Wednesday, April 22, 2020
Christ is Risen!
Wishing the best to all of you, in this period after Easter. Hoping you are well in this strange time, with the Coronavirus still spreading invisibly, with many countries and businesses on lock down and consequent dramatic declines in economic activity — many, many people face severe financial hardship by this summer, and our supply lines of many products may take much longer to re-establish than to shut down.
So we need all the more to recall our faith, that we look forward to an imperishable hope, that man is a creature who does not live by bread alone, but by God’s word, that faith, hope and love, these three, will remain.
In these weeks since my father died on March 28, I have begun to reflect more deeply, more painfully, on the pitiable transience of so many seemingly pressing human concerns and interests. I sense my father’s voice, telling me not to forget that it is the unchanging things that matter, the things of the spirit.
A blessed Easter season to you all, especially now.
This morning, I asked my son, Christopher, to translate for me a new interview granted by the retired Italian archbishop in hiding, Carlo Maria Viganó, 79, in which the archbishop answers questions posed to him by a Portuguese Catholic media outlet, Dies Irae (“Day of Wrath”).
Because the media outlet is in Portugal, the questions touched on that mysterious event in Portugal 103 years ago, in 1917: the apparitions of Our Lady to the three young shepherd children in Fatima. The lady appeared six times: May 13, June 13, July 3, August 19 (because the children had been imprisoned by the local authorities and could not go to see the Lady), September 13, and October 13. The two youngest of the children, Jacinta (March 1910 to 20 February 1920) and her brother Francisco (June 11, 1908 to April 4, 1919), died in the terrible “Spanish Influenza” that swept around the world in 1918-1920, killing millions — so they suffered from a type of “Coronavirus” of that time. The oldest of the three, Lucy, 10 years old in 1917, lived on, and she lived until February 2005, dying not long before Pope John Paul II died in April of that year.
In this interview, the archbishop makes the claim that the Vatican has never released the full contents of the so-called “Third Secret” of the Lady given to the three children.
He further claims that the secret involved warning that a grave apostasy from the traditional Catholic faith, the acceptance by many of a type of secular (worldly) and “modernist” (trendy) thinking, would begin in the latter part of the 20th century, cutting the Church off from her unbroken tradition of faith and practice since the time of the Apostles.
Here is the text of this latest contribution from Viganó. I am still working on a book-length text of our conversations over the past year, and will complete the book very soon now.—RM
Interview with Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganó
Your Excellency, thank you so much for giving us this interview. The COVID-19 epidemic has, in recent months, affected the lives of millions of people and even caused the deaths of many. In light of this situation, the Church, through the Episcopal Conferences, has decided to close practically all churches and deprive the faithful of access to the Sacraments. On March 27th, in front of an empty St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis, acting in a manifestly mediatic [i.e., media-conscious] way, presided over a hypothetical prayer for humanity. There were many reactions to the way the Pope acted in that moment, one of which tried to associate the solitary presence of Francis with the Message of Fatima, i.e., the third secret. Do you agree?
Archbishop Viganó: Allow me first of all to tell you that I am pleased to give this interview for the faithful of Portugal, whom the Blessed Virgin has promised to preserve in the Faith even in these times of great trial. You are a people with a great responsibilitý, because you may soon find yourself having to guard the sacred fire of Religion while other nations refuse to recognize Christ as their King and Mary Most Holy as their Queen.
The third part of the message that Our Lady entrusted to the shepherd children of Fatima, so that they could deliver it to the Holy Father, remains secret to this day. Our Lady asked for it to be revealed in 1960, but John XXIII had a communiqué published on February 8th of that year in which he stated that the Church “does not wish to take on the responsibility of guaranteeing the truthfulness of the words that the three shepherd children said the Virgin Mary spoke to them.” With this distancing [of the Vatican] from the message of the Queen of Heaven, a cover-up operation was started, evidently because the content of the message would have revealed the terrible conspiracy against the Church of Christ by its enemies. Until a few decades ago it would have seemed incredible that we would reach the point that even Our Lady could be silenced, but in recent years we have also witnessed attempts to censor the Gospel itself, which is the Word of Her divine Son.
In 2000, during the pontificate of John Paul II, Cardinal Sodano presented as the Third Secret a version of his own that in several elements appeared clearly incomplete. It is not surprising that the new Secretary of State, Cardinal Bertone, sought to draw attention away to an event in the past [the assassination attempt on John Paul on May 13, 1981] to cause the people of God to believe that the words of the Virgin [in 1917 when she appeared] had nothing to do with the crisis of the Church [in the decades after 1960] and the marriage of modernists and Freemasonry that was contracted behind the scenes at the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965). Antonio Socci, who has carefully investigated the Third Secret, unmasked this harmful behavior on the part of Cardinal Bertone. In addition, it was Bertone himself who heavily discredited and censured the Madonnina delle Lacrime (Madonna of Tears) of Civitavecchia, whose message perfectly agrees with what she said at Fatima.
Let us not forget Our Lady’s unheeded appeal for the Pope and all the Bishops to consecrate Russia to Her Immaculate Heart, as a condition for the defeat of Communism and atheistic materialism: consecrate not “the world,” not “the nation which You want us to consecrate to You,” but “Russia.” Was it so costly to do that?
Evidently so, for those who do not have a supernatural gaze. It was preferred to walk the path of détente with the Soviet regime, inaugurated by Roncalli [Pope John XXIII, whose baptismal name was Angelo Roncalli] himself, without understanding that without God no peace is possible. Today, with a President of the Russian Confederation who is certainly a Christian, the Virgin’s request could be granted, averting further misfortunes for the Church and the world.
In the middle of Holy Week and after the Pan-Amazonian Synod, the Pope decided to establish a commission to discuss and study the female diaconate in the Catholic Church. Do you believe that this is meant to pave the way for the ordination of women or is, in other words, an attempt to tamper with the Priesthood established by Our Lord Jesus Christ on Holy Thursday?
Archbishop Viganó: It is not possible, and will never be possible, for the Sacred Order to be modified in its essence. The attack on the Priesthood has always been at the center of the actions of the heretics and their inspirer, and it is understandable why this is the case: a blow to the Priesthood means the destruction of the Holy Mass and the Most Holy Eucharist and the entire sacramental edifice.
Among the sworn enemies of the Sacred Order there were also the modernists, of course, who, from the 19th century on, theorized about a Church without priests, or with priests and priestesses. These delusions, which were foreshadowed by some exponents of Modernism in France, subtly re-emerged at the Council, with an attempt to insinuate a certain equivalence between the ministerial priesthood deriving from Holy Orders and the common priesthood of the faithful deriving from Baptism.
It is significant that, precisely by playing on this intentional ambiguity, the reformed liturgy [i.e., the new Mass, introduced after the Council] also suffered from the doctrinal error of Lumen Gentium and ended up reducing the ordained Minister to the [status of a] simple president of an assembly of priests. To the contrary; the priest is an alter Christus, not by popular designation, but by ontological configuration to the High Priest, Jesus Christ, whom he must imitate in the holiness of his life and in his absolute dedication represented also by Celibacy.
The next step had to necessarily be taken, if not by annulling the Priesthood itself, at least by making it ineffective by extending it to women, who cannot be ordained: exactly what happened in the Protestant and Anglican sects, which today also experience the embarrassing situation of having lesbian female bishops in the so-called Church of England. But it is clear that the ecumenical “pretext” — that is, drawing closer to dissident communities by acquiring even their most recent errors — is based on Satan’s hatred for the Priesthood and would inevitably lead the Church of Christ to ruin.
On the other hand, ecclesiastical Celibacy is also the object of the same attack, because it is distinctive of the Catholic Church and constitutes a precious defense of the Priesthood that Tradition has jealously guarded through the centuries.
The attempt to introduce a form of ordained female ministry within the Church is not recent, despite repeated statements by the Magisterium. John Paul II also unequivocally defined, and with all the canonical requirements of an infallible ex Cathedra declaration, that it is absolutely impossible to question the doctrine on this subject. But just as it was possible to fiddle with [metter mano] the Catechism to declare the death penalty “not in conformity with the Gospel” — something unheard of and heretical — so today an attempt is being made to create ex novo some form of female diaconate, evidently preparatory to a future introduction of the female priesthood.
The first commission created by Bergoglio years ago gave a negative opinion, confirming what should not even have been the subject of discussion; but if that commission could not obey the wishes of Francis, this does not mean that another commission, whose members, chosen by him, are more “docile” and relaxed in demolishing another pillar of the Catholic Faith, may not do so. I do not doubt that Bergoglio has persuasive methods and that he can exert pressure on the theological commission; but I am equally certain that in the unfortunate event that this consultative body were to give a favorable opinion, it would not necessarily require an official declaration by the Pope to see a multiplying of deaconesses in the dioceses of Germany or Holland, with Rome remaining silent. The method is well known, and on the one hand it makes it possible to strike at the priesthood while on the other it gives a convenient alibi to those within the ecclesiastical structure who can always appeal to the fact that “the Pope has not allowed anything new.” They did likewise by authorizing the Episcopal Conferences to legislate autonomously about Communion in the hand, which, imposed by abuse, has now become universal practice.
It should be said that this will to promote women in the hierarchy betrays the urge [of such movements within the Church] to follow the modern mentality that has taken away the woman’s role of mother and wife in order to unhinge the natural family.
Let’s keep in mind that this approach to the Church’s dogmas confirms an undeniable fact: Bergoglio has adopted the so-called “situation theology,” whose theological pillars are accidental facts or subjects: the world, nature, the female figure, young people… This theology does not have God’s immutable and eternal truth as its founding center; on the contrary, it starts from the observation of whatever is the current pressing need of these phenomena in order to give answers that are consistent with the expectations of the contemporary world.
Your Excellency, according to historians of recognized merit, the Second Vatican Council represented a rupture of the Church with Tradition; hence the appearance of currents of thought that want to transform it into a simple humanitarian association that embraces the world and its globalist utopia. How do you see this serious problem?
Archbishop Viganó: A Church that presents herself as new with respect to the Church of Christ is simply not the Church of Christ! The Mosaic Religion, that is, the “Church of the ancient law,” willed by God to lead His people until the coming of the Messiah, had its fulfillment in the New Covenant, and was definitively revoked on Calvary by the Sacrifice of Christ: from His rib was born the Church of the New and Eternal Covenant, which replaces the Synagogue. It seems that also the post-conciliar Church, modernist and Masonic, aspires to transform, to overcome the Church of Christ, replacing it with a “neo-Church,” a deformed and monstrous creature that does not come from God.
The purpose of this neo-Church is not to bring the Chosen People to recognize the Messiah, as it is for the Synagogue; it is not to convert and save all people before the second coming of Christ, as for the Catholic Church, but to constitute itself as the spiritual arm of the New World Order and an advocate of Universal Religion.
In this sense, the [Second Vatican] Council’s revolution first had to demolish the Church’s heritage, its millenary Tradition, from which she drew her vitality and authority as the Mystical Body of Christ, then free herself from the exponents of the old Hierarchy, and only recently has this revolution begun to offer itself without pretence for what it intends to be.
What you call utopia is actually a dystopia, because it represents the concretization of Freemasonry’s plan and the preparation for the advent of the Antichrist.
I am also convinced that the majority of my brethren, and even more so almost all the priests and faithful, are absolutely unaware of this hellish plan, and that recent events have opened many people’s eyes. Their faith will allow Our Lord to gather the pusillus grex [the “little flock”] around the true Shepherd before the final confrontation.
To restore the ancient splendour of the Church, it will be necessary to question many doctrinal aspects of the Council. What points of Vatican II would you question?
Archbishop Viganó: I believe that there is no lack of eminent personalities who have expressed, better than me, critical viewpoints of the Council. There are those who believe that it would be less complicated and certainly wiser to follow the practice of the Church and the Popes as it applied to the Synod of Pistoia [a diocesan Synod in Pistoia, Italy in 1786, later condemned on 85 points by Pope Pius VI in Rome on August 28, 1794]: there was something good in this Synod as well, but the errors it affirmed were considered sufficient to let it fall into oblivion.
Does the present Pontificate represent the culmination of a process that opened with the Second Vatican Council, desired in the so-called “Pact of the Catacombs” or is it still in an intermediate phase?
[Note: The Pact of the Catacombs is an agreement signed by 42 bishops of the Catholic Church at a meeting following Mass in the Catacombs of Domitilla near Rome on the evening of November 16, 1965, three weeks before the close of the Second Vatican Council. The bishops pledged to live like the poorest of their parishioners and adopt a lifestyle free of attachment to ordinary possessions].
Archbishop Viganó: As is the case with every revolution, the heroes of the first hour often end up falling victim to their own system, as Robespierre did. One who yesterday was judged to be the standard-bearer of the Conciliar spirit today appears almost to be a conservative: the examples are before everyone’s eyes.
And there are already those who, in the intellectual circles of progressivism (such as the one frequented by a certain Massimo Faggioli, haughty in his first name and ungrammatical in his surname), start spreading here and there some doubts about Bergoglio’s real ability to make “courageous choices” — for example, to abolish Celibacy, to admit women to the Priesthood or to legitimize communicatio in sacris [“Communion in sacred things,” that is, the Eucharist] with heretics — almost hoping that he would step aside to elect a Pope even more obedient to those elites who had in the Catacombs and in the St. Gallen Mafia their most unscrupulous and determined followers.
Your Excellency, we Catholics today often feel isolated from the Church and almost abandoned by our Pastors. What can Your Excellency say to the hierarchs and the faithful who, despite the confusion and error that are spreading in the Church, try to persevere in this hard battle to maintain the integrity of our Faith?
Archbishop Viganó: My words would certainly be inadequate. What I limit myself to doing is repeating the words of Our Lord, the eternal Word of the Father: “Behold, I am with you every day, until the consummation of the ages.”
We feel isolated, of course: but didn’t the Apostles and all Christians feel this way as well? Did not Our Lord even feel abandoned in Gethsemane? These are the times of trial, perhaps of the final trial; we must drink the bitter cup, and even if it is human to implore the Lord to let it pass from us, we must repeat confidently: “Not my will, but Yours,” remembering His comforting words: “In the world you will have tribulations, but have courage, for I have conquered the world!”
After the trial, no matter how hard and painful, the eternal prize is prepared for us, which no one can take away from us.
The Church will shine again with the glory of her Lord after this terrible and prolonged Easter Triduum.
But if prayer is certainly indispensable, we must also not fail to fight the good fight, making ourselves the witnesses to a courageous militancy under the banner of the Cross of Christ.
Let us not find ourselves being pointed out as the handmaiden did with Saint Peter in the high priest’s courtyard: “You too were one of his followers,” only to then deny Christ.
Let us not be intimidated! Let us not allow the gag of tolerance to be placed on those who want to proclaim the Truth!
Let us ask the Blessed Virgin Mary that our tongue may proclaim with courage the Kingdom of God and His Justice.
Let the miracle of Lapa be renewed, when Mary Most Holy gave the word to little Joana, born mute. [Note: In Portugal in the late 900s, nuns fleeing the troops of Almançor, the Caliph of Cordoba, hid an image of the Virgin under a boulder, covering a small grotto. Five hundred years later, in 1493, the image was uncovered by a 12-year-old shepherdess named Joana, who found it after squeezing through the narrow crevasse. Joana was born mute, but when her mother tried to cast the image into a fire she recovered her speech. https://www.visitportugal.com/en/node/133125]
May She also give voice to us, Her children, who for too long have been mute.
Our Lady of Fatima, Queen of Victories, Ora pro nobis.
(Translation by Christopher Hart-Moynihan)
“Christ is risen from the dead,
trampling down death by death,
and upon those in the tombs bestowing life!”