Consapevoli del Male
Apostolic Letter of the Holy Roman Pontiff on the failure of the Church
Aware of the evil that has been perpetrated over much of the last century by many who were pleased to call themselves Catholic, including even certain of Our predecessors, We address the peoples of the world with a heavy heart; laden with regret and sincere contrition.
2. Throughout that period of time, men of the Church, whether by ignorance or guile, chose to actively pursue a mission rather unlike that which was given to her by the Lord who said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” [i]
3. In previous centuries, Our predecessors of blessed memory, most notably Pope St. Pius X, dealt most wisely with such men; firmly correcting their errors whilest ruling the Household of God with condemnations when necessary, exhortations in all seasons and above all with the solicitous love of a true father, setting clear boundaries beyond which no man dare step lest he depart from the one true faith established by Our Blessed Lord.
4. In spite of all diligence, certain of the modernists [ii] persisted in plotting ways to justify circumventing the demands inherent to the mission of the Holy Catholic Church, which is nothing less than the “Kingdom of Christ on earth, destined to be spread among all men and all nations.” [iii] Their machinations were by necessity carried out in secret, careful to remain hidden in the shadows; for to do so in the plain light of day was to admit before God and man, thanks to the clarity of teaching provided by the Roman Pontiffs of that age, his manifest unworthiness of the very name, “Catholic.”
5. Beginning in earnest during the preparatory years leading up to Vatican Council II, the modernist supplanters were encouraged to emerge from their lairs to promote false doctrines, the same previously condemned, not unto rebuke, but unto the warm embrace of likeminded prelates even to the highest places.
6. While it is Our intention to address in the course of Our pontificate the entirety of the conciliar text with the piercing precision rightly expected of the Successors of St. Peter for the welfare of the entire family of God, at present We will limit Ourselves to speaking of those most bitter fruits of the Council known as “ecumenism” and “religious freedom.”
7. At the urging of sinful men whose insatiable appetites for novelty and human acclaim know of no discernable bounds, the Council Fathers collectively called for a cease fire whereby the Church Militant, in her members, would lay down “the weapons of our warfare, mighty to God, unto the pulling down of fortifications, destroying counsels, and every height that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God: and bringing into captivity every understanding unto the obedience of Christ.” (cf 2 Cor. 10)
8. In the decades that followed, men of the Church, from the lowest places even to the Office of Peter, were content to behave, in both word and deed, as if “every man is free to embrace and profess that religion which, guided by the light of reason, he shall consider true.” [iv]
9. In departing from the true faith in presuming to imagine that God grants to man the right to reject His saving truth, wayward churchmen found it expedient to address the heretics and schismatics as if each presently and collectively enjoys membership in communities, too numerous to number, used by Our Lord “as means of salvation,” [v] when in truth His Mystical Body, the Holy Catholic Church, is the solitary community of salvation established by the Savior.
10. If this were not offense enough against both God and man, even those who have yet to pass through the waters of Baptism were treated by these same churchmen as if saved.
The Jewish People, for instance, the same Peoples from whom Our Blessed Lord came and wept at their recalcitrance, were suddenly looked upon, not as a People who have need to “repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins” (cf Acts 2:38) but as those who could at once scoff at the Cross, and yet somehow in this same Cross be “reconciled as one in Christ” with the children of the Church. [vi]
11. Also were the Muslims looked upon and treated as a people who already “adore the one God, living and subsisting in Himself; merciful and all-powerful, the Creator of heaven and earth,” [vii] even as they dwell in the darkness and error of a false religion that rejects Christ and thereby He who sent Him. (Luke 10:16)
12. Many more examples could be cited wherein our churchmen neglected to “baptize the nations, teaching them all that Our Blessed Lord commanded” (cf Mt. 28:18-20) as was their duty to do, but at this let Us express Our heartfelt sorrow for having failed not only the Lord who paid so great a price for our Redemption, but the entire human race, the object of His saving work.
13. We shudder to realize how the whole of humankind suffered unnecessarily in the previous century from a deprivation of both spiritual and temporal goods; liberty, order and peace.
It is from this place of heartfelt contrition that We hereby declare Our intention to engage with renewed vigor the mission of the Holy Catholic Church, outside of which there is no salvation, once more to boldly proclaim Christ crucified, died and risen, and repeating after Our predecessor of blessed memory Pope Pius XI:
“When once men recognize, both in private and in public life, that Christ is King, society will at last receive the great blessings of real liberty, well-ordered discipline, peace and harmony.” [viii]
Given 13 May 2050 – The Feast of Our Lady of Fatima
[i] Matthew 28:18-20
[ii] Cf Pascendi Dominici Gregis
[iii] Pope Pius XI, Quas Primas – 12
[iv] Condemned by Pope Pius IX, Syllabus Errorum – 15
[v] Second Vatican Council, Unitatis Redintegratio – 4
[vi] Second Vatican Council, Nostra Aetate – 4
[vii] Second Vatican Council, Nostra Aetate – 3
[viii] Pope Pius XI, Quas Primas – 19