Ngo Dinh Thuc: Archbishop Thuc Bishops and Consecrations Facts and History
Bishop Peter Martin Ngo Dinh Thuc was born October 6, 1897 and died December 13, 1984. In 1938, at the age of 41, Father Thuc was chosen by Rome to direct the Apostolic Vicariate at Vinhlong in Vietnam. He was consecrated bishop on May 4, 1938, being the third Vietnamese priest raised to the rank of bishop. On November 24, 1960, John XXIII named Bishop Thuc “Archbishop” of Hué. He attended the robber’s Second Vatican Council (1964) and signed its documents.
The Validity of the Thuc Consecrations
Archbishop Thuc Bishops and Consecrations. Despite the claims of some “traditionalists,” especially the SSPV supporters, the fact is that the validity of the Thuc-line cannot be questioned. If it can be questioned, then any Episcopal Consecration or Ordination performed in the Traditional Rite can be questioned. We certainly have no bias in this matter, since we have no affiliation with the Thuc-line whatsoever. The facts are the facts. The Ordinations and Consecrations performed in the Traditional Rite by “Archbishop” Thuc and those whom he Consecrated must be considered valid, because when the Traditional Rite is observed the intention is presumed valid, as Pope Leo XIII says in Apostolicae Curae.
For those who don’t know, the “Thuc line” refers to the “traditionalist” priests and bishops who derive their orders from Bishop Ngo Dinh Thuc (1897-1984), the “Archbishop” of Hue, Vietnam prior to Vatican II. After Vatican II, Bishop Thuc took the sedevacantist position and ordained priests and consecrated bishops in the traditional rites for the preservation of the traditional Latin Mass and in resistance to the post-Vatican II sect. Most of the priests in the world who offer the traditional Latin Mass derive their orders from Bishop Thuc or from Archbishop Lefebvre. We regard both the Thuc and Lefebvre lines as valid. This obviously does not mean that we endorse all the positions held by priests who were ordained through those lines.
Some have called into question the validity of the Thuc line based on the accusation that Archbishop Thuc was not in possession of his mental faculties when he performed some of his Episcopal Consecrations. We reject this false position. There is no evidence that Bishop Thuc did not possess his mental faculties at the time of these Consecrations. The Society of St. Pius V, a heretical group headed by Bishop Kelly, which also believes in salvation for non-Catholics (like so many other groups), is so adamant that the Thuc line cannot be considered valid that its priests refuse the sacraments to anyone who goes to Thuc line priests.
Thucites are the bishops and priests who trace their line back to Bishop Thuc and the laymen who are in religious communion with them, such as those who belong to their sects or attend their Masses.
During the 1980s, a retired Vietnamese bishop, the late Pierre-Martin Ngo-dinh-Thuc, consecrated a number of “traditionalist” bishops – Guérard des Lauriers (7th May 1981), Moises Carmona and Adolfo Zamora (both 17th October 1981) were the most prominent – many of whom in turn consecrated others. These consecrations are all illicit and schismatic. The factors leading to this conclusion include the following, some of which relate only to some of these consecrations and some to all of them:
1) Bishop Thuc was not Catholic. He signed the Vatican II Documents.
Bishop Thuc signed the heretical Vatican II documents, at which point he was known to be a notorious heretic with no office in the Church. He was one of the most liberal, rebellious, and heretical bishops at Vatican II. From his own writings during the robber’s Second Vatican II Council, Thuc supported the false ecumenical movement, feminism, and women in sacred functions, such as deacons and priests.
The Thucites appeal to sentiments and other irrelevant facts to defend Bishop Thuc, while they ignore, change, or misinterpret the relevant facts. The relevant facts are as follows:
- Bishop Thuc was not Catholic. He signed the Vatican II Documents.
- Ngo-dinh-Thuc was an arch-liberal at Vatican II, arguing in favour of women priests and the participation of non-Christian groups in the Council. (Acta Synodalia Vaticani II, vol.2 pt.3 p.573, and vol.2 pt.1 pp.358, 359 respectively; English translation available from Britons Catholic Library)
- Even as late as 15th April 1981 (less than a month before he consecrated Guérard des Lauriers), he concelebrated a Novus Ordo “Mass” of Holy Thursday with the Conciliar Bishop of Fréjus-Toulon thus showing that he still adhered to the Vatican II sect at this time.
- In a tape-recorded conversation in January 1982 (the month before his February 1982 declaration of the vacancy of the Holy See, and after the consecrations from which today’s traditionalist bishops derive their episcopal Orders) he told an enquirer that he was (a) hearing confessions on the basis of faculties (invalid faculties) given to him by the bishop (the same Councilar bishop of Fréjus-Toulon), and (b) attending the Novus Ordo in Toulon Cathedral because he liked it.
- He never retracted those beliefs and actions and was thus not a Catholic at the time of the consecrations. And by his declaration of the vacancy of the Holy See which he made on 25th February 1982, long after the consecrations mentioned above, he appeared clearly to confirm his schism, in that he affirmed that “the Catholic Church appears flourishing… The number of Catholics is immense”: statements that evidently imply his recognition of the Conciliar Church as Catholic.
- He imposed on those whom he consecrated an oath of personal fidelity acknowledging him as leader of the world’s faithful Catholics—an act of schism not only on his part but also on the part of those who took the oath, since he had no such authority. (Spanish text and English translation available from Britons Catholic Library)
- He consecrated men destined to become “episcopi vagantes” (wandering bishops) without any form of see, something unknown in the Church’s history and tradition—in the rare cases, in the first centuries, where Catholic bishops were consecrated without papal mandate in urgent circumstances, this was always done for the needs of a particular diocese where the person elected by the clergy was only waiting for the power of Orders in order to fulfill his office. (Dom Adrien Gréa: L'Eglise et sa Divine Constitution, Casterman, 1965)
- All those consecrated by him or by others of his line lack the canonical mission which the Council of Trent dogmatically teaches to be necessary for a bishop to be a legitimate minister of the word and the sacraments: “If anyone say… that those who have not been rightly ordained by ecclesiastical and canonical power and have not been sent [by the Church], but come from some other source [such as a heretical or schismatical source], are lawful ministers of the word and of the sacraments: let him be anathema.” (Council of Trent, Session XXIII; Denzinger 967). Plainly no necessity, no claim of epikeia can override, even in an extreme need, an obligation derived, not from human law, but from Divine law infallibly proposed as such by the Church (such as the Divine Law that forbids Catholics to communicate in the sacraments with non-Catholics).
Thuc’s Idolatrous and False Ecumenism
Bishop Peter Martin Ngo-Dinh-Thuc: “‘Concerning the attraction of non-Christians to the Church.’ With great consolation I see present in these assemblies the delegates of the non-Christian Churches, to be witnesses of our fraternity, sincerity and liberty. But where are the delegates or observers of the non-Christians? …The scandal coming to the whole world from the absence of any invitations sent to the chiefs of the non-Christian religions I expounded in the central commission—but in vain. I earnestly begged the council to make good the omission, so that this most loathsome discrimination between some religions and religions may not longer be found. This absence of an invitation to the heads of the Christian religions confirms in a certain manner that prejudice creeping through the Asiatic and African world: ‘The Catholic Church is a church for men of white colour and not for coloured men.’” (Acta Synodalia Vaticani II, vol. 2, part 1, pp. 358-359)
Thuc’s Heretical Feminism and Woman Priests
Bishop Peter Martin Ngo-Dinh-Thuc: “…it seems to me an extraordinary thing that in the schema concerning the people of God, express mention is nowhere made of women, so that the Church appears totally masculine, whereas the reality is quite different. Do not women constitute the greater part of the laity—even of ecclesiastical prescriptions? Of course I well know the Church had to behave like this in order not to offend the prejudices of those ages. Thus, St. Paul imposed the veil on women in Church, lest they displease the angels. So why must men proudly enter the church bareheaded which is contrary to the custom of clerics today both in the West and the East? In the same way, silence was imposed on women whereas in this Basilica the walls recently resounded to the voices of the Fathers. So to, nuns must obtain the permission of churches to wash the sacred linens. And likewise this unjust discrimination appears here and now in this conciliar hall… Why is it that in our atomic age, when almost everywhere in the world women have obtained juridical equality with men, it is only in the Church of Christ that they still suffer these injurious discriminations… I eagerly seek… these discriminations against the most valiant sex be eradicated. Last of all I shall be grateful to him who can present me with a plain apodictic text of the Gospel which excludes the sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary from the sacred functions [i.e. the priesthood].” (Acta Synodalia Vaticani II, vol. 2, part 3, pp. 513)
This is the man that the Thucites would have us believe will save the Holy Catholic Church. If this evidence from Thuc’s own writings did not exist, it would not matter, because Thuc signed the heretical Vatican II documents, and by that fact alone, he was known to be a notorious heretic who is not Catholic and holds no office in the Church.
Making fools of themselves and proving their extreme bad will, there are some Thucites, such as Fr. Terrance Fulham, who desperately and deplorably try to give Thuc’s clearly heretical statements an orthodox interpretation. They do the same thing Fr. Brian Harrison does when he makes the most ridiculous excuses for the obvious heresies in the Vatican II documents and John Paul II’s crimes. But these Thucites have an added sin of hypocrisy, because they admit the Vatican II documents contain heresy; that is the bases in which they reject all the Vatican II bishops who signed any one of the documents and the Vatican II antipopes. Yet, they exempt Bishop Thuc who signed the Vatican II documents, arguing that he was Catholic. If that were so, then they have no right to denounce any bishop for signing the Vatican II documents, and they have no right to denounce the Vatican II antipopes.
2) Catholics cannot legally receive Orders from notorious apostate, heretic, or schismatic bishops
It is of the faith—therefore, epikeia cannot justify it—that a notorious apostate, heretic, or schismatic bishop cannot be a legal successor to the apostles, nor can he propagate a legal line by ordaining Catholic priests or bishops. People ordained by heretics or schismatics are valid priests and bishops, but their orders are unlawful and illicit, which means that they cannot exercise their order without sin.
The sin of entering into active religious communion with non-Catholics is committed when a self-professed Catholic knowingly gets consecrated or ordained by a notoriously non-Catholic bishop. It is of the faith that a Catholic cannot arrive at a good by an evil means. The Church has already dealt with a similar situation in which there were no Catholic bishops in Armenia. An appeal was made to the Holy See to allow schismatical or heretical bishops to ordain Catholic priests. The Holy See rejected the appeal.
On the Illegality of Ordinations by non-Catholic Bishops
The Communication of Catholics with Schismatics, Holy Orders: “[p. 103] Clement VIII in his Instruction Sanctissimus of August 31, 1595, stated that those who had received ordination at the hands of schismatic bishops who apart from their schismatic status were properly consecrated—the necessary form having been observed—did indeed receive orders, but not the right to exercise them. In this he repeated the doctrine of the glossators. Benedict XIV in the Constitution Etsi pastoralis of May 26, 1742, confirmed this doctrine of Clement VIII. …Not only was the recognized validity of schismatic orders established, but further points were clarified. Schismatic bishops were not to be admitted for the conferring of orders or for the administration of any of the other sacraments. Persons ordained by schismatic bishops were, upon a proper rectification or amendment in their status, to be reconciled and absolved. An appropriate penance was to be imposed on them. If they had embraced any errors, they had previously to abjure them; if they had not embraced any errors, they had nevertheless to renounce the schism of their ordaining prelate. The abjuration was to be made either publicly or secretly, as the facts in the case directed. Before the ordained persons could exercise their Orders, it was necessary for them to receive from the Holy See a dispensation from the irregularity which they had incurred. … [p. 105] On this same matter there was still another response of the Holy Office on November 21, 1709. No Armenian Catholic bishops were available for ordaining priests who were needed in Ispahan, and so it was asked whether sacred Orders could be received from schismatical or heretical bishops. The Holy Office replied that in no way could that be allowed, and that those who had been ordained by such bishops were irregular and suspended from the exercise of their Orders. …The prohibition to receive holy Orders at the hands of a schismatic bishop is contained in the general prohibition against active religious communication as expressed in canon 1258.1. There is also an implicit prohibition contained in canon 2372, wherein it is stated that those who presume to receive Orders from a notorious schismatic automatically incur a suspension a divinis reserved to the Apostolic See.” (The Communication of Catholics with Schismatics, Rev. Ignatius J. Szal, A.B., J.C.L., Imprimatur +D Cardinal Dougherty, Phil., April 2, 1948, Catholic University of America Canon Law Series #264, The Catholic University of America Press, pp. 103-105)
By decreeing “in no way could that be allowed,” the Holy Office confirmed that it is a matter of faith that a Catholic may never knowingly be ordained a priest or consecrated a bishop by a heretic or schismatic. The Holy Office condemns the same excuse that some Thucites use for going to the notorious apostate and heretic Bishop Thuc to be consecrated bishops or ordained priests—they say, there are no Catholic bishops; therefore, we can go before a non-Catholic bishop to be consecrated or ordained. The 1917 Code of Canon Law, Canon 2372, also condemns them by reaffirming the Holy Office’s 1709 decree.
1917 Code of Canon Law: “Canon 2372. Reception of Orders from Unworthy Prelates: All persons who presume to receive orders from a prelate who has been excommunicated, suspended, or interdicted by a declaratory or condemnatory sentence, or from a notorious apostate, heretic, or schismatic, automatically incur suspension a divinis reserved to the Apostolic See. Any person who has been ordained in good faith by such a man, forfeits the right to exercise the order thus received until he obtains a dispensation from the prohibition.”
Even if a heretic or schismatic bishop lied to a candidate by hiding his notorious crimes of heresy or schism, and produced a forged papal mandate, that candidate, even though of good faith, upon discovering the fraud, cannot exercise his orders. That is not even the case with the Thucites, because Bishop Thuc’s notorious crimes could have been easily known upon a basic inquiry (he signed the Vatican II documents, for instance), and thus, all who received orders from him while knowing he was a heretic committed an act of communion in sacred things with a heretic, which is an act of bad faith. Either way, good faith or bad faith, their orders cannot be legally exercised. Those of good faith incur no mortal guilt; whereas, those of bad faith do, they become schismatics. Those of good faith would incur guilt if they continued to exercise their orders after discovering the bishop they received orders from was not eligible to legally confer orders.
The Communication of Catholics with Schismatics, Holy Orders: “[p. 103] Persons ordained by schismatic bishops were, upon a proper rectification or amendment in their status, to be reconciled and absolved. … Before the ordained persons could exercise their Orders, it was necessary for them to receive from the Holy See a dispensation from the irregularity which they had incurred.”
These Thucites of bad will imply a good can come from an evil means: They violate the infallible Church law that forbids them to knowingly go before a notorious apostate, heretic, or schismatic bishop to be consecrated or ordained (Holy Office Decree, 1709 and c. 2372); they violate the infallible Church law that forbids active religious communication with non-Catholics (communicatio in sacris) (c. 1258, §1); they violate the natural law by scandal; and, they violate the divine positive law by endangering the Catholic faith of perversion.
As a result of their knowingly schismatic crime, God abhors them and places them, the obstinate sinner who refuse to convert, under the Romans’ One Curse. “For if, flying from the pollutions of the world, through the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they be again entangled in them and overcome: their latter state is become unto them worse than the former. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of justice than, after they have known it, to turn back from that holy commandment which was delivered to them.” (2 Pt. 2:20-21)
Do not be fooled because their immoral crimes are not manifest to you, for they are very good at hiding these crimes so as to appear pious and holy, like the Pharisees that outwardly appeared beautiful to men, but inwardly were full of hypocrisy and iniquity (Mt. 23: 27-28). Yet, in due time, God will expose their immoral crimes, “For there is nothing hid, which shall not be made manifest: neither was it made secret, but that it may come abroad.” (Mk. 4:22) However, sins of immorality are not the main issue. Your main concern must be their sins of apostasy and heresy, because they deny the Catholic faith; and, their sins of schism because they revolt from the unity of the Church. These sins are manifest among the Thucites and others like them. “And as they liked not to have God in their knowledge, God delivered them up to a reprobate sense.” (Rom. 1:28) You pay a high price, indeed, for putting the Mass and sacraments before the Faith, and that price is punishment here on earth and eternal damnation hereafter.
Thucites must abjure in order to enter the Church and be forgiven
If illegal bishops and priests, such as the Thucites, want to enter the Catholic Church and have their sins forgiven, they must abjure by renouncing their schismatic crime and any heresies they believe in, along with the public crimes of schism and heresy of the non-Catholic bishop who consecrated or ordained them.
The Communication of Catholics with Schismatics, Holy Orders: “[p. 103] If they had embraced any errors, they had previously to abjure them; if they had not embraced any errors, they had nevertheless to renounce the schism of their ordaining prelate. The abjuration was to be made either publicly or secretly, as the facts in the case directed.”
If the crimes were public, the specific abjuration must also be public. Epikeia would apply for the penitent bishops or priests to abjure if proper Church authorities are impossible to access.
3) Bishop Thuc did not abjure his apostate and heretical errors
There is no public record that Bishop Thuc abjured from signing the Vatican II documents, or from his association with the Conciliar Church and its apostate antipopes. He made a deficient declaration in 1982, but it was not an abjuration of his errors. An abjuration is an admission of guilt on the part of the penitent who takes it. In it, he must admit his personal guilt, he must reject and condemn all the errors he held and committed, along with all the errors of the sect he belonged to, along with denouncing its leaders. With this in mind, when you read Thuc’s Munich Declaration against the Conciliar Church, take special note that he is not admitting any personal guilt on his part. Instead, he refers to himself as being a faithful Catholic.
The Archbishop reading the declaration March 21, 1982: How does the Catholic Church appear today as we look at it? In Rome, John Paul II as “Pope” surrounded by the body of Cardinals and of many bishops and prelates. Outside of Rome, the Catholic Church seems to be flourishing, along with its bishops and priests. The number of Catholics is great. Daily the Mass is celebrated in so many churches, and on Sundays the churches are full of many faithful who come to hear the Mass and receive Holy Communion. But in the sight of God, how does today’s Church appear? Are the Masses—both the daily ones and those at which people assist on Sundays—pleasing to God? By no means, because that Mass is the same for Catholics as for Protestants—therefore it is displeasing to God and invalid. The only Mass that pleases God is the Mass of Pius V, which is offered by few priests and bishops, among whom I count myself.
Therefore, to the extent that I can, I will open seminaries for educating candidates for that priesthood which is pleasing to God. Besides this “Mass” which does not please God, there are many other things that God rejects: for example, changes in the ordination of priests, the consecration of bishops, and in the sacraments of Confirmation and Extreme Unction.
“Moreover, the “priests” now hold to: 1) modernism; 2) false ecumenism; 3) the adoration [or cult] of man; 4) the freedom to embrace any religion whatsoever; 5) the unwillingness to condemn heresies and to expel the heretics.
Therefore, in so far as I am a bishop of the Roman Catholic Church, I judge that the Chair of the Roman Catholic Church is vacant; and it behooves me, as bishop, to do all that is needed so that the Roman Catholic Church will endure in its mission for the salvation of souls.
Here I add the principal documents:
1. The Bull “Quo primum” of Pius V.
2. Council of Trent, sess. XXII.
3. Letter “Adorabile exharistiae” Pu. VII., at Council of Florence: Decree pro Armenis (Dz. 698; Decree pro Jacobitis (Dz. 715).
4. Missale Romanum Pius V.: De defectibus in celbratione Missarum: “De defectibus forae”.
5. Constitution “Auctorem fidei” Pu. VI.; Decree “Lamentabili” Pu. X.; Encyclical “Pacendi domminici gregis” Pius X.
6. Council of Florence: Decretum pro Jacobitis; Encyclical “Quanta Cura” Pu. IX.; “Unam sanctum” Boniface VIII.
7. Codex Juris Canonici, can. 1322.
8. Bull “Cum ex apostolatus officio” Paul IV.; Codex Juris Canonici, can. 188, n. 4.
9 Pontificale Romanum: “De conscratione electi in episcopum”, “Forma juramenti” et “Examen”.
February 25, 1982 Munich +Peter Martin Ngo-dinh-Thuc Archbishop
Where is Thuc’s admission of guilt for signing the Vatican II documents and for his association with the Vatican II Church and its apostate leaders? He does not even mention Vatican II. Where does he indicate that he is outside the Catholic Church and now desires to enter? Instead of admitting personal guilt, Bishop Thuc refers to himself as already being Catholic, among the faithful, and as being a “Roman Catholic bishop”.
Bishop Thuc’s pre-1982-Declaration consecrations and ordinations
The Thucites admit there is no public record of Thuc abjuring or making any kind of public declaration before February 25, 1982. Therefore, even if Bishop Thuc did abjure in 1982, which he did not, it is of no consequence to those who were consecrated or ordained by him before his 1982 Declaration; those who were, and appeal to Thuc’s future 1982 Declaration to justify their crime, admit, by implication, that they went before a non-Catholic bishop to be consecrated illegally as bishops or ordained as priests.
There is public evidence that Thuc was still in communion with the Conciliar Church in 1981. Less than a month before Thuc consecrated Michel Louis Guérard des Lauriers a bishop on 7 May 1981, and less than six months before he consecrated Moisés Carmona-Rivera and Adolfo Zamora Hernandez bishops on 17 October 1981, Thuc concelebrated the Novus Ordo Mass of Holy Thursday on 15 April 1981, with the Conciliar Bishop Barthe of Frejus-Toulon, and received “faculties” from him to hear confessions. Therefore, these Thucite bishops needed to have public, documented proof that Thuc abjured sometime after he concelebrated the Novus Ordo Mass in 1981 and before he consecrated them. No such proof exists. There is no proof that Thuc ever abjured his errors before he died on 13 December 1984; therefore, Thuc is not to be considered among the faithfully departed.
Most, if not all, of the Thucites that believe the Holy See is vacant trace their line through the Thucite Bishops des Lauriers and Carmona.
One Thucite bishop, Louis Vezelis, realizing the dilemma and admitting to its consequences, in desperation, lies by telling others that Thuc did not sign the Vatican II documents. But, Bishop Vezelis is still faced with the fact that Thuc adhered to the Vatican II Church, and for that alone he is guilty of apostasy and heresy, for that alone he needed to abjure, even if he did not sign the Vatican II documents.
In the secular realm, most men do not buy a house without first seeing and then receiving the Title, and without examining the condition of the house. If they were not diligent in doing this, and later discovered there was no Title or the house falls apart because it was in bad condition, the fault is theirs for not examining these basic things ahead of time. The same is true in the spiritual realm, the things of God. No man would buy a car or house without a Title and no true Catholic would go before a bishop in a time where almost no-Catholic bishops exists at all to be consecrated or ordained without that bishop having thoroughly proved he is Catholic, and that he can legally consecrate and ordain.
Whose fault is it if a layman or a priest did not thoroughly check the faith of Bishop Thuc, who was about to ordain or consecrate him, and demand from Thuc, in writing, a specific abjuration or confirmation that he took one that rejects and condemns the prevalent heresies and prominent heretics of the Vatican II Church? Whose fault is it if the layman or priest did not check if Thuc signed the heretical Vatican II documents? Surely, this is a very easy thing to do. Is not the making of priests and bishops one of the most serious things that men do in the eyes of God? What kind of man, especially in these days of the great apostasy when false shepherds abound, approaches any bishop for ordination or consecration without first thoroughly examining him, checking into his past, and demanding that the bishop put his beliefs in writing, and if he was associated with the non-Catholic Conciliar Church, or any non-Catholic sect, that he abjured from these non-Catholic entities?
I am sure that these same men (Thucites) are very diligent and meticulous with temporal things, such as when they buy a home, a chapel, or a car. They would make sure they had all the proper papers, and that the home, the chapel, or the car is in proper working order before they purchased it. They should have done the same before they were ordained or consecrated by Thuc! They should have been very diligent and meticulous in examining Thuc, by making sure they had signed papers from Thuc that prove he abjured, and all the evidence necessary to prove he is currently Catholic in word and deed, before they were ordained or consecrated by Thuc.
In The Revelations of St. Bridget of Sweden, The Mother of God explains how a bishop should exercise his episcopal office in order to give glory to God:
A complete explanation to the bishop from the Virgin about how he should exercise his episcopal office in order to give glory to God, and about the double reward for having held the rank of bishop in a true way and about the double disgrace for having held it in a false way, and about how Jesus Christ and all the saints welcome a true and up right bishop.
Book 3 - Chapter 3
The Mother of God was speaking: “I wish to explain to the bishop what he should do for God and what will give glory to God. Every bishop must hold his miter carefully in his arms. He must not sell it for money nor give it up to others for the sake of worldly friendship nor lose it through negligence and lukewarmness. The bishop’s miter signifies nothing other than the bishop’s rank and power to ordain priests, to prepare the chrism, to correct those who go astray, and to encourage the negligent by his example. To hold his miter carefully in his arms means that he should reflect carefully on how and why he received his episcopal power, how he wields it, and what its effects and purpose are.
If the bishop would examine how he received his power, he should first examine whether he desired the episcopate for his own sake or for God’s. If it was for his own sake, then his desire was no doubt carnal; if it was for God’s sake, that is, in order to give glory to God, then his desire was meritorious and spiritual.
If the bishop would consider for what purpose he has received the episcopate, then surely it was in order that he might become a father to the poor and a consoler and intercessor for souls, because the bishop’s goods are intended for the good of souls. If his means are consumed inefficaciously and wasted in a prodigal manner, then those souls will cry out for revenge on the unjust steward. I will tell you the reward that will come from having held the rank of bishop. It will be a double reward, as Paul says, both corporal and spiritual.
It will be corporal, because he is God’s vicar on earth and is therefore accorded divine honor by men as away of honoring God. In heaven it will be corporal and spiritual because of the glorification of body and soul, because the servant will be there with his Lord, due both to the way he lived as a bishop on earth and to his humble example by which he incited others to the glory of heaven along with himself. Everyone who has the rank and garb of a bishop but flees the episcopal way of life will merit a double disgrace.
That the bishop’s power is not to be sold means that the bishop should not knowingly commit simony or exercise his office for the sake of money or human favor or promote men whom he knows to be of bad character because people petition him to do so. That the miter should not be given up to others on account of human friendship means that the bishop should not disguise the sins of the negligent or let those whom he can and should correct go unpunished, or pass over the sins of his friends in silence due to worldly friendship or take the sins of his subordinates on his own back, for the bishop is God’s sentinel.
That the bishop should not lose his miter through negligence means that the bishop should not delegate to others what he should and can do more profitably himself, that he should not, for the sake of his own physical ease, transfer to others what he himself is more perfectly able to carry out, since the bishop’s duty is not to rest but to work. Nor should the bishop be ignorant of the life and conduct of those to whom he delegates his tasks. Instead he should know and review how they observe justice and whether they conduct themselves prudently and without cupidity in their assignments. I want you to know, too, that the bishop, in his role as shepherd, ought to carry a bouquet of flowers under his arms in order to entice sheep both far and near to run gladly after its scent.
This bouquet of flowers signifies the bishop’s pious preaching. The two arms from which the bouquet of divine preaching hangs are two kinds of works necessary to a bishop, namely, public good works and hidden good works. Thus, the nearby sheep in his diocese, seeing the bishop’s charity in his works and hearing it in his words, will give glory to God through the bishop. Likewise, the faraway sheep, hearing of the bishop’s reputation, will want to follow him. This is the sweetest bouquet: not to be ashamed of God’s truth and humility, to preach good doctrine and to practice as one preaches, to be humble when praised and devout in humiliation. When the bishop has traveled to the end of this path and reaches the gate, he must have a gift in his hands to present to the high king. Accordingly, may he have in his hands a vessel precious to him, an empty one, to offer to the high king.
The empty vessel to be offered is his own heart. He must struggle night and day in order for it to be empty of all lusts and the desire for fleeting praise. When such a bishop is led into the kingdom of glory, Jesus Christ, true God and man, will come out to meet him together with the whole host of saints. Then he will hear the angels saying: ‘Our God, our joy and every good! This bishop was pure in body, manly in his conduct. It is befitting that we should present him to you, for he longed for our company everyday. Satisfy his longing and magnify our joy at his coming!’ Then, too, other saints will say: ‘O God, our joy is both from you and in you and we need nothing else.
Yet, our joy is heightened by the joy of the soul of this bishop who longed for you while he was still able to long. The sweet flowers of his lips increased our numbers. The flowers of his works consoled those dwelling far and near. Therefore, let him rejoice with us, and rejoice yourself over him for whom you longed so much when you died for him.’ Finally the King of glory shall say to him: ‘Friend, you have come to present to me the vessel of your heart emptied of your selfish will. Therefore, I will fill you with my delight and glory. My happiness will be yours and your glory in me will never cease.’”
It is our hope that the Thucites, and all those others who have been unlawfully consecrated or ordained, are of good will when they read this and repent and abjure. The only insurmountable obstacle is man’s own pride.
4) Epikeia does not justify consecrations and ordinations by non-Catholic bishops
The principle of epikeia allows for an exemption from Church laws that do not deal with faith or morals in certain emergency situations. Only Catholics and catechumens can be justified by the principle of epikeia in these emergency situations. Non-Catholics who are not preparing to enter the Catholic Church by baptism or abjuration cannot be justified by epikeia. Therefore, the Thucites, being non-Catholics and heretics and not catechumens, cannot justify any of their actions by epikeia. They cannot justify, make legal, their consecrations and ordinations by non-Catholic bishops (notorious heretics or notorious schismatics) anymore than the Greek Schismatics can. It would be of no effect if a Greek Schismatic attempted to make his consecrations and ordinations legal by appealing to epikeia, which is an exemption from a Catholic Church law, because he is not inside the Catholic Church. The same applies to the Thucites.
Canon 2372 forbids holy orders from notorious apostate, heretic, or schismatic bishops
Canon 2372 teaches the dogmatic law that Catholics cannot legally receive holy orders from bishops who are notorious apostates, heretics, or schismatics.
1917 Code of Canon Law: “Canon 2372. Reception of Orders from Unworthy Prelates: All persons who presume to receive orders from a prelate who has been excommunicated, suspended, or interdicted by a declaratory or condemnatory sentence, or from a notorious apostate, heretic, or schismatic, automatically incur suspension a divinis reserved to the Apostolic See. Any person who has been ordained in good faith by such a man, forfeits the right to exercise the order thus received until he obtains a dispensation from the prohibition.”
Bishop Thuc was a notorious apostate, heretic, and schismatic. Therefore, he could not have legally administered the sacrament of orders, ordain, or consecrate. Those who were ordained or consecrated by him incur automatic suspension and cannot legally exercise their orders.
Canon 2261, §2, does not apply heretics and schismatics
Some of the Thucites, of those who admit Bishop Thuc was an excommunicated notorious heretic when he ordained or consecrated them, appeal to the Canon 2261, §2, to justify, make legal, their ordinations or consecrations.
The Practical Commentary: “c. 2261, §2. Except as provided in 2261.3, the faithful can for any just cause ask for sacraments or sacramentals of one who is excommunicated, especially if there is no one else to give them; and in such cases the excommunicated person so asked may administer them and is not obliged to ask the reason for the request.” (Practical Commentary on Canon Law, vol. 2, p. 487)
Canon 2261, §2, applies only to excommunicated bishops and priests who are still Catholic. In a necessity, one may receive the sacraments from a Catholic bishop or priest who are excommunicated for something other than heresy, schism or apostasy. Hence it does not apply to heretics and schismatics. The 1917 Code of Canon Law is also a fallible collection of laws.
Canon 2261, §2, does not include the sacrament of holy orders
Even regarding excommunicate bishops who are Catholic, Canon 2261, §2, does not allow them to administer the sacrament of holy orders, the ordination of priests and consecration of bishops. Canon Law is written with the assumption that there is a visible hierarchy intact, even if the Holy See or a local see may be vacant. When a see falls vacant, in normal times, a vicar capitular or general is appointed to run the see until a new pope or bishop is elected. For a layman to legally receive the sacrament of holy orders (become a priest), he must first have dimissorial letters from his bishop, and he must be either incardinated into a diocese or belong (be ascribed) to a regular religious order, thus have a domicile, a place to legally function (c. 111-117). For a priest to become a legal bishop, he must be certain the consecrating bishop has a papal mandate from the pope (c. 953), at least tacitly, before he can legally be consecrated, and he must be assigned to a place in which he can legally function. Therefore, it is not just a matter of receiving the sacrament of holy orders, but also a matter of these other requirements that must be met in order to become a legal bishop or legal priest. Canon 2261, §2, cannot abolish the requirements in Canons 111-117, 953; therefore, Canon 2261, §2 does not include the sacrament of holy orders.
The lawgiver was well aware of these facts when he wrote Canon 2261, §2, and thus, never envisioned this canon to include the sacrament of holy orders, because of these other necessities—dimissorial letters, papal mandates, and domiciles. Canon 2261, §2 does not make provision for these necessities, and therefore, it cannot apply to the sacrament of holy orders. If it did, there would be chaos in the Church by the making of priests or bishops without the approval of proper Church authorities. There would be no place where they can go and legally function, often conflicting with those who were given a mission and a place to legally function by proper Church authorities. If Canon 2261, §2, includes the sacrament of holy orders, it would undermine and destroy the hierarchic order and structure of the Church. For instance, if Canon 2261, §2, includes the sacrament of holy orders, then bishops with ordinary jurisdiction, those who rule dioceses, would fall prey to excommunicated bishops in their dioceses who would be allowed to ordain priests and consecrate bishops by the mere request of the candidate, and thus without the approval of the ruling bishop, the result in those dioceses would be instant chaos, rebellion, and the undermining and destruction of the hierarchic order and structure of the Church.
Also, there would be no way to stop any Catholic from receiving holy orders, from being ordained or consecrated. All a Catholic layman or priest would have to do is ask an excommunicated bishop to ordain or consecrate him, and the bishop is not obliged to ask him the reason for the request—“in such cases the excommunicated person so asked may administer them and is not obliged to ask the reason for the request.” Thus, instead of Catholics being called to be priests or bishops, they, any Catholic man whatsoever, can demand it from an excommunicate bishop whether called or not, that is, if Canon 2261, §2 included the sacrament of holy orders.
Epikeia, not Canon 2261, §2, justifies a Catholic bishop’s consecrations
The fact that there is no hierarchy in the Church in these latter days of the Great Apostasy is a separate topic altogether that has nothing to do with the letter and the spirit of Canon Law 2261, §2, which was written with the assumption that there is a ruling hierarchy when this canon is utilized. One would have to appeal to the principle of epikeia in these days to justify a Catholic bishop’s ordinations and consecrations. In these cases, there is no conflict with proper Church authorities, such as the pope and bishops with ordinary jurisdiction, because there are none. The next pope would approve these consecrations and ordinations, as long as the bishop in question is Catholic. The principle of epikeia allows for this, not Canon 2261, §2. Epikeia exempts the Catholic bishop from the letter of Canon 953 that requires an explicit papal mandate before he consecrates a bishop.
No pope could approve, either currently or retroactively or tacitly, of a subject who knowingly went before an excommunicated bishop to be ordained or consecrated, let alone a non-Catholic one.
St. Ansgar (A.D. 801-865) was a ninth century French missionary to the people of Denmark, Sweden and northern Germany. He was also a Benedictine monk. Early in his life, Ansgar desired to preach the Gospel in pagan lands. He founded the first Christian church in Sweden in 832. (The Life of Ansgar was written by his companion and successor, Bishop Rimbert.)
It should be noted that Ansgar was appointed to the See of Hamburg in 831 by the emperor, before the pope knew about it. The See of Hamburg was a brand new see which the emperor himself formed. After he created it, he appointed Ansgar to the position. Ansgar was then consecrated by bishops of the area. Pope Gregory IV confirmed the arrangement, but he did so after the fact. Hence, this is another example of how, at various times in Church history, Catholic bishops were sometimes consecrated and installed into even brand new territories without a papal mandate or without receiving papal approval.
5) Bishop Thuc was not stable and was religiously indifferent
Thuc’s religious indifferentism and instability is just more proof of the unreliable character of those who used Thuc to further their prideful ambitions. Not only is there no proof that Thuc became Catholic by abjuring from his signing of the Vatican II documents and from his association with the Vatican II Church, but there is ample proof that he was religiously indifferent and was not stable. He was religiously indifferent because he had no true regard for the Catholic faith. Religious indifferentism is a mortal sin against the faith that was infallibly condemned by Pope Pius IX:
Pope Pius IX, Syllabus of Modern Errors, on Indifferentism: “This proposition is condemned: 15. Every man is free to embrace and profess that religion which he, led by the light of reason, thinks to be the true religion.” (Bull “Quanta Cura”, Dec 8, 1864; Densinger 1715)
Those who Bishop Thuc consecrated and ordained were “free to embrace and profess that religion which he, led by the light of reason, thinks to be the true religion.” Thuc did not care what they believed in, or what religion they belonged to, he treated them all as equals, as Catholics, and proved it by ordaining or consecrating them. Pope Gregory XVI equates this type of behavior with “insanity.”
Pope Gregory XVI, Mirari Vos: “… And so from this most rotten source of indifferentism flows that absurd and erroneous opinion, or rather insanity, that liberty of conscience must be claimed and defended for anyone.”
Therefore, Thuc’s actions of knowingly ordaining and consecrating non-Catholics prove he believed in the heresy of religious indifferentism, and thus was a notorious heretic on this point alone.
Thuc was a bishop for hire, a fool’s fool, that any ambitious man could go to become a bishop or priest, be he an “Old Catholic” heretic and schismatic, or even a man who wanted to start his own Church. Fr. Anthony Cekada, now a Thucite priest, at one time wrote truthfully about Bishop Thuc in his article, Two Bishops in every Garage:
“THE PALMAR FIASCO - The three-day journey by car took Mgr. Ngo to Palmar de Troya, a Spanish village 25 miles south of Seville. …In 1968, tales of apparitions there began to circulate. Among the early enthusiasts was a young man named Clemente Dominguez Gomez who organized devotions and set up a shrine in the little town. …When Mgr. Ngo appeared in Palmar, Mr. Dominguez asked the prelate to ordain himself and several other laymen to the priesthood, and then to consecrate him and a few others bishops. If Mgr. Ngô had any doubts, they were dispelled after Dominguez gave him the news that Paul VI had appeared to him by means of ‘bilocation’ to give his approval to the project. “Pause for a moment to consider what Mr. Dominguez was saying: both the Blessed Virgin and Paul VI (by ‘bilocation’) were telling a Catholic bishop that he should ordain laymen to the priesthood (whom he had just met, and who had done no ecclesiastical studies) and then consecrate them bishops-all in three weeks time. Where anyone else would have laughed the proposal off as absurd, Mgr. Ngô showed a truly colossal lack of common sense and agreed… “‘OLD CATHOLIC’ CONNECTIONS - Mgr. Ngo …moved to Toulon, France. There, in 1979, he raised to the episcopate (for the "umpteenth time") Jean Laborie, leader of a schismatic ‘Old Catholic’ sect, the ‘Latin Church of Toulouse.’ He also ordained another ‘Old Catholic’ from Marseilles named Garcia, and a certain ex-convict named Arbinet who went on later to become a Palmar ‘bishop.’ “Nor were Mgr. Ngo’s activities limited to the consecration and ordination of schismatics. A French newsletter which supports him states that on Holy Thursday, April 15, 1981, he concelebrated the New Mass with Mgr. Barthe, the bishop of Toulon… “Mgr. Ngô’s actions from 1975 onward do not inspire a great deal of confidence in his judgment or in his prudence: the Palmar affair, the promises made and promises broken to the Vatican, the involvement with ‘Old Catholics,’ concelebrating the New Mass while claiming he really wasn’t, then consecrating someone [Guérard des Lauriers] who believes the New Mass is invalid. While everyone is entitled to a few mistakes, one is forced to say that those made by Mgr. Ngô were very grave indeed… given Mgr. Ngo’s track record. The prelate seems to be rather quick to make bishops-the Palmar affair comes to mind-and not particularly fussy. In light of this, one suspects that any priest to show up on Mgr. Ngo’s doorstep could get himself consecrated with very little difficulty and few questions asked. in an age of instant coffee, there are now ‘instant bishops’… “One theme which dominates the affair from beginning to end is a gross and dangerous lack of prudence regarding the transmission of Apostolic Succession-a matter in which the slightest lack of prudence is inadmissable. St. Paul reminds us: ‘Lay not hands lightly on any man’ -he does not say: ‘Lay hands quickly on anyone.’ “…The story will not end here-it is probable that ‘instant bishops’ will continue to multiply exponentially, as among the ‘Old Catholics.’ Our missionary friend in Mexico offers us his opinion on this rather gloomy prospect: ‘We should have within a few years hundreds or thousands of bishops... without true vocations, the one more ignorant than the other, and an unavoidable cause of more division among traditionalists.’” (Fr. Anthony Cekada, Two Bishops in every Garage)
Fr. Cekada now finds himself in the same company he once denounced, with bishops and priests who have no true vocation, who are frauds, schismatics, and heretics, like a freak show in a multiple ring circus. That is because Fr. Cekada was and is a heretic himself, of the pre-Vatican II type that led to the Great Apostasy, raised and imbibed with poison from an erroneous and heretical theology that is found in bad books with imprimaturs many years before the robber’s Second Vatican Council.
Fr. Anthony Cekada’s is a notorious heretic on several counts. He denies the Salvation Dogma. He heretically believes that certain men who live and die worshipping false gods and practicing false religions can be in the way of salvation and be saved. He publicly denounce “Feeneyites” (i.e., those who believe that only baptized Catholics can be saved) as guilty of mortal sin. He is also a notorious heretic for teaching Catholics can knowingly attend mass at non-Catholic churches and pray in communion with notorious heretics or schismatics. He is also a notorious heretic for teaching the contraception heresy of Natural Family Planning, also known as the Rhythm Method.
Fr. Cekada is proof that a heretic—and he believes in several heresies—if he does not repent and abjure, only falls deeper and deeper and gets blinder and blinder. He eventually joined the Thucites and now is one of their ardent defenders. He deceives his readers by only talking of the validity of Thuc’s consecration, while ignoring the main issue, the legality. In so doing, he puts the validity of the sacraments before the Catholic faith and the Church’s laws, and in effect, since he is a heretic, has denied the Catholic faith.
Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum (# 9), June 29, 1896: “The Church has always regarded as rebels and expelled from the ranks of her children all who held beliefs on any point of doctrine different from her own. … St. Augustine notes that ‘other heresies may spring up, to a single one of which, should any one give his assent, he is by the very fact cut off from Catholic unity… if any one holds to one single one of these [heresies] he is not a Catholic’ (S. Augustinus, De Haeresibus, n. 88).”
THE LAW OF THE CHURCH PRESUMES PERTINACITY IN HERESY UNLESS THE CONTRARY IS PROVEN
In addition to the undeniable facts which demonstrate that the Vatican II antipopes are definitely formal heretics, and that most if not all the “traditionalist” priests and bishops are heretics, the presumption of the law is also against them:
Canon 2200.2, 1917 Code of Canon Law: “When an external violation of the law has been committed, malice is presumed in the external forum until the contrary is proven.”
A commentary on this canon by Rev. Eric F. Mackenzie, A.M., S.T.L., J.C.L, states:
“The very commission of any act which signifies heresy, e.g., the statement of some doctrine contrary or contradictory to a revealed and defined dogma, gives sufficient ground for juridical presumption of heretical depravity… excusing circumstances have to be proved in the external forum, and the burden of proof is on the person whose action has given rise to the imputation of heresy. In the absence of such proof, all such excuses are presumed not to exist.”
Another canon law manual states: “If the delinquent making this claim be a cleric, his plea for mitigation must be dismissed, either as untrue, or else as indicating ignorance which is affected, or at least crass and supine… His ecclesiastical training in the seminary, with its moral and dogmatic theology, its ecclesiastical history, not to mention its canon law, all insure that the Church’s attitude towards heresy was imparted to him.” (G. McDevitt, The Delict of Heresy, 48, CU, Canon Law Studies 77. Washington: 1932)
Not only have the Vatican II antipopes made literally hundreds of statements contrary to revealed and defined dogma, but they have also explicitly declared themselves to be in communion with – in the same Church as – schismatics and heretics. To a lesser extent, essentially all of the more known “traditional” priests and bishops also hold similar heresies of salvation for pagans through a so-called baptism of desire or blood etc., as well as the heresy that one can lawfully commune with non-Catholics or heretics, and this of course makes it a mortal sin to be in religious communion with any of them or receive the sacraments from them since they are heretics and outside the Church and Her communion. The antipopes have, furthermore, confirmed these statements with acts which further manifest their adherence to heresy, such as communicatio in sacris (communication in sacred things) with non-Catholics and heretics and various other members of false religions. It is not, therefore, the law or the spirit of the Church to exonerate someone publicly spewing heresy, but rather to presume him guilty.
Pope Innocent IV, First Council of Lyons, 1245: “The civil law declares that those are to be regarded as heretics, and ought to be subject to the sentences issued against them, who even on slight evidence are found to have strayed from the judgment and path of the Catholic religion.”
St. Robert Bellarmine explains why this must be.
St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice, II, 30: “… for men are not bound, or able to read hearts; but when they see that someone is a heretic by his external works, they judge him to be a heretic pure and simple, and condemn him as a heretic.”
A simple illustration will also demonstrate why this must be.
Suppose you had some sheep and you appointed a shepherd to watch over them. Suppose one day the shepherd became a wolf and began eating the sheep and tearing them to pieces. Would you, looking after the welfare of these sheep, maintain the wolf as head of the sheep? Would you demand that the other sheep not yet eaten subject themselves to the wolf, and thus place themselves in proximate danger of being eaten? Of course you wouldn’t, and neither would God.
God could never allow one who is promulgating manifest heresy in the external forum to maintain authority in the Church or be able to demand the submission of Catholics, regardless of what his intentions are. Remember, heresy kills souls. Suppose the wolf in our story is just hungry, or having a bad day. Does this change the fact that the sheep are being eliminated? No.
Furthermore, what wolf who was trying to deceive people would openly declare himself to be a non-Catholic or an enemy of the Church?
Matthew 7:15: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.”
There is no more effective way to assist a false prophet than to insist that he, despite his public profession of heresy, maintains authority in the Church. Pope St. Celestine authoritatively confirms the principle that we cannot regard a public heretic as a person with authority when dealing with the case of the heretic Nestorius. Nestorius, Patriarch of Constantinople, began to preach the heresy that Mary was not the Mother of God. The faithful reacted by breaking communion with him, having realized that since Nestorius was preaching public and notorious heresy he could not have authority in the Catholic Church. The following quote from Pope St. Celestine is found in De Romano Pontifice, the work of St. Robert Bellarmine.
Pope St. Celestine: “The authority of Our Apostolic See has determined that the bishop, cleric, or simple Christian who had been deposed or excommunicated by Nestorius or his followers, after the latter began to preach heresy shall not be considered deposed or excommunicated. For he who had defected from the faith with such preachings, cannot depose or remove anyone whatsoever.”
Pope Pius IX confirms this principle by teaching that one is considered a heretic or a schismatic even if one has not yet been declared as such by the Holy See.
Pope Pius IX, Quartus Supra (# 12), Jan. 6, 1873: “Since the faction of Armenia is like this, they are schismatics even if they had not yet been condemned as such by Apostolic authority.”
This is why the saints, theologians, doctors, canonists and popes who speak to the issue of a “heretical pope” avoid the terms “material” and “formal” heresy, for these are terms that imply a judgment of the internal forum. Rather, they use the words public, manifest, notorious, etc. – terms corresponding to the external forum.
F.X. Wernz, P. Vidal (1943): “Through notorious and openly revealed heresy, the Roman Pontiff, should he fall into heresy, by that very fact is deemed to be deprived of the power of jurisdiction even before any declaratory judgment of the Church…”
Canon 192, 1917 Code of Canon Law: “A person may be unwillingly deprived of, or removed from, an office, either by operation of law or an act of the lawful superior.”
Canon 188.4, 1917 Code of Canon Law: “There are certain causes which effect the tacit (silent) resignation of an office, which resignation is accepted in advance by operation of the law, and hence is effective without any declaration. These causes are… (4) if he has publicly fallen away from the faith.”
What is a public defection from the faith?
Canon 2197.1, 1917 Code of Canon Law: “A Crime is public: (1) if it is already commonly known or the circumstances are such as to lead to the conclusion that it can and will easily become so…”
Thus, we have shown in great detail why it’s utterly false to assert that the heretical “traditionalist” priests and bishops or the Vatican II antipopes are merely “material heretics.” They cannot be material heretics because 1) they know very well of the dogmas which they deny since they have even been rebuked for their heresies—the heresies which they still adhere to and even defend and maintain in their public teachings and literature; 2) they are bound to know the Catholic Faith as “bishops,” especially the dogmas which they deny; and 3) they, the Vatican II sect and the antipopes especially, lack and contradict the essential mysteries of Faith which one must hold to be a Catholic.
AUTOMATIC EXCOMMUNICATION FOR ALL HERETICS, SCHISMATICS AND APOSTATES WITHOUT EXCEPTION
The declaratory sentence which follows an automatic excommunication is merely a legal recognition of something which already exists. If this were not true, the automatic excommunication would be meaningless. Canon 2314, of the 1917 Code of Canon Law, although not infallible, is perfectly in line with Catholic teaching: “All apostates from the Christian faith and each and every heretic or schismatic: 1) Incur ipso facto [by that very fact] excommunication…”
Pope Pius XII, Mystici Corporis Christi (# 23), June 29, 1943: “For not every sin, however grave it may be, is such as of its own nature to sever a man from the Body of the Church, as does schism or heresy or apostasy.”
Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum (# 9), June 29, 1896: “The practice of the Church has always been the same, as is shown by the unanimous teaching of the Fathers, who were wont to hold as outside Catholic communion, AND ALIEN TO THE CHURCH, WHOEVER WOULD RECEDE IN THE LEAST DEGREE FROM ANY POINT OF DOCTRINE PROPOSED BY HER AUTHORITATIVE MAGISTERIUM.”
Pope Pius VI, Auctorem fidei, Aug. 28, 1794: “47. Likewise, the proposition which teaches that it is necessary, according to the natural and divine laws, for either excommunication or for suspension, that a personal examination should precede, and that, therefore, sentences called ‘ipso facto’ have no other force than that of a serious threat without any actual effect” – false, rash, pernicious, injurious to the power of the Church, erroneous.”
The heretical person is already severed from the Church. Most heretics are known to be heretics without a trial or declaratory sentence, and must be denounced as such. As we see here, the Catholic Church teaches that formal processes and judgments are not necessary for ipso facto (by that very fact) excommunications to take effect. They are very often, as in the case of the heretic Martin Luther, formal recognitions of the ipso facto excommunication that has already occurred. This should be obvious to a Catholic.
Pope Pius XII, Mystici Corporis Christi (# 22): “As therefore in the true Christian community there is only one Body, one Spirit, one Lord, and one Baptism, so there can be only one faith. And therefore if a man refuse to hear the Church let him be considered – so the Lord commands – as a heathen and a publican. It follows that those who are divided in faith or government cannot be living in the unity of such a Body, nor can they be living the life of its one Divine Spirit.”
St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice, II, 30: “… for men are not bound, or able to read hearts; BUT WHEN THEY SEE THAT SOMEONE IS A HERETIC BY HIS EXTERNAL WORKS, THEY JUDGE HIM TO BE A HERETIC PURE AND SIMPLE, AND CONDEMN HIM AS A HERETIC. For, in the first place, it is proven with arguments from authority and from reason that the manifest heretic is ipso facto deposed. The argument from authority is based on St. Paul (Titus 3:10), who orders that the heretic be avoided after two warnings, that is, after showing himself to be manifestly obstinate which means before any excommunication or judicial sentence. And this is what St. Jerome writes, adding that the other sinners are excluded from the Church by sentence of excommunication, but the heretics exile themselves and separate themselves by their own act from the body of Christ.”
As we’ve already shown, it’s a dogma that 1) heretics are not members of the Church; and 2) that a heretic is automatically excommunicated (ipso facto) without any further declaration. It is a dogmatic fact, therefore, that a heretic cannot be a part of or govern the Church, since he is not a member of it. To state that Catholics should hold communion with a manifest heretic because no process against him had been completed, is contrary to Catholic teaching, Catholic Tradition and Catholic sense.
THE BIBLICAL BASIS FOR AVOIDING HERETICS
Now, the doctrine that people can never pray in communion with heretics, receive the sacraments from heretics or enter their churches, are taught from the beginning of the Church, and its foundation is of course from the Bible.
Titus 3:10: “A man that is a heretic, after the first and second admonition, avoid.”
The infallible word of God commands us to avoid a heretic after the first and second admonition.
2 John 1:9-10: “Whosoever revolteth, and continueth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that continueth in the doctrine, the same hath both the Father and the Son. If any man come to you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him, God speed you. For he that saith unto him, God speed you, communicateth with his wicked works.”
This bible verse makes it crystal clear that those who have dealings with heretics or schismatics, “communicateth with his wicked works.” This means that those who have dealings with heretics have a part of and share in their sins.
However, there is one exception to this doctrine of receiving the Sacraments from heretics. This specific canon from the Council of Florence deals with the sacrament of baptism. The Catholic Church will always make it clear when there is an exception to a doctrine.
Pope Eugene IV, Council of Florence, “Exultate Deo,” 1439: “In case of necessity, however, not only a priest or a deacon, but even a layman or woman, yes even a pagan and a heretic can baptize, so long as he preserves the form of the Church and has the intention of doing what the Church does.” (Denz. 696)
This exception on baptism is really necessary since no man can ever be saved or by any other means enter into the bosom and unity of the Church without the sacrament of baptism. This, of course, is another proof of the explicit necessity for all to be baptized in order to be saved.
Pope Paul III, The Council of Trent, Can. 5 on the Sacrament of Baptism, ex cathedra: “If anyone says that baptism [the sacrament] is optional, that is, not necessary for salvation (cf. Jn. 3:5): let him be anathema.”
Pope Eugene IV, The Council of Florence, “Exultate Deo,” Nov. 22, 1439, ex cathedra: “Holy baptism, which is the gateway to the spiritual life, holds the first place among all the sacraments; through it we are made members of Christ and of the body of the Church. And since death entered the universe through the first man, ‘unless we are born again of water and the Spirit, we cannot,’ as the Truth says, ‘enter into the kingdom of heaven’ [John 3:5]. The matter of this sacrament is real and natural water.”
The Church made this specific exception in regard to heretics since everyone - young as well as old - must receive the water of regeneration to be saved. However, the words of Pope Eugene IV, in the Council of Florence, do not allow a person to receive the sacrament of Baptism from heretics in all cases, but only in an extreme necessity. One example would be when the danger of death is imminent, and the person in question might risk dying without the sacrament of baptism. (This exception would also of course be valid if you don’t know any Catholics in your area and need baptism. If you have no Catholic friends or family members and need baptism you may be baptized by a heretic as fast as possible. See Baptism; the Steps to Convert to the Traditional Catholic Faith; the Steps for Those Leaving the New Mass; and Conditional Baptism). In such a situation, as described above, however, “not only a priest or a deacon, but even a layman or woman, yes even a pagan and a heretic can baptize, so long as he preserves the form of the Church and has the intention of doing what the Church does.” And so, it is clear why God made this exception through the Pope. Again, when there are exceptions, it will always be mentioned and made clear.
The point being made, one will not, however, find any exceptions regarding any other of the sacraments in regard to heretics or schismatics. According to the teachings of the Church, heretics and schismatics must be avoided under pain of mortal sin. You may thus not have friendly relations with them, e.g., playing sports together, or doing other activities like this, or even meet with them as one would meet with a real Catholic friend. The only exception to this would be if you’re trying to convert a heretic or an unbeliever. In such a case you can meet with him, play sports with him and talk with him. However, if your intention is wrong and you know that you keep contact with atheists or heretics for the wrong reasons, and not for the purpose of really converting them (or even if your intention is right but the sinner, heretic or schismatic is obstinate and non-convertible and refuses to listen), as all too often happens with heretical family members, then you must cease all contact with them. For doing otherwise might be the cause of your eternal destruction. How many people have not forfeited God to please other men more? How many have not lost God because they spent too much time trying to help others whilst overlooking themselves? “Beware of men”, Jesus Christ warns (Matthew 10:17). Catholics must realize that few are Saved; most adult Catholics are damned. Not even Jesus Christ, who is God, could convert all the hardened Jews.
In this context, see: THE SECOND COUNCIL OF CONSTANTINOPLE AND MIXED MARRIAGE ARGUMENT EXPOSED
Catholics are explicitly forbidden to knowingly pray in communion with heretics or receive the sacraments from them as Pope Leo X and the following dogmatic Councils makes clear. These quotations, of course, also condemn the Vatican II sect’s false ecumenism, as well as their false prayer meetings or gatherings with the false religions of the world.
Pope Leo X, Fifth Lateran Council, Session 8 and 9, ex cathedra: “And since truth cannot contradict truth, we define that every statement contrary to the enlightened truth of the faith is totally false and we strictly forbid teaching otherwise to be permitted. We decree that all those who cling to erroneous statements of this kind, thus sowing heresies which are wholly condemned, should be avoided in every way and punished as detestable and odious heretics and infidels who are undermining the Catholic faith.
“…All false Christians and those with evil sentiments towards the faith, of whatever race or nation they may be, as well as heretics and those stained with some taint of heresy, or Judaizers, are to be totally excluded from the company of Christ’s faithful and expelled from any position, especially from the Roman curia, and punished with an appropriate penalty…”
The Pope just said infallibly that all heretics should be avoided in every way. Note that you can only know that someone is a heretic if you yourself have obtained this knowledge of the person in question. Thus, if you know your priest to be a heretic, you are obliged to avoid him in every way, and may not approach him for the sacraments. This same authoritative language can be seen in Pope Vigilius ex cathedra decree from the Second Council of Constantinople.
Pope Vigilius, Second Council of Constantinople, 553, ex cathedra: “The heretic, even though he has not been condemned formally by any individual, in reality brings anathema on himself, having cut himself off from the way of truth by his heresy. What reply can such people make to the Apostle when he writes: As for someone who is factious, after admonishing him once or twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is perverted and sinful; he is self-condemned (Titus 3:10).”
Question: Does this mean that I cannot live with my heretical parents, even though I’ve tried to convert them?
Answer: Of course not. All it means is that you cannot unite yourself with heretics purposely (outside of what the Church approves of), or be friends with them, or be in religious communion with them. That’s what’s condemned here. The Pope is not condemning those who, in a necessity, live with a heretic, who are married with a heretic (so long as the Church has approved of it), who buys food or do business with heretics, or who work under a heretic or take orders from him, etc.
III Council of Constantinople, 680-681: “If any ecclesiastic or layman shall go into the synagogue of the Jews or the meetinghouses of the heretics to join in prayer with them, let them be deposed and deprived of communion [excommunicated]. If any bishop or priest or deacon shall join in prayer with heretics, let him be suspended from communion [excommunicated].”
The Third Council of Constantinople just defined infallibly that any person who prays in communion with heretics are to be excommunicated and refused communion for praying with other heretics. Now let’s look at some other quotes:
Council of Laodicea, 4th century, (#Canon 6): "No one shall pray in common with heretics and schismatics… It is not permitted to heretics to enter the house of God while they continue in heresy.”
Council of Carthage: “One must neither pray nor sing psalms with heretics, and whoever shall communicate with those who are cut off from the communion of the Church, whether clergy or layman: let him be excommunicated.”
Pope Pius IX, Sept. 16, 1864, letter to the English Episcopate (CH 254): “That Christians and ecclesiastics should pray for Christian unity under the direction of heretics and, what is worse, according to an intention which is radically impregnated and vitiated with heresy, is absolutely impossible to tolerate!”
1917 Code of Canon Law, Canon 823: “Mass may not be said in churches of heretics or schismatics, even though they were in the past properly consecrated or blessed.”
1917 Code of Canon Law, Canon 1258.1: “It is unlawful for the faithful to assist in any active manner, or to take part in the sacred services of non-Catholics.”
Pope Pius XI, Mortalium animos (# 10): “So, Venerable Brethren, it is clear why this Apostolic See has never allowed its subjects to take part in the assemblies of non-Catholics: for the union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it.”
Pope Pius VI, Charitas Quae, April 13, 1791: “31... Keep away from all intruders, whether called archbishops, bishops, or parish priests; do not hold communion with them especially in divine worship.”
For people then to claim (in spite of all the quotations above saying otherwise) that one may pray at heretical churches or receive the sacraments from them or that an assembly presided over by heretics or an assembly that prays in communion with other heretics, to somehow be the Church of God or the Church of Catholics, is simply to deny God’s revealed infallible truth.
COUNCIL OF TRENT TEACHES THAT HERETICS CANNOT GIVE AN ABSOLUTION IN CONFESSION
The following information will be quite devastating to the Dimonds’ heretical position on receiving the sacrament of Penance from heretical ministers. Even though the Council of Trent, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Robert Bellarmine and many others (as we will see) clearly teaches that heretics cannot give an absolution in confession or have any jurisdiction whatsoever, Peter still has refused to accept this position. Wonder why?
Pope Julius III, Council of Trent, Sess. 14, Chap. 7, On the Reservation of Cases: “Wherefore, since the nature of a judgment requires that sentence be imposed only on subjects, the Church of God has always maintained and this council confirms it as most true, that the absolution which a priest pronounces upon one over whom he has neither ordinary nor delegated jurisdiction ought to be counted as of no effect... But that no one may on this account perish, it has always been very piously observed in the same Church of God that there be no reservation in articulo mortis [in danger of death], and that all priests, therefore, may in that case absolve all penitents from all sins and censures; and since outside of this single instance priests have no power in reserved cases, let them strive to persuade penitents to do this one thing, betake themselves to superiors and lawful judges for the benefit of absolution.”
Now, one could argue that this quotation never mentioned the word “Catholic” and that it explicitly mentioned ALL PRIESTS and that it thus as a necessity must have included the heretics. True, the Council never mentioned the word “Catholic,” but it doesn’t have to for three reasons.
First, the Council of Trent infallibly defined that “the nature of a judgment requires that sentence be imposed only on subjects”. Now I ask you, are Catholics subjects to heretical or schismatical priests and bishops that reject the Catholic Church and faith? Of course not! This fact is of course also backed up by Holy Scripture and the magisterium of the Church: “For what have I to do to judge them that are without? Do not you [the faithful] judge them that are within?” (1 Corinthians 5:12). So, then, it’s perfectly clear that those who are outside do not command on the inside, for “it is absurd to imagine that he who is outside can command in the Church.” (Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum, #15, June 29, 1896).
There are three parts contained in the sacrament of Penance, that is 1) Contrition, 2) Confession, and 3) Satisfaction (cf. Council of Trent, Sess. 14, Chap. 3). Every time the priest tells a person what kind of satisfaction he must make in order to be absolved from his sins, the priest makes a sentence (or command) over him that requires a satisfaction (or penance) on the part of the penitent. However, the Council of Trent infallibly defined that “the nature of a judgment requires that sentence be imposed only on subjects”, and Pope Leo XIII “it is absurd to imagine that he who is outside can command in the Church.”
Now if a Catholic had been an eastern schismatic and confessed his former heresy or schism to an eastern schismatic priest, the priest would tell him that he did no sin at all when he was an eastern schismatic and that he would get no absolution unless he repented of his sin of separating from the eastern schismatic church. And that is why no non-Catholic priest can absolve a Catholic because the Catholic Church could never allow a non-Catholic priest to make a sentence or judgment on other Catholics when he cannot even judge right from wrong himself. That is not to say that heretics cannot know right from wrong in many cases, for they do. It rather means that as long as they remain outside the Church of Christ and lack the Catholic faith, they cannot have jurisdiction over Catholics or command them to do something that has to do with them receiving forgiveness in the Catholic Sacrament of Penance.
Second, the Council of Trent ordered the Priests (who was among ALL THE PRIESTS MENTIONED) that if they did not have this necessity “in danger of death” for granting a valid absolution in confession, they then must strive “to persuade penitents to do this one thing, betake themselves to superiors and lawful judges for the benefit of absolution”. But I ask you, since when does the Catholic Church endorse heretical or schismatical priests, their superiors or their churches? Never! Therefore, this statement cannot have referred to heretical ministers, obviously.
Third. The Council of Trent affirmed that this teaching of jurisdiction has always been upheld and maintained in “the Church of God”, and “this council confirms it as most true”, thus proving to everyone that it’s not simply dealing with ecclesiastical laws that can be changed, but specifically with dogmatic laws that can never be changed.
These three points, then, totally excludes all heretics, schismatics, and apostates from ever being able to grant a valid absolution in confession or from ever being able to receive supplied jurisdiction in case of a necessity since they are outside the Church and Her jurisdiction (de fide).
ST. THOMAS TEACHES THAT HERETICS CANNOT GIVE AN ABSOLUTION IN CONFESSION
Peter Dimond, “Sacraments from Undeclared Heretics” Debate – The Important Quotes: “A few schismatics will quote St. Thomas in Summa Theologica, Supplemental Pt., Q. 38, A. 2, Obj. 1, in which the objection (not necessarily St. Thomas) says that a heretic cannot absolve. However, the schismatics don’t quote St. Thomas’ reply to the objection, in which he states that he’s referring to those who are “cut off.” Heretics who have been officially “cut off” or “suspended in regard to others” by a declaration cannot have jurisdiction, and thus cannot absolve.”
St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Suppl. Part, Q. 38, Art. 2, Reply to Objection 1: “The effect of absolution is nothing else but the forgiveness of sins which results from grace, and consequently a heretic cannot absolve, as neither can he confer grace in the sacraments. Moreover in order to give absolution it is necessary to have jurisdiction, which one who is cut off from the Church has not.”
To refute Peter’s argument, we will simply quote from another passage of St. Thomas that he simply cannot explain away or deny.
St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Second Part of the Second Part, Q. 39, Art. 3: “ON THE OTHER HAND, THE POWER OF JURISDICTION... DOES NOT REMAIN IN HERETICS AND SCHISMATICS; AND CONSEQUENTLY THEY NEITHER ABSOLVE NOR EXCOMMUNICATE, NOR GRANT INDULGENCE, NOR DO ANYTHING OF THE KIND, AND IF THEY DO, IT IS INVALID.”
As we can see here, St. Thomas clearly teaches that heretics lose their jurisdiction independently of any declaration and that they lose it from simply being in heresy. This if anything should be the final nail in the coffin on the myth that St. Thomas is agreeing with the Dimonds or that he teaches that we may receive the sacraments from certain “undeclared” heretical ministers. We wonder if Peter will accept this information, or simply ignore it as usual.
As an aside note, Peter do agree with the above statement, at least in regards to excommunication, for Peter admits on his website that heretics and schismatics cannot excommunicate and that their excommunication would be worthless, invalid, and of no effect (excommunication requires jurisdiction too)! Nonetheless, even though he claims they cannot excommunicate, he nevertheless argues that they can absolve. His position is truly a contradiction from beginning to end.
Question: But what then does St. Thomas mean when he is referring to them as “cut off”?
Answer: When St. Thomas is referring to heretics or schismatics as “cut off”, he is simply referring to them as automatically excommunicated. For as we could see above, St. Thomas does not consider heretics to have any jurisdiction independently of any formal excommunication. St. Thomas thus based his conclusion on the Divine Law, and not on any formal excommunication, as explained by St. Robert Bellarmine:
THE HOLY FATHERS AND SAINTS TEACH UNANIMOUSLY THAT HERETICS AND SCHISMATICS ARE IPSO FACTO [BY THAT VERY FACT] DEPRIVED OF ALL ECCLESIASTICAL JURISDICTION AND DIGNITY
“Finally, the Holy Fathers teach unanimously not only that heretics are outside of the Church, but also that they are ipso facto [by that very fact] deprived of all ecclesiastical jurisdiction and dignity. St. Cyprian (lib. 2, epist. 6) says: “We affirm that absolutely no heretic or schismatic has any power or right”... St. Optatus (lib. 1 cont. Parmen.) teaches that heretics and schismatics cannot have the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, nor bind nor loose. St. Ambrose (lib. 1 de poenit., ca. 2), St. Augustine (in Enchir., cap 65), St. Jerome (lib. cont. Lucifer.) teach the same.
“St. Nicholas I (epist. ad Michael) repeats and confirms the same. Finally, St. Thomas also teaches (S. Theol., II-II, q. 39, a. 3) that schismatics immediately lose all jurisdiction, and that anything they try to do on the basis of any jurisdiction will be null.
“… those Fathers, in affirming that heretics lose jurisdiction, did not cite any human law, which furthermore perhaps did not exist in relation to the matter, but argued on the basis of the very nature of heresy. … while heretics already before being excommunicated are outside the Church and deprived of all jurisdiction. For they have already been condemned by their own sentence, as the Apostle teaches (Tit. 3:10-11), that is, they have been cut off from the body of the Church without [formal] excommunication, as St. Jerome affirms.” (St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice, lib. II, cap. 30)
So while Peter teaches to his followers that they are right in seeking an absolution from a heretical minister, St. Thomas teaches that we sin if we knowingly seek an absolution from them.
St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Suppl. Part, Q. 19, Art. 6, Whether those who are schismatics, heretics, excommunicate, suspended or degraded have the use of the keys?: “On the contrary, Augustine says (Tract. cxxi in Joan.) that the ‘charity of the Church forgives sins.’ Now it is the charity of the Church which unites its members. Since therefore the above are disunited from the Church, it seems that they have not the use of the keys in remitting sins. Further, no man is absolved from sin by sinning. Now it is a sin for anyone to seek absolution of his sins from the above, for he disobeys the Church in so doing. THEREFORE HE CANNOT BE ABSOLVED BY THEM: and so the same conclusion follows.”
Therefore, when St. Thomas refers to heretics or schismatics as “cut off”, “excommunicated” or “separated” etc. in context of receiving an illicit sacrament, he is not referring to them for any other purpose than to denote their automatic excommunication.
St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Third Part, Q. 82, Art. 7: “Accordingly, such as, being within the Church, received the power of consecrating the Eucharist through being ordained to the priesthood, have such power rightly indeed; but they use it improperly if afterwards they be SEPARATED FROM THE CHURCH BY HERESY, SCHISM, or excommunication. And since the consecration of the Eucharist is an act which follows the power of order, such persons as are SEPARATED FROM THE CHURCH BY HERESY, SCHISM, or excommunication, can indeed consecrate the Eucharist, which on being consecrated by them contains Christ’s true body and blood; but they act wrongly, and sin by doing so; and in consequence they do not receive the fruit of the sacrifice, which is a spiritual sacrifice.”