Refutation of Appendix 1
(And the Credibility of Atila Sinke Guimaraes)

by I. Shawn McElhinney


By Atila Sinke Guimaraes

Taken from The Remnant, March 15, March 31, April 15, 2000

[Prefatory Note:  In revising this project for easier reading - primarily by making several shorter urls where previously there had been larger urls - the repetition of sources used in these appendix sections compared to the primary sections of this project was somewhat excessive. Therefore, while the first four parts (on ten urls now instead of four) were mainly just restructured with very little in the way of content alteration was made, on these Appendix sections, it seemed appropriate to revise them and remove some of the duplication. (And add little segues to accommodate this when needed.)

As this writer has grown to prefer using indirect references to himself when writing in the interim since this work was first put out and the present time, that pattern will reflect itself in these appendix sections. (Though in the earlier sections - and the later Appendix A - the more direct references such as "I" and "my" were left as they were since those sections received only the most minor of touchups. The same cannot be said of the sections you are about to read where there were changes made and some of them significant ones.) - ISM 1/25/03]

Ah yes, the "glorious" Remnant magazine. The present writer used to read this National Enquirer of religious publications when he was a so-called 'traditionalist'. The articles always sounded convincing to those who wanted to believe what they were saying. Unfortunately, this article when properly scrutinized falls apart and is a shining example of the adage "a little knowledge can be dangerous."

Unhappily the Holy Catholic Church is passing through difficult days today. One hundred years ago she was enjoying one of her more glorious periods. After the proclamation of the dogma of Papal Infallibility (1870), the influence of the Papacy reached a new high point in History. Even though the dogma applied exclusively to the infallibility of certain extraordinary pontifical teaching, this infallibility understandably radiated into other areas of papal activity.

Excuse me but solemnity of a decree is not what determines infallibility. The decree on papal infallibility did not apply "exclusively to the infallibility of certain extraordinary pontifical teachings" as the architect of the decree itself, the theologian Bishop Vincent Gasser noted to the Council Fathers at Vatican I during his 4 hour speech at the deputation de fide. (This was covered earlier: in brief "defines" refers to any universal pronouncement solemn or not that is meant to be definitive.) We will address this error of the author later on when dismantling Fr. Wathen’s work in Appendix II of this sorry-excuse-for-a-refutation. How sad that the author makes such a cardinal error starting out.

The common teachings of the Pope were regarded with much more respect. Their acts of government took on characteristics of perennial laws. Their liturgical, exegetic, and canonical decisions came to be considered as almost perfect or holy. The proclamation of Papal Infallibility shed a kind of golden aura on the Papacy thereafter. This caused joy among Catholics, especially those turned toward the counter-revolutionary fight, that is to say, those who understand that there is a centuries-old conspiracy to destroy the Church and Christendom, and who thus dedicate their lives to defend them from this.

Everything to the so-called 'traditionalist' (or "trad") is a "conspiracy." It is no different then with fundamentalists like Jack Chick except with Chick the "conspirators" are Jesuits and the Vatican and not Masons, Modernists, or Jews. This is not to say that there are not people out there seeking to destroy the Church indeed there are - and yes some of them are Masons, Modernists, and Jews. But not every thing that happens is the result of some complex diabolical scheme and not all Jews or Masons are in on a plot to subvert the Church.

In a secondary refraction, the light of Papal Infallibility cascaded over the whole Church Hierarchy. With different intensities, Cardinals, Archbishops, bishops, and priests came to participate in the same aura that radiated from the Supreme Pontiff. Thus, at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century, the Spouse of Christ saw the concept of a Monarchical Church splendidly established.

If nothing else, the above paragraph is descriptively written.

The natural consequence of this process was obedience. All hierarchical institutions proceed from obedience and generate obedience. This also happened in the Catholic Church.

These three characteristics - the exaltation of the Papacy, an increased respect for the Hierarchy and the obedience of the faithful - represented a victory for the Counter-Revolution. A victory against the protestant Reformation that denied the Papacy. A victory against the French Revolution that launched itself against the Monarchy in the State and in the Church. A victory against the liberal Catholic movement of the first half of the 19th century. These victories have thus enthused what there was of the best and most healthful among Catholics. Because of this enthusiasm, these elements remained a lively presence up to the vespers of Vatican II.

Here it comes…(this is SO typical)…the world was serene and beautiful until the "evil machinations of Vatican II!!!" What is truly ironic is that some extremist fundamentalists think that the Church since Vatican II has been engaged in a "diabolical plot" to seduce Protestants into the Church. Like her Spouse the Church gets lambasted from every angle including those who claim to be "loyal" to her. The sad truth though is that hardcore "trads" such as the three "greatest ‘trad’ webmasters" (falsely so-called) are as loyal to the Church as Judas was to Our Lord. So great and loyal to the Church that no bishop whose communion is recognized by the Pope would endorse their websites or articles and the Remnant as of late has shown themselves to have fallen into schism from the Church as well. (Arguably they are proximate to heresy too.)

By a curious irony of History, after the de facto installation of progressivism in the directive bodies of the Church with Vatican Council II, these same characteristics came to play a role that, in practice, worked in an opposite sense. They came to serve the self-destruction of the Church.

More like "[b]y a certain irony the "trad" wants to praise the authority of the Church except when it opposes them which in that case she must be demeaned and disqualified and the "trad" is not afraid to resort to Protestant arguments to do this while ignoring (of coruse) that the arguments that they ape from Protestants are intended to disprove the infallibility of the Church and the Pope and the credibility of the Church."

(At least our Protestant brethren are honest in their dissent and do not try and have it both ways by claiming to be Catholic, lambasting others for not being Catholic and then acting like a bunch of little Korah’s by obstinately opposing the very authority they insist that Protestants and the Orthodox, etc. should be obeying which they refuse to obey. This is what these Pharasaical "trads" like Atila Sinke Guimaraes and the "Hammer triplets" do constantly).

John XXIII, Paul VI and John Paul II used this acquired prestige to spread principles different from the perennial teaching of the Magisterium. Mater et Magistra, Pacem in Terris, Ecclesiam Suam, Populorum progressio, Sollicitudo rei socialis, Mulieris dignitatem, Ut unum sint, Tertio millennio adveniente are some pontifical documents in which one notes this new teaching.

First of all, how much of this teaching dealt with problems that previously (in some form or another) did not exist??? Second of all, how much of this teaching can be said to be a legitimate development (whoops, another word that "trad" ears cannot handle) of previous teachings??? Mr. Guimaraes does not say but instead immediately presumes that there is something wrong. This is the rebellious mindset at work here, the seeds of schism. He is not asking if perhaps he is not properly understanding a certain teaching or if there is perhaps some justification for the pope addressing something in a manner that at first glance does not appear to square with precedent. Nope to the suspicious "trad" the first reaction is rebellion. After all, to the "trad" it is never possible that they are the party that is misunderstanding an issue, it is always everyone else. (Funny, Luther claimed the same thing for his views.)

In Vatican Council II as well, the express thinking in the principle documents clashes with earlier ordinary and extraordinary pontifical teaching. Written in a deliberately ambiguous language, such documents are founded on the same Nouvelle Theologie previously condemned as heterodox, especially Lumen Gentium, Gaudium et Spes, Unitatis Redintegratio, Dignitatis Humanae, Nostrae Aetate.

Actually the only document of this group that can be said to be "deliberately ambiguous" in some parameters is Nostra Aetate and that is because it addresses relations with other religions and in stressing common ground areas, which can vary from religion to religion. Thus, there is expected to be some ambiguity. The rest of the documents mentioned here are about as ambiguous as any other decree from a General Council and yes ambiguity is hardly applicable to solely to Vatican II. (Anyone who reads of how Trent handled the role of Tradition in the handing on of Revelation knows of what this writer speaks of.)  Mr. Guimaraes did not mention Sacrosanctum Concilium, which could appear to be a tad bit ambiguous in spots: perhaps the impetus for many liberals to justify their freewheeling with the liturgy. However, as Stephen Hand has astutely pointed out, even if Sacrosanctum Concilium was bulletproof, the liberals would have found somewhere else to justify their insolence. Frankly this present writer is sick and tired of these accusations of widespread ambiguity with the documents of Vatican II. Ninety-nine percent of the time, those making the accusations have never even read the Council documents but instead borrow these accusations from other authors (or they scan the documents to "proof-text" them like Protestant apologists do with the Bible). The author has read the documents of Vatican II and they read just fine when the general norms of theological interpretation are followed. There are a few spots that could perhaps use a bit of clarification, but that is hardly irregular.

Vatican II addressed more topics and had more written documents then any General Council in history except maybe Trent (and volume-wise Vatican II had many more overall pages then Trent did). It is ALWAYS the goal of the Church in a General Council to only specifically address issues they seek to address to the extent that they need to be addressed and nothing more. There is always room left in the decisions of Councils for legitimate growth in understanding from the foundation of what has been defined in previous council or papal decisions. This room left for growth can be called "ambiguity" to the extent that it does not fully answer a question in all parameters. The development of doctrine paradigm explains these as a growth in knowledge and indeed "trads" accept development in areas that they need it (Transubstantiation, Immaculate Conception and Assumption) while arbitrarily rejecting it in other areas (Extra Ecclesia Nulla Salus, Papal Infallibility properly understood, etc.) There is no difference whatsoever between self-styled 'ttraditionalists' and Protestants on this matter except the 'traditionalist' accepts many more developed doctrines then Protestants. The same arbitrary private judgment as to what they accept and what they reject is prevalent in both instances though.

Because Vatican II had more documents, there are more places that can possibly "accommodate" potential dissidents than other councils. (As Mr. Guimaraes - dissident that he is - has no shortage of demonstration in this essay or other writings of his.) The importance though is that the Council Fathers and Pope indicated that they were not changing anything except developing some doctrines, settling certain labourous theological controversies, and for the most part re-affirming previous teachings. There were also some new pastoral guidelines that are applicable to the modern situation in the world but this is hardly an irregular practice. Almost all General Councils issue pastoral and disciplinary provisions that are applicable for their respective time periods that can be modified or dropped later on when situations change. The largest tasks for the Second Vatican Council were to present the ageless faith in contemporary language so that the teachings were better explained to the world. Included in this movement was the restoration of the liturgy too. Pastoral guidelines promulgated to the Universal Church require religious assent (which it might be added "trads" do not do). As for the Missal it is recognized as free from error due to the universal character of its promulgation. This does not mean that there are not areas that might not be ambiguous; however ambiguity is not the same as error. Otherwise as Brother Alexis Bugnolo brilliantly noted, "trads" commit blasphemy with the assertion that ambiguity and error are synonymous:

That a document or Missal lacks a particular non-essential part is not a formal theological teaching of error.If that were the case, Christ would have been in error when He instituted the Mass, since He manifestly did not include many other prayers, as does the Missale Romanum of Pope St. Pius V.[cf. Pope John XXII, Quum inter non nullos: November 12, 1323 A. D., on the topic of implying Sacred Scripture does not accurately portray the actions of Christ Jesus]. [1]
Therefore, unless the "trad" wants to espouse blasphemy, they need to rescind this position immediately.

Thus, by a kind of "wave of the magic wand," the Church radically changed her appearance.

She has done this often throughout the centuries. This authors comment betrays a serious ignorance of Church history. Pope John XXIII outlined the mission of the Council in his opening statement, excerpts of which read as follows:

In order, however, that this doctrine may influence the numerous fields of human activity, with reference to individuals, to families, and to social life, it is necessary first of all that the Church should never depart from the sacred patrimony of truth received from the Fathers. But at the same time she must ever look to the present, to the new conditions and new forms of life introduced into the modern world, which have opened new avenues to the Catholic apostolate
The manner in which sacred doctrine is spread, this having been established, it becomes clear how much is expected from the Council in regard to doctrine. That is, the Twenty-first Ecumenical Council, which will draw upon the effective and important wealth of juridical, liturgical, apostolic, and administrative experiences, wishes to transmit the doctrine, pure and integral, without any attenuation or distortion, which throughout twenty centuries, notwithstanding difficulties and contrasts, has become the common patrimony of men. It is a patrimony not well received by all, but always a rich treasure available to men of good will.
The salient point of this Council is not, therefore, a discussion of one article or another of the fundamental doctrine of the Church which has repeatedly been taught by the Fathers and by ancient and modern theologians, and which is presumed to be well known and familiar to all. For this a Council was not necessary. But from the renewed, serene, and tranquil adherence to all the teaching of the Church in its entirety and preciseness, as it still shines forth in the Acts of the Council of Trent and First Vatican Council, the Christian, Catholic, and apostolic spirit of the whole world expects a step forward toward a doctrinal penetration and a formation of consciousness in faithful and perfect conformity to the authentic doctrine, which, however, should be studied and expounded through the methods of research and through the literary forms of modern thought. The substance of the ancient doctrine of the deposit of faith is one thing, and the way in which it is presented is another. And it is the latter that must be taken into great consideration with patience if necessary, everything being measured in the forms and proportions of a magisterium which is predominantly pastoral in character…
And often errors vanish as quickly as they arise, like fog before the sun The Church has always opposed these errors. Frequently she has condemned them with the greatest severity. Nowadays however, the Spouse of Christ prefers to make use of the medicine of mercy rather than that of severity. She consider that she meets the needs of the present day by demonstrating the validity of her teaching rather than by condemnations…[2]
The Church has ALWAYS sought to re-express her ageless doctrines in different ways throughout the centuries in ways that contemporaries of their respective periods could better understand them. Vatican II did nothing different then any other General Council except the emphasis was on positive teaching (and not condemnations) and utilizing the norms of the Ordinary Universal Magisterium to settle issues definitively (infallibly) rather then solemn dogmatic definitions. Other then these differences (and the Pope being present for every session along with more bishops then any other 10 General Councils of history combined), there were no differences of note between Vatican II and any other General Council except in the imaginations of this author and the three ‘trad’ comrades of this so-called "refutation" of my work.

What was wrong came to be right, what was certain came to be uncertain. Today there is talk of abolishing Quanta Cura and the Syllabus of Pius IX; the Encyclical Pascendi is called outdated; so also with the Decree Lamentabili and the anti-modernist oath. The dogmatic constitutions of the Council of Trent and the anathemas against Liberalism are set aside. Pardon is asked for the age-old dogmatic teaching against the errors o the Jewish religion.

What "dogmatic teachings against the Jews" is this author referring to??? It is strange for "trads" to constantly insist that not all Magisterial teachings are infallible but then they raise to dogmatic status Ordinary Magisterial teaching, private opinions of popes, saints, or theologians, etc. and then wave away universally promulgated Ordinary Magisterium teachings promulgated since Vatican II. First of all, it has nowhere been spoken about abolishing Quanta Cura - which condemns Guimaraes and his ilk anyway - or the Syllabus of Errors. (Not to mention Lamantabili and Pascendi or any of the Constitutions of the Council of Trent. Instead, we get more ambiguous comments from the same "trads" who complain about ambiguity. There was no "setting aside" any anathemas against Liberalism either - just Mr. Guimaraes' inability to understand the concept of development which was endorsed by Popes Leo XIII and Pius X who affirmed the orthodoxy of Cardinal Newman against the "trads" of their respective time periods. (Who balked about the same phenomenon then as the "trads" of today do.) Until Mr. Guimaraes presents evidence of these claims, this writer will not dignify him with a response to them since he knows that every one of Atila's statements is a flat out lie. He is making very serious charges here so he had better supply evidence and not just rhetoric. In other words…put up or shut up!!!

What was the secret force that led almost the whole body of Catholics to the relative acceptance of this enormous change, certainly the greatest ever witnessed in History? It was due primarily to the action of the three aforementioned factors: papal prestige, the strength of the Church Hierarchy and the obedience of the faithful.

There have been no fundamental changes in doctrine in Catholicism either before or since Vatican II. There have been different ways of expressing ancient doctrines utilized surely but the Church has done this in every age. This is hardly irregular.

Paradoxically, for more than a century, counter-revolutionary Catholics were the principal artisans who established these three factors on an institutional level. However, after John XXIII was raised to the Pontifical Throne, they were the ones who suffered most from the application of these elements. The choir of progressivists, permissivists, the pusillanimous, and the mediocre even today launch against these Catholics the epithets of being "against the Pope," "disobedient to the Hierarchy," "outside the Church."

It is at least mildly hilarious that the rigorous suppression of different methods of theology before Vatican II by politically-minded manual theologians was not looked at as "persecuting" of those whom they sought to censor. An example of this was the manner whereby Fr. de Lubac was treated. Granted there were some theologians that went too far (like Teilhard) but many did not but were still suppressed simply for approaching theology differently despite holding to all defined doctrines. As this writer has noted previously, Newman was hounded for thirty-three years after his conversion by overly suspicious people in the Curia. Vindication only occurred for him in his lifetime after Pope Leo XIII named him his first Cardinal in 1879. After Newman and Pope Leo’s deaths, there were people who started calling Newman a Modernist and Pope St. Pius X had to come to Newman’s defense. (After Lamentabili, the "trads" of the period were running around accusing anyone who did not think exactly as they did of being a "Modernist" and this included accusing Newman of being one too. The era of "Catholic McCarthyism" was in full swing you might say.) The same thing happened after the death of St. Thomas Aquinas when the "trads" of his time period were calling St. Thomas a heretic and seeking to have his writings suppressed. It got so bad that his teacher - the brilliant but aged St. Albert the Great - had to come out of retirement to defend the honour and the work of his even more brilliant pupil from charges of heresy. Now "trads" speak highly of St. Thomas in principle while ignoring that he was considered a kind of "Modernist" by the ‘trads’ who hated him and were suspicious of his methods. His methods - like those of Newman, Blondel, de Lubac, Danielou, and Congar - were not the "traditional" ones of his time.

The problem with Mr. Guimaraes’ comments here is that he is lumping all people who are Tridentine-minded into the same bag when this is not the case at all. There are those who are in the Church who are in submission to Rome and recognize the authority of both Vatican II and the authentic magisterial teachings promulgated since Vatican II while possibly having some differences in theology and different liturgical preferences. TCR is one such example and FSSP is another. (As is the  Society of St. John.) Others could be named also but those are the only ones that come to mind. (Well Una Voce does too but many at UV [like their president Mr. Michael Davies] suffer from severe theologically deficient outlooks.)

However, Mr. Guimaraes does not seem to realize that there are many who are disobedient to the Magisterium and reject authentic ordinary magisterial teachings and also the teachings of a General Council. But notice the tone of Guimaraes: anyone who is critical of those who are not in submission to the Magisterium (*) are immediately "progressivists, permissivists, the pusillanimous, and the mediocre." If anyone is mediocre it is this author and of course the three "trad" maestros of the "superb prescription" falsely so-called fame. In fact, calling them and their work "overwhelmingly mediocre" would be a profound compliment…

Thus, they see themselves in the sad circumstance of defending the Papacy but resisting the progressivist teachings of the conciliar Popes, of loving with ever increasing ardor the monarchic characteristics of the Church, of venerating the chains of dependancy that link those below to those above them. At the same time, they do not hesitate in denying their obedience to the Hierarchs who are promoting the auto-demolition of the Church.

Another wonderful ambiguous "trad" term there…"auto-demolition." Very ambiguous but at the same time whatever it means it surely sounds frightening. Never do these people ask if maybe there is rationale for the Church’s policies, no immediately since it appears sinister to Mr. Guimaraes and other like-minded "trads", then it must be wrong. (There is no shortage of a pathetic "suspicion-complex" about everything with these kinds of people.) After all, if it was not wrong then these "trads" would presumably understand the rationale. It never ceases to amaze this writer of how the "trads" treat Magisterial documents the way many Protestants treat the Bible: presuming they are perfectly clear and never need an interpreter at times to resolve apparent conflicts, etc. And while acting in this manner with magisterial documents, they are critical of Protestants for playing the "private judgment card" when it comes to the Bible. Again the term "Pharisaical" comes to mind.

The situation of these Catholics is delicate and paradoxical. Faced with the dilemma: "Fidelity to principles or to persons? Orthodoxy or obedience?" they adhere to the principles and resist the unorthodox authority.

Now Mr. Guimaraes is acting like a Protestant and exercising private judgment on the orthodoxy of the Magisterium!!! If these types of "trads" are going to act like this with Tradition and the Living Magisterium, then they have no logical foundation of argument to be critical of Protestants for acting this way with the Bible. Yet that is still exactly what these hypocritical types will do. Typical.

From this the question necessarily arises: By acting in this way, do they place themselves outside the Church? The answer is no, positively no.

Mr. Guimaraes has no competence whatsoever to declare anything (or anyone) orthodox or heterodox that the Church has not passed judgment on.
They are one of the most precious parts of the faithful. They are following the divine example of Our Lord, Who obedient to the synagogue authorities in everything that was possible, nonetheless did not fear to disagree with them in discussions and deny them obedience in all that opposed true doctrine. This attitude does not imply either placing oneself outside the Church or of standing in judgment of the Pope.
Unlike these arrogant "trads", Our Lord knew the Law inside and out (He WROTE it after all). He also could read minds and hearts: none of which these jokers can do. The Lord also has all authority from heaven and He delegated His authority to the Apostles and their successors. Meanwhile these "trads" like Luther, Montanus, and Pelagius among numerous others of note think that somehow THEY possess competence over and above the Divinely protected Magisterium on matters of doctrine and theology. Further they think that they can choose when and under what circumstances they will be compliant. To Luther it was when the Church followed Scripture (interpreted according to HIM) and to the "trads" it is when the Church adheres to Tradition (interpreted according to THEM). There is no difference whatsoever except in the obstinate schismatic mind of the rebellious quasi-heretical "trad": NOT A WHIT OF DIFFERENCE!!! Except the sources used for this rebellion of course.

Such a conclusion, however, is not only mine. Many great Saints and Doctors of the Church have spoken on this matter and recommended that attitude. The doctrine on the right of the faithful, even the most simple, to resist decisions of ecclesiastical authorities that are dangerous toe the Faith and objectively erroneous, was expounded by Saints and Doctors of the Church, as well as by famous theologians.

Yes but not the united episcopate in union with the Pope. And the burden of proof is on the shoulders of the rebuker at all times. In the case of doubt the Church always gets the benefit of the doubt from those who truly have faith in Our Lord and His promises: a faith which "trads" manifestly do not possess.

St. Thomas Aquinas, in many passages of his works, upholds the principle that the faithful can question and admonish Prelates. For example: "There being an imminent danger for the Faith, Prelates must be questioned, even publicly, by their subjects. Thus, St. Paul, who was a subject of St. Peter, questioned him publicly on account of an imminent danger of scandal in a matter of Faith. And, as the Glosa of St. Augustine puts it (Ad Galatas 2, 14), ‘St. Peter himself gave the example to those who govern so that if sometimes they stray from the right way, they will not reject a correction as unworthy even if it comes from their subjects."

The examples of the Angelic Doctor and St. Paul do not apply to magisterium teachings promulgated to the universal church by the popes. Or to quote Pope Pius XII from Humani Generis:

[It must not] be thought that what is expounded in Encyclical Letters does not of itself demand consent, since in writing such Letters the Popes do not exercise the supreme power of their Teaching Authority. For these matters are taught with the ordinary teaching authority, of which it is true to say: "He who heareth you, heareth me";{Luke x,16} and generally what is expounded and inculcated in Encyclical Letters already for other reasons appertains to Catholic doctrine. But if the Supreme Pontiffs in their official documents purposely pass judgment on a matter up to that time under dispute, it is obvious that that matter, according to the mind and will of the same Pontiffs, cannot be any longer considered a question open to discussion among theologians. [3]
Humani Generis 20 refers to the ordinary magisterium which is generally not an exercise of infallibility (not definitive in nature) but notice what the Pontiff noted about the degree of assent owed. What is written in Encyclical letters still demands consent and generally what is written in Encyclicals appertains to Catholic doctrine; therefore if the Ordinary Magisterium is being utilized to teach the Universal Church then logically it would not contain errors in doctrine. (And when the popes pass judgment on a previously controverted point, that matter is no longer open for debate but is to be accepted according to the mind of the Popes.) In short, when in doubt, at a bare minimum religious submission is owed. Thus, "trads" who do not grant this degree of assent to the Encyclicals of Pope John XXIII, Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II are in schism for refusing to submit to the Roman Pontiff with religious assent. The same principle applies to the Apostolic Letters and Apostolic Exhortations of the popes as well.  

Referring to the same episode, in which St. Paul resisted St. Peter "to his face," St. Thomas teaches: "The reprehension was just and useful, and the reason for it was not trivial: there was a danger for the preservation of evangelical truth... The way it took place was appropriate, since it was public and open. For this reason, St. Paul writes: ‘I spoke to Cephas,’ that is, Peter, ‘before everyone,’ since the simulation practiced by St. Peter was fraught with danger to everyone." 2

Again, the burden of proof is with the rebuker, not with the one being rebuked when the rebukee is a superior this especially applies. Peter knew he was in the wrong and that is why apparently he did not object to Paul’s correction. Besides, this was not a matter of doctrine but instead practice and not actual sanctioned Church practice but merely the errors of one man acting privately: granted that man was the Pope. There is a huge difference since "trads" object to doctrines of faith and the ordinary magisterium of the Popes since Vatican II. (Which they are required to render assent to avoid being in schism from the Holy See.)

The Angelic Doctor also shows how this passage of the Scriptures contains teachings not only for Hierarchs, but for the faithful as well: "To the Prelates [was given an example] of humility so that they do not refuse to accept reprehensions from their inferiors and subjects; and to the subjects, an example of zeal and liberty so they will not fear to correct their Prelates, above all when the crime is public and entails a danger for many." 3

Again the burden of proof is with the rebuker. Also, St. Thomas never even hinted that the united episcopate in union with the Pope either unified throughout the world on a doctrine or at a General Council could err on matters of faith or morals. Nor did St. Thomas even hint that the Pope as Chief Shepherd could err when teaching doctrine to the universal church either definitively or not. The Pope may indeed make errors in the ordinary magisterium sometimes but when teaching universally to the Church as most papal apostolic letters and encyclicals are, when they appertain to Catholic doctrine they must be heeded.

In his Comments on the Sentences of Peter Lombard, St. Thomas teaches how respectfully correcting a Prelate who sins is a work of mercy all the greater as the Prelate’s position is higher: "Eccl. XVII: 12 says that God ‘imposed on each one duties toward his neighbor.’ Now, a Prelate is our neighbor. Therefore, we must correct him when he sins. ..... Some say that fraternal correction does not extend to the Prelates either because a man should not raise his voice against heaven, or because the Prelates are easily scandalized if corrected by their subjects. However, this does not happen, since when they sin, the Prelates do not represent heaven and, therefore, must be corrected. And those who correct them charitably do not raise their voices against them, but in their favor, since the admonishment is for their own sake. ... For this reason, ... the precept of fraternal correction extends also to the Prelates, so that they may be corrected by their subjects." 4

See the previous comments.

Fr. Francisco de Vitoria, O.P. states: "A Pope must be resisted who publicly destroys the Church. What should be done when the Pope, because of his bad customs, destroys the Church? What should be done if the Pope wanted, without reason, to abrogate Positive Law?"

His answer is: "He would certainly sin; he should neither be permitted to act in such fashion nor should he be obeyed in what was evil; but he should be resisted with a courteous reprehension. Consequently, ... if he wanted to destroy the Church or the like, he should not be permitted to act in that fashion, but one would be obliged to resist him. The reason for this is that he does not have the power to destroy. Therefore, if there is evidence that he is doing so, it is licit to resist him. The result of all this is that if the Pope destroys the Church by his orders and actions, he can be resisted and the execution of his mandates prevented."

The problem here is that the "trad" is now elevating theological opinions to the level of dogma. And again, the burden of proof is on the accuser who must then demonstrate that they have the competence to make these determinations. Now if a prelate was going against the clear teaching of the Universal Catechism or the decrees of a General Council (or the Magisterium of the Popes ordinary or extraordinary) then yes he could be rebuked. However, the problem with "trads" is that they are almost always without exception badly schooled in theology and the ability to utilize proper nuance in theological questions. (Not to mention being bereft of proper understanding of the development paradigm of Lerens, Aquinas, and Newman.) Because of these deficiencies, they are in no position to be able to make proper determinations yet they delude themselves into thinking that they are. Their first step in any situation should always be to give the Magisterium the benefit of the doubt and seek to find a way to harmonize what appears to be contradiction in previous and current policies. Only when all else has failed should they attempt to withhold assent and even then they must be open to being corrected and considering that they are mistaken. "Trads" do not do this, instead their first reaction is to dissent and shriek about anything that appears irregular to them. Appearances can be deceiving yet to the "trad" the Magisterium is as crystal clear in its past documents and formulations as Scripture is to the Protestant and neither generally will listen to people tell them that something is different from what is so "obvious" to them.

Fr. Francisco Suarez, S.J., also defends this position: "If [the Pope] gives an order contrary to good customs, he should not be obeyed; if he attempts to do something manifestly opposed to justice and the common good, it will be licit to resist him; if he attacks by force, by force he can be repelled, with a moderation appropriate to a just defense." 6

See the previous comment.

St. Robert Bellarmine, the great paladin of the Counter-Reformation, maintains: "Just as it is licit to resist a Pontiff that aggresses the body, it is also licit to resist one who aggresses the souls or who disturbs civil order, or, above all, one who attempts to destroy the Church. I say that it is licit to resist him by not doing what he orders and preventing his will from being executed. It is not licit, however, to judge, punish or depose him, since these are acts proper to a superior." 7

See the previous comment. 

Fr. Cornelius a Lapide, S.J., argues: "Superiors can, with humble charity, be admonished by their inferiors in the defense of truth; that is what St. Augustine, St. Cyprian, St. Gregory, St. Thomas and others declare about this passage (Gal. 2:11). ... St. Augustine wrote (Epistula 19 ad Hieronymum): ‘By teaching that superiors should not refuse to be reprehended by inferiors, St. Peter gave posterity an example more rare and holier than that of St. Paul as he taught that, in the defense of truth and with charity, inferiors may have the audacity to resist superiors without fear.’" 8

See the previous comment.

Applying these teachings to our days, the conclusion is very grave and very simple: Catholics who truly love the Church have the duty to resist the doctrines, laws, norms and orders coming from an ecclesiastical authority, especially if it be the Pope, which favor progressivism. Such resistance should be courteous and charitable. It does not mean that one is placed outside the Church by this. Also, it does not mean that the Catholic who takes this position has the power to judge the Pope.

So Catholics should exercise private judgment then huh??? How PROTESTANT this is. In fact, there is another eerie parallel that I dealt with in his treatise. Here it is again:


Jansenism like Lutheranism and Calvinism was a heresy concerning Grace but, whereas with these last two, all the heresies of the sect sprung from their false teaching on Grace, while with the Jansenists the heresy on Grace seems to have been a result rather than a cause. The theory from which all of their false teaching drew its strength being the theory professed by many Anglicans today; that the teaching of the Church is something to be searched for in the records of the past rather than something to be heard and accepted in the living present.[4]
Anyone going to continue to deny that these guys and the three buffoons who wrote this sad excuse for a refutation are not very much Jansenistic both in their methodology but also in their rigorous moral outlooks???


In my last article, the Reader could see that every Catholic has the right to resist commands and teachings of the ecclesiastical authority when they are in error and prejudice the Holy Church or the common good.

Again, I repeat this cannot become a question of what is in error dependant on the private judgment of the individual. Even in non-definitive teachings the Magisterium is still much more likely to be right then the individual on matters relating to faith and morals. Therefore, the burden of proof is on the accuser and when it comes to authentic Ordinary Magisterium teachings, there IS no dissent allowed (Matt. 23:1-3; PP XII: Humani Generis 20; VC II: Lumen Gentium 25). This does not mean that the Magisterium is always right when teaching via the OM but its teachings cannot be questioned or else the dissident is guilty of the sin of schism (if they are rebellious in disobeying the Magisterium: if they are not rebellious then it is just an error). This is why accusations against the Magisterium must always be approached carefully because the Church has the promised guidance of the Holy Spirit and not only with Extraordinary Magisterium teachings. No Our Lord said WHATSOEVER you bind/loose on earth is bound/loosed in heaven (Matt. 16:19; 18:18). Thus authentic Ordinary Magisterium teachings are bound and loosed on the Catholic and if they refuse to comply then they sin against Him who said "He who listens to you listens to Me" (Matt. 10:40; Luke 10:16, John 13:20). Again the burden of proof is ALWAYS in favour of the Magisterium on matters of faith, morals, or those intimately connected with faith and morals. This is why "trads" need to be VERY careful…MUCH more then they are on these matters.

In it are excerpts from very authoritative authors, among them St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Augustine, and St. Robert Bellarmine, who all hold that the faithful have the right and the duty to resist authority, and that the latter should receive such resistance and admonishments with the same spirit of humility that St. Peter received the famous reprimand of St. Paul (Gal 2:11). Departing from this exceptional example, the authors do not retreat before the possibility of a Pope who could fall into error or heresy or try to destroy the Church, and for this reason, merit the resistance and admonitions of the faithful.

Again, when the Pope or the united episcopate under him are teaching via the Ordinary Magisterium the authors STILL must comply or they are guilty of disobedience. This refers to bishops that teach in communion with the united episcopate under the Pope or the pope teaching individually to the universal Church even when not speaking ex cathedra or in other non-solemn definitive ways. Failure to do this is to separate oneself from the Church. However, if a bishop is going against the teachings of the united episcopate or the Catechism (for example a bishop or priest teaching that contraception was okay) then yes they can indeed be rebuked and should be. However, there is much more to infallibility then just papal infallibility. The Fathers believed that the Church could not fail and this was not limited to just the pope but the Church as a whole. This is why the "trad" position is so dangerous because they introduce theological novums that did not exist in antiquity (and further then this: they are generally too arrogant to admit it and are usually beyond listening to anyone who disagrees with them on a point).

The considerations of these authors are not academic hypothoses, elaborated behind closed doors in theological disputes and classrooms. They are well grounded in the reality of the Church be it past or present.

Do you know who the authors sound like to me??? I will give you a hint:

But as to the wish that the form of the Church should be ascertained by some kind of vain pomp, how perilous it is I will briefly indicate, rather than explain, that I may not exceed all bounds. What they say is, that the Pontiff, who holds the apostolic see, and the priests who are anointed and consecrated by him, provided they have the insignia of fillets and mitres, represent the Church, and ought to be considered as in the place of the Church, and therefore cannot err. Why so? Because they are pastors of the Church, and consecrated to the Lord. And were not Aaron and other prefects of Israel pastors? But Aaron and his sons, though already set apart to the priesthood, erred notwithstanding when they made the calf (Exod. 32:4). Why, according to this view, should not the four hundred prophets who lied to Ahab represent the Church? (1 Kings 22:11, &c.). The Church, however, stood on the side of Micaiah. He was alone, indeed, and despised, but from his mouth the truth proceeded. Did not the prophets also exhibit both the name and face of the Church, when, with one accord, they rose up against Jeremiah, and with menaces boasted of it as a thing impossible that the law should perish from the priest, or counsel from the wise, or the word from the prophet? (Jer. 18:18). In opposition to the whole body of the prophets, Jeremiah is sent alone to declare from the Lord (Jer. 4:9), that a time would come when the law would perish from the priest, counsel from the wise, and the word from the prophet. Was not like splendour displayed in that council when the chief priests, scribes, and Pharisees assembled to consult how they might put Jesus to death? Let them go, then, and cling to the external mask, while they make Christ and all the prophets of God schismatics, and, on the other hand, make Satan's ministers the organs of the Holy Spirit!…[5]
Oh but it gets better:
Profane men think that religion rests only on opinion, and, therefore, that they may not believe foolishly, or on slight grounds, desire and insist to have it proved by reason that Moses and the prophets were divinely inspired. But I answer, that the testimony of the Spirit is superior to reason. For as God alone can properly bear witness to his own words, so these words will not obtain full credit in the hearts of men, until they are sealed by the inward testimony of the Spirit. The same Spirit, therefore, who spoke by the mouth of the prophets, must penetrate our hearts, in order to convince us that they faithfully delivered the message with which they were divinely entrusted.
This connection is most aptly expressed by Isaiah in these words, "My Spirit that is upon thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith the Lord, from henceforth and for ever," (Isa. 59:21). Some worthy persons feel disconcerted, because, while the wicked murmur with impunity at the Word of God, they have not a clear proof at hand to silence them, forgetting that the Spirit is called an earnest and seal to confirm the faith of the godly, for this very reason, that, until he enlightens their minds, they are tossed to and fro in a sea of doubts.
5. Let it therefore be held as fixed, that those who are inwardly taught by the Holy Spirit acquiesce implicitly in Scripture; that Scripture, carrying its own evidence along with it, deigns not to submit to proofs and arguments, but owes the full conviction with which we ought to receive it to the testimony of the Spirit.
ENLIGHTENED BY HIM, WE NO LONGER BELIEVE, EITHER ON OUR OWN JUDGMENT OR THAT OF OTHERS, that the Scriptures are from God; but, in a way superior to human Judgment, feel perfectly assured--as much so as if we beheld the divine image visibly impressed on it--that it came to us, by the instrumentality of men, from the very mouth of God. We ask not for proofs or probabilities on which to rest our Judgment, but we subject our intellect and Judgment to it as too transcendent for us to estimate. This, however, we do, not in the manner in which some are wont to fasten on an unknown object, which, as soon as known, displeases, but because we have a thorough conviction that, in holding it, we hold unassailable truth; not like miserable men, whose minds are enslaved by superstition, but because we feel a divine energy living and breathing in it--an energy by which we are drawn and animated to obey it, willingly indeed, and knowingly, but more vividly and effectually than could be done by human will or knowledge.
Hence, God most justly exclaims by the mouth of Isaiah, "Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord, and my servant whom I have chosen, that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he," (Isa. 43:10).
Such, then, is a conviction which asks not for reasons; such, a knowledge which accords with the highest reason, namely knowledge in which the mind rests more firmly and securely than in any reasons; such in fine, the conviction which revelation from heaven alone can produce. I say nothing more than every believer experiences in himself, though my words fall far short of the reality. I do not dwell on this subject at present, because we will return to it again: only let us now understand that the only true faith is that which the Spirit of God seals on our hearts. [6]
This writer has addressed these weak and circular arguments from Calvin’s Institutes in dialogues with Reformed Protestants on previous occasions. Note though what is being said here and the presumptions being made. The subject differs of course (with Calvin it was Scripture with "trads" it is the Magisterium and their interpretation of Tradition) but the methodology is the same. This writer was dead on accurate in his treatise labeling this pseudo so-called 'traditionalism' as "Protestantism of the right" because that is precisely what it is.

Without being overly concerned over documentation, I will briefly cite some cases of errors or heresies of Popes in the past and of the resistance that they occasioned. I leave open the possibility of returning to deal with these incidents in a more detailed and minutely documented way, should it be necessary.

Well based on this track record about to be presented, Mr. Guimaraes needs to do a lot more reading and a lot less talking.

1. In the second century, the rites of the Church still were not fixed. There was a natural tendency to maintain the Judaic rites. There was the influence of the Roman empire, dominant in almost the whole known world. There was the Greek influence, present principally in Egypt and Syria. With this, a question understandably presented itself to the Church. Which of these influences should the liturgical rite follow? Pope St. Anicetus (155-168) wanted to regularize the rites of the Church, initiating what would come to be the Roman Rite. St. Polycarp of Smyrna, a disciple of St. John the Evangelist, wanted to keep the same rites that he had learned from St. John and had been followed by the other Apostles. This Saint traveled from the East to Rome and spoke firmly to St. Anicetus, opposing this uniformization. St. Polycarp was intransigent. St. Anicetus could not manage to persuade him of his reform. The two rites were maintained, because of the resistance of the great Bishop of Smyrna. St. Polycarp, along with St. Clement of Rome, the Pope, and St. Ignatius of Antioch are honored with the singular title of Apostolic Father, that is, among the great apologists of the Church, these were instructed by one or another of the Apostles.

First of all, there is no evidence that "the other Apostles" all agreed with John the Evangelist on these matters. This is after all a question of practice not doctrine and there is no reason to presume that all of the Apostles marched in lockstep on these types of issues. As for Mr. Guimaraes’s account of what happened that is not what the Catholic Encyclopedia says happened (and since I know the shoddy quality of "trad" sources I prefer to deal with the normally very reliable Catholic Encyclopedia then his mystery sources).

Oh and why are these fellows (the author, the three "trad" comrades of the "pathetic refutation" fame) so insistent on pointing out that a Pope can err but refuse to recognize that Polycarp could have erred also??? Simple, to do this is to undermine their agenda, which is one of obstinence at any cost even schism and heresy. Point one fails and fails badly because in relation to what ‘trads’ do today it is a non-sequitur to their cause.

2. In the year 190, a similar question arose. Pope St. Victor (189-199) suffered the provocations of Blastus, a Catholic of the Jewish race who went to Rome with the intention of provoking a schism in the Church over the celebration of the Easter rites.

Why is the race of this Blastus person a relevant factor here??? Could it be that the venomous hatred of the Jews among many ‘trads’ was why Mr. Guimaraes brought up the evidence that this person Blastus was "of the Jewish race" (presuming that he was of course)???

St. Victor had decided to resolve the problem by making a uniform rite to be followed under the threat of excommunication. All the Churches agreed, with the exception of the Asian church, which at that time was very numerous. St. Irenaeus, an Asian and at that time Bishop of Lyons (France) opposed the decision of the Pope, and presented himself before St. Victor to show him all the evils that could come for the Church with the possible schism. The resistance of St. Irenaeus had the desired effect, and St. Victor, while maintaining the general rule for the rest of the Church, opened an exception for the Asians.

But Irenaeus did not question the pope’s authority in the process, merely his prudence. As Eusebius noted in his Church History Book V Chapter 24:

The Disagreement in Asia
But the bishops of Asia, led by Polycrates, decided to hold to the old custom handed down to them. He himself, in a letter which he addressed to Victor and the church of Rome, set forth in the following words the tradition which had come down to him: "We observe the exact day; neither adding, nor taking away. For in Asia also great lights have fallen asleep, which shall rise again on the day of the Lord's coming, when he shall come with glory from heaven, and shall seek out all the saints.
Among these are Philip, one of the twelve apostles, who fell asleep in Hierapolis; and his two aged virgin daughters, and another daughter, who lived in the Holy Spirit and now rests at Ephesus; and, moreover, John, who was both a witness and a teacher, who reclined upon the bosom of the Lord, and, being a priest, wore the sacerdotal plate. He fell asleep at Ephesus. And Polycarp in Smyrna, who was a bishop and martyr; and Thraseas, bishop and martyr from Eumenia, who fell asleep in Smyrna. Why need I mention the bishop and martyr Sagaris who fell asleep in Laodicea, or the blessed Papirius, or Melito, the Eunuch who lived altogether in the Holy Spirit, and who lies in Sardis, awaiting the episcopate from heaven, when he shall rise from the dead - All these observed the fourteenth day of the passover according to the Gospel, deviating in no respect, but following the rule of faith. And I also, Polycrates, the least of you all, do according to the tradition of my relatives, some of whom I have closely followed. For seven of my relatives were bishops; and I am the eighth. And my relatives always observed the day when the people put away the leaven. I, therefore, brethren, who have lived sixty-five years in the Lord, and have met with the brethren throughout the world, and have gone through every Holy Scripture, am not affrighted by terrifying words.
For those greater than I have said ' We ought to obey God rather than man.' " He then writes of all the bishops who were present with him and thought as he did. His words are as follows: "I could mention the bishops who were present, whom I summoned at your desire; whose names, should I write them, would constitute a great multitude. And they, beholding my littleness, gave their consent to the letter, knowing that I did not bear my gray hairs in vain, but had always governed my life by the Lord Jesus." Thereupon Victor, who presided over the church at Rome, immediately attempted to cut off from the common unity the parishes of all Asia, with the churches that agreed with them, as heterodox; and he wrote letters and declared all the brethren there wholly excommunicate. But this did not please all the bishops. AND THEY BESOUGHT HIM TO CONSIDER THE THINGS OF PEACE, AND OF NEIGHBORLY UNITY AND LOVE. Words of theirs are extant, sharply rebuking Victor. Among them was Irenaeus, who, sending letters in the name of the brethren in Gaul over whom he presided, maintained that the mystery of the resurrection of the Lord should be observed only on the Lord's day. He fittingly admonishes Victor that he should not cut off whole churches of God which observed the tradition of an ancient custom and after many other words he proceeds as follows:
"For the controversy is not only concerning the day, but also concerning the very manner of the fast. For some think that they should fast one day, others two, yet others more; some, moreover, count their day as consisting of forty hours day and night. And this variety in its observance has not originated in our time; but long before in that of our ancestors. It is likely that they did not hold to strict accuracy, and thus formed a custom for their posterity according to their own simplicity and peculiar mode. Yet all of these lived none the less in peace, and we also live in peace with one another; and the disagreement in regard to the fast confirms the agreement in the faith."
He adds to this the following account, which I may properly insert:
"Among these were the presbyters before Soter, who presided over the church which thou now rulest. We mean Anicetus, and Plus, and Hyginus, and Telesphorus, and Xystus. They neither observed it themselves, nor did they permit those after them to do so. And yet though not observing it, they were none the less at peace with those who came to them from the parishes in which it was observed; although this observance was more opposed to those who did not observe it. But none were ever cast out on account of this form; but the presbyters before thee who did not observe it, sent the eucharist to those of other parishes who observed it. And when the blessed Polycarp was at Rome in the time of Anicetus, and they disagreed a little about certain other things, they immediately made peace with one another, not caring to quarrel over this matter. For neither could Anicetus persuade Polycarp not to observe what he had always observed with John the disciple of our Lord, and the other apostles with whom he had associated; neither could Polycarp persuade Anicetus to observe it as he said that he ought to follow the customs of the presbyters that had preceded him.
But though matters were in this shape, they communed together, and Anicetus CONCEDED the administration of the eucharist in the church to Polycarp, manifestly as a mark of respect. And they parted from each other in peace, both those who observed, and those who did not, maintaining the peace of the whole church."
Thus Irenaeus, who truly was well named, became a peacemaker in this matter, exhorting and negotiating in this way in behalf of the peace of the churches. And he conferred by letter about this mooted question, not only with Victor, but also with most of the other rulers of the churches. [7]

Actually it is the ‘trads’ who seek strict uniformity far more then anyone else so in this case the ‘trad’ position is actually best represented by the view of St. Pope Victor I (whom they are claiming was in the wrong). Also, as you can see, Irenaeus (while acting as a peacemaker certainly) did not repudiate the Pope’s authority or question his right to do as he said he would (as "traditionalists" do constantly with JP II and did with Paul VI). There is no comparison between the actions of Irenaeus and those of Lefebvre and other "trads" for the latter two actually repudiate the authority and the decisions of the Apostolic See and not just in minor matters (like celebrating a festival: technically the day can be put anywhere on the calendar) but in matters of doctrine and in rejecting not only a General Council but also authentic ordinary magisterial teaching that must be given religious assent when promulgated to the Universal Church. This author named some of them earlier and they will be relisted here for the benefit of the reader. (The Encyclical Letter Mater et Magistra, the Encyclical Letter Pacem in Terris, the Encyclical Letter Ecclesiam Suam, the Encyclical Letter Populorum Progressio, the Encyclical Letter Sollicitudo rei Socialis, the Apostolic Letter Mulieris Dignitatem, the Encyclical Letter Ut Unum Sint, and the Apostolic Letter Tertio Millennio Adveniente. Every one of these documents of the pope's magisterium requires religious submission or else the dissenter is no longer Catholic (cf. Humani generis §20). Refusal to render religious assent is to repudiate the authority of the Sovereign Pontiff in the areas of discipline and government and to defacto repudiate the decrees of 2 General Councils (Vatican I and Vatican II) not to mention act as the Jansenists heretics did.

3. A more serious and sad case was that of Pope Marcellinus (296-304), which took place in the years 303-304. It is not a case of resistance per se, but the precedence of a Pope who fell into an error contrary to Catholic Doctrine. With regard to this, the Roman Breviary (reading of April 5) says: "During the cruel persecution of the Emperor Diocletian, Marcellinus of Rome, overcome with terror, offered incense to the idols of the gods. For this sin he did penance, and wearing a hairshirt, went to the Council of Sinuesso, where many Bishops had assembled, and there he openly confessed his crime." There is no account of resistance to this attitude, but one can well imagine that the heroic Catholics who were disposed to offer their lives as martyrs to avoid the crime of Marcellinus strongly opposed the shameful defection of the Supreme Pontiff.

This is very sloppy scholarship here. First of all, one of the most notable early Church historians Eusebius says nothing of this (very strange since apostasy of any Patriarch of the Church most notably the Bishop of Rome would not go unnoticed — especially by a historian who was his contemporary). Secondly, the agreement to the Formula of Hormisdas in 519 by the Eastern Patriarches (who submitted to it in ending the 40 year Acadian schism with the West) is strange since the formulary specifically says that "in the Apostolic See the Church has been preserved without blemish." Well a pope offering sacrifice to idols would be a blemish and a huge one and it is very unlikely that the Eastern bishops would have agreed to the formulary if one of the popes had indeed previously sacrificed to idols (as these "trads" allege that Marcellinus did) or promulgated heretical teachings (such as these "trads" claim that Liberius did — more on Liberius later on). But that is if it actually happened. If Atila Sinke Guimaraes was a real scholar, he would know to do his homework rather then fabricate such stories to justify his obdurate position (or to obtain his information from sources of questionable repute: which virtually all "trad" sources are). Here is what the Catholic Encyclopedia says on the matter:

THE DONATIST BISHOP PETILIANUS OF CONSTANTINE IN AFRICA ASSERTED, in the letter he wrote in 400 and 410, that Marcellinus and the Roman priests Melchiades, Marcellus, and Sylvester (his three successors) had given up the sacred books, and had offered incense. BUT HE COULD NOT ADDUCE ANY PROOF. In the Acts of confiscation of the church buildings at Rome, which at the great Carthaginian conference between Catholics and Donatists, were brought forward by the latter, only two Roman deacons, Straton and Cassius, were named as traitors. St. Augustine, in his replies to Petilianus, disputes the truth of the latter's report ("Contra litteras Petiliani", II, 202: "De quibus et nos solum respondemus: aut non probatis et ad neminem pertinet, aut probatis et ad nos non pertinet"; "De unico baptismo contra Petilianum", cap. xvi: "Ipse scelestos et sacrilegos fuisse dicit; ego innocentes fuisse respondeo"). One can only conclude from Petilianus's accusation that such rumours against Marcellinus and Roman priests were circulated in Africa; but that they could not be proved, otherwise St. Augustine would not have been able to assert the innocence of the accused so decidedly, or safely to have referred to the matter at the Carthaginian conference. But even in Rome similar stories were told of Marcellinus in certain circles, so that in two later legendary reports a formal apostasy was attributed to this pope, of course followed by repentance and penance. The biography of Marcellinus in the "Liber Pontificalis", which probably alludes to a lost "passio" of his, relates that he was led to the sacrifice that he might scatter incense, which he did. But after a few days he was seized with remorse, and was condemned to death by Diocletian with three other Christians, and beheaded. It is clear that this report attempts to combine a rumour that the pope had offered incense to the gods, with the fact that, in other circles he was regarded as a martyr and his tomb venerated.
At the beginning of the sixth century, rather later than this "passio Marcellini", a collection of forged documents appeared, which were manufactured in the dispute between Pope Symmachus and Laurentius. Among them are also found apocryphal Acts of an alleged synod of 300 bishops, which took place in 303 at Sinuessa (between Rome and Capua) in order to inquire into the accusation against Marcellinus that he had sacrificed at Diocletian's order. On the first two days Marcellinus had denied everything, but on the third day he admitted his lapse and repented; however the synod passed no sentence on him "quia prima sedes non judicatur a quoquam". When Diocletian learnt of the occurrence, he had the pope and several bishops of this synod executed (Hefele, "Konziliengeschichte", I, 2 Aufl. 143-45). THE SPURIOUSNESS OF THESE ACTS IS ALMOST CERTAIN. The forger has made the most of the rumour of Marcellinus's lapse for his own purposes in a different way from the author of the "passio", which crept into the "Liber Pontificalis". These apocryphal fragments cannot by themselves be considered as historical proofs, any more than the rumours in Donatist circles in Africa. IT IS ACCEPTED AS CERTAIN THAT THE POPE DID NOT COMPLY WITH THE IMPERIAL EDICT BY ANY OVERT ACT, SUCH AS THE SURRENDER OF THE SACRED WRITINGS, OR EVEN THE OFFERING OF INCENSE BEFORE THE STATUE OF A GOD. Such an apostasy of a Roman bishop would without a doubt have been given the greatest prominence by contemporary authors. Eusebius has not made use of the above mentioned idea. And later, Theodoret was still less in a position to state in his "Church History", that Marcellinus had been prominent in the persecution ton ’en tô diogmô diaprépsanta (Hist. Eccl., I, 2). And Augustine also would not have been able to assert so curtly in answer to Petilian, that Marcellinus and the priests accused with him as traitors and "lapsi" were innocent. [8]
No more needs to be added except to point out (again) the profoundly erroneous historical "facts" adduced by Mr. Guimaraes.

4. The epoch of Pope Liberius (352-366), in the middle of the fourth century, was marked principally by three men. The Roman Emperor Constantius II, son of Constantine, directed the semi-Arian persecutions. St. Athanasius, Patriarch of Alexandria, and St. Hilary, Bishop of Poitiers, resisted. At first, Liberius took a strong laudable stance supporting the Bishops who had resisted the Emperor and were exiled for refusing to sign semi-Arian decrees. In view of this, Constantius ordered the Pope to be taken and submitted him to pressures to intimidate him. Since the Pope remained constant up to the point, he was sent to Thrace. Then Constantius had Felix elected to occupy the Chair of Peter. This exile was more difficult for Liberius to sustain than the other pressures. After some time, he submitted to the desires of the Emperor. Four letters preserved by St. Hilary of Poitiers in his Historical fragments, and his work Ad Constantium contains the testimony of Pope’s submission. St. Athanasius also left a record of the papal defection in his History of the Arians (41) and his Apologia against the Arians (89). From Thrace, Liberius was taken to Sirmium, where he signed a semi-Arian profession of faith in the year 357. After he signed this document, the Pope was authorized to return to Rome. In his Chronicle (a. 349), St. Jerome wrote: "Liberius, conquered by the tedium of exile, with heretical perversity, signed [the semi-Arian faith] and entered Rome as a conqueror." It is interesting to note that neither St. Athanasius nor St. Hilary had any problem in resisting the Arian politics of Pope Liberius. It is largely from the writings of these two saints that the history of Pope Liberius is known today.

It really gets tiring having to fill in for the educational shortcomings of these so-called "experts". Again let the Catholic Encyclopedia refute Mr. Guimaraes' nonsense:

In the fragments of St. Hilary are embedded a number of letters of Liberius. Fragment IV contains a letter, "Studens paci", together with a very corrupt comment upon it by St. Hilary. The letter has usually been considered a forgery since Baronius (2nd ed.), and Duchesne expressed the common view when he said in his "Histoire ancienne de l'Eglise" (1907) that St. Hilary meant us to understand that it is spurious...I
There follows in the same fragment a paragraph which declares that Liberius, when in exile, reversed all these promises and actions, writing to the wicked, prevaricating Arians the three letters which complete the fragment. These correspond to the authentic letters which have preceded, each to each: the first, "Pro deifico timore" is a parody of "Obsecro"; the second "Quia scio uos", is a reversal of everything said in "Quamuis"; the third "Non doceo", is a palinode, painful to read, of the letter to Hosius. THE THREE ARE CLEARLY FORGERIES, composed for their present position...The forger is clearly one of the Luciferians, whose heresy consisted in denying all validity to the acts of those bishops who had fallen at the council of Rimini in 359; whereas Pope Liberius had issued a decree admitting their restoration on their sincere repentance, and also condemned the Luciferian practice of rebaptizing those whom the fallen bishops had baptized...
Consequently, St. Hilary becomes a strong witness to the innocence of Liberius. If St. Athanasius believed in his fall, this was when he was in hiding, and immediately after the supposed event; he was apparently deceived for the moment by the rumours spread by the Arians. The author of the preface to the "Liber Precum" of Faustinus and Marcellinus is an Ursinian masquerading as a Luciferian in order to get the advantage of the toleration accorded to the latter sect, and he takes a Luciferian view of Liberius; POSSIBLY HE FOLLOWED JEROME'S "CHRONICLE", WHICH SEEMS TO BE FOLLOWING THE FORGED LETTERS; for Jerome knew St. Hilary's book "Against Valens and Ursacius", and he refused to accept the assertion of Rufinus that it had been interpolated. In his account of Fortunatian (De Viris Illust., xcvii) he says this bishop "was infamous for having been the first to break the courage of Liberius and induce him to give his signature to heresy, and this on his way into exile". This is incredible, for St. Athanasius twice tells us that the pope held out two whole years. EVIDENTLY ST. JEROME (WHO WAS VERY CARELESS ABOUT HISTORY) had got hold of the story that Fortunatian had a letter of Liberius in his hands after the Council of Milan, and he concludes that he must have met Liberius as the latter passed through Aquileia on his way to Thrace; that is to say, Jerome has read the forged letters and has not quite understood them. [9]
Lest anyone think that this writer misquoted the above link, the entire article can be read here. Not much more needs to be added except that the author’s claims that Hilary and Athanasius believed that Pope Liberius had fallen (and that Liberius had engaged in "Arianizing activities") do not square with the accounts as they have been handed down. Even the most knowledgeable of Protestants (who never cease to argue against papal infallibility) have dropped the incident with Liberius as a disqualifying factor (and they NEVER use the Marcellinus argument which would be a goldmine for their cause if it was true). Apparently the "trads" who basically stole the "Protestant play book" on these and other matters have not been informed that the "book" they argue from has been "updated"…

5. At the beginning of the fifth century, St. Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, St. Aurelius, Archbishop of Carthage, and St. Jerome in Bethlehem were shining lights in North Africa. The Church was afflicted with the Pelagian heresy. The doctrine of Pelagius was first condemned by the Council of Carthage in 411. Afterward, it gave rise to the great polemic of St. Jerome and Orosius in Jerusalem, where the heretic had established an important base. St. Augustine wrote various books against the Pelagian doctrine: The Remission of Sins and the Baptism of Children, the Spirit and the Letter, Letter to Hilary, Nature and Grace, Perfect Justice, The Acts of Pelagius, The Grace of Christ, and Original Sin. Alongside these intellectual efforts, the Bishop of Hippo and the Bishop of Carthage exercised their influence so that the two African Council’s of Carthage and Mileve held in 416 condemned the Pelagian doctrine and its promoters. This effort of the African bishops was approved and praised by Pope Innocent I (401-417), who also expressly condemned Pelagius, his doctrine and his followers.

Correct thus far...

With the rise of Pope Zosimus (417-418) to the papal throne, the Pelagians found an unexpected opportunity to return to the offensive. After various hypocritical maneuvers of Pelagius, Pope Zosimus, in the presence of the Roman clergy, recognized the perfect orthodoxy of the statements of the heretic. He expressed indignation that a man of Pelagius’ merit could have been so calumniated (Letter Postquam nobis, of November 21, 417). This papal support for Pelagius can also be found in the Letter Magnum Pondus. In addition to this inconceivable position, the Holy See demanded a formal retraction from the African Bishops.

This was not a reversal at all but a miscommunication. Pelagius made a submission to the Apostolic See and was not sincere about it. Pope Zosimus asked him to submit to the doctrinal decisions of his predecessors and Pelagius agreed. Then the latter went back on his word.

The Africans appealed, asking Rome to take into consideration the prior condemnation of Pope Innocent I and the two councils of Carthage. The request was unheeded.

Pope Zosimus was not reversing the condemnation of Innocent I but was taking into account that maybe Pelagius was not guilty of the heresy that bore his name. Pelagius tried to pull a fast one but did not succeed.

In face of this situation, St. Augustine and St. Aurelius made an energetic protestation, or obtestatio - an oath with God as witness - affirming that the prior Catholic Doctrine prevailed over the judgment of Zosimus. A plenary council of all Africa then assembled to uphold the condemnation made by Pope Innocent I against Pelagius. Finally, Pope Zosimus, breaking with his prior measures, accepted the condemnation of Innocent I and renewed the excommunication of Pelagius. A brilliant example of resistance.

That is not what St. Augustine said happened:

"This opinion of Pelagius was afraid or ashamed to bring out to you; but his disciple without any dissimulation was neither afraid nor ashamed to publish it openly before the Apostolic See. But the very merciful prelate of the See, when he saw him carried headlong with such presumption like a madman, until he might come to himself, if that were possible, preferred binding bit by bit by question and answer to striking him with a severe sentence, which would thrust him down that precipice over which he seemed to be already hanging. I do not say 'had fallen,' but 'seemed to be hanging'; for earlier in the same libellus he had promised before speaking of such questions: 'If by chance, being but men, some error should creep in, let it be corrected by your decision.' So the venerable Pope Zosimus holding to this preparatory statement, urged the man inflated with false doctrine, to condemn what he was accused of by the deacon Paulinus, AND TO GIVE HIS ASSENT TO THE LETTERS OF THE APOSTOLIC SEE WHICH HAD EMANATED FROM HIS PREDECESSOR OF HOLY MEMORY. He refused to condemn what the deacon objected, but he dared not resist the letters of Blessed Pope Innocent, nay, he promised to 'condemn whatever that See should condemn.' Thus gently treated, as if a madman, that he might be pacified, he was still not thought fit to be released from the bonds of excommunication. But a delay of two months was decided, that an answer might be received from Africa, and so an opportunity of coming to his senses was given him by a medicinal gentleness in his sentence. For, indeed, he would be cured, if he would lay aside his obstinate vanity, and attend to what he promised, and would read those letters [of St. Innocent], to which he professed to consent." [10]
Again Mr. Guimaraes errs and errs badly. Since Dr. Pusey and the Anglican divines tried to use a version of the Pope Zosimus incident to argue against papal infallibility, this writer wonders if Mr. Guimaraes borrowed his rationale from the archives of Pusey. The profoundly PROTESTANT nature of these arguments by so-called "Catholics" (which is what Pusey and his associates called themselves by the way: interesting that their "trad" descendants follow suit in this manner) is amazingly similar. But then so is the purpose (defying the papacy and refusing to submit to its judgments) albeit the precise degree differs. But at least Pusey and company did not take the Pharasaical position of claiming infallibility for the See of Rome and then seeking to disobey her by inventing a clinical definition of infallibility that is diametrically opposed to the understanding of the ancient Church, Vatican I (as the Council Fathers understood the term "defines"), Pope Pius XII (Humani Generis 20), and Vatican II (Lumen Gentium 25). To the credit of Dr. Pusey and the Anglican divines (like George Salmon) they at least were consistent in this one regard. Too bad "trads" cannot be equally consistent. Since the Truth by its very nature is consistent, these "trads" and their internally contradictory and arbitrary philosophies fail the most basic test of all that a truthful position (if it is a position claiming to be truth) must possess: internal consistency.

6. Vigilius was a kind of puppet of the Empress Theodora. He was the one who gave the order to Belisarius, one of the principal generals of Justinian, to depose Pope Silverius (536-537). Silverius was exiled to Asia, returned to Rome, and then newly exiled to the island of Palmaria where he died, abandoned. After Silverius, Vigilius himself was raised to the Pontifical Throne (537-555). At that time the question of the "Three Chapters" was a much-discussed topic. In summary, this referred to a position in relation to the Council of Chalcedon, which condemned the heresy of Eutiques, monophysitism. To condemn the "Three Chapters" was equivalent to condemning the Council and approving monophysitism.

No it was not. And in condemning the Three Chapters, Constantinople II also upheld Chalcedon in the process. Or as Monsignor Phillip Hughes noted in his work "A History of the General Councils" when discussing Constantinople II:

The Emperor Justinian wanted the Council of Chalcedon to be condemned. At first, Pope Vigilius took a firm attitude. For this, he was made prisoner and exiled to Constantinople. After years of struggle, in which he suffered ridicule and physical violence, Vigilius gave in. On the orders of Justinian, a new council of Constantinople was convoked and the "Three Chapters" were condemned, that is to say, it adhered to monophysitism. Vigilius, who wanted to end this exile, asked Justinian permission to return to Rome. The Emperor made the condition that the Pope approve the decisions of the recent Council. Vigilius turned from his former orthodox position, wrote a letter of retraction, condemned the "Three Chapters" and launched an anathema against its authors. After this reconciliation with Justinian, Vigilius was rewarded with concessions that would have allowed him to reorganize the government of Rome and Italy. He left Constantinople, but he never carried out his plans, because he died before he reached Rome…
Just a brief interjection here before resuming with Msr. Hughes source.It is interesting to note how strange (since Constantinople II is recognized as Ecumenical by the West and the East and General Councils have always been recognized as infallible) that Mr. Guimaraes - and presumably the "Hammer triplets" for using his article agree with him - are claiming that two General Councils contradicted!!! Did they??? No they did not but to realize how will involve actual reading up and studying which are anathema to the "trad" who prefers to read a Davies book (or the garbage of Fr. Wathen) and then strut around as self-anointed "experts."
With the eighth sentence the council [II Constantinople] comes to grips with the Monophysites, for it quotes verbatim the much controverted formula of St. Cyril,[27] AND DETERMINES THE, CATHOLIC, SENSE IN WHICH HE USED IT, A SENSE THAT FITS WITH EPHESUS AS WELL AS WITH CHALCEDON. This formula, it is now said, should not be understood to mean that the unity by which Christ is one being is the effect of a fusion between the divine and the human natures; the two natures remain two natures in the union, and the union is a union in a single person. Those who thus fuse the natures are as erroneous as those who speak of them as separate beings. Both are condemned by this sentence 8. It is the turn of the Nestorians again in 9--their practical direction is condemned, that Christ should be worshipped with a double worship simultaneously directed, first to the divine in Him, and then to the human. To balance this the single adoration of Christ in the sense of Eutyches-- i.e., as though before the adorer there were present God alone and this being, neither man nor God, who cannot be adored--is also condemned. The doctrinal decision of Pope John II, twenty years ago now, is repeated in sentence 10; it is correct to say, "One of the Trinity suffered in the flesh for us." The eleventh sentence strings together a list of heresiarchs from Origen to Eutyches, and with all others condemned already "by the four holy synods"[28] condemns them and their supporters anew...
Chalcedon was not in conflict with Ephesus. The fourteen "chapters" of the council just dissolved seem to have established this clearly, with, if anything, a little more favour for the Alexandrian way of speech than that of Antioch. But had one alleged conflict been extinguished only for another to spring from its ashes? Was the council just dissolved at cross purposes with Chalcedon? The West seems to have thought so, and the action of those who for years deprecated the condemnation of the Three Chapters had been compromised by this fear that Chalcedon must, thereby, be compromised inevitably. And certainly Askidas and his party--the crypto-Monophysites of the court--hoped that Chalcedon must, thereby, be so compromised. But this was never any part of the emperor's plan. How could he have intended such a wholesale surrender? Nor, among the great majority of the eastern bishops-- better equipped to deal with these matters than their Latin brethren--did the name of Chalcedon suffer. As to the Monophysites, they already, and for a hundred years, had the worst possible opinion of Chalcedon. Moreover--as we, with what is called "hindsight," can so easily see--the Monophysites had by now washed their hands of the Catholic Church, and what its councils decided would no longer have any interest for them." [11]
As is obvious, Vigilius condemned the 3 Chapters as they related to Cyril’s work AFTER CONSTANTINOPLE II HAD SET FORTH THE PROPER SENSE OF CYRIL’S WRITINGS THAT HARMONIZED EPHESUS AND CHALCEDON!!! For crying out loud you ignorant and obstinate "trads", get an education before you start throwing around citations the meanings of which you clearly do not understand. Pope Vigilius changed his mind on the condemnations because the SENSE of the condemnations had changed from what it was previously. Again this writer realizes that these kinds of distinctions are difficult for the "trad" mind to make but at least put forward some effort at it please.

This has been a brief account of six historical precedents that illustrate errors of Popes in the past and the consequent possibility of opposing them with a legitimate and salutary resistance. Three interesting cases still remain which will be dealt with in the next article.

This has been a decisive refutation of these so-called papal "errors" which were actually not errors at all and none of which gives Mr. Guimaraes (or the three "greatest ‘trad’ webmasters") any justification for their rebellion against the Teaching Authority of the Church as manifested in the papal magisteriumm of Popes John XXIII, Paul VI, and JP II. (Not to mention the authority of the General Council Vatican II.)


With regard to the present day situation of the Church, the times that we are living in lend themselves to innumerable historical parallels. In effect, the crisis opened by Vatican Council II is certainly the most serious of History.

No it is not even close. The situation with the Judaizers (which involved a Council at Jerusalem and the Apostle Paul had to follow up addressing in 2 epistles that are a part of Holy Writ) was worse then today. The Gnostic situation, the Arian situation, the Chalcedon situation, Islam when it initially came up, The Eastern Schism, the Albigensian situation, the Western Schism, the Protestant "reformation", the Jansenist heresy, and the situation with Darwin in the nineteenth century were all worse then what we are experiencing today.

From top to bottom the Church edifice was revolutionized. It is normal, therefore, for Catholics to ask if there have been analogous precedents to what we are now witnessing, in order to know how to act. If this is opportune with regard to the ecclesiastical crisis, it is imperative with regard to the Papacy. In fact, after the proclamation of papal infallibility, the notion began to spread that all the positions of a Pope are infallible and immutable — a Pope can never err, and whoever thinks such at thing would be committing a crime. The reality, however, is not so simple. The conditions under which papal infallibility is guaranteed are very restricted and rare. For a document of the papal Magisterium to be considered infallible, very precise elements are necessary. Thus, there is a significant margin of error in the attitudes assumed by a Pope. Saying this, I by no means want to encourage any lack of respect for the pontifical authority. I only want to place myself within the actual situation as it was desired by Our Lord and taught by the Church.

Well Mr. Guimaraes and the Hammer triplets are very much outside the bounds of what the Church actually teaches.

The Papacy is for me the perfect institution: it is the mainstay of the created universe, the pillar of the temporal order and the summit of the spiritual order. The stairs that Jacob saw in his dream, with angels rising and descending on it, I consider as a symbol of the Papacy. It is by no means of the Papacy that the earth meets heaven. So much so that one might ask if some future theologian will study whether the attitudes of a Pope on earth might have juridical repercussions in heaven. The words of Our Lord, "And whatsoever you shall bind upon earth, shall be bound also in heaven; and whatsoever you shall loose upon earth, shall be loosed also in heaven" (Mt 18:18) seem to suggest a certain "heavenly jurisdiction" in the exercise of the Petrine Primacy. I mention this not to defend a new theological question — the times unfortunately are not propitious for this — but to make public my unrestrained veneration for the Papacy.

Well considering that the author has argued like John Calvin, Anglicans, and other detractors of the papacy to defend his proposition, it is a viable speculation as to whether he really likes the papacy in reality or merely in the abstract.

[snipped sections on Anicetus, Victor I, Marcellinus, Liberius, Zosimus, and Vigilius: all historical and doctrinal errors of Mr. Guimaraes that this author has already substantially refuted]

2. In order to follow the heresy of Pope Honorius (625-638), some background information is necessary, which I will give here in a very brief way. The doctrines of monoenergism and of monothelism are two variants of monophysitism. The author of the heresy, Patriarch Sergius of Constantinople, defended the notion that in Christ there was only one single energy and one single will. This was countered by the strong and efficient opposition of St. Sophronius, who was afterward Patriarch of Jerusalem. This heresy was also combated by St. Maximus the Confessor and various Popes, as will be seen below. In an attempt to thwart the attacks of St. Sophronius and gain approval for the new heresy, Sergius wrote to Pope Honorius. The Pope responded with a letter of approval. In the document, Honorius praised the efforts of Sergius and approved his thesis about the single energy. The arguments of those who opposed him, said Honorius, could be reduced to merely a grammatical question. It was sufficient, Honorius affirmed, to teach that the same Word Incarnate divinely operates divine things and humanly operates human things, and that in all His action there is only one acting, therefore, only one will.

Sigh…Mr. Guimaraes again needs to do his homework:

It was now for the pope to pronounce a dogmatic decision and save the situation. He did nothing of the sort. His answer to Sergius did not decide the question, did not authoritatively declare the faith of the Roman Church, did not claim to speak with the voice of Peter; it condemned nothing, it defined nothing. Honorius entirely agrees with the caution which Sergius recommends. He praises Sergius for eventually dropping the new expression "one operation", but he unfortunately also agrees with him that it will be well to avoid "two operations" also; for if the former sounds Eutychian, the latter may be judged to be Nestorian. Another passage is even more difficult to account for. Following the lead of Sergius, who had said that "two operations" might lead people to think two contrary wills were admitted in Christ, Honorius (after explaining the communicatio idiomatum, by which it can be said that God was crucified, and that the Man came down from heaven) adds: "Wherefore we acknowledge one Will of our Lord Jesus Christ, for evidently it was our nature and not the sin in it which was assumed by the Godhead, that is to say, the nature which was created before sin, not the nature which was vitiated by sin." Other passages in the letter are orthodox. But it is plain that the pope simply followed Sergius, without going more deeply into the question. The letter cannot be called a private one, for it is an official reply to a formal consultation. It had, however, less publicity than a modern Encyclical. As the letter does not define or condemn, and does not bind the Church to accept its teaching, it is of course impossible to regard it as an ex cathedra utterance. But before, and even just after, the Vatican Council such a view was sometimes urged, though almost solely by the opponents of the dogma of Papal Infallibility. Part of a second letter of Honorius to Sergius was read at the eighth council. It disapproves rather more strongly of the mention of either one operation or two; but it has the merit of referring to the words of St. Leo which Sergius had cited. [12]
Again, it would be nice if Mr. Guimaraes would actually read history from reputable sources. This track record of error he has established here (all to justify his schism from the Church) should be an embarrassment to the author if he is truly one who desires to submit to the Lord’s wishes and not just his own whims.

St. Sophronius was elected Patriarch of Jerusalem. He called a synod to combat the heresy. The final document of the assembly was a anti-monothelist profession of faith. The Patriarch also wrote a treatise about the first heresies and how the Church had always combated them. The central point of his analysis was to demonstrate that the Church had always taught that there were two energies, one human and one divine, in Christ. This is a natural consequence of the double nature of the Savior. To affirm the contrary is to fall into monophysitism. The documents of Sophronius - the conclusion of the synod and the treatise - were sent to Honorius. The Pope reproved the Patriarch, warning him that he should not separate the energies in Christ.

It is abundantly clear that St. Maximus and his Constantinopolitan friends, St. Sophronius and the bishops of Palestine, Sergius and his suffragans, had no notion that the Apostolic See had been compromised by the letters of Honorius, but "they looked to it as the only port of salvation." That anyway is what the 1913 Catholic Encyclopedia noted interestingly enough and it is usually a reliable source.

With this situation standing between Honorius and Sophronius, the Emperor Heralitus launched edicts about religious unity and the faith, in which he favored the heresy and combated St. Sophronius.

This is the only argument that the author brings up that is at all relevant to his case; however it will now be shot down. Pope Honorius I did not promulgate any magisterial teaching of any kind. (Which rules out any possibility that he spoke definitively in any capacity be it ordinary or extraordinary.) Therefore, because this work is "less then an Encyclical but above a pure private correspondence" it is immaterial in comparing it to Ut Unim Sint or other ordinary magisterium teachings promulgated by a pope which require religious assent even in non-definitive areas. (And definitive assent if there are definitive areas: and many documents from the papal magisterium issued by the pope in his own name contain some teachings of this qualification.) So even the one point that is moderately supportive of Mr. Guimaraes' arguments fall apart when looked at more closely because it is a non-sequitur to his case.

Monothelism was condemned by the successors of Pope Honorius: Pope Severinus (640-640) condemned it, Pope John IV (640-642) in 642, and Pope Theodore I (642-649) excommunicated Pyrrhus, Patriarch of Constantinople, for defending the same error. Pope St. Martin I (649-655) was imprisoned by the Emperor Constans II, and died a martyr because he would not accept monothelism. Pope Eugenius I (654-657) also rejected this doctrine. The Ecumenical Council of Constantinople (680-681) condemned monothelism and condemned Pope Honorius as a heretic. The condemnation document was elaborated by Pope Saint Agatho (678-681).

Pope Leo II who ratified the decrees of Constantinople III said that the condemnation against Honorius was because of a lack of diligence in addressing the heresy and crushing it at the very beginning before it had time to spread, not for being a heretic himself. Or to quote The Catholic Encyclopedia on the matter:

" The words about Honorius in his letter of confirmation, by which the council gets its ecumenical rank, are necessarily more important than the decree of the council itself: ‘We anathematize the inventors of the new error, that is, Theodore, Sergius,...and also Honorius, who did not attempt to sanctify this Apostolic Church with the teaching of Apostolic tradition, but by profane treachery permitted its purity to be polluted’"…
"Nothing, however, could be less explicit. Hefele, with many others before and after him, held that Leo II by the same words explained the sense in which the sentence of Honorius was to be understood. Such a distinction between the pope's view and the council's view is not justified by close examination of the facts. At best such a system of defence was exceedingly precarious, for the milder reading of the Latin is just as likely to be original: "but by profane treachery attempted to pollute its purity". In this form Honorius is certainly not exculpated, yet the pope declares that he did not actually succeed in polluting the immaculate Roman Church. However, in his letter to the Spanish King Erwig, he has: "And with them Honorius, who allowed the unspotted rule of Apostolic tradition, which he received from his predecessors, to be tarnished." To the Spanish bishops he explains his meaning: "With Honorius, who did not, as became the Apostolic authority, extinguish the flame of heretical teaching in its first beginning, but fostered it by his negligence"…
It is clear that no Catholic has the right to defend Pope Honorius. He was a heretic, not in intention, but in fact; and he is to be considered to have been condemned in the sense in which Origen and Theodore of Mopsuestia, who died in Catholic communion, never having resisted the Church, have been condemned. But he was not condemned as a Monothelite, nor was Sergius. And it would be harsh to regard him as a "private heretic", for he admittedly had excellent intentions...[13]
So it becomes very obvious the sense with which Pope Honorius was condemned is not that which Mr. Guimaraes implies in his statement. And since Constantinople III was ratified by Pope St. Agatho’s successor Pope Leo II, it is in the sense that Pope Leo II outlined which is how we need to understand the condemnation of Constantinople III of Pope Honorius. Oh but before finishing this topic off, an interesting tidbit from the article on Pope Honorius that should be of interest to ‘trads’ in light of who it mentions:
Bellarmine and Baronius followed Pighius IN DENYING THAT HONORIUS WAS CONDEMNED AT ALL. Baronius argued that the Acts of the Council were falsified by Theodore, a Patriarch of Constantinople, who had been deposed by the emperor, but was restored at a later date; we are to presume that the council condemned him, but that he substituted "Honorius" for "Theodorus" in the Acts. This theory has frequently been shown to be untenable… [14]
So Cardinal Bellarmine denied the condemnation of Pope Honorius it seems!!! This is another example of private theologians being able to err. Considering that St. Robert Bellarmine is one of the chief exponents of the theory of a pope falling into heresy (which is constantly brought up by ‘trads’ to justify their obstinance), it is interesting to point out this most elementary blunder by the Cardinal because it implies something that hurts the "trad" cause in citing him as an ally. If St. Cardinal Bellarmine was wrong once before, then he can be wrong again and interestingly enough, Cardinal Bellarmine seems to find it necessary to defend Pope Honorius to the point of denying the Acts of the Council and Pope Leo II’s interpretation of the Council (or else why would he do so???). Now this is not said to cast any suspicions on the good Cardinal mind you, only to show that his actions in defending a pope that was condemned as a heretic posthumously (for laxity and not for his actual beliefs) do not seem to square with his theory that the pope could indeed fall into heresy. This is strange since in practice he seems to have denied what he professed in theory.

3. The Council of Toledo of 638 praised King Chintila for a law of interdict against those who professed the Jewish faith from remaining in Spain. The Council determined that in the future every King should swear to maintain this rigorous prescription, under punishment of anathema. This attitude of prevention in relation to the errors of the Jewish religion was a confirmation of a canon of the Council of Toldeo of 633, presided over by St. Isidore.

So what. Local councils can make mistakes unless their teachings are supported by the Pope in the form of promulgating them in a definitive manner to the Universal Church (or are local councils now infallible to Mr. Guimaraes???).

Pope Honorius sent an admonition to the Bishops of Spain, expressing benevolence in relation to the Jewish errors. In view of this, St. Braulio of Saragossa, disciple and friend of St. Isidore of Seville, reprimanded the Pope immediately after the Council of 638. He stated that he found it incredible that baptized Jews had received permission in Rome to return to their superstitious practices. The Saint sent Honorius an account of the "past and present" acts of the councils regarding the Jewish errors. Directing himself to the Pope, St. Braulio first manifested his respect toward the "the first and most eminent of the Prelates," to the "chief of our ministry." But then he affirmed that he could not believe that the "astuteness of the serpent had been able to leave traces of his passing over the stone of the Apostolic See."

So what. Local councils not ratified by the pope and extended to the Universal Church have no authority outside of their providences. Toledo was never ratified as binding teaching and besides, why now is it the "infallibility" of St. Braulio or of a local council that is now being touted as authoritative??? This writer is under no obligation to agree with him or with Toledo’s decisions and without the Toledo articles in front of me, he has no idea what practices were being condemned. However, it is sadly quite predictable that these "trads" had to look for some excuse to bash the Jews like the despicable Ku Klux Katholiks that they are. Like Jack Chick bashing Catholics, Christian Identity groups bashing those of African and Asian descent, and other disgusting actions by similarly spiteful people, these "trads" must bash the Jews. You see, as much as these "trads" might not want to admit it, yes even some saints were bigots too at times or they had other personality flaws. There are a lot of earlier saints that would never make it past the barb of a devils advocate from previous centuries. (Formal canonization is a much more rigorous process then universal acclimation as they did in former times.) It is called being human and barring special grace to avoid sin, even saints were sinners. The author is always amazed that these "trads" are so quick to judge others but they defend unreservedly their favourite saints who made comments that they concur with especially ones that come across as hateful towards the Jews. It is especially  interesting that someone like Charles "Hammer" Goldstein - who was involved in composing this pathetic excuse for a "refutation" of part of this writers' treatise - can be so spiteful especially since he is a Jew. (With a last name like Goldstein, it is pretty obvious.) Therefore this writer asks him straight out: why are you so ashamed of your heritage Charles??? Our Lord was a Jew too (as was Our Lady, St. Joseph, St. Simeon, and the Apostles). Are you also ashamed of them too???

Interestingly enough, this writer has heard from several sources that Adolph Hitler (whose father’s real name was Schnicklegruber) was from Jewish ancestry too and it seems that Mr. Goldstein and Mr. Hitler share a common hatred here. It is disturbing to contemplate just how far people with the same attitude as some of these radical "trads" (most notably the "Hammer triplets") would go in assisting Hitler if they were around during WW II and living in Germany. Even as a 'traditionalist', this author never understood the consuming hatred that so many of these people (who are mentally and emotionally stuck in the Middle Ages) have for other people based on their religion (especially the Jews). Then they associate being kind and compassionate with people of differing faiths as "compromising one’s position" as if we must necessarily be rude and bash other people to be "good faithful Catholics." These types of ‘trads’ should read and meditate on the Epistle of James Chapter 2 verses 1-13 because they are CLEARLY violating the Apostle’s precepts. Our Lord founded Catholicism NOT "Ku Klux Katholicism." Such a mentality is disgusting and a poor witness for the Lordship of Our Lord Jesus Christ. These people should be ashamed of themselves.

One of the "dogmas" of progressivism that unfortunately is held by many in high places of the Church today is that of not combating the errors of the Jewish religion, which, nonetheless, continues to profess the same principles. It is interesting to see here how the Councils and the Saints have acted so courageously in the past. And how even when a Pope, a heretic Pope, had sustained the Jewish errors, he had received the exemplary resistance of a Saint.

Now the saint is incapable of being wrong right??? First of all, Honorius was condemned posthumously for inactivity regarding the Monolethite heresy. HE WAS NOT CONDEMNED AS A HERETIC FOR ACTUALLY BEING A HERETIC. Get your facts straight before you open your mouth Mr. Guimaraes!!! Your track record in this article (much like the accuracy of Hammer and company’s sad attempt at a "refutation" of about 20-25% of this writer's treatise) is utterly dismal. (But at the same time it is typical uneducated, triumphalistic, obstinate, and spiteful "trad" bilge.) May Mr. Guimaraes turn from his rebellious schismatic and arguaby quasi-heretical ways and submit to the Church of the Living God, the pillar and foundation of truth (1 Tim. 3:15). Otherwise, we Catholics must treat him and his ‘trad’ associates like the heathens and the publicans that they are for refusing to heed the Church which has the power to individually (pope) and collectively (pope and united episcopate) bind and loose in heaven whatsoever they bind and loose on earth pertaining to matters of faith and morals (Matt. 16:19; 18:16-18). Ordinary magisterium teaching are "bound" on Catholics. Either Mr. Guimaraes and the Hammer triplets accept them or they are schismatics. The choice is up to them but we already know God’s view of those who obstinately scorn and rebel against His established order (see Numbers 16; Jude 1:8-13 for incidents involving "trads" of both the OT and the NT periods). This article was titled The Duty To Resist. Obviously in light of the numerous glaring errors might we suggest a different title for it should Remnant decide to reprint it??? How about Any Excuse to Remain in Schism??? The obvious ignorance of the author who wrote it (and the magazine that published it) has been clearly and unambiguously demonstrated here in this response (and another series of arguments endorsed by the "3 greatest ‘trad’ web-masters" [falsely so-called] goes down in flames). May they repent of their errors and return to the Barque of Peter before they "perish in the contradiction of Korah" (Jude 1:8-13).

(*) Such as him and his Remnant buddies who recently "declared war" on the Pope: yep that is how you obey your superiors alright — by telling them when you will be compliant (see Jude 1:8-13).


[1] Br. Alexis Bugnolo: Response to Fr. James Wathen
[The paper this was taken from is no longer available on the Internet - ISM 1/25/03]

[2] Pope John XXIII: From His Opening Allocution to the Council  (October 11, 1962)

[3] Pope Pius XII: Encyclical Letter "Humani Generis" section 20 (August 12, 1950)

[4] M L Cozens: "A Handbook of Heresies", pg. 75, On Jansenism (c. 1928)

[5] John Calvin: "Institutes", Prefatory Address Excerpts from Book 1 (c.1550)

[6] John Calvin: "Institutes" - Book 1 Chapter 7 Excerpts (c.1550)

[7] Eusebius of Caesarea: "Church History"  Book V Ch. 24 (c. 320 AD)

[8] Catholic Encyclopedia: From the article "Pope Saint Marcellinus" (c. 1913)

[9] Catholic Encyclopedia: From the article "Pope Liberius" (c. 1913)

[10] St. Augustine of Hippo: "De pecc orig" vi-vii, 6-8, p. 388-9.

[11] Monsignor Phillip Hughes: "A History of the General Councils",  Chapter 5 on Constantinople II (c. 1960)

[12] Catholic Encyclopedia: From the article "Pope Honorius" (c. 1913)

[13] Catholic Encyclopedia: From the article "Pope Honorius" (c. 1913)

[14] Catholic Encyclopedia: From the article "Pope Honorius" (c. 1913)

©2003, 2000, "Detection and Overthrow of the 'Traditionalist Catholics' Falsely So-Called" (Refutation of Appendix 1), written by I.Shawn McElhinney. 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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