Was Vatican Council II Voided by Pope Pius II's "Execrabilis"? by F John Loughnan

Was Vatican Council II Voided by Pope Pius II's "Execrabilis"?
By: John Loughnan

(A Commentary on Mr D.J. McDonnell's Article in Oct. 1998 "CATHOLIC") by F John Loughnan

In his November 1988 issue, Mr Donald S. McLean, Editor of "CATHOLIC" (a proSSPX Australian monthly), prefaced an article by Des McDonnell with:

"Desmond McDonnell is a graduate of Monash and Melbourne Universities. He is a Public Servant and writes as a hobby. He was rejected, on the grounds of psychological unfitness, from studying for the priesthood in the Archdiocese of Melbourne. Readers of this article will realise why..." Subsequently, Des was successful in obtaining admission to the Society of St Pius X seminary in Australia and spent some time there. He ceased studies for the priesthood and, ultimately, became a teacher at the SSPX school at Tynong. He has continued to make frequent contributions to "CATHOLIC".

In the September 1990 "CATHOLIC", Fr. Brian W. Harrison, O.S. stated that there were documents showing that Archbishop Lefebvre had signed Dignitatis Humanae, and he "included the relevant pages" of the documentation as proof. Des (then at the Australian SSPX's Holy Cross seminary) took Fr. Harrison to task over:

1) the assertion that Archbishop Lefebvre had signed Dignitatis Humanae,
2) the implication that Archbishop Lefebvre is a liar, and
3) in doubting Thomas style, demanded: "Just show us the two documents themselves with his signature, and that of Bishop de Castro Mayer, on them!" (Imagine the difficulty in producing the originals to Des here in Australia?)

The April 1991 issue had a reply and counterreply entitled Punch and CounterPunch. Fr Harrison pointed out that "Mr McDonald (along with the French traditionalists who were the source of his 'information') is just plain wrong. It is an indisputable historical fact that those two prelates (Lefebvre and de Castro Mayer. F.J.L.) signed the final, officially promulgated Declaration on Religious Liberty..."

Mr McDonald, pooh poohed Fr Harrison's statements and challenged his photocopied documentation, saying: "Well let Father believe his bureaucrats. I prefer rather to believe the most faithful, courageous, clearsighted and persecuted Archbishop in the Church today."

Fr. Harrison, to the Editor of "CATHOLIC" (November 1991): "You have now published plainly false assertions about myself...the whole point I am trying to make is that although they voted against the religious liberty schema right until the end, both these prelates signed the same text an hour or two later, taking into account the fact that, in the meantime, the Supreme Pontiff and many other Council Fathers had already done so, thereby promulgating it formally as a document of the Magisterium." This prompted a grudging "If we have misrepresented Fr. Harrison..." from the Editor of "CATHOLIC". I do not know whether Des also proffered an apology to Fr. Harrison. Later, in August 1996 "CATHOLIC", p.3., Mr McLean stated that "We think Mr MacDonnell (sic) won the...debate"!

In THE LATIN MASS of Spring 1997, Fr. Harrison referred to "members and supporters of the Society of St Pius X (having) resorted to the most convoluted hermeneutical acrobatics and bizarre conspiracy theories in order to explain away the conclusive documentary evidence" that Archbishop Lefebvre did, in fact, sign Dignitatis Humanae and Gaudium et Spes on December 7, 1965 having "in a moment of submissiveness, subjected his own judgment to that of Peter and, added his signature to the documents, thereby sharing in their promulgation (but that) after the Council he quickly reverted to his total opposition to these documents, especially Dignitatis Humanae."

Marie Ryan (July 1998 AD2000) correctly observed that " 'CATHOLIC' is not a publication of the Society of St Pius X"; but she incorrectly wrote (April AD2000) that: A..."Mr Lisle advised the SSPX to take note, as it were, that 'the Fraternity of St Peter was arriving in Australia and New Zealand' "; for it was Fr Violette (French/Canadian District Superior of the SSPX in Australia) who made that announcement in his own (Jan.Feb. 1998) Bulletin. Mr Lisle's intention, I believe, was to demonstrate Fr. Violette's antiCatholic verbiage, which included the assertion that such "evil " (e.g. the new Mass, Vatican II novelties, new Catechism, etc.) ...'would have happened to the SSPX had the protocol of 1988 been accepted.' "

The Protocol, however, was accepted! "The Cardinal informed us that we would now have to allow one New Mass to be celebrated at St Nicholas du Chardonnet. He insisted on the one and only Church, that of Vatican II. In spite of these disappointments, I signed the Protocol on May 5th..." (A Statement by Archbishop Lefebvre, signed June 19, 1988 as recorded in Archbishop Lefebvre and the Vatican, p.207, by Fr. François Laisney, who was then Editor of The Angelus Press in the USA. It is to be noted here that Archbishop Lefebvre signed the protocol "to allow one New Mass to be celebrated..." a Mass that Fathers Violette and Peek would later describe as "intrinsically evil".

That he would allow himself to be almost immediately dissuaded, and the 1965 event be shown not to be an isolated event, is history. Fr. Harrison wrote (THE LATIN MASS of Spring 1997): "Those who remember the events of May/June 1988 will not find this sudden aboutface on the part of Lefebvre to be out of character; after all, he retracted almost immediately the agreement he had signed on May 5 with Cardinal Ratzinger which would have given legitimacy to the SSPX. Also, it seems that former members of the SSPX have testified that in private, the Archbishop vacillated between a sedevacantist outlook and acceptance of John Paul II as being a true pope."

Fr. Harrison reissued his challenge "(for the third time in five years!)" to the SSPX "to inspect the original, untouched document in the Vatican II archives...For it is clearly a sign of dishonesty and cowardice to accuse someone else of lying whilst refusing to look at the evidence which proves his veracity."

Appearing to deny "Thou art Peter...", Des wrote in September 1998 "CATHOLIC": "For many conservatives however, it is the Papacy, rather than the Mass, which is the visible Rock upon which the Church is built." Later, "CATHOLIC" of August 1994 appears to carry Des' credo under the banner "The 'New Mass' from A to Z". : His definitions for the New Mass include Blasphemy, Heresy, Illegality and Invalidity. In a strange letter in July 1998 AD2000 he would write that the "danger of developing a schismatic mentality" was his preferred option to "the endless struggle to impose a Catholic interpretation on the local new Mass...". Copies of

1) my letter of August 20, 1998 to Cardinal Ratzinger

2) the reply from the competent authority, the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, and
3) my open letter of Nov. 9, 1998 have been forwarded to Des McDonnell, Don McLean and others. Copies of them are available upon request to (03) 9726 7173.

In response to these I received a "Clayton's reply" (curiously dated 12. XI. '98) from Des. He made no comment as to the content of my letter to Cardinal Ratzinger nor to the reply from Mons. Perl, Secretary of Ecclesia Dei. Des did, however, enclose a copy of his article "The Many Heresies of the Catholic Conservative", published in the October 1998 issue of "CATHOLIC". Mr Don McLean, praised his article claiming "The article is rather longer than our usual, but we think worthwhile."

Some Points Made in the October 1998 "CATHOLIC" Article by Mr D. J. McDonnell 1.Regarding Bishop Fabian Bruskewicz: "Was it honest ignorance? Genuine stupidity? If so why has the 'good conservative' Bishop refused the appeals to remove the name of the SSPX from his list? Whence then this malice?", wrote Des.

Response: Such vituperation deserves to be returned to its writer! However, as with the Fr. Harrison debacle, I would bet heavily that Des has not made enquiries directly to Bishop Bruskewitz! The plain facts are that the bishop judged that the SSPX was among a group membership in which was defined by him to be "always perilous to the Catholic Faith and most often is totally incompatible with the Catholic Faith."

The Church has "an innate and proper right to coerce offending members by means of penal sanctions (c. 1311)."

The promise of Our Lord was not given to Marcel Lefebvre, who has persistently defied lawful authority. That Des does not like the results is, as Fr Angele (SSPX, Hampton) was wont to say, "tough"!

Please also refer to Appendix 1 below.

2."Pope John XXIII...in his famous Opening Speech (to Vatican II) had specifically forbidden his gathering from issuing any condemnations. (Documents of Vatican II, Abbott, ed., p.712)"

Response: There is no such "specific forbidding" on page 712 in my copy of THE DOCUMENTS OF VATICAN II, Walter M. Abbott, S.J., General Editor, Geoffrey Chapman Publishers, 6th printing 1972. Accordingly, I am at a disadvantage here or am I?

3.Des has problems with the pope "getting rid of his tiara", and signing the documents of Vatican II as "Bishop", etc.

Response: Does he know the first time that the pope wore a tiara? How scandalised would he be (and what would he have done) if he lived in the times of some of the following precedents?:

a)440c: St Leo I {45th P.} took over the old heathen title "pontifex maximus" which the Emperors had discarded. (Although "Tertullian uses it satirically of Pope Callistus (Calixtus) I (217222.)"

b)495: St Gelasius I {49th P.} was the first pope to be saluted as "Vicar of Christ" at Roman synod of May 13, 495 prior popes were content with "Vicar of Peter".

c)885c: Stephen V (VI) {111th P.} forbade the Slavonic liturgy. As a result the small group of St Methodius' disciples reverted to the Byzantine rite in the Slavonic tongue. The foundations were thus laid for a Slav speaking church which would eventually spread to include Russia, but which would be alien from Rome.

d)993: John XV {138th P.}, son of a priest named Leo, was the first pope to ritually canonise a saint St Ulrich, bishop of Augsburg (923 73), at a synod in the Lateran, Jan 31, 993.

e)996: Gregory V {139th P.} (3 May 996 18 Feb. 999) Emperor Otto III chose his 24 year old relative, Bruno, to be the first German pope.

f)999: Silvester II {140th P.} (2 Apr. 999 12 May 1003) Emperor Otto III chose the first French pope.

g)1024/32: John XIX, {145th P.} Brother of Benedict VIII {144th P.} but a bad pope. He published first indulgence with alms as a condition.

h)1075: St Gregory VII {155th P.} In his Dictatus Papae (Mar. 1075): He decreed xxii)"That the Roman Church has never erred; nor will it err to all eternity, the Scripture bearing witness."

xxiii)"That the Roman Pontiff, if he has been cononically ordained undoubtedly is made a saint by the merits of St Peter."

xxvi)"That he who is not at peace with the Roman Church shall not be considered Catholic."

Those last two should surely be upheld by the ultratraditionalist SSPXers, but I do not think that they would really like to think of Popes Paul VI, John XX111, and the present pope John Paul II as Saints! As to the last one, they really do not think that the Roman Church is the Roman Church, so scrap that thought too!

i)1089:a)Bl. Urban II {157th P.} First mention of "curia". The expression curia Romana first appears in a Bull of 1089.

1095:b)Is generally reputed to have issued the first plenary indulgence in 1095, at the Council of Clermont, to all who should join the crusade to recover Palestine from the Selyuk Turks.

j)1123:1st Lateran Council first to use Latin as official language.

k)1276: John XXI {185th P.} but there never was a John XX.

l)1352: Innocent VI {197th P.} St Bridget of Sweden turned against him and denounced him as a persecutor of Christ's sheep because of harshness toward the Franciscan Spirituals.

m)1415: Gregory XII {203rd P.} (30 Nov. 1406 4 June 1415) The old man's first pontifical act was to pawn his tiara for 6,000 florins to pay his gambling debts.

n)1523: Clement VII {217th P.} (18 Nov. 1523 25 Sept. 1534); Illegitimate son of Guilio de Medici, brother of Lorenzo the Magnificent, founder of the pagan salon, the Platonic Academy. Clement was a cousin of Leo X {215th P.} who, brushing aside the impediment of illegitimacy, made Clement archbishop of Florence and cardinal, opening the way to power.

o)Sixtus IV P.{210th} (147184) a) Was first pope to licence the brothels (30000 ducats a year) and to put a tax on priests' mistresses, etc.

b) Was first pope to decide indulgences could be applied to the dead. Indulgences were limitless, and the treasury needed restoring.

c) A Carmelite from Mantua wrote "your temples, priests, altars, rites ...prayers, heaven and God too are for sale."

p)"Accommodations with Christ's enemies" This is really a nono for the SSPXers of today!

1)Innocent VIII {211th P.} First pope to enter into an accommodation with Christ's "enemy" the Muslims; for 40,000 ducats yearly and gift of the "Holy Lance" he detained the Sultan's brother (the Sultan's enemy) in close confinement at Rome. 2)Alexander VI {212th P.} was the next: when Charles VIII of France, incited by the future Julius II, invaded Italy, threatening a council to depose the pope, Alexander did not hesitate to seek help from the Turkish Sultan Baized II. In the event, he had to come to terms with Charles.

3)Paul III {218th P.} proposing to hurl the Turks against Vienna, died, on Nov. 10, 1549.

q)Pius VI {248th P.) was the first pope to sign a treaty giving up part of the temporal patrimony (to Napoleon) The Treaty of Tolentino.

r)Pius VII {249th P.} startled conservatives at Christmas, 1797 by declaring in a sermon that there was no necessary conflict between Christianity and democracy.

s)Leo XIII {254th P.} (20 Feb. 1878 20 July 1903) His concern for reunion (he was the first to speak of "separated brothers") was expressed in his letters Praeclara (1894) and Satis cognitam (1896), the one inviting both Orthodox and Protestants to return to Rome but avoiding any mention of schism.

t)John XXIII {259th P.} 1963, Apr 11: Encyclical Pacem in Terris. "Broke away completely from the idea that error has no rights, a principle that had inspired the Inquisition. He replaced it by the principle that human beings have rights from God that no one can take from them. (Extracts from "My Reasons For Withdrawing From The Society of St Pius X", by F. John Loughnan) 4.Des continues: "...in his Bull "Execrabilis" in 1460, Pope Pius II had condemned any future Council which might be called specifically for the purpose of reforming the Church...(....canon 1372 of the New Code is derived from it) To the extent that Vatican II was a Council to reform the Church therefore, it falls under Pius II's condemnation. Pius II forbids us to accept Vatican II as a council to reform the Church. (c.f. Denz. 1375...Enchiridion Symbolorum...)" Response: To put it as kindly as possible, this is an unmitigated "fairy tale"! To my knowledge, this "fairy tale" was first expounded by a scurrilous paper out of Louisville, Kentucky more than twenty years ago! The paper's name was VERITAS. How do I know? I subscribed to it for a short while. Again, to put it kindly Des is exposed as untrustworthy. I have inspected (and have photocopies of:

1.the 1911 Volume XII (pp. 1268) issue of The Catholic Encyclopedia,

2.Enchiridion Symbolorum of 1952, 1960, 1963 and 1965,

3.Documents of the Christian Church, Henry Bettenson, Oxford University Press, 1965, (All the above are readily available for inspection at Corpus Christi Seminary, Clayton.)

4.Renaissance and Reformation 13001648, G.R. Elton, The Macmillan Company, etc., 1968,

5.Documents in Renaissance & Reformation History, Edited by David Webster & Louis Green, Cassell Australia Ltd, 1969. All of these sources support my contention (as set out below) regarding "Execrabilis" as extracted from "My Reasons For Withdrawing From The Society of St Pius X":


a)Pius II {208th P.} followed principles of personal expediency:

1)In fathering at least two children during his travels through Scotland and mainland Germany; the first siring was by a Scottish lass, and the second was by a married Breton woman (ie in an adulterous union) named Elizabeth. Boasting, he wrote to his father:

"...You know what a cock you were and I am no eunuch nor to be put in the category of the coldblooded." (VOC pp.556/8.)

2)Of his experiences in England and Scotland, he wrote: that he had visited "the village where men are said to be born with tails" The footnote adds: "(Strood, in Kent. The inhabitants of this district were said to have cut off the tail of St Thomas Becket's horse, and were thus fittingly punished by divine justice." (MRP p.32.)

3)From his autobiography: "The following facts about Scotland...The men are short and brave; the women fair, charming, and easily won. Women there think less of a kiss than in Italy of a touch of the hand.", (MRP p.33.) and

4)"...two young women showed Aeneas (he writes in the second person), who was by this time very sleepy, to a chamber strewn with straw, planning to sleep with him, as was the custom of the country, if they were asked." (MRP p.35.)

5)He was made poet laureate in 1442 by King Frederick III of Germany. (KOTC pp.182.) During this period he wrote a)the frivolous novel Historia de Eurialo et Lucretia, celebrating Caspar Schlick's amorous adventures. (Schlick was Frederick's chancellor.) b)the erotic comedy Chrysis

.6)Initially he was on the side of the antipope Felix V. Another account records: Before taking orders he "grew hot and burned for a woman" and fathered two boys, who both died very early in life. (The last was in early Feb.1442.) ( VOC p.556.) He put off the issue of Holy Orders until it became imperative to ecclesiastical advancement. (MRP p.20.) His nephew became Pius III {213th P.}

7)Embracing the "Conciliarist" position he wrote: "Hardly anyone doubts that a Council is above a pope." (VOC p.131.) He played an important part at the Council of Basle, but after 1442 deserted the Council for service with the Emperor Frederick III. He was ordained in 1446. 8)Furthering his career, he took appointments with

a)Juan, Cardinal of San Pietro in Vincoli,

b)Francesco, Bishop of Milan, etc. Elected pope in 1458, he turned his back on his humanist and conciliarist past.

9)When he became pope, he tried to suppress his novel, "Euryalus and Lucrezia" "The Tale of Two Lovers". A section contains the following big lovescene: "They went into her room where they passed so sweet a night that both said: Mars and Venuscould not have been better together. You are my Ganymede, my Hippolytus, my Diomedes,' said Lucretia. 'And you my Polixena,' he replied, 'my Aumelia, Venus herself.' And sometimes, raising the blankets, he gazed at those secret parts he had not seen before, and cried: 'Thus, when she bathed in the spring, must Diana have appeared to Actaecon.' "

10)Continuing his policy of "expediency", subsequent to his elevation to the papacy, he pursued an anticonciliarist policy. On Jan. 18, 1460 (convinced that the decline of papal influence was due to the inflated prestige of councils) he published the Bull Execrabilis, in which he denied that appeals could lie from a pope to a General Council; although this was made to appear as no more than a concern for effective justice, it was really an outright attack on the theories which had put the pope under Conciliar control.

11)Of Sigismondo Malatesta, he wrote about 1460: "No mortal heretofore has descended into Hell with the ceremony of canonisation. Sigismondo shall be the first to be deemed worthy of such honour. By an edict of the Pope, he shall be enrolled in the company of Hell as comrade of the devils and the damned..." (MRP p.185.) Obviously, he did not care for Ziggy!

12)"Rome", he said, was "the only city in the world to be run by bastards." In this, he was speaking quite literally. (VOC p.145.)

b) Certain ultratraditionalists have "hung their hats" on Pius II's Execrabilis as being proof positive that Vatican Council II, (because "it was called to introduce drastic change into the Church"), is automatically and beforehand declared to be null and void. A certain elderly man, attached to the SSPX chapel at Hampton, wrote and published many copied works, selling them throughout Australia. He subscribes to the Execrabilis theory. Examples of his typical reasoning and style follow:

1)'In 1460 Pope Pius II issued a Papal Bull "Execrabilis". This Bull was infallible and relates specifically to Faith and Morals nor can it be revoked or annulled. In effect, the Bull pronounced that a Council may not be used to reopen Judgements. Once the Church has made a Judgement,it cannot be questioned by Councils or future Popes."Execrabilis" states that if any Council goes against this Bull,all such Councils,no matter in what age they are called pronounces,declares and decrees all such Councils condemned,reproved,quashed and annulled,and,ipso facto,all who participate have incurred ana thema. No wonder there is a Divine Interdict over all the earth.' (From: "The Chair of Peter [IS IT VACANT AS SOME ULTRATRADITIONALISTS CLAIM?], By John Cooke. ... $6.50c.plus post Aust.$2.50c.[sic] .)

2)In criticising a statement of Michael Davies (quoted by me in my An Open Letter from a Confused Catholic) that "Vatican II was an Ecumenical Council properly convoked by the reigning Pontiff according to the accepted norms...", he also writes:

'So far, so good. But the Council strayed from Tradition, was not dogmatic as all previous Councils wereand because it introduced novelty and innovation,it comes under the condemnation of the Bull "Execrabilis" (1460)of Pope Pius II,which states that judgements made by the Church cannot be undone by later Councils. It also says: "Any Council called to make drastic change in the Church is beforehand DECREED to be void and annulled. If anyone thinks Vatican Two did NOT make drastic changes in the Church is either blind or dumb. [sic].

'Although the good Archbishop accepted "that its official documents were voted for by the majority of the Council Fathers and validly promulgated..." this still does not overcome the Decree of "Execrabilis".' (From a letter, dated Nov. 15, 1996, to me from the same source.) Apparently, John Cook has obtained a Degree in Theology from the University of Veritas in Louisville, Kentucky!

3)A group (including the above gentleman) from the SSPX chapel at Hampton are exponents of the theory that "Mary did not die, because She has all the time been without original sin as well as any personal imperfection. That is why She could not die." This, of course, is an "improvement" on the Church's position. It appears to be a Marian variation of the Monophysite Christological heresy.

c)However, a reading of the Bull exposes several important points:

1) Pius II uses a word which is anathema to Traditionalists "wishing"! Why is it anathema? Because it is a buzz word that upsets Traditionalists. Paul VI used it in his promulgation of the Order of Mass of Pope Paul VI (he hoped "confidimus" and wished "volumus" that it would be accepted by the Catholic people) and THAT (according to SSPXers) was sufficient to show that the promulgation was, therefore, not of obligation!

2)Pius II actually condemned "appeals of this sort..." That is all "appeals OF THIS SORT"! And what are "appeals of this sort"? Theyare the presumption "to appeal to a future Council from the pope of Rome..."

3)While the usual formulae of words were added, such as: "no one shall dare...(or) infringe this page of our will...Should anyone presume ...he will incur the indignation of Almighty God and of the blessed apostles Peter and Paul.", nevertheless there is nothing in it to justify a belief that it was not just as subject to reformation or other action within the powers of a future pope! 4) Moreover, Execrabilis was no more "infallible" or untouchably binding on future popes than, for example, the Bull of Sixtus V (Aeternus Ille ), which was promulgated, complete with excommunications on the whole church, "By the fullness of Apostolic power...this edition (of the Bible.)...is to be received and held true, lawful, authentic and unquestioned..." Being riddled with errors, it was certainly NOT infallible, and WAS corrected under Gregory XIV!

5) And again, it was no more "infallible" or untouchably binding on future popes than the case of the two Clements regarding the suppression of the Society of Jesus. Within the space of nine years, Clement XIV not only took no notice whatsoever of his immediate predecessor's "perpetual" order, but he contradicted it "perpetually". However, Clement XIII had the last laugh!

a)Clement XIII's Bull of Jan. 07, 1765, Apostolicum pascendi: Regarding the Society of Jesus "...recently has been traduced by men...In order to reject the atrocious injury made to the Church of God...to stop with our Apostolic Authority the circulation of such unreasonable remarks...using the plenitude of the Apostolic Power ...walking in the footsteps of Our Predecessors by this Constitution whose effect shall be perpetual, We declare and state in the same form and manner as Our Predecessors, that the Institution of The Society of Jesus breaths to the highest point piety and holiness..."

b)Clement XIV's Encyclical of July 21, 1773, Dominus ac Redemptor Noster: "Now, we have perceived that the said Society of Jesus could no longer produce the abundant fruits and advantages...but,on the contrary that if it existed it was almost impossible that the Church could have true and permanent peace. Led by such considerations...we, after mature examination, of our own certain knowledge, and in the plenitude of the apostolic power, suppress and extinguish the said society... We declare, therefore, that it is perpetually broken up and dissolved..." c)Pius VII, using the plenitude of his apostolic authority, re established the Society of Jesus in 1814!

6)Consider also the Bull Ex quo singulari (July 11, 1742) of Benedict XIV {245th P.} in which he finally suppressed the Chinese Rites:

a)"...we condemn and detest their practice as superstitious...we revoke, annul, abrogate and wish (there's THAT word again! FJL) to be deprived of all force and effect, all and each of those permissions, and say and announce that they must be considered for ever to be annulled, null, invalid and without any force or power."

Was THAT irreformable? Pius XII did not think so! Under Pius XII {258th P.} 1939: The Sacred Congregation of Propaganda reversed Clement XI's decision on the Chinese rites and Benedict XIV's "for ever" Ex quo singulari !

b)Under Canon 1258,

1)As to Japan: in (S.C.Prop. Fid., 26 May, 1936) AAS 28406, "An Instruction of the Sacred Congregation of Propaganda was sent to Japan, on 26 May, 1936...It asserts that the Faith does not reject the rites and customs of any nation if they are in no way reprehensible; in fact it desires to defend and protect them." As to "visiting of the national temples or Jinja. The answer was that the purpose of the visits was nothing more than to express sentiments of patriotism and loyalty." (CLD pp.368/9.)

2)As to China: in (S.C.Prop. Fid., 8 Dec., 1939) AAS 3224, a) Catholics are permitted to be present at ceremonies in honor of Confucius in Confucian temples or in schools;

b)Erection of image of Confucius or tablet with his name on it is permitted in Catholic schools. c)Catholic magistrates and students are permitted to passively attend public ceremonies which have the appearance of superstition.

d)It is licit and unobjectionable for head inclinations and other manifestations of civil observance before the deceased or their images.

e)The oath on the Chinese rites, which was prescribed by Benedict XIV, is not fully in accord with recent regulations and is superfluous. (CLD pp.370/2.)

d)"In France and Germany the Bull was met with vigorous opposition and outside Rome it was not generally accepted. In spite of repeated prohibitions of "appeals to a Council" by Pius II in the Bull Infructuosos palmites of Nov 2, 1460, by Sixtus IV in the Bull Qui monitis of July 15, 1483, and by Julius II in the Bull Suscepti regiminis of July 1, 1509, secular princes as well as ecclesiastical bodies continued to use an appeal as a legitimate legal device. How is this fact, so perplexing for modern Catholics to be accounted for.

1)The canonist Gozzadini contests the validity and the binding force of the prohibition on the ground that it deprives the accused of a right which rests on natural law... If it was objected that the appeal was addressed to a tribunal which did not in fact exist, the answer was that the authority of the Church, which is greater than that of the Pope, endures even though no Council is actually sitting."

2)St Thomas More wrote to Cromwell: "...yet never thought I the Pope above the General Council."

Fortunately, I am able to report that not all of Des's article is inaccurate! Indeed, no! The section about the connection between Execrabilis and Canon 1372 is quite correct. Not, however, in the way Des recounts. He would have his readers believe that Canon 1372 is derived from the proposition that any Council called for the purpose of introducing drastic change into the Church is beforehand declared null and void, and therefore, "Pius II forbids us to accept Vatican II as a council to reform the Church." (Among other things, Des believes the censure is against the group, the future Council, without specifying "who" is being violated.)

The following is from The Code of Canon Law in English translation, prepared by The Canon Law Society of Great Britain and Ireland in association with The Canon Law Society of Australia and New Zealand. Collins. 1983:

"Can. 1372 A person who appeals from an act of the Roman Pontiff to an Ecumenical Council or to the College of Bishops, is to be punished with a censure."

Perhaps a little more clarity might be achieved by examining the equivalent canon 2332 in the "old" Code of Canon Law. The following is from "Canon Law A Text And Commentary", by T. Lincoln Bouscaren, S.J. and Adam C. Ellis, S.J., The Bruce Publishing Company. Third Edition, 1958:

"Appeal From Pope to General Council. All persons of whatever state, rank, or condition, even though they be King, Bishop, or Cardinal, who appeal from the laws, decrees, or mandates of the reigning Roman Pontiff to a universal Council, are suspect of heresy, and ipso facto contract an excommunication which is especially reserved to the Holy See; and universities, colleges, Chapters, or other moral persons of whatever name, who are guilty of the same offense, incur an interdict reserved in the same special way to the Holy See (c. 2332)." (That is, the censure is against the person for violating the reigning Pope.)

Truely, there is much more that could be commented upon concerning the writings of Mr Desmond J. McDonnell, and on their publication in "CATHOLIC". As for myself, I subject my writings and criticism to the judgement of the Church and willingly withdraw that which may be incorrect.

November 19, 1998.


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©1999 Was Vatican Council II Voided by Pope Pius II's "Execrabilis"? ... John Loughnan ... This text may be downloaded or printed out for private reading, but it may not be uploaded to another Internet site or published, electronically or otherwise, without express written permission from the author.

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