Conciliar Rome v Trad, Inc: Same product different package

An undated theological manual recently discovered at in abandoned monastery in Cervinara, Italy, is receiving a great deal of attention in certain circles.  

Bearing the signature of Fr. Scriba Mitica, with the imprimi potest of the eminent 18th century dogmatic theologian, Abbot Fictus Clericus, portions of the text seem remarkably relevant to the present crisis.   

Mitica writes: 

How can a faithful Catholic obey a Holy Roman Pontiff who is actively trying to cut off the fount of God’s grace from the lives of innocent children? As for me, my first duty is to them, not to any pope. Obeying his evil orders is antithetical to everything I believe, and I will not comply. (Mitica, Doctrinam Mentita, Ch. VII)

The theologian goes on to state:

It is exactly in times like this that God will be most pleased to hear our prayers. God heard the appeals of the Jews and rescued them from impossible situations countless times. God has miraculously delivered many Christian victories as a response to prayer, such as the Battle of Lepanto. Our Lady of Victory, pray for us! (ibid.)

Evidently, as Mitica wrote, Christendom itself was under a vicious attack at the hands of an unnamed Roman Pontiff. The pope’s assault against the Church was apparently so severe that Mitica likened it to the war that was waged against the Church by the Muslim Ottoman Turks in the 16th century.  

NB: This is the Holy Roman Pontiff and Vicar of Christ under discussion! The contemporary relevance of this text goes without say.

At this point, some readers are likely suspecting that the manual is a forgery, others are probably thinking that everything contained in this post thus far simply must be satire, but that is not the case. 

The fact of the matter is only some of it is satire.

Truth be known, Abbot Fictus Clericus (Fictitious Cleric), and Fr. Scriba Mitica (Mythical Scribe) never existed, nor does the make-believe manual, Doctrinam Mentita (False Teaching). Indeed, the thoughts conveyed in the citations above are utterly foreign to Catholic tradition.  

As for the quotes themselves, however, they are genuine, offered as they were by some of tradservatism’s most popular commentators in response to the recent rescript from Bergoglio’s Vatican cracking down on the Traditional Roman Rite. 

The first comes to us from the publisher of the world’s oldest… ah, you know the rest.

The second response is taken verbatim from a letter written by a man who goes by the name Marc Rome, the President of an organization called “Preserve the Latin Mass.” Dr. Peter Kwasniewski shared the letter on Facebook calling it a “great message.”

[Sarcasm Alert] Don’t you just hate when the Roman Pontiff orchestrates a persecution of the faithful so severe that it threatens to choke off the avenues of grace from the innocent, waging an outright war against the Holy Roman Catholic Church over which he reigns as Vicar of Christ and visible head on earth? 

Well, ya know, these things can happen since poor Jesus never thought to confer any special graces on the popes in order to prevent such things. Unfortunately, the Good Shepherd failed to provide for the protection of the members of His Mystical Body. 

While the notion of an unprotected flock suffering brutal attacks at the hands of a rogue Roman Pontiff meshes rather seamlessly with those who dwell in the tradservasphere, such a nonsensical notion is plainly incompatible with Catholic doctrine, for example, as set forth by the 20th (and last) ecumenical council: 

The first condition of salvation is to maintain the rule of the true faith. And since that saying of our lord Jesus Christ, ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church,’ cannot fail of its effect, the words spoken are confirmed by their consequences. For in the Apostolic See the Catholic religion has always been preserved unblemished, and sacred doctrine been held in honour … 

This gift of truth and never-failing faith was therefore divinely conferred on Peter and his successors in this See so that they might discharge their exalted office for the salvation of all, and so that the whole flock of Christ might be kept away by them from the poisonous food of error and be nourished with the sustenance of heavenly doctrine. (Vatican Council 1, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Art. 2, 7)

Most Catholic commentators, like the aforementioned tradservative voices, are reacting to the recent rescript as if the big story is the increasing level of hostility being exhibited toward the Roman Rite on the part of Bergoglian Rome, its Heretic-in-Chief, and his minions. 

That’s noteworthy enough, I suppose, but it’s not news. 

Jorge & Co. are not Catholic, a reality so plain that even non-Catholics have been talking about it for years! Moreover, it has been obvious for some time now that these men don’t really have a genuine desire to be Catholic. Rather, what the current ruling class of the counterfeit church really wants, just like the Council that birthed it, is to change what Catholic means.

But guess what? 

They’re not alone. The leaders of the tradservative movement are also striving to change what Catholic means, or more appropriately stated, all concerned are working to redefine what the Catholic Church is.

Sure, today’s most well-known tradservative personalities give at least an appearance of desiring to be Catholic, but they have so lost whatever sensus Catholicus they ever had that they are laboring to convince others that the Church established by Christ, and the Office of Peter upon which He is building it, have become in our day an obstacle toward holiness and, ultimately, salvation itself.

How can the Church established by Christ as the solitary means of salvation for all place roadblocks between the faithful and the very end for which the Church was founded? If Jesus is Lord indeed, and the Church His Mystical Body and our Holy Mother, it cannot.

That doesn’t stop the tradservatives, nor their superstar clerics, from insisting otherwise:

Though one hopes that it is hardly necessary to do so for most readers, let it be said that it is not possible that the Church herself could ever turn away from the One who gave her life. Why? Simply put, because that would be tantamount to her death. 

“The Spirit of our Redeemer, who penetrates and fills every part of the Church’s being, is active within it until the end of time.” (cf Pope Pius XII, Mystici Corporis 63)

The above tweet from Bishop Strickland is far from just one man’s error, rather, it perfectly encapsulates the disordered ecclesiology of the entire tradservative movement, a cottage industry that appears to be growing by leaps and bounds in our day thanks to the antics of the “God of Surprises.” As Jorge ratchets up his attacks against tradition, the movement gains momentum. 

That’s great news for those whose bread is buttered by such things.

It’s terrible news, however, for sincere seekers of truth who fail to realize that devotees of the Council and consumers of tradservative media are both falling victim to the very same deception:

Though the packaging may be different, the product is essentially the same, namely, a church that can and does undergo substantial change over time.

In the case of the conciliar counterfeit church, its leading voices are peddling the lie that the doctrine of the Church concerning things like ecumenism, religious liberty, and the Kingship of Christ are no longer acceptable. In short, their entire operation is based on the premise that the traditional doctrines have changed.

The more plainspoken among them do not hesitate to say so without nuance.

As for the leaders of the tradservative movement, their fervent belief is that Catholic doctrine, such as it was once taught concerning the nature and prerogatives of the Church, has changed, either that or it was never true in the first place.

Where once the Magisterium taught that the faithful could rest in the assurance that Holy Mother Church is trustworthy, and that her authoritative teachings, even if not infallible, are always safe to embrace, the tradservatives sow a militant distrust for the Church and her visible head on earth, the pope.

In our day, they are growing bolder and bolder in their insistence that the faithful must protect themselves and their children from the poisonous doctrines, devastating disciplines, and scurrilous attacks that are being launched against them from the See of Rome itself.

Where does this paradigm leave the simple man who takes to heart the exhortation of Our Lord to be as little children? 

It leaves them as orphans, unless, of course, they turn with childlike trust to the captains of the tradservative industry to partake of their scholarship and their insights.

It’s quite a nifty business model: Convince the foolish to embrace a dubious theory concerning the nature of the current ecclesial crisis (“the Church and the pope cannot be trusted”), while also proposing to offer a solution (“arm yourself with our articles, books, conferences, newspapers, and videos”).

One notes the degree to which those who trade in tradservatism are increasingly invoking the language of war, rallying their followers to figuratively take up arms and draw battle lines between themselves and the Holy Roman Pontiff.

One is hard pressed to imagine a less Catholic attitude!  

Worst of all is that many naïve souls appear to be buying what the tradservatives are selling. The former are unwittingly placing themselves in danger, but the latter, even more so.    

“Be not many of you teachers, my brethren, knowing that you receive the greater judgment.” (James 3:1)

Unlike tradservatism, attempting to speak the truth is a terrible business model. If you benefit from our work, please help us continue.