Saturday, 12 January 2013

pope, pope, pope...

I see that no one responded to the post wherein I copied verbatim pope Gregory the Great's letter to the Emperor about the nature of episcopacy. Perhaps the nature of what people actually believed about the papacy (well, there was no such institution back then!) at the time is unclear from that letter? Well, let's try another letter, this time from the Archbishops of Trèves and Cologne to pope Nicholas I, who, having passed an unjust sentence upon the former, vainly supposed that he had some kind of immediate jurisdiction beyond the confines of Rome:

''Without a council, without canonical inquiry, without accuser, without witnesses, without convicting us by arguments or authorities, without our consent, in the absence of the metropolitans and of our suffragan bishops, you have chosen to condemn us, of your own caprice, with tyrannical fury. But we do not accept your accursed sentence, so repugnant to a father’s or a brother’s love; we despise it as mere insulting language; we expel you yourself from our communion, since you commune with the excommunicate; we are satisfied with the communion of the whole Church and with the society of our brethren whom you despise and of whom you make yourself unworthy by your pride and arrogance. You condemn yourself when you condemn those who do not observe the apostolic precepts which you yourself are the first to violate, annulling as far as in you lies the Divine laws and the sacred canons, and not following in the footsteps of the popes, your predecessors...''

It's interesting that an Orthodox ecclesiology still prevailed in the West, at least at the metropolitan level, whereas the arrogance of Nicholas I (who was despised by his own people) still festered away in Rome. Could you imagine a modern day Roman Catholic saying such things as ''we are satisfied with the communion of the whole Church,'' and expelling the pope from the society of Christians for not following the sacred canons and traditions of his predecessors? No mention here is made of being subject to the holy father being necessary for salvation, thou art Peter, binding, loosing, infallible, kiss my toe or burn in Hell, etc. Seen through the prism of modern ecclesiologies, this letter almost validates the position of the Sedevacantists. I mean at least they, while having not thoroughly shaken off the yoke of popery, have seen that communion with the ''neo-Modernist'' popes is superfluous to the Gospel.

In short, the Papacy is a vile institution bethought of the Devil which makes a mockery of episcopacy. The doctrine of Papal Infallibility is repugnant to the Gospel and is a heresy worse than the christological heresies which plagued the early Church, and people subject to the pope are in danger of eternal damnation.


  1. Do look up Conciliarism, it was quite powerful for a while.

  2. But the Sedevacantists are caught in a trap of their own making; their people aren't in power, so they moan and groan wishing only for a return to power, but never questioning the underlying liberalism of the papacy. Thus, they are - at best - enablers for liberals, who started changing things with the filioque and haven't stopped since. Once in power, liberals create great change, such as Pius X. Innovation, thy home is Rome!

  3. " I think there is nothing to do but to pray, for the Church, the Vicar of Christ, and for ourselves; and meanwhile to exercise the virtue of loyalty, which indeed only becomes a virtue when one is under pressure to desert it....

    "As Christians those faithful to the Vicar of Christ must put aside the resentments that as mere humans they feel – e.g. at the ‘cockiness’ of our new friends (esp. C of E). One is now often patted on the back, as a representative of a church that has seen the error of its ways, abandoned its arrogance and hauteur, and its separatism; but I have not yet met a ‘protestant’ who shows or expresses any realization of the reasons in this country for our attitude : ancient or modern : from torture and expropriation down to ‘Robinson’ and all that.

    "Has it ever been mentioned that RCs still suffer from disabilities not even applicable to Jews? As a man whose childhood was darkened by persecution, I find this hard. But charity must cover a multitude of sins!"

    One hopes that Tolkien, an unrepentant devotee to what you call a Satanic institution, was saved by his charity from your pronouncement of everlasting damnation on him and his brethren.

    Your lack of charity---let's just come out and call it malice---will do you no credit.

  4. All very interesting, James C, but what does this have to do with the letter I just published? I still maintain that Tolkien, were he alive today, would join the Orthodox Church. As with Newman, Orthodoxy was little known in his time and so for Christians of ''episcopal polity'' there was really only a choice of Anglicanism or Roman Catholicism. Tolkien was baptised into the Church of England.

  5. And what evidence do you put forth that Tolkien would be Orthodox today, besides your ludicrous notion that Tolkien was ignorant of it into the 1970s? And I thought you weren't a "Traddie" who thinks everything went to pot only in the Sixties? If the rot set in centuries ago and the papacy has long been a fraud from the depths of hell, was Tolkien too stupid to realize this or did he really and consciously believe in the Catholic Church and what he called the "Vicar of Christ"?

    At some point you are going to have to deal with the Jekyll-and-Hyde schizophrenic dissonance to which this blog has descended. Odes to Tolkien alternated with bigoted vitriol against his faith and his identity is a bit bizarre, you must admit?

    If the Protestant British ruling class had done what you propose them do, then Tolkien's works would have gone up in flames along with Tolkien himself. Would that have been a happy result?