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:: The Lidless Eye Inquisition ::

A weblog dedicated to the exposure of the crackpots of the lunatic self-styled 'traditionalist' fringe who disingenuously pose as faithful Catholics.
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"Do not allow yourselves to be deceived by the cunning statements of those who persistently claim to wish to be with the Church, to love the Church, to fight so that people do not leave Her...But judge them by their works. If they despise the shepherds of the Church and even the Pope, if they attempt all means of evading their authority in order to elude their directives and judgments..., then about which Church do these men mean to speak? Certainly not about that established on the foundations of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself as the cornerstone (Eph. 2:20)." [Pope St. Pius X: Allocution of May 10, 1909]

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[:::....Recent Posts....:::]

As I am planning a return to blogging in other for...

Though this weblog has been suspended "in perpetui...

After pondering this in recent days, I cannot thin...

Points to Ponder: I now come to the positive reas...

"One From the Drafting Board" Dept. The material ...

Before this weblog is formally closed in perpetuit...

On Altar Girls and General Norms of Interpretation...

Final Reflections I would like to thank Shawn McE...

On Juridical Abrogation of the 1962 Missal: [Pref...

This weblog for the lions share of the past year a...

The Inquisitors
:: I. Shawn McElhinney
:: F. John Loughnan
:: Peter J. Vere JCL
:: Greg Mockeridge
:: Apolonio Latar
:: Gregory Rossi
:: Keith Kenney
:: The Curmudgeon
:: Mark Bonocore
:: Gregg the Obscure
Affiliated Weblogs/Websites
:: Rerum Novarum [>>>]
:: Sean O' Lachtnain's Home Page [>>>]
:: Envoy Encore Weblog (Peter Vere JCL, contributor) [>>>]
:: Cooperatores Veritatis [>>>]
:: Thoughts of Apolonio Latar III [>>>]
:: Sancta Liturgia [>>>]
:: Disturber of the Peace [>>>]
:: Vita Brevis [>>>]
Specialty Weblogs
:: The (New) Catholic Light BLOG (Peter Vere JCL, contributor) [>>>]
:: John Betts' Boycott BLOG [>>>]
Ecumenical Jihad*
:: Apolonio Latar and Kevin Tierney's Culture of Christ BLOG [>>>]
Specialty Weblinks
:: A Prescription Against 'Traditionalism' [>>>]
:: On the Intricacies of Dialogue - A Commentary [>>>]
:: The 'Tradition is Opposed to Novelty' Canard [>>>]
:: On Assisi and Catholic Principles [>>>]
:: F. John Loughnan's "Classification of Some Integrist (Lidless Eye) Websites" [>>>]
:: A Syllabus of Various (Mostly Pseudo-"Progressivist") Dissenting Authors [>>>]
:: A Canonical History of the Lefevrist Schism - Peter J. Vere's License Thesis From Saint Paul University, Ontario, Canada [>>>]
:: What Makes Us Catholic Traditionalists - written for The Wanderer December 6, 2001 (I. Shawn McElhinney/Pete Vere JCL) [>>>]
:: Yes Virginia, Fr. Nicholas Has Been Suspended - written for The Wanderer March 6, 2003 (Pete Vere JCL/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Squelching Fr. Gruner's 'Squawking Squire' [>>>]
:: RadTrad Watch [>>>]
:: Antisemitism and the Catholic Right [>>>]
[:::....Site Intention, Disclaimer, Copyright, Etc....:::]
:: Intentions of this Weblog (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Weblog "War and Peace Length" Disclaimer (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Site Copyright (I. Shawn McElhinney/SecretAgentMan) [>>>]
:: Exhortation to Those Who Participate in the Message Boxes (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Linking to Tridentine Apostolates, Etc. --A Lidless Eye Inquisition Clarification Thread (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Heretical Pseudo "Traditionalist" Apostolates....:::]
Mario Derksen's Catholic Insight
:: Responses to Mario Derksen--Parts I-III (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario on EENS (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario Derksen's Errors on Man (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario Derksen's Sedevacantism--Parts I-III (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Response to Mario --Parts I-II (Kevin Byrne) [>>>]
:: Mario's Sedevacantism and His Conscience (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder -I. Shawn McElhinney's Discussion List Comments on the "Karol Wojtyla is the Pope" Subject (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
Gerry Matatics' Apostolate
:: Gerry Matatics Too Hard Line For The Remnant (Pete Vere)[>>>]
:: Concerning Gerry Matatics and His Alleged Sedevacantism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Schismatic and Theologically Specious Pseudo "Traditionalist" Apostolates....:::]
Catholic Apologetics International (or CAItanic)
:: Bob Sungenis' "Reply" to Richard John Neuhaus --Parts I-II (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - Richard J. Neuhaus on CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On CAItanic and the "Petrification" of their Opponents (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: On Stunted Ecclesiology and Other Examples of the Arrested Development of CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Baghdad Bob Meets Bible Bob (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Commentary on CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Sungenis/Ferrara and Double Standards (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: On Sungenis’ “Novelty”--Parts I-II(Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: A Short Response to John Salza and Sungenis (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: A Brief Clarification by Your Weblog Host On "Mr. Ipse Dixit" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Matatics vs. Sungenis (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Sungenis and God's Contingent Knowledge--Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: On "The Big Bang Theory" and its Pertinance to Catholic Doctrine (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Novus Ordo Watch
:: On "Novus Ordo Watch" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: More on "Novus Ordo Watch" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Props to David Alexander (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Remnant
:: Beyond Lunacy (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: The Remnant Gets it Right (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Commending Christopher Ferrara (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Society of St. Pius X (SSPX)
:: Points to Ponder - on the SSPX (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On the "Reconciliation" Rumours of the SSPX (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: SSPX Demotes Key Priest Hoping For Reconciliation (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Three Cheers for Sedevacantism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On Fr. Paul Aulagnier (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Schism For One Dollar (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Bishop Rifan the Prophet (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Is the SSPX Still Lefebvrist? (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Civil War Breaks Out in the SSPX's French District (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Controverted Apostolates...:::]
Kevin Tierney and His Apostolate
:: Responding to Kevin Tierney's Criticism (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Some Brief Comments on Kevin Tierney's Response to Gregg the Obscure (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Response to Kevin Tierney's Response to I. Shawn McElhinney (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: More Sophistry From Kevin Tierney --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Obedience and Kevin Tierney's Appeal to Canon Law 212 (I. Shawn McElhinney/Pete Vere JCL) [>>>]
:: Responsum ad Tiernam Dubiosum --Parts I-III, Addendum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Note About A Blog (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Radtrads Again (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On True and False 'Traditionalism' With Kevin Tierney --Parts I-VII (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Pope John XXIII, Pacem in Terris, and Global Government --Parts I-III(Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: Clarification on Global Government (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Brief Response to Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Musings on Diversity (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: An Example of the Honesty That Must Accompany Dialogue (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Muttering On Many Subjects (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Detailed Response to Kevin on The Revised Missal, Corpus Christi, Church Attendance, Church Forms, Protocol 1411, Etc. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Musings (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: "Responsum ad Tiernum" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Discussing the Liturgy and Various Contrastings With Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Refuting the “He’s Not Disobedient. He's Just Stupid.” Defense (Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: "Responsum ad Tiernum" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Controverted Subjects and People in General....:::]
:: Response to a Self-styled "Traditionalist" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Term "Inquisition" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Addressing a Sedevacantist Heretic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: February's Quote of the Month (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: On TAN Books (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: On Defining Modernism (Chris Burgwald) [>>>]
:: Refuting the Late 'Trad' Michael Malone's Errors on Vatican II (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From His Beatitude Melkite Patriarch Maximos IV Saigh, Cardinal of the Roman Church (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: The Catechism and Radical Traditionalists (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Screwtape Parody on Radical Traditionalism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With a Rad-Trad --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Hell and the Catechism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Sola Fide Trads (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Some Traddie Fallacies Examined (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With Adrian a Self-styled 'Traditionalist' --Parts I-VIII (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. Opatus of Milve (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Mr. Smith's Misunderstandings --Parts I-VI (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Integralist-'Traditionalist' Conection --Parts I-V (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Discussion With Christopher Blosser on Reflections on Covenant and Mission (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Morality of Promoting Conspiracy Theories (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Question About the Magisterium (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: John Paul II and Islam (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Have 'Traditionalists' Been Too Hard on the Pope Viz Islam (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: A Conversation --Parts I-II (I. Shawn McElhinney/Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Fatal Flaws of False 'Traditionalism' With Albert Cipriani--Parts I-VII (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Conversation on Spiritual Maturity and the Traditional Catholic Approach to Difficulties --Parts I-III (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Is it Okay to Complain? (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Obedience: The Rise of True Catholics --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Radtradism and Mother Teresa (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Common 'Traditionalist' Errors in Dogmatic Theology and the Ordinary Magisterum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Notes on the Ordinary Magisterium (SecretAgentMan) [>>>]
:: Some Self-styled "Traditionalist" Mendacity (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Posting Rules for Radical 'Traditionalists' (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Thoughts on Radtradism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Why Garrigou-Lagrange? (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: The Syllabus (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Refutation of Some Common Radtrad Misuses of Citations (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: The Errors of Michael Malone Revisited (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Confuting an Attempted Justification for Schism --Parts I-II (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Another Assisi? Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder -Maximus the Abbott as quoted by Pope Leo XIII in Satis Cognitum §13 (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With a 'Traditionalist' (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: "To Be Deep in Catholic Theology is to Cease to Be a (Pseudo) 'Traditionalist'" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From Pope Benedict XV (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Charles de Nunzio (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: For Those Interested (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Refuting Mike's Errors (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: A Response to Mike Tucker (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Will it Merely Be More Uncatholic "Business As Usual"??? (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. John Bosco (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. Irenaeus of Lyons (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Dialogue/Debate on Pascendi (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From Cardinal Ratzinger on the Revised Roman Missal (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Responsum ad Hibernius (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Material (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Liturgical Dance (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Humanism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Humanism and Vatican II (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: John Paul II and Universalism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Scruples (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Tony Blair and Receiving Communion (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Confuting Radical Pseudo-'Traditionalist' Nonsense --Part I (Mark Bonocore) [>>>]
:: Confuting Radical Pseudo-'Traditionalist' Nonsense --Part II (Mark Bonocore/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: "Wast-ing A-way A-gain in Se-de-vac-ant-a-ville" Dept. (Mark Bonocore/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the McElhinney Media Dictum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Tomorrow Christendom (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Correcting a Common Misperception of This Weblog (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Response to a Guimaraes Article (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: A Response to Fr. Nitoglia (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: More on "Tomorrow Christendom" (Dom Calvet/Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Surprised by Canon Law (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Michael Davies' Passing (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Redemptionis Sacramentum and Canonical Implications for Ecclesia Dei (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Notification of Assisi Essay, Etc. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - Richard John Neuhaus on the Vatican and "Americanism"--Parts I-VI (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: 8 Things You Can Do to Stop the Judaizers (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On Circumspection in Speech and Public Writing (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: On the Revised Missal Ordination Rites and Other Tidbits (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
::Points to Ponder - John Laux on an Interesting Parallel from History on the Subject of "Preserving Tradition" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: In Fairness to Michael Forrest (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Michael Forrest and the Jews (Pete Vere) [>>>]
::Points to Ponder - Pope Gregory XVI on the Authority of the Popes (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: Michael Forrest and the Jews--Part II (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Miscellaneous Dialogual Subjects...:::]
:: Real Catholic Traditionalism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: An Open Challenge to Catholic Traditionalists (Dom Gerard Calvet/Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Quo Primum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Traditionalist Debate of the Millenium: Pete Vere vs. Shawn McElhinney (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Dialogue on Ecclesia Dei With Mark Downey (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Sister Lucia of Fatima, Ora Pro Terri Schiavo (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Ecclesia Dei And Respect for Traditionalists (Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: On "The Vile Spectacle of Traditionalists Rooting for Bad News" --Dialogue With Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>> [>>>]
:: On Liturgical Nonsense, Recent Restore Rants, Church Music, Etc (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: Briefly Revisiting an Old Subject (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Examining Kevin Tierney's "Catholic Contract" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Guest Editorials...:::]
:: The Problems Some Have With Interfaith Outreach (Guest Editorial by Gary Gubinski) [>>>]
:: On the Liturgical Movement (Guest Editorial by the Society of St. John; Prologue by I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Jacinta's Vision (Guest Editorial by Fr. Thomas Carleton) [>>>]
:: Guest Editorial on Private Revelation (Kevin M. Tierney) [>>>]
Any correspondence will be presumed eligible for blogging unless the sender otherwise specifies (cf. Welborn Protocol)

*Ecumenical Jihad listing is for weblogs or websites which are either dedicated to or which to the webmaster (i) are worth reading and (ii) characteri ze in their general outlook the preservation of general Judeo-Christian morality and which are aimed at positively integrating these elements into society. (Such sites need not even be Catholic ones.)

As society has grown more estranged from its founding principles, I wish to note sites which share the same sentiments for the restoration of society even if the means advocated in this endeavour differ. The Lidless Eye Inquisition does not necessarily endorse particulars with sites under this heading.

:: Thursday, December 29, 2005 ::

Cyprian, Tertullian, Ecclesiology, and the Anglican Divines, Etc.
(Dialogue With Kevin Tierney)

This is a continuation of various threads in one of the comments boxes between Kevin and your humble weblog host on the subjects as noted above. (Time contraints prevents me from finding and linking to them all.) Kevin's words will be in black font and his quoting of previous statements of mine will be in blue font.

Ok going way off on a tangent here, but it's an interesting discussion of Church History:

"I agree. Perhaps what impeded Tertullian's ecclesiology from properly systemizing was his involvement with the Montanists...he was a brilliant writer in so many respects. His views on the Trinity were the most solid of the ante-Nicene Fathers and he anticipated what Chalcedon decreed on the two persons of Christ 250 years in advance. He was not however as prescient on ecclesiology from what I can tell and definitely missed the boat on the non-Christological aspects of Mariology. (Including denying her perpetual virginity.)"

I think we also have to remember that Tertullian was a layman and a rather successful lawyer if memory serves me correctly. (I cannot remember his profession.)

You are correct on both counts. St. Jerome claimed he was a priest but he seems to be the only one who made this claim. Furthermore, Jerome's Scriptural prowess is well known but he had a general carelessness about history which makes me instantaneously doubt anything he says on the matter that cannot be corroborated by at least one or two other witnesses.

As a layman ecclesiology would not really be his forte I think at that time.

Perhaps so. It also may have been as I noted the montanist influence...getting so tied up in involvement with them and their views that he could not see the ecclesiological forest for the trees.

Tertullian was arguably the most brilliant of the early Fathers but everyone has their limits and certain presuppositions that colour their approach to the world...in his case the idea that the montanists were the new prophets channelling the Holy Spirit.

Frankly (and I hate to say it but in the context of this subject matter I must), it looks too much like a kind of proto-charismatic movement to me. And that it went on its own way without concern for the unity of the Church should be something that our charismatic brethren take heed of.

And during that time in a lot of ways many other issues Tertullian was battling, primarily the Docetics and the Gnostic views of Marcion. Things were not very much focused on ecclesiology in that respect.

True. When the attack is upon the very person of Christ and his physical existence, ecclesiological issues are secondary. This makes sense since if there is doubt on Who and what one is supposed to believe in, the question of various affiliations with the root and matrix of Who and what is believed lack their key points of reference.

Now Cyprian, he was battling many times against the Novatians, and was also trying to boost his case against them, and since they were directly attacking the unity of the Church, Cyprian had to present a coherent ecclesiology of the Church.

Coherent in theory. In practice Cyprian was not so consistent as you well know.

The Gnostics and Docetics attacked that unity of course, but it was in a different fashion, as in it was not neccessarily a parallel hierarchy, whereas the Novatian one, though it never got off the ground too much, came awful close.


Cyprian needed to demonstrate that what he was doing was not permissable, because it attacked the unity of the Church, and then he outlined just what that unity consisted of. Yet at the same time he had to demonstrate the importance of the local Bishop, but balance it with the primacy of the Roman pontiff.

This is where he was in theory sound but in practice he vacillated once he found himself on the opposing side of the Church of Rome on a matter pertaining to doctrine.

So while Cyprian was heavily influenced by Tertullian on other issues, in many ways he was sorta "breaking new ground" in the disputes over ecclesiology, since really Ignatius of Antioch was the only one who touched on the structure of the Church in-depth before him. (Irenaeus of Lyons touched on it briefly, but did it in a more Roman-centric matter, as it was the perfect polemic agianst the Gnostics "hidden knowledge."

Indeed. As I noted in a five part series on church models about two years ago:

The model of the Church as mystery (Lat. sacramentum) was probably first explicitly enunciated by St. Cyprian of Carthage in his treatise The Unity of the Church written in approximately 251 AD. It was slightly revised around 256 after his own run-in with the Bishop of Rome on a matter of doctrine[...] but that is another subject altogether. [Excerpt from Rerum Novarum (circa November 23, 2003)]

And again:

Most scholars believe that St. Cyprian's enthusiasm for the See of Peter as the root and matrix of the Catholic Church was diminished after he was on the receiving end of this same authority. Hence, in the redacted version, he emphasized more the episcopate than the papacy -though in both versions he recognized that all the bishops were what the Bishop of Rome was in episcopal dignity. [Excerpt from Rerum Novarum (circa November 23, 2003)]

Part of the reason the Gnostics were able to make early inroads was that there was no systematization as to how the concept of "church" was understood. For this reason, it varied some from locale to locale though there were some specific principles that were recognized such as the primacy of the Roman see (first explicitly set forth by Irenaeus of Lyons and implicitly attested to by Ignatius of Antioch) and the role of the bishop in his dioceses being analogous to that of the pope's towards the universal church. While one could find many implicit attestors to this prior to the early third century, it is St. Cyprian to whom the first explicit systemization is owed...and arguably his delineations are just as valid today as they were then.

"Studying the Anglican divines and then tangling with White and Svendsen & co. is like playing in the major leagues and then being sent to AA ball if you know what I mean "

You ain't kiddin. These men, whatever one may think of them, did at times give Rome a serious run for their money on history, and it took brilliant and gifted historians to prove them false. Men like White, Webster and Svendsen badly recycle their arguments, and attempt to present it in a pop format, not recognizing these men were serious scholars, not pop culture historians.

"And Firmilian was in some far away dioceses at that...one would have thought Cyprian would have found a fellow African bishop if he could have. It is akin to Lefebvre having to look all the way to Campos Brazil to find a bishop (de Castro Mayer) to agree with him in his disputations with Paul VI and John Paul II...history has an uncanny tendency to repeat itself "

My mentor said something of the same thing in regards to Firmillian. By simple stature alone, Cyrpian was a leader bishop. Probably the most well known African Father, he would not have had to seek help if this was some ordinary Bishop. The fact that Rome herself had sided against Cyprian, he was forced almost in desperation to look wherever he could. Though it's also interesting the comparison you make, in that De Mayer would not have been the big name he was had he not sided with Lefebrve. They were definetly not two of the strongest prelates in the Church on this one.

Well said. It would have bode better for Lefebvre to have found a bishop whom the curia in Rome would have been more apt to consider the opinion of...and preferably a cardinal at that. (Say one or more of the newly minted cardinals from the 1985 consistory such as Cardinal Stickler or Cardinal Biffi.) But hindsight is always 20-20 on these matters of course.

:: Shawn 4:38 PM [+] | ::

:: Saturday, December 24, 2005 ::
The Gifts Not Under the Tree

A merry Christ Mass to you all, and thanks for your prayers during this election campaign. It has been so intense that it will be nice to have a week off to spend with family. As I do every year, I wrote a Christ Mass essay.

This year's essay is a tribute to a Catholic gentleman named Raymond. It borrows its title from an old New Covenant article called The Gifts Not Under the Tree.

:: Pete Vere 5:28 AM [+] | ::

:: Sunday, December 18, 2005 ::
The Organic Development of the Sacred Liturgy

I've been musing over this issue for the past couple weeks as I prepare to launch into my commentary of Eucharistics Prayer II at my own blog Sancta Liturgia. I must confess upfront that it was far easier reading the plethora of commentary on liturgical forms before the reform of H.H. Pope Paul VI of blessed memory. Really all that it entailed was selecting what I thought to be the most germane and choice quotes and compiling them into coherent articles (at least so I hope). I'm currently scrubbing the texts of the Clementine Vulgate (the New Vulgate hadn't yet been promulgated when the reform of the liturgy was in process), Early Church Fathers, various anaphora, Eastern liturgies, the Sacramentaries of Pope Leo and Gelasius, and of course the former missal for phrases, quotes, context. It's exhausting but enlightening work. I'm surprised on two fronts: first that upon a surface comparison with the prayers of the current missal with the former missal the differences seem so stark and second, that there is a deeper level to these modifications and reforms than I have been led to believe from the opinions of others. In any case, I neither have all of the texts nor all of the commentaries I would like to actually engage in a thorough and scholarly exposition of some prayers of the new missal. The end product will not be on par with that of Card. Bona, Josef Jungmann, Adrian Fortesque, Dom Cabrol or any of the other household liturgical names. For that I deeply apologize in advance. Still one must do what they can with what they have.

Cardinal Ratzinger, before his elevation to the Chair of Peter, has called the reform of the liturgy a banal on-the-spot fabrication that deviates from the organic development that has gone before it. Abbot Boniface Luykx has plainly said that what the liturgical renewal movement wanted they didn't get. I have read in so many places by so many people that the reformed liturgy simply is not an organic development that I couldn't possibly list them all in a single article. Nevertheless, it's important to realize that the liturgy of the Catholic Church has never been semper idem in any place or at any time. The mere existence of a plurality of rite long before Vatican II ought to attest to this but it seems that the old fable persists none the less. Even the Roman Rite so revered and loved by traditionalists of different stripes (as also myself) has gone through vast changes from the historical perspective.

What is it then that consitutes organic development? I find myself at a loss to answer this question. Was it organic the first time in Paris when the host and chalice were lifted above the priests head for adoration at the consecration? Was it organic when parishes and cathedrals stopped being built with reference to an East-West axis (the apse preferrably orientated to the East)? Was it organic when the Gloria was wholesale introduced into the liturgy? Or how about when the Kyrie was also not only imported to the Roman liturgy but altered in the process? Are these not, at least in their genesis, but perfect examples of the inorganic development of the form of the liturgy? I'm not sure that I can answer an unqualified "Yes" or "No" to these questions. There must be a method surely for testing such alterations against the lex orandi and lex credendi of the universal Church. Is it mere subjectivity or is there not an objective method to discover here. I have the inkling that the answer resides in what Fr. Alexander Schmemann calls liturgical theology as differentiated from the theology of the liturgy. I think Vatican II in Sacrosanctum Concilium gives us the locus theologicus for a real understanding of the liturgy in its forms and its essence: the sacred liturgy is the source and the summit of Christian life. This sounds quite spectacularly as that which Pope Callistus enlisted in the fight against Nestorianism as the lex orandi est lex credendi. Our liturgical life is not simply that which is properly called liturgy. The liturgical life of a Christian precedes the liturgy and flows from it. It is both a participation in the heavenly Jerusalem and a work carried out during our earthly pilgrimage.

We all know these things, both traditionalists and non-traditionalists. Even if we are not fervent for the same forms, we are fervent for many of the same ideals and certainly for the same faith. Perhaps among the readership here we can offer one another some tentative ideas on this very topic.

Laudetur Iesus Christus!

:: Keith Kenney 12:43 AM [+] | ::

:: Tuesday, December 13, 2005 ::
Revisiting the Latin Mass 1995 Cardinal Stickler Interview:

This is a revisiting of sorts (in hopefully a more compact fashion) of a subject I wrote on at Rerum Novarum and this weblog in September of 2003. And while it is advisable to review that thread before reading this one, strictly speaking it is not necessary to do so. The aim of this thread is narrower and to deal with what many perceive to be a contradiction in some of Cardinal Stickler's statements in that article. The words of the person I am interacting with will be in black font and the article in full can be read HERE. But before I start this off, I want to make it clear (lest there be misunderstanding) that though this is on Kevin Tierney's new website, the material interacted below was not written by Kevin.{1} Having noted that, let us get on with it...

I wanted to touch on something posted to your [Kevin's] site commenting on the bit from His Eminence in the 1995 Latin Mass Magazine. Here is what is posted there (my comments interspersed):

In a previous post I cited the commission of cardinals mentioned by Alphons Maria Cardinal Stickler. I need to correct my arguments a bit before Kevin publishes a response. He and I were privately discussing the responses and through some questions demonstrated to me a need to clarify things.

From Latin Mass Magazine, Summer 1995, here is the interview in question:

Pope John Paul II, in 1986, asked a commission of nine cardinals two questions. Firstly, did Pope Paul VI, or any other competent authority legally forbid the widespread celebration of the Tridentine Mass in the present day? No. He asked Benelli explicitly, "Did Paul VI forbid the old mass?" He never answered - never yes, never no.

Why? He couldn't say "Yes he forbade it." He couldn't forbid a mass which was from the beginning valid and was the Mass of thousands of saints and faithful. The difficulty for him was he couldn't forbid it, but at the same time he wanted the new Mass to be said, to be accepted. And so he could only say, "I want that the new Mass should be said." This was the answer all the princes gave to the question asked. They said: the Holy Father wished that all follow the new Mass.

The answer given by eight of the cardinals in '86 was that, no, the Mass of Saint Pius V has never been suppressed. I can say this, I was one of the cardinals. Only one was against. All the others were for the free permission: that everyone could choose the old Mass. That answer the Pope accepted, I think; but again when some bishops' conferences became aware of the danger of this permission, they came to the Pope and said, "This absolutely should not be allowed because it will be the occasion, even the cause, of controversy amongst the faithful." And informed of this argument, I think, the Pope abstained from signing this permission. Yet, as for the commission -I can report from my own experience- the answer of the great majority was positive.

There was another question, very interesting. 'Can any bishop forbid any priest in good standing from celebrating a Tridentine Mass again?' The nine cardinals unanimously agreed that no bishop may forbid a Catholic priest from saying the Tridentine Mass. The nine cardinals unanimously agreed that no bishop may forbid a Catholic priest from saying the Tridentine Mass. We have no official prohibition and I think that the Pope would never establish an official prohibition not because of the words of Pius V, who said this was a Mass forever. Those words of Pius V were common for an important decision of the Pope. He always said, "This is valid forever." But this was not a theological, it was not a dogmatic statement, this decree of the Pope promulgating his Tridentine Mass order. And so it could be changed by his successors....

In Italian, they say that one pope gives the bull and another takes the bull again, that is, he can change the disposition of his predecessor...

So what about a bishop forbidding the Mass in the case of a priest or a whole dioceses? You must realize that a bishop is the only one who has responsibility for his dioceses....Bishops have no jurisdiction over their colleagues. A bishop in his dioceses, for his dioceses and his subjects, can find the arguments to forbid it. He can say, "This is disturbing to the peace in the dioceses."

It is necessary to notice that the privilege is given to the bishops, not the faithful. So a bishop can use the privilege or not.

I orginally said that the subject was Quo Primum which it was not directly.

I do not want to give the impression here that this commission was juridical in any way, simply that it does demonstrate at least one senior cardinal and eight others have opinions that the Tridentina Missal was not and cannot be forbidden.

I will get to this in a moment.

The logical step from here is what I was arguing. I in effect skipped that point. I provide it here.

If Pope Paul did not suppress the Tridentine Missal then it is not possible to argue that Missale Romanum somehow did prohibit the Tridentine Missal. At the most it could be said from this as I have argued, the privledges granted still exist even if the bull Quo Primum was derogated to allow the Novus Ordo Missae. Yet we have the CDW documents Kevin cites as proof Missale Romanum did abrogate Quo Primum and prohibit the use of the Tridentine Missal. So it must be that either this comission was not aware of the CDW documents or they did not think them authoritative. The lack of comment makes it impossible to assume either way.

I am presuming that because it mentions "Kevin" that it was Ian's argument being made here.{2} Either way, it ignores the fact that Quo Primum established a juridical framework granting all priests the right to use the Missal of Pius V which was canceled out by Missale Romanum. The latter action did not actively forbid the liturgical usage but it also did not positively allow for it either except in very limited circumstances. Just because something is not forbidden does not mean it is automatically allowed. There are a lot of things not expressly forbidden which are done in the celebration of the revised liturgy. That these gestures or statements are not expressly forbidden does not of course make them permissible. The same principle also applies to the celebration of the older rite. The promulgation of the revised missal by apostolic constitution revoked the law in which the older liturgy was sanctioned{3} which thus affected a kind of passive prohibition by logical extension. Now is not the time to go into the active and passive principles in ethics and theology but briefly: they are akin to material and formal elements when ascertaining heresy, schism, and apostasy insuchwise that active prohibition would involve a formal element whereas passive prohibition would be purely material in nature.

That all nine agreed that no bishop may forbid a priest in good standing from using the Tridentine Missal also seems to indicate that there is a privledge granted to priests (which would indicate Pope Paul VI did not abrogate these privledges granted in Quo Primum) or that the Tridentine Missal enjoys the status of immemorial custom (which would mean the Pope Paul VI did not abrogate the custom in Missale Romanum).

I think this agrees with my argument from before. I felt it was necessary to correct myself.

Again, the question dealt with a passive negative prohibition. In other words, did Paul VI actively forbid the usage of the older liturgical rite with Missale Romanum??? The answer is no, he did not. However, he did replace the previous law with one giving the same right previously given with the older liturgical form to the revised liturgy. There was in other words a functional replacement of one liturgical law with another...probably an obrogation but possibly an abrogation. I favour the former myself{4} but I am not a canonist and there are eminent canonists who have argued for abrogation. Either way, the functional result is the same and there was (other than the 1984 Indult) no legal standing for the older liturgy in the church after 1970. Obviously with 1988's motu proprio this changed to some extent but even that wider application did not allow for celebrations apart from communion with the local ordinaries...a point made obvious by John Paul II's exhortation of generous cooperation on the part of the local ordinaries in facilitating a means of celebrating the older rite in his communion (via the motu proprio).

There seems to be a problem with the text here, though. I don't have the original article in hand, and I am using the text given to me.

I presume that Ian got the text from Kevin who got it from me at some point...

The Cardinal seems to contradict himself. The comission says that no bishop may forbid a priest from using the Tridentine Missal, yet he seems to indicate that it is possible for a bishop to forbit it. I do not know what to make of this seeming contradiction here, but I present it for your consideration. It would seem important to note that I know of no bishop who has explicitly forbidden the use of the Tridentine Missal in his diocese.

No bishop has to explicitly (or if you will, actively) forbid the usage of the Tridentine Missal in the dioceses for it to not be allowed. Liturgical rubrics and laws tell us what to do not what we are not to do. What Cardinal Stickler relates is that there were some cardinals who (because of no active prohibition of the older missal by Paul VI){5} favoured Pope John Paul II signing a juridical decree making manifest to all priests the right to use the older missal. This is what His Eminence meant when he said "informed of this argument, I think, the Pope abstained from signing this permission." If Pope John Paul II had signed such a decree (or a "permission" if you will establishing what is sometimes called a "privilege" for all the clergy) as those cardinals were in favour of him doing, then the matter would not be one that the local ordinaries could decide on as they could under the structure of the 1984 Indult and still can under the 1988 Ecclesia Dei motu proprio. With the kind of privilege the cardinals favoured, the bishops could not forbid celebration of the older rite in their dioceses but without it they can. In short, there is no contradiction at all in His Eminence's words from the Latin Mass 1995 article whatsoever.


{1} For those who are interested, I have dealt with the Quo Primum subject in past essays and blog threads though I do not have time to track them down at the present time. Nonetheless, Kevin's responses to Ian at his site are well done and worth your time to read if this is a subject that interests you.

{2} I received an email confirmation from Kevin that indeed this understanding was correct. Whether or not such a correspondence by private email constitutes an actual exercise of the authentic Tierney magisterium or is merely the view of Kevin as a private commentator is something that I leave for the debate of others if they so want to do so ;-)

{3} I explained this in some detail in a seven part dialogue on true and false "traditionalism" with Kevin which was blogged to Rerum Novarum in August of 2003 (see part VII). Though several dialogues with Kevin on various subjects have been posted to Rerum Novarum since that time (including some in early 2004 on church-state issues that I thought turned out quite well on both sides), the latter one was the first of its kind to be posted over there. If it reads a bit pointed in some spots, it was primarily because we had not been dialoguing long and initial suspicions had to be overcome to eventually establish what the French call rapport with one another.

{4} I use as my pretext for favouring obrogation as opposed to abrogation the very words of Pope Paul VI himself issued in a solemn consistorial allocution to the college of cardinals a few months before Archbishop Lefebvre incurred his ad divinus suspension:

We must attach to this refusal to respect the liturgical norms laid down a special grievousness in that it introduces division where Christ's love has gathered us together in unity, namely, into the liturgy and the eucharistic sacrifice. For our part, in the name of tradition, we beseech all of our children to celebrate the rites of the restored liturgy with dignity and fervent devotion. Use of the old Ordo Missae is in no way left to the choice of priests or people. The Instruction of 14 June 1971 provided the celebration of Mass according to the former rite would be permitted, by faculty from the Ordinary, only for aged or sick priests offering the sacrifice without a congregation. The new Ordo Missae was promulgated in place of the old after careful deliberation and to carry out the directives of Vatican Council II. For a like reason, our predecessor St. Pius V, after the Council of Trent, commanded the use of the Roman Missal revised by his authority.

In virtue of the supreme authority granted to us by Jesus Christ we command the same ready obedience to the other laws, relating to liturgy, discipline, pastoral activity, made in these last years to put into effect the decrees of the Council. Any course of action seeking to stand in the way of the conciliar decrees can under no consideration be regarded as a work done for the advantage of the Church, since it in fact does the Church serious harm. [Pope Paul VI: Excerpts from an Allocution to a Consistory on Loyalty to the Church and to the Council, 24, May 1976: AAS 68 (1976) 369-378; Not 12 (1976) 217-223]

Roma locuta est, causa finita est!!!

{5} This was also reasonably ascertainable based on what Pope Paul VI made provisions for as noted in the above consistorial address or (to quote some of my words in the aforementioned seven part dialogual thread):

Pope Paul VI gave Indults in 1970 to Cardinal Heenan and Archbishop Lefebvre for the celebration of the older litirgical forms - as well as a privilege to elderly priests to celebrate it in private[.] [Excerpt from Rerum Novarum (circa August 3, 2003)]

The existence of such limited (but nonetheless real) exemptions from the normative law are a strong implicit argument against the idea of an active prohibition by Pope Paul VI of the older rite and (presumably) are what the cardinals had in mind when giving their opinions on the matter (contra an active prohibition) to Pope John Paul II in 1986.

:: Shawn 4:00 PM [+] | ::

:: Friday, December 09, 2005 ::
Sedevacantists are less extreme than Lefebvrists, part 756839

I really ought to be on the campaign trail, however, Fr. Cekada just forwarded me his latest response to Chris Ferrara and the Remnant. It is called "Resisting the Pope, Sedevacantism and Frakenchurch". It is a great of example of sedevacantism NOT being as extreme as Lefebvrism or other resistance positions.

While I vehemently disagree with Fr. Cekada's ultimate conclusion (namely, that there's no pope), he presents a number of strong premises to show that a valid Pope cannot promulgate a defective or invalid liturgical rite. Thus the future of the traditionalist movement will be a debate between Ecclesia Dei trads and sedevacantists/privationists.

:: Pete Vere 5:15 AM [+] | ::


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