Astonishing Calamities in the Church’s Post-Conciliar Phase

December 9, 2021

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COMMENTARY

The historic declaration of Paul VI in the allocution Resistite fortes in fide, of June 29, 1972, is fundamental for a better understanding of the calamities in the post-Conciliar phase of the Church. We quote the Poliglotta Vaticana.

Pope Paul VI receives the Noble Guard January 7, 1964. Prince Odescalchi Alessandro carries the flag.

Referring to the situation of the Church today, the Holy Father affirmed that he had the feeling that “the smoke of Satan has entered into the temple of God through some crack.” There is doubt, uncertainty, complexity, restlessness, dissatisfaction, confrontation. People no longer trust the Church; they trust the first secular profane prophet who speaks to us through some newspaper or social movement, running after him and asking him if he has the formula of true life. We do not realize that we are already owners and masters of it. Doubt has entered our consciences through windows that ought to be open to the light….This state of uncertainty also reigns in the Church. It was thought that after the Council the history of the Church would enter a sunny day. It entered instead a cloudy, stormy, dark, skeptical, and uncertain day. We preach ecumenism and yet we ourselves are farther and farther apart. We seek to dig abysses instead of filling them.

St. Michael Vanquishing Satan missal and book of hours, Lombardy c. 1385-1390

How did this happen? The Pope confided one of his opinions: An adverse power has intervened. His name is the devil, the mysterious being to which Saint Peter also alludes in his Epistle.1.

The same Pontiff, in an allocution to the students of the Pontifical Lombard Seminary on December 7, 1968, had affirmed:

The Church finds herself in an hour of disquiet, of self-criticism, one might even say of self-destruction. It is like an acute and complex interior upheaval, which no one expected after the Council. One though of a blossoming, a serene expansion of the mature concepts of the Council. The Church still has this aspect of blossoming. But since “bonum ex integra causa, malum ex quocumque defectu,” the aspect of sorrow has become most notable. The Church is also being wounded by those who are part of her.2.

His Holiness John Paul II also painted a somber picture of the Church’s situation.

Pope John Paul II receiving Prince Roger Chylinski-Polubinski and Dame Barbara Bromont-Slawinska, Poet Laureate. During the meeting, the Holy Father encouraged the Polish Nobility Association, giving a special Apostolic Blessing to the organization, its members and activities, and expressed his desire that the association grow in members and activities. He also highlighted the importance of the PNA’s activities in helping ensure the continuity of the Polish people’s cultural heritage.

One must be realistic and acknowledge with a deep and pained sentiment that a great party of today’s Christians feel lost, confused, perplexed, and even disillusioned: ideas contradicting the revealed and unchanging Truth have been spread far and wide; outright heresies in the dogmatic and moral fields have been disseminated, creating doubt, confusion, and rebellion; even the liturgy has been altered. Immersed in intellectual and moral “relativism” and therefore in permissiveness, Christians are tempted by atheism, agnosticism, a vaguely moralistic illuminism, a sociological Christianity, without defined dogmas and without objective morality.3.

In a similar vein, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine for the Faith, later stated:

“laws in favor of homosexual unions are contrary to right reason…the State could not grant legal standing to such unions without failing in its duty to promote and defend marriage as an institution essential to the common good.” Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions Between Homosexual Persons (July 31, 2003). This document was signed by the Congregation’s Prefect, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, and Secretary, Archbishop Angelo Amato.

Results since the Council seem to be in cruel contrast to the expectations of all, beginning with those of John XXIII and Paul VI….The Popes and the Council Fathers were expecting a new Catholic unity, and instead one has encountered a dissension that — to use the words of Paul VI — seems to have gone from self-criticism to self-destruction. A new enthusiasm was expected, but too often there has been boredom and discouragement instead. A new leap forward was expected, but instead we find ourselves facing a process of progressive decadence….It must be clearly stated that a real reform of the Church presupposes an unequivocal turning away from the erroneous paths that led to indisputably negative consequences.4.

1. Insegnamenti di Paolo VI, vol. 10, pp. 707-709.
2. Ibid., vol. 6, p. 188.
3. John Paul II, allocution to the religious and priests participating in the First Italian National Congress on Missions to the People for the 80s, February 6, 1981, L’Obsservatore Romano, February 7, 1981.
4. From Vittorio Messori, Vittorio Messori a colloquio con il cardinale Joseph Ratzinger-Rapporto sulla fede (Milan: Edizioni Paoline, 1985), pp. 27-28.

 

Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, Revolution and Counter-Revolution (York, Penn.: The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family, and Property, 1993), Part III, Chapter II, pg. 146 – 148.

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