Certainly the question of the liturgy and the sacraments is important, but it is not the most important. The most important question is the question of the Faith. This question is unresolved in Rome. For us it is resolved. We have the Faith of all time, the Faith of the Catechism of the Council of Trent, of the Catechism of St. Pius X, hence the Faith of the Church, of all the Church Councils, of all the Popes prior to Vatican II. Now the official Church is persevering, we might say pertinaciously, in the false ideas and grave errors of Vatican II, that much is clear.
Fr. Tam is sending us from Mexico a number of copies of a piece of work he is doing, most interesting work, because he is compiling cuttings from the Osservatore Romano, hence cuttings from Rome’s official newspaper with speeches of the Pope, of Cardinal Casaroli and Cardinal Ratzinger, official texts of the Church, and so on. It is interesting, because such documents of public record are irrefutable, being published by the Osservatore Romano, so there is no doubting their authenticity.
Well, these texts are astounding, quite astounding! I shall quote you a few texts shortly. It is incredible. In the last few weeks (since I am now unemployed!) I have been spending a little time re-reading the book by Emmanuel Barbier on Liberal Catholicism. And it is striking to see how our fight now is exactly the same fight as was being fought then by the great Catholics of the 19th century, in the wake of the French Revolution, and by the Popes, Pius VI, Pius VII, Pius VIII, Gregory XVI, Pius IX, Leo XIII, and so on, Pius X, down to Pius XII. Their fight is summed up in the encyclical Quanta Cura with the Syllabus of Pius IX, and Pascendi Dominici Gregis of Pius X. There are the two great documents, sensational and shocking in their day, laying out the Church’s teaching in face of the modern errors, the errors appearing in the course of the Revolution, especially in the Declaration of the Rights of Man. This is the fight we are in the middle of today. Exactly the same fight.
There are those who are for the Syllabus and Pascendi, and there are those who are against. It is simple. It is clear. Those who are against are adopting the principles of the French Revolution, the modern errors. Those who are for the Syllabus and Pascendi remain within the true Faith, within Catholic doctrine. Now you know very well that Cardinal Ratzinger has said that as far as he is concerned Vatican II is “an anti-Syllabus”. Therewith the Cardinal placed himself clearly amongst those who are against the Syllabus. If then he is against the Syllabus, he is adopting the principles of the Revolution. Besides, he goes on to say quite clearly, “Indeed we have now absorbed into Church teaching, and the Church has opened herself up to, principles which are not hers but which come from modern society,” i.e., as everyone understands, the principles of 1789, the Rights of Man.
We stand exactly where Cardinal Pie, Bishop Freppel, Louis Veuillot stood, and Deputy Keller in Alsace, Cardinal Mermillod in Switzerland, who fought the good fight together with the great majority of the then bishops. At that time they had the good fortune to have the large majority of the bishops on their side. Bishop Dupanloup and the few bishops in France who followed Bishop Dupanloup were the odd ones out. The few bishops in Germany, the few in Italy, who were openly opposed to the Syllabus, and in effect opposed to Pius IX, they were the exception rather than the rule. But obviously there were the forces of the Revolution, the heirs of the Revolution, and there was the hand reached out by Dupanloup, Montalembert, Lamennais and others, who offered their hand to the Revolution and who never wanted to invoke the rights of God against the rights of man – “We ask only for the rights of every man, the rights shared by everyone, shared by all men, shared by all religions, not the rights of God,” said these Liberals.
Well, we find ourselves in the same situation. We must not be under any illusions. Consequently we are in the thick of a great fight, a great fight. We are fighting a fight guaranteed by a whole line of popes. Hence, we should have no hesitation or fear, hesitation such as, “Why should we be going on our own? After all, why not join Rome, why not join the pope?” Yes, if Rome and the Pope were in line with Tradition, if they were carrying on the work of all the Popes of the 19th and the first half of the 20th century, of course. But they themselves admit that they have set out on a new path. They themselves admit that a new era began with Vatican II. They admit that it is a new stage in the Church’s life, wholly new, based on new principles. We need not argue the point. They say it themselves. It is clear. I think that we must drive this point home with our people, in such a way that they realize their oneness with the Church’s whole history, going back well beyond the Revolution. Of course. It is the fight of the City of Satan against the City of God. Clearly. So we do not have to worry. We must after all trust in the grace of God.
“What is going to happen? How is it all going to end?” That is God’s secret. Mystery. But that we must fight the ideas presently fashionable in Rome, coming from the Pope’s own mouth, Cardinal Ratzinger’s mouth, Cardinal Casaroli’s mouth, of Cardinal Willebrands and those like them, is clear, clear, for all they do is repeat the opposite of what the Popes said and solemnly stated for 150 years. We must choose, as I said to Pope Paul VI: “We have to choose between you and the Council on one side, and your predecessors on the other; either with your predecessors who stated the Church’s teaching, or with the novelties of Vatican II.” Reply – “Ah, this is not the moment to get into theology, we are not getting into theology now.” It is clear. Hence we must not waver for one moment.