A case for Pope Michael

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A case for Pope Michael

Post by Admin on Mon Feb 08, 2016 4:59 pm

Originally written as a reply to Anthony Zarella, but reply function was locked on disqus:

// And I'm not arguing with "checked" - I'm arguing with "duly checked". //

By duly, I meant simply "as is due", as opposed to his checking his own private revelation only.

// I'm sure someone made some sort of inquiries - but that doesn't mean that anyone qualified made the necessary sort of inquiries. //

HE is the one person in the universe who cannot be qualified at the moment he has a private revelation.

ANYONE ELSE, especially with some episcopal or even priestly background, is qualified to at least start an enquiry.

As for Rome usually closing it, in a case like this, if the private revelation is true, the one "incumbent" in Rome would not be qualified.

// But then you imply, "Therefore, there is good reason to believe that his claims were at least minimally credible." //

No, I implied only "therefore there is some reason to think his private revelation is not as per purely procedural grounds condemned by its being not checked by anyone else". That is all, so far.

// That's where you lost me. I mean, I'm sure L. Ron Hubbard's followers are quite convinced of the validity of his claims... but that doesn't make Scientology anything more than a laughable crock of BS. //

At least they have the good sense to be opposed to psychiatry.

And, it is NOT based on Private Revelation.

Ron Hubbard was a decent essayist, with some decent programs, but he wanted to be tax exempt as well, which involved in US founding a new religion.

When I say decent, I mean for a non-Christian, like Lloyd Alexander or Voltaire.

// Colinist. The "Apostles of Infinite Love". Not that Bawden's numbers are much better - by his own interviews, he's got somewhere between 30 and 100 followers, worldwide. //

He is making a point of the remnant being a small one.

// I'm not even talking about his election - I'm talking about his ability to even call a conclave with any degree of binding authority. //


When FSSPX and Sedes celebrate masses and ordain priests without any either local bishop or Pope of Rome giving any binding authority behind this, they invoke the virtue of epikeia - in its unusual application of breaking the letter to keep the spirit of a law.

NOW, moral theology says epikeia is a virtue in its unusual application when cases of necessity not foreseen by the law must be removed by means contrary to its letter. He therefore argues that FSSPX and Sedes have a grave duty to go the whole hog and REMOVE the case of necessity, in order to invoke epikeia, and that one being the absence of a true Pope. How is such an absense removed? By electing a Pope.

// He and one other (can't recall her name at the moment - Theresa something, I think) wished to call a conclave. So they themselves investigated the matter, and they themselves determined that they themselves had the authority to do so. //

Mrs Theresa S. Benns. I corresponded with her as well back when I was Palmarian. Back then she would be scolding me for not accepting him, now she is rejecting him herself. But as said, the question is not of authority on this view which they applied, but one of what epikeia means.

// Everyone they invited (besides Mr. and Mrs. Bawden, and the couple from down the street) obviously disagreed... but by Bawden and whatshername's own (pre-papal) authority, it was determined that their disagreement was simply error, and thus disqualified them from having a valid say in the putative conclave. //

Would YOU argue that FSSPX and Sedes are RIGHT to reject authority of, say, John Paul II, as I suppose you call him, while at same time living without submitting to any other Pope either?

They went against FSSPX and Classical Sedes on grounds such as you would use against them too. So they went against you on grounds used by FSSPX and Classical Sedes, but against these on grounds used by you : the Catholic Church needs to continue having a Pope and Catholics (except for short remonstrances, such as by St Paschal against Pope John XXII) need to go on submitting to him.

// There is no precedent - not one single shred in all 2,000 years of Church history - for a layman (with the assistance and consent of a laywoman) to simply declare himself that sort of binding authority. //

As far as I know, he was not claiming to have binding authority, he claimed the case for it had so.

And there is one precendent, namely Constantine convoking Nicea.

// I said : No, there is such a thing as emergency (like one arising if the Vatican is occupied by sham Popes who are obvious heretics), and in such a case anyone seeing an emergency has a right to intervene. //

// You said: Again, not one shred of precedent. //

Oh, yes, plenty. You are strong, someone is raping a girl in the street, you are NOT a policeman, should you not intervene, just because you are not a policeman?

You are a layman in Constantinople, a Patriarch utters a heresy about the Blessed Virgin, should you NOT shout heresy, just because you are a layman?

That is exactly what happened in the case of Nestorius.

// There are cases in which canonical requirements are suspended due to necessity - but there is no case that you can point to where a person utterly without authority can simply seize authority by reason of necessity. Especially a layperson without the consent of a single, solitary clergyman. Point me to a single example that proves me wrong. //

Authority itself is in such a case a canonic requirement suspended due to necessity. And that layman in the pew before Nestorius is at least one single example.

// And please, don't waste both your time and mine by citing the "emergency jurisdiction" arguments of the SSPX - they made it up just like Bawden did. //

No, actually not. David Bawden thought, Pope Michael thinks, they did not think the argument through enough, but there is precedent for "emergency jurisdiction" - namely of priests hearing confession, of bishops confirming, which is their case, they are not into conclaves, so far, except their seminarian David Bawden and their priest a bit later von Pentz or von Prentz. On a boat, a priest does not need to have jurisdiction from a bishop to hear confession, he has it automatically due to the case of necessity, by the Church law. St Athanasius did confirm people in sees outside his own. This is not made up.

However, a conclave would not seem to be an act of jurisdiction by a superior, but an election about who shall be the superior receiving jurisdiction from God - it presupposes there is no one already having it at the moment, and NORMALLY proceeds by a convocation using authority of someone previously appointed to task as being a cardinal, BUT the forms for Papal elections have varied over history, and therefore the canonic requirement is not jure divino; just jure ecclesiastico.

While the impossibility for a heretic to be Pope is jure divino.

// I mean an example in which the duly constituted Church hierarchy has historically approved (even retroactively) anything that is even remotely like what Bawden did. //

Accepting a previous Antipope, Felix, as Pope, was retroactively approved even by the innocently deposed in absentia Pope Liberius himself. Saint Felix II.

He also succeeded Pope Liberius' second reign.

// Sure it was - it was his personal interest in being able to call a conclave. //

No, that is not a p e r s o n a l interest. He would have jumped onto any conclave he had heard of previous to his own, either while it was accepting lay voters or if it had already elected a Pope.

// I honestly have no opinion as to whether I think he intended to put himself forward all along, or whether he truly did only stand for election because no one else showed. I don't think it matters. //

I think it does.

// What matters is whether he had the authority to call and constitute a conclave in the first place - because if he didn't, then it wasn't a real conclave, no matter who attended. //

As if conclaves were sacraments requiring jurisdiction for valid effect.

// And no one decided that question but him (and Theresa someone-or-other). Or rather, every "sede" bishop on his list did make a ruling on that question... and they ruled against him, deciding that his summons to a conclave had no more force than a demand that they show up for tea and biscuits would have. //

They actually used a theological argument well beyond that, namely, and this some have afterwards retracted when going about elections in 2005, or sth, that it was there duty to let Providence work instead of taking initiatives.

// And if Roncalli had actually affirmed indifferentism, then Cum ex Apostolatus Officio would absolutely apply (unless he had subsequently renounced and validly confessed that heresy prior to his election). //

According to Cum ex Apostolatus, even then he would not be eligible to either Papacy or Imperial or Royal or Presidential or any other dignity exercised over Catholics. President of some Buddhist only community, perhaps, but not one involving or at least not one mainly constituted of Catholics.

Jure divino, there is no problem if one has regretted the heresy and acquired the due competence to avoid all or any heresies in the future. Jure ecclesiastico, since Paul IV counted on difficulties acquiring such competence after having fallen into heresy, there is.

// In the case of Cdl. Roncalli, I don't know precisely which statements of his Bawden objected to, but I suspect it was something similar - a case where he could have been speaking heresy, or he could have been saying something entirely orthodox, and simply didn't realize or didn't care that it would give the wrong impression. //

I am sure that Bawden checked what he had exactly said, and as much as you give Roncalli favour of the doubt, so do I with His Holiness Pope Michael.

If he was guilty of hasty judgement, there are other indications after election he was one, which implies election must have been invalid.

// First, Pope John XXIII isn't making any doctrinal statement about the forces of the universe - he's referring to the beliefs of others. I agree that he implies that he agrees that the universe is, by and large, governed by scientific principles - but an oblique implication does not a heresy make. //

If the implication is strict, yes.

And if in first sentence he is indeed referring to beliefs of others, in second he reveals he shares half of these, namely by saying the laws governing men are quite different from them.

// Second, the forces of the universe are blind, elemental forces - unless you think that God directly and immanently wills the trajectory of each atom at each instant. //

God immediately wills the daily circular movement of the aether in which stellar and planetary bodies are dragged along.

Angels immediately will whatever variations there are as against the common daily movement - retrogrades or Mercury, yearly movement of Sun around zodiac, parallactic and aberrational yearly movements of bodies usually called fix stars earlier, now called stars.

// God created a universe that runs by physical laws - I don't see how that detracts from His power or majesty in any way. //

No, he created a universe that runs partly ACCORDING to physical laws - and I say partly, namely under His own action and under that of freewilled creatures.

Whenever I or you write, no physical law determines what letters we chose. Such is also God's direct action on daily movement, or the angelic action on celestial bodies.

Saying the opposite is a form of Deism, a partial affirmation of the "clockmaker God".

// He could "reach in" at any moment and alter the workings of things - but there is no reason to assume that He must (nor, indeed, is that at all traditional doctrine - the Church has never condemned science, and has in fact been a staunch supporter of it). //

1) Science does not exclude occasionalism.
2) Reaching in and altering are two different things. God is reaching in on the daily movement even when NOT altering it (though one day He did, Joshua X, and one other day He will again).
3) My position is the majority position of theologians through the ages.

CHECK THAT OUT instead of trying to "imply" opposite from "support of science". Riccioli.

4) Heliocentrism, the only alternative (pace Sungenis) if you and Roncalli were right, is not scientific. It was also condemned by Pope Urban VIII, as in by an Inquisition trial which he approved after it had judged. This judgement has never per se been reversed.
5) Even with acceptance of gravitational and inertial ONLY causes, none freewilled, it does not work, to judge by parallel experiment of Don Petit.

// For you to condemn this as heresy, you pretty much have to prove that it is an infallible doctrine of the Church that God did not write physical laws into the universe, such that they can function without His direct intervention. //

Some things can fonction without His direct intervention, like stones falling to the ground, like fires going out when fuel is consumed.

Some things can NOT do so, like the daily movement of the universe. Theoretically it could also be only a concerted movement of angels carrying their celestial bodies same direction through empty space (in which case there would be no Geocentric explanation for Geostationary Satellites, but there is with a daily movement of all of the aether), but that puts the voluntary cause down a peg from God to His angels, and does not make it a blind causation.

// And I know you can't find that anywhere, because it's just not there. //

Your strawman version of what I say is not there.

What I do say is there. Prima Via, especially as expressed in Contra Gentes. Riccioli who takes the angelic only view also rejected the first and foremost proof of God by St Thomas in favour of Anselmian proof.

He, like St Thomas, rejected a purely mechanistic view.

This one has led to the rise of modern atheism, as well as to ridiculous positions about Special Creation and World Wide Flood accounting for faunal diversity and fossils being "unworthy of God", by which come the heresies against Biblical Inerrancy.

// Like Liberius, for one. //

Liberius would be a very exact case of stating only things which are orthodox in such a way as they could appear heterodox. He did so under pressure.

// Another example would be either Nicholas III or John XXII (depending on which one you would perceive as "seeming orthodox" and which "seems like a heretic"). [Note - this is John XXII (twenty-second), from the 1300s, not John XXIII (twenty-third, a.k.a. Roncalli)] //

Nor Antipope John XXIII from perhaps Basel council or sth.

Yes, I note.

// Nicholas III seemed to give doctrinal assent to the belief of one branch of the early Franciscans, who argued that Jesus and the Apostles owned absolutely no property, either individually or in common, and that this was (by way of perfect example) the ideal state in which a Christian should live. //

Did he really seem to give DOCTRINAL assent to it?

Or did he only give PRACTICAL assent?

// John XXII then expressly refuted that notion, and considered it ridiculous (and demanded that the Franciscans take possession of their own property, rather than continue the elaborate fiction that everything they ate or wore actually belonged directly to the Pope). //

Did even he consider the other position heretical?

If so, he was judging it heresy AFTER Nicholas III had lived, and therefore the latter could not have been guilty of embracing any formal heresy, since not yet defined so.

// Now, what actually was true is that Nicholas III's decree wasn't properly a doctrinal definition. //

Thank you. My point exactly.

// But I'm sure John XXII appeared to be espousing heresy to a great many people. //

He was espousing heresy but retracted it on the remonstrance of St Paschal who threatened to go Sede otherwise. FSSPX has of course another view of what "withdrawing obedience" meant in that threat.

But that was in context of Beatific Vision of Saints. Not in context of Jesus' Property.

// If a valid conclave were to elect an illiterate country bumpkin as Pope, he would not fail to become Pope because he did not know the doctrines of the Church thoroughly, nor would he forfeit the papacy if he were to advance an idea that he was innocently unaware was heretical (though, of course, he would be divinely protected from officially defining that error). //

Some might consider this the case of Pope Michael.

// What statement? The one by Cdl. Roncalli, to which Bawden objects? I should be asking you.

I just read a journalist's summary of an interview with Bawden, which said that he rejected Roncalli as a valid papal candidate on the basis of statements he had made as a Cardinal which "seemed to" place Catholicism on equal footing with Orthodoxy and Protestantism. //

Well, I was asking you.

But as mentioned, one of my theories was that Pope Michael could have started out as antipope (like St Felix II) due to an undue conclave (and invalid due to being undue rather than to lack of authority) while for instance Mirko Fabris was really Pope Krav.

// I'd like to reiterate that both Christian charity and the heuristic principle of interpretive charity would counsel that when a person says a thing, and it seems like it could mean something bad, but it might not, then we should assume it doesn't mean the bad thing, unless there is ample evidence to indicate that it probably does. //

Well, problem is, some Sedes do credit some modern hierarchs with the kind of logical consistence which would make such a thing impossible unless there was real heresy (modern hierarchs as in modernist apparent hierarchs). But on the other hand they usually also safeguard this by saying they are judging the words rather than the real intentions of the man.


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