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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.
Welcome to The Lidless Eye Inquisition | bloghome
"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....:::]

The revocation of indefinite suspension to this we...

Briefly on A Few Issues... Though the The Lidless...

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...

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.

:: Tuesday, January 28, 2003 ::

Points to Ponder:
(From First Things' Fr. Richard J. Neuhaus on CAItanic)

I am frequently asked whether there is much Catholic criticism of “Evangelicals and Catholics Together” (ECT). The answer is in the negative. Not that all Catholics are terribly enthusiastic about it, but most think it is no big deal that Catholics are in productive dialogue with evangelical Protestants. After all, the Catholic Church is in dialogue with almost everybody. It comes with being catholic. But there are exceptions. Catholic Apologetics International (CAI), for instance, devotes forty–three pages to criticizing an address I recently gave at Wheaton College in Illinois and concludes: “Father Neuhaus has shown himself to be an enemy of Christ, with a soothing voice and a flowery tongue that masks the Serpent’s hiss. He wears the clothing of a sheep, but like a ravenous wolf he seeks to dissolve the Holy Church, and like Esau, to sell Her precious pearls of truth for a bowl of false and unholy ecumenical porridge.” So you can see that some Catholics are not entirely approving of my work with ECT.

I was not aware of CAI’s somewhat pointed reservations until they were brought to my attention by that notable blogger Mark Shea, who is concerned about what he calls the Lidless Eye Crowd on the rightmost fringes of Catholicism. In my Wheaton address I, as usual, drew on the documents of Vatican II and statements of this pontificate such as Dominus Iesus (Jesus the Lord) and Ut Unum Sint (That They May Be One), but that, in the view of CAI, is just the problem. In another long essay from CAI, we are told that “it appears that Vatican II, in intention but not in fact, did redefine the perennial teaching of the Church.” “That is to say that ‘the Spirit of Vatican II,’ as it is interpreted and applied by the more progressive innovators . . . appears to be exactly in line with what the Council itself intended to present.” The Church teaches that Protestants are damned; Vatican II says they have means of grace and may be saved. The Church says that Jews are collectively guilty of the death of Christ; Vatican II says not. The Church says that religious freedom is a pernicious heresy; Vatican II affirms religious freedom. On each point, the CAI document cites earlier councils, popes, and saints in order to establish the “perennial teaching” of the Church. The unavoidable implication is that Vatican II was a false council and the pontificates of Paul VI and John Paul II are devoid of magisterial authority. Like his soulmates on the far left, the CAI author has no use for Newman’s understanding of the development of doctrine, an understanding explicitly endorsed by the Magisterium since Vatican II.

Every so–called development is, in fact, a radical change, a contradiction, and an effort to reform the irreformable. That Vatican II and subsequent pontificates are heretical is a thought not to be entertained lightly by a Catholic. Our author writes, “Please God, may I be wrong about this. If ever there was a time that I wished to be corrected and proved wrong, this is it.” As it happens, in the essays on my work and on Vatican II, there is not the slightest indication that the author wishes to be corrected, never mind to be proved wrong. He entered into full communion with the Catholic Church only recently, believing he had found the rock (as in monolith) of inflexible and sedentary truths. It seems he was not prepared for the Church of ongoing pentecostal stirrings of the Spirit leading into the fullness of the truth that will not be exhaustively understood until “we know even as we are known.” He seems to be saying, to paraphrase St. Augustine, “So late I knew you. So soon must I say good–bye.”

Where he might go from here, God only knows. Having put the burden of proof on those who believe that the Catholic Church has not fallen into heresy, we hope he will stop presenting himself as a Catholic apologist. In any event, the answer to the question whether there are Catholic critics of ECT is yes, but they are not very. If they are very Catholic, they are not very critical; and if they are very critical, they are not very Catholic.

:: Shawn 8:21 PM [+] | ::

:: Monday, January 27, 2003 ::
"Wast-ing A-way A-gain in Se-de-vac-ant-a-ville" Dept.
("Look-ing for my... lost pa-pal chaaair...")

The following is a response written this morning to an email sent by a sedevacantist webmaster. The names have been changed to protect the guilty.

On Mon, 27 Jan 2003 07:19:39 J LLLLLLLL CCCC wrote:
For those who are somewhat familiar with Fr. Brian Harrison's May 2000 article: "A Heretical Pope Would Govern The Church Illicitly But Validly"

This article has been increasingly referred to by those who want to squelch the doctrinal application that - a pope CAN become a heretic and automatically cease to be pope and Catholic. Interesting that they have to resort to a relatively unknown priest in Puerto Rico.

Hello Mr. CCCC:

Based on the response you have started to give, it would be a safe bet to say that you are a sedevacantist. (Or, if you dislike the term, you deny the validity of the last four claimants to the papal throne. For this response kindly consider these two as synonymous.) For if one thing is as regular as rain is here in Seattle, it is someone trying to justify their disobedience to the pope by pretending that there is no pope. That may well work in Mr. Rogers "Land of Make-Believe" but in the here and now it is a position without merit.

I presume that you sent this becoming aware that I revised some of my writings from 2000 (and all of the ones from 2001) - mostly in minor ways but in some cases with noticeable additions or deletions - in late 2002 and early 2003. Included in that list was my treatise refuting 'traditionalism' which includes a short writing on sedevacantism. (Which was also made into an essay in its own right.) If you did not know of this, then it is simply the most extraordinary of coincidences that you emailed me not even a day after my revisions (completed on the 25th of January) were posted to the web on the 26th of January. But lest I get offtrack here, let us get back to the issue at hand.

You seem to think that because Fr. Brian Harrison may have modified his position a little that my premise is somehow undermined. If this is your presumption, might I take this moment to inform you a bit as to the sitz im leben of my own writing.

Initially that section was added to my treatise in August of 2000 and did not include any material from Fr. Harrison at all. In December of 2000 when I revised the treatise and shortened the work (by removing unnecessary duplications and/or unnecessary threads which diluted the efficacy of the writing), I beefed up the section on sedevacantism with among other things a quote from Fr. Harrison's essay as additional support.

In this current version of the work, I have leaned out some of the extra material previously added, retained the reference to Fr. Harrison's essay, and added some stuff from Dr. Ludwig Ott's Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma - something I should have thought to do in the first place. Nonetheless, another significant element to this equation does not help your case in writing with regards to a "change of mind" of Fr. Brian Harrison. More on this in a moment.

For if you look closely, the footnotes of the text read as follows:

[1] Vatican II: Dogmatic Constitution "Lumen Gentium" §23 (November 21, 1964)

[2] Vatican II: Dogmatic Constitution "Lumen Gentium" §23, footnote 30 (November 21, 1964)

[3] Matthew 23:1-4 (Revised Sedevacantist Version)...

[4] Vatican I: Dogmatic Constitution "Pastor Aeternus" §1 (July 18, 1870)

[5] Vatican I: Dogmatic Constitution "Pastor Aeternus" §1 (July 18, 1870)

[6] Vatican I: Dogmatic Constitution "Pastor Aeternus" §2 (July 18, 1870)

[7] Pope Pius XII: Apostolic Constitution "Vacante Sede Apostolis" §34 (December 8, 1945)

[8] Dr. Ludwig Ott: "Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma" pg. 282 (c. 1960)

I quoted Fr. Harrison's essay simply as icing on the cake not as the main thrust of my argument. The Apostolic Constitution he refers to was at one time on the web but no longer is for some reason. (I know this because I read the text myself in late 1999.) However, my harddrive excerpts from that source matched some of the ones quoted by Fr. Harrison so I quoted his essay as a first-hand source for the quotes from Vacante Sancte Sedis. (Making the latter quotes second-hand.) But this was done merely as an ancillary addition and not as a constituent element of the work.

Out of the eight references, one was to a second-hand quote of a previous Apostolic Constitution governing conclave elections (the one from 1945 which directed the 1958 Conclave election of Cardinal Roncalli to the Apostolic Throne). Another was a parody of the sedevacantist position used to illustrate the absurdity of the sedevacantist (or "no pope" position). But the remaining six are from either Vatican I (3 references), Vatican II reiterating Vatican I (2 references), and one from a theology manual from the 1950's which outlines the obvious corollary extensions which are implicit in the two definitions of perpetual papal primacy.

In short, my primary argument is from Church teaching itself, not the speculations of saints who, however learned and saintly are not the magisterium. (And further still, they would not have dared to put their speculations against the teaching of the popes and councils.) And in the end that is what happens when you quote the saints against Church teaching - much as the Protestants quote the Bible against Church teaching. Just as they are woefully in error to do this, so are you.

Besides, I find it interesting that for some reason I should trust you and your associates on these matters. Wherever Fr. Harrison is stationed, maybe you should look at it differently: the sedevacantist position is so manifestly absurd that only an "unknown priest from Puerto Rico" had bothered to address these unsubstantiated assertions.

For the rest of the Church has universally accepted Roncalli and his successors as valid popes. By contrast, you guys in your "empty chair" thesis are functionally no different than the other "trads" or Protestants in your invention of supposed "errors" which vanish the moment anyone applies the general norms of theological interpretation to the supposed "contrary" texts. (Or supplies more than one sentence of context as you guys love to take single sentences from JP II's writings absent their context and single sentences from other sources and "prove" an "error exists".) The error is in those who are unlearned and unstable twisting magisterial texts to their own destruction (cf. 2 Pet iii,14-17), not in the rest of us who with varying degrees of difficulty can (and do) successfully reconcile what appear at first or second glance to be contradictions.

Fortunately, Fr. Brian Harrison has since seen some light and has revised his position stating that:

"It is true that a Pope who was a formal, public, notorious heretic could not govern the Church either licitly or validly, but would automatically lapse from office."

I am unaware of anyone who would claim otherwise. But before you presume that this "disproves" the anti-sedevacantist position, a significant factor needs to be stressed. This whole line of argumentation is akin to hypothesizing on the number of angels who can dance on the head of a pin (and if they know the San Antonio Stroll). We could just as validly hypothesize on what we would do if the body of the Blessed Virgin was found buried in a tomb and what that would do to the state of Catholic dogma. We could just as validly hypothesize on what we would do if the body of Jesus Christ was found in a tomb somewhere in Jerusalem. Either scenario would of course be suicidal to the Catholic Faith in toto but at the same time, it is possible that these could happen. (I would argue that the possibility is so extremely remote as to be not a serious enough threat to keep even those of the weakest faith awake at night.)

What I manifestly reject is the sedevacantist line that there is any way to prove that any of the last four popes are heretics. (Mind you this would have to be a method that could have been denied the Jansenists, Old Catholics, Protestants, Orthodox, or others who have made similar claims historically.) This is more of a theological abstract idea than one that can actually be proven in reality. And for those who are secure in the faith, such speculations were acceptable prior to 1870. However, since Vatican I they are no longer acceptable for faithful Catholics to profess.

How could he not see some light when we read, for instance, the Saint and Doctor, St. Francis de Sales, approved in 1877:

St. Francis de Sales died a long time before Vatican I (c. 1870)...

"Now when [the Pope] is explicitly a heretic, he falls ipso facto from his dignity and out of the Church, and the Church must either deprive him, or, as some say, declare him deprived, of his Apostolic See."

"Salus Ex Catholicis Est"

How does this square with the very words of the Deputation de fide at Vatican I - where the Dogmatic Constitution Pastor Aeternus was hammered out before the final vote??? I quote from my treatise Appendix D where excerpts of the Relatio are posted:

As far as the doctrine set forth in the Draft goes, the Deputation is unjustly accused of wanting to raise an extreme opinion, viz., that of Albert Pighius, to the dignity of a dogma. For the opinion of Albert Pighius, which Bellarmine indeed calls pious and probable, was that the Pope, as an individual person or a private teacher, was able to err from a type of ignorance but was never able to fall into heresy or teach heresy. To say nothing of the other points, let me say that this is clear from the very words of Bellarmine, both in the citation made by the reverend speaker and also from Bellarmine himself who, in book 4, chapter VI, pronounces on the opinion of Pighius in the following words: ###"It can be believed probably and piously that the supreme Pontiff is not only not able to err as Pontiff but that even as a particular person he is not able to be heretical, by pertinaciously believing something contrary to the faith."### From this, it appears that the doctrine in the proposed chapter is not that of Albert Pighius or the extreme opinion of any school, but rather that it is one and the same which Bellarmine teaches in the place cited by the reverend speaker and which Bellarmine adduces in the fourth place and calls most certain and assured, or rather, correcting himself, ###the most common and certain opinion###". [I. Shawn McElhinney: A Prescription Against 'Traditionalism' from Appendix D - The Forgotten Vatican I Relatio (January 25, 2003)]

St. Francis de Sales' opinion on this subject was acceptable before Vatican I but since that time is no longer acceptable. This does nothing against the holiness of the saint as he did not adhere to any opinions that were unacceptable in the sixteenth century. Rather than simply say this though, I will give a brief and by no means extensive example of this principle.

St. Thomas Aquinas is not penalized for failing to profess the Immaculate Conception (which was not settled doctrine until the time of Trent and not binding on the faith until 1854). In the same manner we do not penalize St. Bellarmine for holding that the subdiaconite was a sacrament rather then a sacramental, we do not penalize the Church Fathers for failing to only enumerate seven sacraments. We do not penalize St. Gregory the Great for not professing the filioque. Nor do we penalize St. John Chrysostrom for attributing defects and sins to the Blessed Virgin, St. Augustine for opining on double predestination, St. Athanasius for not professing the Deuterocanons as Scripture, St. Justin for appearing to arianize on the divinity of Christ, etc. Before a position is accepted into the corpus of Church teaching, it is not worthy of blame to have opposed it. But those who pit the Fathers and Doctors against the august Magisterium of the Church are no different than Protestants, Jansenists, Old Catholics, and other historical heresies.

There is also the fact that heresy is not "proven" by actions or words that are of themselves and by their very nature equivocal. Hence, JP II's Koran kissing (a popular example of "heresy" in some sedevacantist circles) fails to qualify as heresy. The reason: for all we know the pope was simply trying to show affection for his audience and made an unwise split second judgment on the matter. At least that is how a real Catholic would look at the matter first and foremost.

I remind you that the same St. Francis de Sales you have referenced also made it a point in his spiritual direction to counsel people to be ready and willing to excuse the faults of their neighbour without putting an unfavourable interpretation on their actions. For "[t]he same action can be looked upon under many different sepects: a charitable person will ever suppose the best, an uncharitable one will just as certainly choose the worst". He also said "[d]o not weigh so carefully the sayings and doings of others, but let your thought of them be simple and good, kindly and affectionate".

I assure you, St. Francis himself would not look kindly on someone who took the attitude towards their superiors that you appear to. (Based on the fact that only sedevacantists even bother with this line of argumentation to begin with.) And yes, JP II is your superior. Further still, the culpable refusal to submit to his authority is to lose any hope of salvation (cf. Apostolic Letter Unam Sanctum).

Ubi Petrus Ibi Ecclesia

:: Shawn 12:48 PM [+] | ::

:: Sunday, January 26, 2003 ::
I’m honored to be invited to join this august company.

I’d like first to point out that, despite the connotations that “Inquisition” has in our culture, the goal of this site is not to disparage those with whom we disagree nor to promote our own intellect, judgment or sanctity.

One very good introduction to the original Inquisition comes from our friends at the Order of Preachers. For those of you who lack either the time or the inclination to read the whole thing, please take a look at these quotes:

“It [the Inqusition] was a matter of convincing a heretic of the contradictory position he held in regard to the Christian Faith, and of converting him.”

“The problem of the Inquisition is rooted in two far older problems: that of the prosecution of heresy in Christian society and, more generally, that of the feelings of this society about disagreements within the body of the faithful. The latter goes back to the origins of the Church, when Christians were intensely attached to "being of one mind" (Phil 2:2): "one Lord, one Faith, one baptism, one God and Father of us all" as St. Paul wrote (Eph 4:5). Faith was indeed entirely a gift of God; but to be authentic, it required belief and a common objective content.”

“Dissension regarding the Faith thus appeared as the gravest of faults, by far the most pernicious. This is why the inquisitorial process sought first to cure, as a physician does. Not only the society that was threatened, but also the heretic himself, [who] must be saved.”

To be a part of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church requires that faith mentioned above; the orthopraxis born of that faith – of which the letters of St. John so eloquently speak; and active participation in the Church, in communion with the faithful, the clergy and the Vicar of Christ.

This site, then, exists in the hope of binding up those wounds in the Body of Christ that come from Catholic Christians who believe that the institutional Church has lost her way and needs to return to practices of earlier centuries. I’d suggest that the reason this site doesn’t have so much to do with the “progressive” dissidents is twofold: (1) they’re usually older folks who don’t use the web very much and (2) even those who do use the web are disinclined to discussion, but usually resort to ad hominem attacks whenever any of their tenets are challenged. Besides, the members of this site are generally rather stoutly conservative folks. We see VOTF as the will-o-the-wisp that it is. We see that integrism could produce a long-standing schism, but work in our own small way in the hope that it doesn’t.

:: Gregg the Obscure 6:36 AM [+] | ::

:: Friday, January 24, 2003 ::
From the Envoy Weblog:
(Circa Late December 2002)

This is from an exchange with a guy who reacted to Pete Vere's posting of a Wanderer article that he and I wrote in December of 2001 on authentic Traditionalism. This XXXXX fella immediately came right out of the starting gates insulting me, claiming that I only wanted to "bash" people, he called me a Gnostic, and then proceeded to name drop encyclicals such as Mediator Dei - which he snidely asked me if I had read and proceeded to snip bits and pieces from the text absent context. (Not to mention when I responded by telling him to take his little temper tantrum to the "kiddie table" and not bother the adults, he got even snider in his tone.)

I responded to his taunts on Mediator Dei with a detailed exegesis on the relevant parts of the encyclical which he snipped from context. (Unlike him, I used general norms of theological interpretation in my exegesis.) His response to me was to ignore the post and carp on other issues in standard "trad" methodology. Hence, my response to him below.

This is a mixed bag of responses to a few different posts. I do not have the time to label and sort each one unfortunately.

I guess you don't think that Vatican II documents (ANY of them) can undergo theological scrutiny, nor the acts of the Holy Father, such as Assissi.

XXXXX, constructive criticism is not the problem provided that it is conducted with proper deference to ecclesiastical authority and avoids the Martin-Luther like "ready, fire, aim" approaches are sadly not uncommon amongst the majority of those who style themselves as 'traditionalists'.

I would like to see more of this, esp. with regard to "ecumenism" in light of Mortalium Animos and DH and religious liberty condemned by pre-Vatican II Popes.

This is an example of what I call the "homousian principle" XXXXX. Just as the Council of Nicaea took a term previously condemned in a heterodox sense and appropriated it in an orthodox sense, Vatican II took terms previously condemned in a heterodox sense and appropriated them in an orthodox sense. This can be discerned through utilizing the norms of theological interpretation which includes (i) the times the documents were written (ii) the contemporary problems the documents intended to address and (iii) the sense that the documents attach to the terms of discussion. But if you simply prooftext documents then you can manufacture reams of so-called "contradictions".

This is why the sacred sciences need to be approached with a humility that frankly is not common to most extremists of any bent.

As far as the subjects you mention above, they were two of my stumbling blocks in coming to grips with the assertions of false 'traditionalism'. There were many points to go over but ecumenism, religious liberty, and interfaith (in that order) were three of the most difficult doctrinal elements to reconcile. Thus for those like my Traditionalist friend Jeff Culbreath who confess to having difficulties with them, I am very sympathetic. On the other hand, those who are brazen enough to confidently assert that there are errors or contradictions, I tend to handle them more stridently. I can usually tell after a couple exchanges if I am dealing with a genuinely anguished person or a blowhard.

you or HE asked me to quote from a source where the Mysterium Fidei in the consecration formula allegedly came from Jesus Christ and His apostles.

Why is the term missing from all known consecratory formulas prior to the fifth century and why is it unique to the post fourth century Church of Rome and its liturgical variants???

I did: Innocent III with reference in Denzinger's.

Care to provide some context to the quote itself??? Anyone can prooftext.

The response from I.Shawn? Silence of course...

Some would take silence from me as a blessing (chuckle). Seriously though, it is no secret to anyone who has paid reasonably close attention to my weblog entries or message board participation in recent months why I have been more absent then active. (With the weblog it is primarily the past few weeks whereas with message boards it is for the most part the past year.)

I am using these comments box to break up the monotony of revising and editing an earlier work of mine to go before a theological censor. This was something that got delayed for over a year and a half for various sundry reasons I do not want to talk about here as I have done so elsewhere. Suffice to say, this is not a case of "he who gets the last word wins".

Nonetheless, you operate from the presumption that if someone does not respond to you that they somehow cannot. I have seen nothing thus far on these threads that cannot be adequately responded to except for the limitations of time. And while I am admittedly hesitant to respond to you because of the rather childish attitude you have displayed on these threads, I am willing in light of my own past as a dyspeptic "trad" to wipe the slate clean here with you.

Before I forget, unless I am mistaken, you were rather silently passing over my exposition on Mediator Dei. Care to comment on that since I used not some mythical "Gnostic" source as you claimed but instead used the text itself verbatim. For one who thinks my "silence" on your point somehow is a defacto surrender what are we to make about your approach to my exegesis on Mediator Dei hmmmmmm??? :)

To cover this in brief though, "mysterium fidei" is believed to have originated in a gloss that made its way into the Roman Canon in the period where it was being reformulated. (Primarily between 400 and 600 AD.) The Roman Canon being the general pattern for all the western liturgies subsequent to the seventh century this term became widely used in the consecratory formularies of the western rites.

There was a general agreement that the requisite words for consecration were "this is my body" and either "this is my blood" or "this is the chalice/cup of my blood". St. Thomas opined that the reason the words did not appear in the Scriptures was because they fell under the discipline of the arcana (meaning that they were handed down in the tradition but were not made public to the uninitiated) but this position does not stand up to the fact that this expression cannot be found in the liturgical texts prior to the fifth century and no eastern anaphora contained them.

St. Thomas also in not a few spot treats the words of Pope Innocent III on these subjects as "expressing an opinion, rather than determining the point". Finally, Denzinger was a compendium of magisterial texts that was primarily for the use of theologians who were familiar with the general norms of theological interpretation. It is an abuse to quote Dz in the same manner as a Protestant quotes the Scriptures without taking into account the context and other relevant factors involved.

So in short, Dz contains texts that are recognized as magisterial and which carry varying theological qualifications. Not every document in Dz is infallible and therefore irreformable. (Evidence of this is easy to demonstrate as dicastery texts are also at times in Dz and they are never considered in and of themselves infallible.)

Now then, I have answered your challenge, how about interacting with my exegesis on Mediator Dei. Dialogue is supposed to be a two-way street. I am hesitant to dialogue anymore with people who cannot squarely face up to their own overreaches.

And need I note that XXXXX moved onto other topics and refused to interact with my responses above??? (All of which is typical and why I am hesitant to talk about these issues with "trad" hotheads such as him.)

:: Shawn 10:09 AM [+] | ::

:: Thursday, January 23, 2003 ::
The Remnant Disses Science and Technology

(Originally posted at the DPI Bullies 'N' Bozos BLOG)

The self-styled "traditionalist Catholic" publication The Remnant looks loonier and loonier the more we read its articles, as well as other drivel penned elsewhere by its key writers.

It seems that back in Nov. 2000, The Remnant, through veteran house weirdo Solange Hertz, trashed modern science and technology. In fact, in her book Beyond Politics: A Metahistorical View of What Keeps on Happening, Hertz "argues" (cf., pp.47-56) that both electricity and electronics are demonic and were inspired by Ol' Scratch himself, all as part of a supernatural conspiracy to overthrow Christianty and usher in the Anti-Christ.

Moreover, Hertz "reasons," the progress of modern technology overall has caused faith and the True Religion to plummet and the forces of atheism, secular humanism, and the New Age movement to flourish and take over. Hmmm. Might be time to move to Lancaster, PA, buy a horse and buggy, and take up farming.

But we digress.

Such twaddle is to be expected from Hertz, who, in the very same book, also endorses Geocentricity, among other long-discredited notions. Here is part of what one mainstream traditionalist Catholic --a priest no less!-- had to say in his response (The Remnant: Church vs. Science) to such nincumpoopery masquerading as "traditionalism":

...Normally, I would recommend that someone like Mrs. Hertz read Providentissimus Deus to gain a knowledge of how the Church interprets Scripture in the light of the realities of science -- but her low regard for Pope Leo XIII would probably make that a waste of time. Her failure to distinguish democracy from republican government, her identification of socialism and communism with the former, her claim that Leo XIII ordered the republicanization of Europe, and her contention that democracies and republics must separate Church and state, would likely make that Pope's writings meaningless to her. A pity, really, for Pope Leo's works are key to understanding the Church's teachings on Its relationship to the modern state.

...The Remnant is getting to be more and more of an embarrassment to traditional Catholicism as time goes on, and it becomes increasingly clear that it is a journal devoted to seventeenth century antiquarian thinking. Acceptance of the 'indult' without orthodoxy, the purposeful isolation of Catholics from the Mass, the wistful desire for monarchy, and now the denial of physical reality!


Editor's Note:

After pointing out the supreme irony that Hertz uses a computer to do her "work," one Remnant reader was told by editor Michael Matt that this was okay because Hertz (whose last name --ironically enough-- is also an electronics term designating computer processing speed) is "clear-eyed" about the devilish nature of electonics.


In that case, those of us who live in Washington DC should contact our city's ex-mayor Marion Barry poste-haste and procure a kilo of crack. After all, we're "clear-eyed" about the harmful nature of narcotics.

:: John M. Esparolini 7:42 AM [+] | ::

:: Tuesday, January 21, 2003 ::
This is a weblog specifically intended to address those who falsely pose as faithful Catholics but in reality are wolves in sheeps clothing. The term "Lidless Eye" was coined by Mr. Mark Shea (whom we hope to persuade to participate in this weblog). I tend to refer to them in my writings as "self-styled 'traditionalists'" or some variation thereof. Lest there be no confusion as to these terms, I explain HERE my usage of terms and they are synonymous with the manner whereby a growing number of people are referring to the same sort of people as "Lidless Eye reactionaries". This is noted up front because there are people who refer to themselves as "traditionalists" who are not "Lidless Eye" reactionaries. All of this may sound confusing but hopefully as this weblog develops, the distinctions will manifest themselves with greater clarity.

H L Mencken once noted that "[i]t is the natural tendency of the ignorant to believe what is not true. In order to overcome that tendency it is not sufficient to exhibit the true; it is also necessary to expose and denounce the false". That is what this weblog intends to do with those who falsely refer to themselves as "Traditionalist Catholics" when indeed their reactionary tone, abrupt judgmental nature, and overt rebellion against the magisterium of the Church is the very antithesis of the way a true Traditionalist would behave.

:: Shawn 9:07 PM [+] | ::


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