Some advice to the excommunicated ultramontanist hermits of Scotland

crucifix drawing john of the cross

Jesus, who was obedient, even unto death, death on a cross.

Apparently some hermits declared some months ago that they were withdrawing their “obedience from Pope Francis” and that they were severing “communion with the Holy See.” “Them’s is fightin’ words” as we say here in the back reaches of Appalachia. Those words are technical, and scream out for an application of canonical penalties involving excommunication. And – no surprise – they were excommunicated. That’s clearly what they desired all along, making a show.

There is simply zero need to do what they have done. They are not brave. They are ignorant ultramontanists. Pope Francis has not done anything ex-Cathedra against the faith, not could he. Ambiguity might be troublesome. Ambiguity might throw one’s own soul into anguish. But that’s no reason to force these excommunications.

Yes, I know, they listed all sorts of things they don’t like about Pope Francis. Fine. Lots of people do that, but not everyone gets excommunicated. The reason they did get excommunicated is because they treat what Pope Francis himself calls a dialogue instead as ex-cathedra dogma. It’s not. And that’s disingenuous for them to treat such things in that manner. But this is what they ultra-tradition-al-ism-ists have always done. They can get as huffy as they want, but they talked themselves into getting excommunicated. No one would have batted an eye had they said that they disagree with Pope Francis, even if they said this very strongly. And I don’t think Pope Francis could have possibly cared less even if they called him a heretic, which apparently they did. That’s not the issue. They went over the line only when they said that they were withdrawing obedience and severing communion with the Holy [Apostolic] See. That’s the kicker. The kicker-outer terminology.

Here’s the deal: whenever you run across ambiguity from any ecclesiastical superior or anything downright wrong, one’s duty is to do what the Church has always taught be done, with the attitude that one simply doesn’t understand the commands of one’s temporary ecclesiastical superior. Period. And this is NOT disobedience. It is supreme obedience. One will likely suffer for it, but won’t get excommunicated for it. And to such as think they are entitled never to suffer in such manner, never to follow our Lord by taking up their cross, to them I say: Get a life! Don’t be such tender snowflakes! March on behind our dear Lord Jesus.

Also, I suggest they look up what Saint Thomas Aquinas said is always the motivation for division in the Church.

I’ve tagged this post also with “Missionaries of Mercy” because I think it is a mercy to assist those who have purposely removed themselves from communion with the Church to reenter. Their choice. But I think I’ve given them a way to save face and come back to the fold.


Filed under Missionaries of Mercy, Pope Francis

9 responses to “Some advice to the excommunicated ultramontanist hermits of Scotland

  1. Are we angry at Christ? I should hope not. We need to follow the founder always. We should follow his supreme pontiff 99.999% of the time (questioning only when, for example,the pontiff would install pagan idols in consecrated churches). We should walk out on Christ…NEVER!

  2. nancyv

    sounds like sound advice Father. I pray they have ears to hear and humility to respond.

  3. pelerin

    I was surprised to read this as I occasionally look at the blog of the Order which I presumed this to be, and have not seen any news about any excommunication of Scottish monks at all. There must be another group on another island off Scotland as I see this one still has a photo of Pope Francis and I can find no mention of excommunication of the monks on the Internet.

  4. Aussie Mum

    When I first read about this on Christmas Eve I was concerned that the hermits in question would gain a following and others do likewise because of the support they received from a well respected Catholic in Britain with a large online following. Thankfully, that hasn’t happened. It is very sad that they have cut themselves off from the Church and I hope they return. And I hope that others who are teetering on the edge, because of the suffering the current situation in the Church is causing, will realise that to leave would be to desert Our Lord and exactly what the devil wants. The thing to do is to stay put and offer up the confusion and suffering experienced in reparation for the wrong things that are happening.

  5. Joisy Goil

    Once again we need to apply the spiritual ointment, more commonly called the ROSARY. One or more each day will create a cushion of spiritual protection for you and yours and if you add prayers for the poor misdirected people to your intentions – who knows what happy results we may see.

  6. Aussie Mum

    I am hoping that the next pope is Cardinal Sarah or someone like him who would be a holy pope and set things right again.

  7. “No one would have batted an eye had they said that they disagree with Pope Francis, even if they said this very strongly.”
    Don’t be too sure that NO ONE would have batted an eye. I’ve seen a post or two suggesting that merely to call out Il Papa for ambiguity, dialogue, or participating in Pachamama liturgy is Totally Unchristian Hate, and maybe such people OUGHT to leave the Church, or already have.
    And to both sides (and especially all sedevacantists) I say, remember the words of St. Padre Pio: “Pray, hope, and don’t worry. God is merciful and hears your prayer.” To which I add: There isn’t now, and never has there been, anybody who has the power to take from Christ our Lord his Bride the Church.

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