Tag Archives: Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith

Jorge “The Heretic” Bergoglio smashes the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith?

You have heard that it’s been said that on February 14, 2022, Pope Francis let us know about his latest motu proprio, Fidem servare, by which he divided up a bit more incisively the “Holy Office” into a section, effectively, for the old Promoter of Justice crowd and another section for the old Doctrine of the Faith crowd, and that this quite complete break (though under one Prefect) weakens the punch of executive action from the doctrinal section. I’m not so sure about that. Not at all. I think it’s the other way around.

There already was a division along these lines, more or less. But now, those who are faithful are wide open to being condemned as heretics and excommunicated without much oversight. The doctrinal crowd are supposed to follow the old Agendi ratio in doctrinarum examine, which fully encourages the declaration of excommunications which cannot be appealed. From my point of view, this gives the heretics more power to do damage to the faithful of the Lord’s Little Flock. I ask, from my perspective as a nothing-priest in the smallest parish of North America in the most remote area of Appalachia:

Why is it these days that believing in any and all the Catholic Creeds of old – the Apostles Creed (usually recited before the Holy Rosary), the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed (often recited at Holy Mass) and the Athanasian Creed (usually recited, for instance, during exorcisms) – why is it, I ask, that believing in all the articles of Faith (Traditiones as the first dogmatic decree of the Fourth Session of the Trent called them) these days is bound to make one ♬ feel ♬ that one is oneself a heretic? Am I to ♬ feel ♬ guilty for what would, in any other time, be a basic prerequisite for being a priest, nothing special, just believing in the faith? Am I to ♬ feel ♬ guilty for upholding the integrity of the Sacraments? Am I to ♬ feel ♬ guilty for encouraging with joy and charity the following of the Commandments not as mere sometimes-suggestions but as Commandments which you do out of love of Jesus?

For me, as a priest just trying to do the right thing, this ♬ feeling ♬ of guilt comes about because so very many of my fellow priests and bishops are heretic apostates, and I, in my fallen human nature, ♬ feel ♬ left behind. I gotta tell you, that’s momentarily annoying, like for a nano-second, and is a ♬ feeling ♬ replaced instantaneously by the righteous aggression of an Elijah on Mount Carmel: If you think that the demon-idol Pachamama to whom human sacrifice is made is a demon-goddess who rules over all, then follow her; if you think that the Lord God is the one and only God, then follow Him. There is no middle ground: “Thou shalt not have strange gods before thee.”

We can multiply examples of blasphemy and heresy and apostacy and violent aggression. Should we bring up all the example of insulting Christ Jesus and His Immaculate Mother? Should we bring up the solicitation of sin in the encouragement of absolving people from sin that they don’t think is a sin and for which they are not repentant, “accompanying” them? Are we to be forced to be subject to abortion tainted “vaccines”? Are we to reject that the Sacrifice of Jesus has relevancy to the life of the parish? Etc.

Let me just speak to one example which goes to the very foundation of the Church, which to change is to reject the Church. These are just some random thoughts, incomplete, about infallibility, which are ever more necessary to express in these confusing, ambiguous times, not in any particular order:

  • Infallibility is a negative expression. I’m not talking about ♬ negative vibes ♬ or ♬ negative feelings ♬. Infallibility refers to the inability to fail. That’s it.
  • Now buckle your seatbelt: Infallibility does not refer to any positive inspiration or ♬ positive feelings ♬, even if much more abstractly, as if to some sort of historical movement of dialogue, in which, although plenty of mistakes are made, generally things go toward an evolutionary advancement, because, yeah, you know, like a perpetual dialogue of right and wrong but somehow right includes wrong and that’s somehow more right than just right or wrong because we’re all together in total contradiction to each other, but all together, you know, in Hegelian Rahnerianism… Right? Let’s continue. ;-)
  • Infallibility only refers to Peter upon whose flesh and blood person the Church is founded by Christ Jesus.
  • When Jorge Bergoglio says that everybody is infallible in believing, and says this in Latin (infallibile in credendo) as if he’s citing a maxim of the ancient Fathers of the Church, that’s actually his own heretical statement that was never ever used in the history of the Church until it came out of his own heretical mouth. Again, no one is infallible except Peter and his successors, and only when he is specifically teaching as (1) bishop of Rome, successor of Peter, (2) to the universal Church, (3) on a matter of faith and morals (especially controverted in whatever historical circumstances), and (4) pronounces that what he is saying is already revealed in Sacred Revelation (Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition), which Sacred Revelation has not been somehow more fully provided by God since the death of the last Apostle. Extremely few Popes have made an infallible pronouncement. Jorge Bergoglio has never done this.
  • Popes can be personally heretical and even publicly manifest their personal heretical opinions. This is really bad and evil on their part, but it does not offend against infallibility. They are just being jerks. They cannot do this and fulfill all the conditions for an infallible pronouncement listed just above. Thus:
  • A Pope cannot make an incorrect infallible statement. Many even saintly people said/say that a Pope can infallibly fail. Um… any saint who has said such a thing was not canonized for saying such a thing, but rather for their personal holiness. Thank God that also people who just don’t get it on some things can still be great saints that we all respect.
  • People are simply too soft these days, and think Christ Jesus was a wimp, and couldn’t possibly have meant what He said, namely, in an actual translation of the inspired Greek which NO ONE wants to translate literally: Whatever you bind or loose on earth already perfectly continues to stand and will perfectly continue to stand that way for all eternity in heaven, since before the foundation of the world onward. In other words, mind you, the very person of Peter is expendable before the eternal unmanipulatable unchangeable Truth: before he can fail in an infallible pronouncement he will die, be incapacitated, be martyred, whatever. It simply will not come to pass, ever, that Peter or his successors will be able to fail in an infallible pronouncement.
  • Just because a Pope is personally, manifestly, a total heretic, day and day out, to the scandal of the entire Church and the world, does not mean that he is no longer Pope. It matters not that he does this as Successor of Peter, bishop of Rome, on a matter of faith and morals and to the universal Church. It would be guaranteed that he has not pronounced his heresy as being also already that which is manifest in Sacred Revelation itself. It just cannot happen.
  • It’s not a matter of “Oooh! The pope has failed in his infallibility and so ipso facto he is no longer Pope.” That is to say, by definition, that the pope is not infallible. That’s heresy. But so many hold that today, you know, just because of their unreasoned ♬ feelings ♬. I get that. Scandal makes us angry. Rightly so. But don’t let anger make you into a heretic. He just said something heretical, but not infallibly because he didn’t fulfill all the conditions for infallibility. Right? Yep. That’s exactly right. It’s really annoying, and scandalous, and odious to the salvation of souls, but non-infallible heretical opinions of whatever pope are not infallible. Get it?
  • Just because any pope is personally, manifestly a heretic doesn’t mean that there is any legitimate mechanism by which to remove him, not a bunch of good-guy cardinals holding a meeting, not a trial by all the bishops of the world. Nope. That would be to say that everybody is infallible when the Pope is not. And that’s the very heresy for which such as Jorge Bergoglio would be removed by such a fake mechanism. Right? Don’t be so upset that you become cynical and become a heretic, being condemned to hell for that which you condemn. Irony. More on that below. But it’s a fact: people easily fall into the very heresy that they are combatting. Be careful. A lot of people are not careful. They give into their entitlement to ♬ negative feelings ♬, not because they are right – and they are right – because merely because they are entitled wusses and they gotta throw hissy fits. Dang. Be right, but don’t become what you condemn. Just be crucified with our Lord Jesus by Peter who denies you to your face. As the Master so the disciple. And if Paul should reprimand Peter because Peter thinks he is infallible in his non-infallible opinions about the faith (Galatians 2:11), know that Peter, although having stood condemned, converted and because a saint. Desire the conversion of the apostate heretic.

So, any objection?

  • “But Father George! Father George! You give too much weight to Matthew 16! You should take a look at the verbatim passage in Matthew 18 which is like everyone is infallible! Pope Francis is right! And you’re a fraud, Father George!”

Calm down, calm down. Matthew 18 merely has it that everyone may know the faith as exactly as Peter may know the faith, or even better than Peter knows the faith. But it doesn’t say they are infallible or infallible in their believing. In fact, it speaks of their being fallible, fallen human beings that we are, so that when we’re wrong, we’re to bring that disagreement to Peter, who alone is infallible. Yep.

But what if:

  • But what if Jorge published some statement of what he himself calls a mere dialogue (Amoris laetitia), isn’t that infallible and can’t we throw an entitled tantrum and say he’s not the Pope anymore? Well, you can, and many have, and will continue to do so, wearing themselves out as they pound sand and kick rocks, but that’s just being butt-hurt. Nothing more. It’s just some stupid dialogue. It’s scandalous. It hurts souls. It’s really bad and evil. But that’s it. It hasn’t offended against infallibility.
  • Alright, alright, but what if Pope Francis actually makes an upcoming infallible statement with all the conditions above being met that the church is now different, a dialogue church, in which all truth and morality and liturgy are up for grabs according to historical circumstance where might makes right because everyone is infallible and it’s all about the tyranny of relativism by majority rule (or really the rule of the tyrannical dictator? So glad you asked: As said above, he will firstly die, or be incapacitated or martyred. Get it?

Here’s what I suggest to those who think any pope can change the truth: Get over yourselves with all your pope-worship or across-the-mountain-ism, however you want to define those terms, and just be Catholic? The Truth is not the mean between two poles. The Truth is living. God is Truth. Jesus said: “I am the Truth.” The Truth doesn’t have to dance around between two poles of right and left made up of out-of-control-gyroscopes so that the Truth has to move way to the left of what was the center or way to the right of what was center to keep – ooh! – exactly between those poles that are simply in reaction to one another in all historical vicissitudes. No. Instead:

  • Crux stat dum volvitur orbis. [The Truth of the] Cross remains steadfast while the world spins madly.

And you know I’m going to say this: the only way people are not going to be cynical is by also praying for the conversion of heretics, and that includes the Pope.

By the way. There are heaps of really excellent arguments on both sides that Jorge Bergoglio is the Pope or is not the Pope. I wasn’t there. I don’t know. The Lord knows how to handle our prayers.

I do have some intense experience with the Sankt Gallen mafia, both in Rome (being dragged to the actual politicking session at the Irish College), and almost right to the campus of Sankt Gallen with one of the engineers of same), and being praised and defended by the highest powers that be of…. cough cough… giving a retreat to… gag… gag… but ending the career of… cough cough… I had better stop. What I know is that “Francis”, a close friend of many close friends, might well not be Pope. I don’t know. I wasn’t at particular sessions, certainly I was not present in the conclaves… although… dang… I gotta stop. My point in this post is just to clear up some matters on infallibility.

  • “Dang it Father George! You can’t do that! What about if Jorge is not actually the Pope. That means in theory he could make a fallible infallible pronouncement, as it were, so to speak, right? He could check all the prerequisites you listed above and pronounce, say, on Easter Sunday, 2023, that we have an everyone-is-infallible different church, no longer founded on the person of Peter by the Son of the Living God, but on the notion that everyone is infallible, right, Father George, isn’t that right?!”

Yes, that’s true. But here’s my thought on that. Even though that wouldn’t offend against infallibility because, after all, he’s not actually the Pope in that scenario, I don’t think our Lord will block the angels from taking the imposter out on the spot, seconds before he does that. It’s just too scandalous, too confusing. Our Lord says the time will be shortened, otherwise not even one of the elect would be saved. Let that sink in for a moment. It would be just too much. The time will be shortened to the second before Jorge could do such a thing. I’m quite sure that will be dramatic, like another lightning bolt out of the heavens. :-) But we pray for conversion. Right? Come on… Hail Mary…

P.S. I was once told that I write this blog not to have more clarity in my own thinking (the primary reason of this blog), nor for any apostolate in helping others in the Church and in the world have greater clarity regarding the faith (though I attempt to take this as deadly seriously, however weakly, as Christ Jesus took us deadly seriously, laying down His life for us, Innocent for guilty, on the Cross)… No… I was told that I write this blog for the exclusive motivation of producing admiratio, the vice of drawing attention to oneself simply to draw attention to oneself, that my efforts have nothing to do with a priestly desire to brings souls to the Sacraments, to Jesus, with all the honesty and integrity that demands of all of us.

My answer to is to say that, of course, absolutely, I’m full of pride, and would go to hell for my pride, diabolical as my pride would be if not for the mercy and forgiveness of my dark and wretched soul by Mary Immaculate’s dear Divine Son, Jesus.

But, here’s the deal: I might stand out like a sore thumb because those who are supposed to teach the faith do not teach the faith, and they are terribly offended by my incredibly mediocre efforts. As inept as they are, my own little writings show them up, not because my writings are any good, but they don’t make any effort at all. It’s like on a scale of 1-100, I’ve gone from zero to one, but they’ve remained at zero. My tiny effort looks out of the ordinary because they make no effort at all. In any other time, everyone else would be high up the scale and I would terribly pitied for being so unlearned in the faith. But these are terribly dark times. Amazingly, my little candle flame seems to shine with the force of the sun. Those who should be doing more do not. And they are upset. They are stunned by the mere statement of truth.

Two literary bits to keep in mind:

hilaire belloc


“To the young, the pure, and the ingenuous, irony must always appear to have a quality of something evil, and so it has, for […] it is a sword to wound. It is so directly the product or reflex of evil that, though it can never be used – nay, can hardly exist – save in the chastisement of evil, yet irony always carries with it some reflections of the bad spirit against which it was directed. […] It suggests most powerfully the evil against which it is directed, and those innocent of evil shun so terrible an instrument. […] The mere truth is vivid with ironical power […] when the mere utterance of a plain truth labouriously concealed by hypocrisy, denied by contemporary falsehood, and forgotten in the moral lethargy of the populace, takes upon itself an ironical quality more powerful than any elaboration of special ironies could have taken in the past. […] No man possessed of irony and using it has lived happily; nor has any man possessing it and using it died without having done great good to his fellows and secured a singular advantage to his own soul.” [Hilaire Belloc, “On Irony” (pages 124-127; Penguin books 1325. Selected Essays (2/6), edited by J.B. Morton; Harmondsworth – Baltimore – Mitcham 1958).]

And “The Donkey” by Gilbert Keith Chesterton:

When fishes flew and forests walked
And figs grew upon thorn,
Some moment when the moon was blood
Then surely I was born.

With monstrous head and sickening cry
And ears like errant wings,
The devil’s walking parody
On all four-footed things.

The tattered outlaw of the earth,
Of ancient crooked will;
Starve, scourge, deride me: I am dumb,
I keep my secret still.

Fools! For I also had my hour;
One far fierce hour and sweet:
There was a shout about my ears,
And palms before my feet.

I don’t ♬ feel ♬ guilty in the least for putting up a post like this. It’s my obligation as a priest. I don’t bring on malicious division because of this. No, this is a sword of holy division – even divisiveness – however much I’ve made it dull, the sword which Christ Jesus came to bring. I’m happy to wield this sword, no matter how awkwardly, no matter how ineptly. Simply put: I’m happy to be a priest, even if there are those who think I’m a heretic for believing the faith with the kindness of Galatians 2:11.

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Filed under Holy See, Irony, Pope Francis

+Dolan: No religious exemption for vax. How to write your own exemption. ;-)

Don’t think you’re going to get any help from vax-mandator in chief pictured above. He will just call you crazy in your head and tell you you’re a murderer and that you’re obliged to get the vaccine, damned be any babies in the womb. But there are some official sources that you can cite in the article below. Who cares if Dolan or any priest won’t help you. They will bring that to the judgement. Write your own letter. Behold:

CNA – Tuesday, August 03, 2021 – NY archdiocese warns priests not to grant religious vaccine exemptions – by Matt Hadro – Washington D.C.

The Archdiocese of New York has instructed priests not to grant religious exemptions for COVID-19 vaccines, saying that do so would contradict the pope. “There is no basis for a priest to issue a religious exemption to the vaccine,” stated a July 30 memo from the archdiocese’s chancellor, John P. Cahill, to all pastors, administrators, and parochial vicars in the archdiocese.“ Pope Francis has made it very clear that it is morally acceptable to take any of the vaccines and said we have the moral responsibility to get vaccinated. Cardinal Dolan has said the same,” the memo stated. By issuing a religious exemption to the vaccine, a priest would be “acting in contradiction to the directives of the Pope and is participating in an act that could have serious consequences to others,” the memo stated. [Hypocrites, all.]

A screenshot of the memo was circulated on social media this weekend. CNA confirmed the memo’s accuracy with the archdiocese and with a priest of the archdiocese on Monday.

In a December 2020 note, the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith stated that “vaccination is not, as a rule, a moral obligation” and “therefore, it must be voluntary.” The Vatican congregation acknowledged “reasons of conscience” for those refusing a vaccine. [Those of you who need a note of religious exemption, quote those two sentences at the beginning of this paragraph, which I’ve but in bold. Those override the non-infallible statements of the Pope speaking as a private person.]

Vaccine mandates have begun to be announced at places of employment in the United States. The Catholic health care network Ascension will mandate coronavirus vaccination for employees, physicians, volunteers, and vendors, although it has promised some health-related and religious exemptions. Some Catholic institutions have stated their support for conscience exemptions to vaccine mandates, or have provided materials for individuals with religious objections to receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. The National Catholic Bioethics Center lists a form letter on its website for individual Catholics seeking religious exemptions from vaccine mandates.

“The Roman Catholic Church teaches that a person may be required to refuse a medical intervention, including a vaccination, if his or her informed conscience comes to this sure judgment,” the letter states, adding that the Church “does not prohibit the use of any vaccine, and generally encourages the use of safe and effective vaccines as a way of safeguarding personal and public health.” [You can also quote the first part of this paragraph from the National Catholic Bioethics Center (normally my enemy) which I’ve put in bold. You can also include this next sentence:] The Catholic Medical Association, a national network of Catholic doctors and health care workers, stated on July 28 that it “opposes mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations as a condition of employment without conscience or religious exemptions.”

The New York archdiocese’s memo began by acknowledging the “sincere moral objection” of some individuals to receiving COVID-19 vaccines, “due to their connection to abortion.” “This concern is particularly acute among people who are strongly pro-life and very loyal to the teaching of the faith,” the memo stated. [What a bunch of hypocrites.] The archdiocese further stated, “Any individual is free to exercise discretion on getting the vaccine based upon his or her own beliefs without seeking the inaccurate portrayal of Church instructions.” [You can also use the previous words which I’ve put in bold.]

Priests, however, “should not be active participants to such actions” by granting religious exemptions, the memo stated. [What a bunch of hypocrites. This is actively assisting the culture of death, omission can be commission of sin.]

“Imagine a student receiving a religious [vaccine] exemption, contracting the virus and spreading it throughout the campus. Clearly this would be an embarrassment to the archdiocese. Some even argue that it might impose personal liability on the priest,” the memo said. [Who cares? What a bunch of hypocrites.]

Currently, three vaccines have been given an emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration – those produced by Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson. While all three vaccines were tested on cell lines derived from elective abortions decades ago, only one of the vaccines – Johnson & Johnson – was directly produced using the controversial cell lines. [None of that makes a difference. Babies had to be murdered for all of these, whether research and/or development and/or testing. Murder is murder. What a bunch of hypocrites.]

The Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has stated that the use of the vaccines with connections to the questionable cell lines is “morally acceptable,” but that Catholics should seek “ethically irreproachable Covid-19 vaccines” when available. [What a bunch of hypocrites: these can be “morally acceptable” and not “ethically irreproachable” at the same time. Forked tongue hypocrites. Liars. Death mongers.]

In its December 2020 note, the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith further stated that vaccination must not be mandatory. “Those who, however, for reasons of conscience, refuse vaccines produced with cell lines from aborted fetuses, must do their utmost to avoid, by other prophylactic means and appropriate behavior, becoming vehicles for the transmission of the infectious agent,” the congregation stated. [What a bunch of hypocrites. They grant that this is a good conscience which has come to such a conclusion, but then otherwise permit it (as above).]

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has stated that all three vaccines approved for use in the United States are “morally acceptable” for use. “[I]f one can choose among equally safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines, the vaccine with the least connection to abortion-derived cell lines should be chosen,” the USCCB said in March. “Therefore, if one has the ability to choose a vaccine, Pfizer or Moderna’s vaccines should be chosen over Johnson & Johnson’s.” [What a bunch of hypocrites. Murder is murder. “Least connection to abortion-derived cell lines” makes no difference. It all ends up in murder of the image of God in the womb, the least of the brethren. The USCCB is a pack of murderers.]

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Filed under Coronavirus

Exorcism law for Catholics: Instruction on Healing 2000; Inde ab aliquot annis 1985; Amorth; Ecclesia Dei dubia 2015

LOURDES-MICHAEL

This is in Saint Michael’s chapel above the grotto in Lourdes, France.

[[ This commentary has been slightly revised and updated with the addition of the Ecclesia Dei response to dubia. ]]

The four matters commented upon here:

  1. Instruction on Prayers for Healing (14 December 2000) [Feast of St John of the Cross, who hated sensationalism]
  2. Inde ab aliquot annis (29 September 1985) [Feast of St Michael the Archangel (and now Gabriel and Raphael as well)]
  3. A citation from Father Amorth
  4. Response to dubia set forth by a priest to the Commission “Ecclesia Dei” – 26 June 2015 [Feast day of Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer, which may indicate the provenance of the dubia ;-) ]

The Instruction of 14 December 2000 was approved by the ordinary session of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and shown to and approved by Saint John Paul II. This document cites Inde ab aliquot annis, which was also signed by Cardinal Ratzinger while Prefect of the CDF under Saint John Paul II.

Why you should read this post: Because we’ll be seeing lots more exorcisms taking place with all the new exorcists coming on board. This will help you keep your wits about you, knowing what the Church actually says about such things amidst all the various opinions. A couple of generations have gone by with almost no exorcists appointed in the entire Church. This means a loss of experiential wisdom, a risk of sensationalism, a risk of pride in going up against Satan. Let’s take a look at what the Church actually says. I don’t apologize for taking no prisoners. This is too important.

========================================

CONGREGATION FOR THE DOCTRINE OF THE FAITH
INSTRUCTION ON PRAYERS FOR HEALING 14 December 2000

[Let’s skip right to the disciplinary norms:]

Art. 1 – It is licit for every member of the faithful to pray to God for healing. When this is organized in a church or other sacred place, it is appropriate that such prayers be led by an ordained minister. [Since the distinction is about the place in which this happens, the logic is that it would be inappropriate for those who are not ordained to lead organized prayer for healing in a church or other sacred place.]

Art. 2 – Prayers for healing are considered to be liturgical if they are part of the liturgical books approved by the Church’s competent authority; otherwise, they are non-liturgical.

Art. 3 – § 1. Liturgical prayers for healing are celebrated according to the rite prescribed in the Ordo benedictionis infirmorum of the Rituale Romanum (28) and with the proper sacred vestments indicated therein.

§ 2. In conformity with what is stated in the Praenotanda, V., De aptationibus quae Conferentiae Episcoporum competunt (29) of the same Rituale Romanum, Conferences of Bishops may introduce those adaptations to the Rite of Blessings of the Sick which are held to be pastorally useful or possibly necessary, after prior review by the Apostolic See.

Art. 4 – § 1. The Diocesan Bishop has the right to issue norms for his particular Church regarding liturgical services of healing, following can. 838 § 4.

§ 2. Those who prepare liturgical services of healing must follow these norms in the celebration of such services.

§ 3. Permission to hold such services must be explicitly given, even if they are organized by Bishops or Cardinals, or include such as participants. Given a just and proportionate reason, the Diocesan Bishop has the right to forbid even the participation of an individual Bishop. [This, of course, has historical reference to the one time Archbishop, Emmanuel Milingo, who was forbidden to participate in such things in the Archdiocese of Milan. Milingo was “laicized” / dismissed from the clerical state in 2009.]

Art. 5 – § 1. Non-liturgical prayers for healing are distinct from liturgical celebrations, as gatherings for prayer or for reading of the word of God; these also fall under the vigilance of the local Ordinary in accordance with can. 839 § 2. [All of this should be obvious, but the abundance of disobedience requires that this be reiterated. The cry “We can do whatever we want!” is frequently to be heard, just as Satan’s cry of “Non serviam!” (I will not serve!) is likewise frequently heard. When there is disobedience you can be sure Satan is nearby.]

§ 2. Confusion between such free non-liturgical prayer meetings and liturgical celebrations properly so-called is to be carefully avoided. [In fact, I’ve never even once seen anything that was not confused.]

§ 3. Anything resembling hysteria, artificiality, theatricality or sensationalism, above all on the part of those who are in charge of such gatherings, must not take place. [Jesus doesn’t like hysteria. Really, He doesn’t. Jesus wrought exorcisms with quiet authority. Hysteria is a result of faked authority.]

Art. 6 – The use of means of communication (in particular, television) in connection with prayers for healing, falls under the vigilance of the Diocesan Bishop in conformity with can. 823 and the norms established by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in the Instruction of March 30, 1992.(30)

Art. 7 – § 1. Without prejudice to what is established above in art. 3 or to the celebrations for the sick provided in the Church’s liturgical books, prayers for healing – whether liturgical or non-liturgical – must not be introduced into the celebration of the Holy Mass, the sacraments, or the Liturgy of the Hours. [Wow. There. They said it. Totally cool. This happened and, I think, happens all the time, especially in Confession. That’s extremely imprudent. People recall the practice of Alphonsus Liguori, but not really. There is never a citation. Anyway, this is the legislation of Church now and it must be obeyed.]

§ 2. In the celebrations referred to § 1, one may include special prayer intentions for the healing of the sick in the general intercessions or prayers of the faithful, when this is permitted.

Art. 8 – § 1. The ministry of exorcism must be exercised in strict [“strict”] dependence on the Diocesan Bishop, and in keeping with [1.] the norm of can. 1172 [which I’ll try to present in another post with a document I presented to some 150 exorcists many years ago, but the idea is that the express mandate of the local ordinary is necessitated for an imprecatory exorcism], [2.], the Letter of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith of September 29, 1985,(31) [which we will comment on further below], and [3.] the Rituale Romanum (32) [which will need its own series to comment upon].

§ 2. The prayers of exorcism contained in the Rituale Romanum must remain separate from healing services, whether liturgical or non-liturgical. [Get it? It’s not to be done. No direct commands to Satan in any kind of healing service. That ends about 99% of healing services.]

§ 3. It is absolutely forbidden to insert such prayers of exorcism into the celebration of the Holy Mass, the sacraments, or the Liturgy of the Hours. [And no matter how clear and repeatedly this is said, there will be people who will try to find loopholes. Read it: “Absolutely forbidden.” It is absolutely wrong. Nefas est! And, Fathers, to be explicit to the max: DO NOT DO THIS IN CONFESSION].

Art. 9 – Those who direct healing services, whether liturgical or non-liturgical, are to strive to maintain a climate of peaceful devotion in the assembly and to exercise the necessary prudence if healings should take place among those present; when the celebration is over, any testimony can be collected with honesty and accuracy, and submitted to the proper ecclesiastical authority. [One might find examples of the correct way of doing this in Lourdes.]

Art. 10 – Authoritative intervention by the Diocesan Bishop is proper and necessary when abuses are verified in liturgical or non-liturgical healing services, or when there is obvious scandal among the community of the faithful, or when there is a serious lack of observance of liturgical or disciplinary norms. [This is a reprimand to Bishops for not fulfilling their role of governance. In my experience, this is because those very bishops were happy to have such abuses take place, thinking that this was the nice thing to do].

The Sovereign Pontiff John Paul II, at the Audience granted to the undersigned Cardinal Prefect, approved the present Instruction, adopted in Ordinary Session of this Congregation, and ordered its publication.

Rome, from the Offices of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, September 14, 2000, the Feast of the Triumph of the Cross.

+ Joseph Card. RATZINGER
Prefect

+ Tarcisio BERTONE, S.D.B. Archbishop Emeritus of Vercelli
Secretary

============================================================

CONGREGATION FOR THE DOCTRINE OF THE FAITH

Letter to Ordinaries regarding norms on Exorcism

INDE AB ALIQUOT ANNIS – 29 September 1985

Your most Reverend Excellency,

Recent years have seen an increase in the number of prayer groups in the Church aimed at seeking deliverance from the influence of demons, while not actually engaging in real exorcisms. These meetings are led by lay people, even when a priest is present.

As the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has been asked how one should view these facts, this Dicastery considers it necessary to inform Bishops of the following response:

1. Canon 1172 of the Code of Canon Law states that no one can legitimately perform exorcisms over the possessed unless he has obtained special and express permission from the local Ordinary (§ 1), and states that this permission should be granted by the local Ordinary only to priests who are endowed with piety, knowledge, prudence and integrity of life (§ 2). Bishops are therefore strongly advised to stipulate that these norms be observed.

2. From these prescriptions it follows that it is not even licit that the faithful use the formula of exorcism against Satan and the fallen angels, extracted from the one published by order of the Supreme Pontiff Leo XIII, and even less that they use the integral text of this exorcism. Bishops should take care to warn the faithful, if necessary, of this. [“the faithful” – this speaks to individuals. The next paragraph speaks to groups. But in this paragraph 2 one sees that individuals even privately are absolutely forbidden to use the exorcism prayer from Leo XIII or anything extracted from it. That’s clear and strong. Priests generally are included, except for those who have the “special and express permission from the local Ordinary”. Disobey and you will get yourself in trouble. Disobedience is a sign of Satan’s presence. Disobedience is an open invitation to Satan to do his demonic worst.]

3. Finally, for the same reasons, Bishops are asked to be vigilant so that – even in cases that do not concern true demonic possession – those who are without the due faculty [priests included] may not conduct meetings during which invocations, to obtain release, are uttered in which demons are questioned directly and their identity sought to be known. [Priests without the due faculty still insist that because of the language in this paragraph they can still address Satan directly, so as to “bind” him, or some such thing, as if this were not an exorcism when, clearly, as a direct command to Satan, it is the very definition of an exorcism. Let’s just say it: forcing Satan with direct commands to answer questions and to reveal their identity is the very definition what is to go on in an exorcism, those direct commands being exorcisms is and of themselves in the larger exorcism or, in this case, with malicious deceit, the larger “deliverance” (which is actually an exorcism done in disobedience.]

Drawing attention to these norms, however, should in no way distance the faithful from praying that, as Jesus taught us, they may be delivered from evil (cf. Mt 6:13). [Exactly right. One may ask our Heavenly Father to rebuke Satan, as did Saint Michael himself. And this is how Jesus, the very Son of the Living God, told us all how to pray. Why is it that people think Jesus’ advice should be despised as worthless, or think themselves better than Saint Michael? I think that many have been misled, and that many think that they have to have power by way of doing exoricms, even to the point of disobeying the Church to do this. But such disobedience is to make friends with Satan.] Finally, Pastors may take this opportunity to recall what the Tradition of the Church teaches concerning the role proper to the sacraments and the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, of the Angels and Saints in the Christian’s spiritual battle against evil spirits. [Indeed, Confession is so very important. But don’t do exorcisms in Confession.]

I take the opportunity to express my deepest respects,

Your most esteemed in Christ,

Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger
Prefect

Alberto Bovone
Secretary

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At this point, some quote Father Amorth (an old friend), in An Exorcist: More Stories, 189-90 (translated from a book going back to January 1992 in Italian, by the way…), to say that…

official exorcisms are not allowed [by non-exorcists]; they are reserved exclusively for the exorcist. The same holds true for the exorcism of Leo XIII, even though it is now part of the public domain. The private use of such exorcisms is another matter; at least, this is how I understand the above-cited document.

“At least, this is how I understand…” he says tentatively.

  • Are there “unofficial” exorcisms? Any direct command to Satan is an exorcism. Doing an exorcism needs the special and express permission of the local Ordinary.
  • He is right to mock the mere fact of something merely being published widely (“Part of the public domain”). The fact of leaflets spread about by private individuals is not the granting of a special and express permission!

But, let’s see if the much later document of “Ecclesia Dei” in 2015 has anything pertinent to say about anything private:

=================================

Congregatio pro Doctrina Fidei
Pontificia Commissio “Ecclesia Dei”
Prot. N. 153/2009 – 26 June 2015*

[…] Thank you for your letter of 9 June 2015 [an instantaneous response], in which you submitted two dubia regarding the use of the Rituale Romanum of the Extraordinary Form (which is in fact the editio typica dated 1952).

In relation to the first dubium, namely “is a priest allowed to publicly and / or privately use the Exorcismus in satatam et angelos apostaticos (the so-called Exorcism of Leo XIII) found in Title XII of the 1956 Rituale Romanum without express permission of the local Ordinary”, this Pontifical Commission would respond as follows:

  • Pursuant to Can. 1172 § 1, no one may carry out an act of exorcism over persons without the special and express permission of the local Ordinary. Accordingly, any use, whether public or private, of the Exorcism of Leo XIII over persons is subject to such special and express permission of the local Ordinary.
  • As regards the public use of said Exorcism in situations other than over persons, such as over places, objects, or in other circumstances, this is also subject to the authorization of the Ordinary, in accordance with the opening rubric to be found in chapter III of Title XII of the 1952 Rituale: “Sequens exorcismus recitari potest ab Episcopis, nec non a Sacerdotibus, qui ab Ordinariis suis ad id auctoritatem habeant”. Indeed, it does not appear that any later legislation ever lifted the rule laid down by this rubric, which therefore remains in force. As for the letter Inde ab aliquot annis of the CDF of 29 September 1985, this letter deals with the question of the use of the Exorcism by laypersons, and is therefore of no consequence as to the situation of priests. It should further be noted that by “public” use of the Exorcism, one should understand any use made by a priest in the name and with the authority of the Church for the benefit of the faithful.
  • As regards the private use of the Exorcism of Leo XIII by priests, i.e. outside of any pastoral context and / or request by the faithful, and simply as a pia oratio, this Dicastery sees no grounds for which to deny this to priests on the basis of the discipline currently in force. That said, the competent authorities of the […edited out…] remain free, should they deem it appropriate, to provide its members with internal guidelines or rules [for further restriction, obviously] in this regard. [“Ecclesia Dei” rules out this exorcism of Leo XIII being used for the benefit of any member of the faithful and for any benefit whatsoever of the faithful such as over places at the request of the faithful if there is no special and express permission of the local Ordinary for a priest to do this as a duly authorized exorcist. “Ecclesia Dei” concedes a private usage that is to be unknown to anyone but the priest himself ( – over himself? or his domicile? – ) and only as a “pious prayer”. But an imprecatory (by direct command) exorcism as is had with the Exorcism of Leo XIII is not, by definition, a deprecatory (by request to Jesus or the saints) exorcism. The latter could be seen as a “pious prayer” such as the ending of “The Lord’s Prayer”. But the Leo XIII exorcism is definitely not that. It directly places monstrous, arrogant, violent Satan under the authority of Christ and the Church, drawing on the merits of Christ and the saints as an imprecatory exorcism wrought be a duly authorized priest-exorcist. Is this concession about using the Leo XIII exorcism as a “pious prayer” saying that a priest can privately go ahead and recite the Leo XIII exorcism, but just don’t mean what you say? I wonder what Satan would make of that. Does not meaning what you say make a mockery both of exorcism and of prayer? I wonder what Satan would make of that. I simply don’t know what to make of this. I’m not privately or publicly going to encourage priests to do exorcisms over themselves or anything of theirs such as private living quarters even privately even a “pious prayer” (whatever that means) based on an utterly nonsensical private answer to private dubia by a Secretary of a Commission, which answer, by the way, does not bear the public affirmation of the Cardinal Prefect of CDF of the time. Sorry + Guido Pozzo. But perhaps someone would like to explain this “pious prayer” thing to me. The comments box is open. Someone suggested that “merely addressing them” (the demons) is just fine as such an address is not mentioned. My question is: Why the hell would you be concerned with addressing demons if you are not doing an exorcism as duly authorized by the local ordinary to do that? Are the demons your good buds? ST II-II 90. ad. 2 is cited to say that it’s all good. Seriously? Muddled application, my friend. The same fellow says that none of the above restrictions are concerned with “adjuring them” (the demons). To be pedantic, “to adjure” is a direct literal translation from the Greek “exorcism” into Latin: To say “I adjure you, Satan” is exactly the same as to say “I exorcise you, Satan”. In their desire to have communication with the demons[!] people are dealing with fire. I fear for them. You should rethink this throw away concession, + Guido Pozzo.]

In relation to the second dubium, namely “can a deacon validly confect blessings which are not expresse jure permitted to him in the 1956 Rituale Romanum”, this Pontifical Commission would respond that regardless of the question of validity, it is clear from Can. 1169 § 3 that the faculty granted to a deacon to confect a blessing must be expressly conceded. Now, it does not appear that any such faculty has been granted to deacons by Church authority as regards the use of the blessing rites contained in the 1952 Rituale. Such concessions indeed exist in the 1984 De benedictionibus, but these are given on a rite-by-rite basis, and therefore only pertain to those particular rites referred to and laid out by that liturgical book, without any influence on the rights to use the blessings of the 1952 Rituale.

[…] + Guido Pozzo – Secretary

[*This 2015 letter was published years later in 2018 on the internet only in pdf form by Rorate. The transcription and interlinear commentary is mine].

Finally, just to end on a literary / film analogy, here’s a bit about power that was meant for good being corrupted into that which is evil. What do we become with fake authority? This is just a few seconds long:

Be careful, my fellow priests.

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Filed under Angels, Exorcism, Priesthood