them. But honestly, for all the Vat2 talk about the priesthood of the laity and so on, the whole Vat2 Revolution was built, was it not, on the long-standing Vatican 1 Church “reality’ that most Catholics “prayed and paid” and didn’t ask questions. I had many family members who embraced the changes; and only a few of the older ones lamented the various changes to my mother, and when she demanded of them why they didn’t speak up, they’d shrug and say, “Father says it’s ok.”

            The question is, I suppose, when the news does break, will there be a rush for the boats or will the mass of Vat2 Catholics hold back, either staying on deck or returning to their cabins.


          • Very hard to say, indeed. Angels (good and bad) are much better at understanding causation than we are, but I think even they are “waiting with baited breath”, as it were.

            There’s one more Titanic analogy to bring up: Some have thought that that evening, in the calm water and intensely cold air, there was a mist over the pack ice that the ship was fast approaching. The iceberg that did the deed was out in front of the pack ice and thus looked dark against the mist. So it is quite possible that they steered right for the iceberg, thinking it was a channel through the pack ice. Since the log did not survive (intentionally?), we cannot know for sure.

            But has not the Barque of Peter now a helmsman who is steering right for a massive iceberg, and isn’t he claiming (and all the Progs cheer leading!) that it is a channel to open water? I’ve a Leftist acquaintance, who insists she’s a Buddhist but obviously is just a goofy Westerner who “hasn’t a clue” about Buddhism. But she insists, with great passion, actually, that El Bergi is the greatest pope “ever” and the ONLY ONE who can save the Church.

            It’s just so odd.

          • I’ve a relative who is a similar “Buddhist.” I prefer to call that branch of “spirituality” has hedonism with meditation… because that’s all it really is.

          • “People know something’s going on.”

            This about sums it up, I think.

            They know “something” is going on, but not much more than that. I’ve even talked to priests who are not informed.

            Catholics amaze me in the lack of interest they have overall for the Church and what’s going on. I confess I don’t actually “get it”. If there was tons of zeal to spread the Gospel and people were vociferously active in defending the faith, that would be one thing, but when I see lots of sometime Mass-goers and lots of dedicated Rotary members, I really scratch my head.

      • A couple of remarks on this here.
        “…Imagine the falling away, the schism, that would happen instantly…”
        – To be honest, we do not need to imagine that. How should we call the situation that we already have? When many of the shepherds, even with the highest ranks, are just, let’s say,- very bad in being a true Catholics! (This ‘true’ here is same as ‘ortodox’) Did you ever heard anything about Bp Athanasius Schneider and his revelation about some very strange schism that we already have?
        . . .
        “…Most Catholics are not really aware of what’s happening so it would be shocking to hear really blatant, personal criticism…”
        – Who is talking about, or calling for the ‘blatant, personal criticism’? It is the TRUTH, that we are talking about, and all faithful Catholics should always do the same,- always speak (in, for, about) the Truth. Especially all the officials in the habits.
        . . .
        “…There are many calls here and on other blogs for direct, frank, even harsh talk because we think the Truth must be spoken no matter what the fall-out. But that is just not the way it can be done now.”
        – Not ‘no’, but Yes! That’s exactly the this must go, and that’s the way the TRUTH always must be spoken and defended, no matter what!
        Remember, only the Truth, even if painful, liberates, while the lie always offends.
        . . .
        “…It will be a year soon since the Dubia were sent. In Church history this is a mere blip of time. We must be patient!…”
        – One year is indeed a mere blip of time in the Church history, and even less than that in the eyes of God. But, who are ‘we’ who should be ‘patient’? Among ‘we’ I see bishops, cardinals too? And ‘be patient’ with what? With the spreading of venom, toxic, poison? Waiting for what? For the time when God Himself shall right in the face of all heretics explain His only, always the same, unchangeable TRUTH? But we know, He has done that already. Many times, trough the mouth of many faithful ones, in the past. Right now He needs the same (kind of faithful people and even more clerics). He don’t need so badly, because God is defenseless, but HE needs us for us, for our own sake. He want to have the faithful ones as He had then Jeremiah, Isaiah, Elias,… and yes, the faithful ones as His own Son Jesus Christ! Because every good Catholic should be, and the shepherds should be certainly no less, the TRUE DISCIPLES of our Christ the Lord. So they, as we too, should and must constantly do our best to imitate the Christ.

        – A call to be ‘patient’ with the heretics, deceivers, and the wicked ones, while we daily pray totally different prayers to our God, seems to me as a sign of cowardice and even betrayal.
        I am asking myself, do we even know what we are really saying when praying? Or what are our real (and sincere) thoughts during our prayers?
        We could take as good example the words of Psalm 50:
        “I will teach the unjust thy ways: and the wicked shall be converted to thee.”
        “O Lord, thou wilt open my lips: and my mouth shall declare thy praise.”

        – Every Catholic who daily holds Breviarium in his hands, must know the real meaning of the words, and must daily be reminded to the Truth. Included all prelates. If they are the faithful ones.

        Instead calling for patience (which means to be passive, except eventually the prayers, penance, and doing some of the Seven Works of Mercy), we should better listen to apostle Paul and beg our God for giving us the good faith, strength, endurance, to be faithful so we can do our main job as good Catholics: witnessing for our Lord!

        “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear: but of power, and of love, and of sobriety. Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but labour with the gospel, according to the power of God, Who hath delivered us and called us by his holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the times of the world.” (2 Timothy 1, 7-9)

        • Absolutely nailed it. Right on!

          “And ‘be patient’ with what? With the spreading of venom, toxic, poison? Waiting for what?”

          This is exactly the problem I have with all those who say {and have said for 50 PLUS years????} to “be patient”.

          Patient with sin and the spread of lies?

    • “On the other hand, those of us desiring red meat must consider that the on-going messages of the Dubia Cardinals may speak loud and clear to Vatican ears highly attuned to the veiled nuances and subtleties of clerical speech.”

      This is an interesting point.

      I found Burke’s most recent statements made to the Wanderer to be blunt and clear cut. In the Vatican world of “veiled nuances”, I suspect there is a lot of tail chasing and head spinning going on.

      • Thanks RodH. Let us pray that Cardinal Burke has the courage to follow through on his Wanderer remarks. He is pretty much out there alone.

    • This site contains links to wholly-unauthorised or approved “prophetic” claims and to false “seers”. Where are the Moderators when they are actually wanted?

      • That story is a cut and paste from the Catholic Herald (click here for link) originally posted on Friday, 18th August, 2017.

        Cardinal Raymond Burke has publicly discussed making a formal correction of the Pope. However, Fr Nichols said that neither the Western nor Eastern Codes of Canon Law contain a procedure “for enquiry into the case of a pope believed to have taught doctrinal error, much less is there provision for a trial.”

        Does this mean we might have to grin and bear this?

        • I don’t know the procedures involved, canonical or otherwise, but I’ll tell you who DOES know: Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke. And when that man uses a word such as “necessary” (or any word, for that matter), what he means is precisely what he says. How many of us even realized there was any such thing as the presentation of “Dubia” to the Holy Father, before His Eminence et al. went ahead and presented them? Cardinal Burke knows what he is about,, and he can be relied upon to see this thing through, that the cross of Christ might not be emptied of its meaning.

          But even beyond that, the cri de coeur coming from many of the faithful needs to be addressed at the most basic of levels. No, we don’t have to “grin and bear” egregious error, for the ultimate reason that God is light, and in Him there is no darkness. That is why the only answer to the present crisis is Total Marian Consecration–the driving of the darkness of sin out of our own hearts first, and then out of the world. God is counting on Cardinal Burke, but He is also counting on each one of us. Following in the footsteps of St. Maximilian, who was able to “grin and bear” Auschwitz itself due to the solidity of his Marian Christocentricity (for there is no other kind), let us begin and continue to do our own part, while waiting for the members of the hierarchy to do theirs.

          And if they don’t (which I am not expecting–just sayin’)? How would that change who God is, or who He is calling each of us to become? If the whole world went Arian again, would that make Arius right? No, it wouldn’t. If the whole world were to be consumed in a climate-change induced inferno (a much less likely prospect), would that turn Amoris Chapter 8 into viable Catholic moral theology, or even common sense? No, it would not. Nothing would. Jorge Bergoglio may flatter himself into thinking that he will be the one to “split the Church” (a rather odd ambition, don’t you think, for a man of his profession?), but the Church doesn’t split. All anyone can ever do is to induce people to split off from Her. May we, wretched sinners though we are, implore the Almighty Father in Heaven that we ourselves may never be counted among such a number. And not only we ourselves, but any and all over whom we have, through interpersonal contact or through prayer, any influence at all. Since the stated goal of St. Maximilian’s Militia Immaculatae movement is to conquer all hearts for Her (for, where Mary reigns as Queen, there alone is Her Son truly King), the number of those over whom we accept this responsibility is meant to be without limit. Are you a Knight? If not, become one. If so, become a better one. This is the answer, Dubia or no Dubia. There will never be any other.

        • The story is from the Catholic Herald. I am referring to the links shown on the site whose address is given above.

        • I believe he is giving the the Pope one last chance to save face and give some sort of explanation; letting the Pope know that he’s going to make a formal pronouncement and when he does it will will be a public rebuke of the Pope’s wilful silence.

      • The article in question is just fine. Therefore I see no problem posting this link. If you have an issue with our methods of moderation, please use the contact form available at the top of every page and make your concerns known.

        • Yes, the article is fine. The SITE on which the article is found, posted above, contains many links to supposed on-going apparitions which have been condemned. You wash your hands of any responsibility?

          1P5 restoring Catholic Tradition?!

          • We simply don’t have the ability to look at every single link posted on every article here and check all of the sites therein for orthodoxy. If there is something wrong with a specific comment please flag it and let us deal with it. In this case you simply stating there is an issue with the site in a reply to the comment should be sufficient. Also, please moderate your tone. We appreciate civil, even if heated discussions. If you cannot do so and abide by the decisions of the moderation team, you can simply go elsewhere. If you think there is something wrong with our moderation policies, as I said, please contact us via the form linked at the top of the page.

  7. It’s interesting that the anniversary to the sending of the Dubia to Francis is coming up. I believe the middle of September. The next few months should be interesting indeed. If you read the entire interview of Cardinal Burke in ‘The Wanderer’, his answers were somewhat more direct than in his previous interviews. In one part, he was asked about Cardinal Meisner and he responded that he was a good and faithful shepherd, and faithful shepherds are truly charitable when they impart the truth of the faith. Truly faithful shepherds guide people in truth and their faithfulness doesn’t translate into
    “throwing stones at people.” (Here of course, he was parroting Francis’ accusations of the ‘legalism’ of orthodox shepherds when Francis has said more than once that they ‘throw stones at people’s lives’…..if you all will recall) Francis and his false ‘mercy’……ugh!!!!

    Part 2 of the interview is even more revealing than part 1 where Cardinal Burke seems to infer that the ‘formal correction’ is really NOT off the table at all……but…………we shall see.. To give Francis a full YEAR to answer is giving him WAY too much benefit of the doubt as far as I’m concerned, but who am I but just a lil ol pew sitter.

    • As with many teachings of the Early Church Fathers, they are timeless and VERY relevant,

      St. Cyprian wrote, over 1800 years ago, the following:

      “Moreover, beloved brethren, a new kind of devastation has appeared; and, as if the storm of persecution had raged too little, there has been added to the heap, under the title of mercy, a deceiving mischief and a fair-seeming calamity. Contrary to the vigour of the Gospel, contrary to the law of the Lord and God, by the temerity of some, communion is relaxed to heedless persons,-a vain and false peace, dangerous to those who grant it, and likely to avail nothing to those who receive it. They do not seek for the patience necessary to health nor the true medicine derived from atonement. Penitence is driven forth from their breasts, and the memory of their very grave and extreme sin is taken away. The wounds of the dying are covered over, and the deadly blow that is planted in the deep and secret entrails is concealed by a dissimulated suffering. Returning from the altars of the devil, they draw near to the holy place of the Lord, with hands filthy and reeking with smell, still almost breathing of the plague-bearing idol-meats; and even with jaws still exhaling their crime, and reeking with the fatal contact, they intrude on the body of the Lord, although the sacred Scripture stands in their way, and cries, saying, “Every one that is clean shall eat of the flesh; and whatever soul eateth of the flesh of the saving sacrifice, which is the Lord’s, having his uncleanness upon him, that soul shall be cut off from his people.”22 Also, the apostle testifies, and says, “Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of devils; ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table and of the table of devils.”23 He threatens, moreover, the stubborn and froward, and denounces them, saying, “Whosoever eateth the bread or drinketh the cup of the Lord unworthily, is guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.”24

      16. All these warnings being scorned and contemned,-before their sin is expiated, before confession has been made of their crime, before their conscience has been purged by sacrifice and by the hand of the priest,25 before the offence of an angry and threatening Lord has been appeased, violence is done to His body and blood; and they sin now against their Lord more with their hand and mouth than when they denied their Lord. They think that that is peace which some with deceiving words are blazoning forth:26 that is not peace, but war; and he is not joined to the Church who is separated from the Gospel. Why do they call an injury a kindness? Why do they call impiety by the name of piety? Why do they hinder those who ought to weep continually and to entreat their Lord, from the sorrowing of repentance, and pretend to receive them to communion?”

  8. “The Pope is the principle of unity of the bishops and all the faithful.”
    Cardinal Burke

    No. The “principle of unity of the bishops and all the faithful” is the Faith. The Pope is only secondarily and accidentally the principle of unity. This distinction is essential. Dogma is the proximate Rule of Faith, not the Pope. Dogma is the “formal object of divine and Catholic Faith.” Dogma is divine revelation formally defined. The Pope is the necessary and instrumental cause of Dogma. The formal and final cause is God.


    • Well said Drew. So many forget that the Pope is the custodian and defender of the deposit of the Faith. He is not the Faith itself. The fact that God has allowed such a man to occupy the center of the Church shows that He is sifting the wheat from the chaff – to see who are idolizers of the papal person and office, and those who hold to the Catholic Faith whole and entire.

    • What Cdl. Burke meant by “principle” is actually “an instrument and sign”. And this is true because only those who are in full communion with the successor of Peter are members of the Church founded by Jesus Christ and in unity with each other. Of course there are some caveats to this declaration such as in the current situation when the faith of the pope is in question.

      Francis has been called upon to make a decision. If he does not, a decision will be made for him.

      ‘The fist of Christ is clenched tightly about the shaft of an iron rod, His holy arm is raised and prepared to strike. When He does the entire world will know that He is the Lord and, trembling in fear, will bow down before and pay Him homage.’

    • But if we separate ourselves from the Papacy (regardless of the worthiness of the incumbent) we are no longer in union with The Church.

      • To be subject to the Roman Pontiff is necessary as a necessity of means for salvation is a Dogma, that is, a formal object of divine and Catholic Faith. No one is suggesting that we “separate ourselves from the Papacy” as his subject but that does not change the fact that the Faith is the primary and unconditional principle of unity in the Church. If the pope fails in the Faith then “we must obey God rather than man.”

        Remember that obedience is only a virtue when it is directed by the virtue of Religion which is the primary subsidiary virtue under the moral virtue of Justice. Obedience to anyone in violation of the virtue of Religion is always a sin even if that person is the Roman Pontiff. To be disobedient to a pope because he commands anything against the virtue of Religion is meritorious and does not imply removing yourself as his subject any more than a son who disobeys his father who commands that he sin would end his being his son.

        Also remember, the two greatest trials in history required the faithful to be disobedient to the divinely constituted authority: the fallen angels followed their divinely constituted authority of Lucifer and the Jews at the time of Jesus followed the Pharisees who were ‘sitting on the chair of Moses.’ We seem to be facing a similar trail today. Obedience to the unjust or immoral command of a superior can only mitigate guilt. It cannot remove it.

        Dogma is the proximate Rule of Faith. The pope is only secondarily and accidentally the Rule of Faith.


        • I pray for the Pope, but advise those not as well catechised as I to disregard his “suggestions & attitudes” against established and unchangeable Dogma.

          It’s an uphill fight with the papolators of my own family, who can’t see why “I have a bee in my bonnet” against this Pope.
          I guess this is my cross to bear. . . . sigh.

  9. We, and they know what they, the Dubia Cardinals must do and they must do it sooner than immediately. They must do it yesterday. We have waited long enough while a renegade pope tears the Church of Christ farther apart each day and the Cardinals and their brothers all over the world sit on their hands and do nothing. Enough is enough! Get on with it!!

    • Are you still expecting some public action from those three cardinals? If they were going to, they would have by now.

      • Burke gave a statement about a formal correction about 48 hours ago. He (& the other 2) are gonna do it.
        (They had to give a generous amount of time to the Pope so he couldn’t say he didn’t have time to make a clarification.)

    • Not that I have to seriously worry that it might happen, but I would actually fear an orthodox profession of faith from this man, this “Pope Saladin” who praises Islam so frequently and encourages the colonization of Europe by Muslims and who denies the differences between religions on important matters and specifically affirms the peacefulness of a religion that has expanded by the sword quite proudly all over the world.

      Were he at this point to make a public profession of the faith, I would be inclined to take him at his past words and practices and simply accept such a profession for what it would appear to be: an expression of taqiyya.

      It would be the aggressive and rigid promotion of that faith, along with strict discipline of those who deny it, that would get my attention and earn my respect.

      Until then, I read and observe him and compare his words and actions to those of the Magesterium and Saints and great Popes of the past. In that there is great clarity and very little confusion. He has made himself very clear indeed.

        • More of the same unquestioning and really quite stunning support for what is a migration to and colonization of Europe.

          No caveats, no clear exposition on the responsibilities of migrants, no condemnation of the tenets of Islam that clearly support migration as a tool of conquering enemies, and conversion of non-Muslims, nothing.

          It is as if this man IS a Muslim.

          • He is probably not. But, can we speak here about true Catholic Faith!?
            Some kind of religion where the human is in center, especially the poor ones, and true God is there just as some kind of support, when needed, and then usually putted there on very wrong way, can never be called Catholic Faith. To me, it seems more as a kind of new world religion…

          • He was elected by the St Gallen mafia who are the freemasonic cardinals who are the creatures of the European Union who are implementing the “Coudenhove Kalergi Plan” Look it up. It’s real.

            The late Fr Malachi Martin, looking through the lens of how the Jesuits undermined the papacy, predicted a pope like Francis–approved by modernist Jesuits, and the tool of the NWO– before he died (under mysterious circumstances, after having been slandered in an attempt to discredit the truth of his writings about the Vatican, the Popes, and the Church.

  10. Even if the pope were to make some form of Profession of Faith, I fear that I might not be able to hear it, having been profoundly deafened by the silence that’s ensued since the dubia were submitted.

    Perhaps during his visit to Colombia in September (aka Dubia Anniversary Month), a group of pesky Trads could get close enough to ask Francis politely but firmly, “And when are you going to answer the dubia, Holy Father?” I’d pay good money to see his expression. I think it would probably stop a clock.

    (Any Colombian Trads reading, try gaining entry to the Medellin football stadium on September 9th where Francis is due “to meet priests, nuns, seminarians and their families” – one of the few events on his itinerary which won’t be choreographed to the nth degree).

  11. A profession of faith. How perfectly quaint!

    El Lider Maximo has no need for such antiquated gestures. Are you listening, you “rigid” “rosary counters”?

    • Indeed. And he already has demonstrated that whoever he thinks Jesus is, it’s not the same Jesus in whom the Church professes its faith.

  12. I think many of us have been justifiably frustrated with the length of time the “dubia process” has taken, for this reason:

    This pontificate is only the bump of the abscess showing on the mystical Body of Christ. The abscess has been there for many years and SHOULD have been excised many years ago.

    The need for a strong defense of the faith by many prelates in the form of a combative, ongoing, continuous, rigid and unflinching affirmation of truth and condemnation of falsehood and the enemies of the faith inside the Church was made plain. That it has come to this now is a tragedy and deep scandal.

    Having said that, I believe we are now seeing at least Cardinal Burke in possession of the courage to see this thing thru. I thought at first he would do it, but I confess I lost some faith in him along the way. i am regaining that faith again.

    As the old saw goes: “The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”

    In this case, the tree should have been planted 50 years ago as we all know, but hey, close enough…

    • I am sure that the good tree should have been planted even before than five decades ago, because also the weeds had been planted before 1967. The dark and false spirit have entered some weak (but important) souls, and so the Church, before that time.

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