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Francis as “the Prince”
 

"of This World ..."?

 

Francis: The Machiavellian Prince

 

and the Logical Conclusion of "Vatican II"

 

 

 

Francis is the logical conclusion of the Second Vatican Council understood as the Assisted Suicide of the Church.  He is the logical consequent of nearly every flawed statement, every questionable postulate, and every sophistical premise either substantive or implicit, within Vatican II as so many antecedents to a catastrophically spurious argument.  As he himself stated as early as 2013 — but not before a rude  slap in the face to all his predecessors (one still alive: Pope “Emeritus” Benedict):   
 

“In the interview, Francis denounced the “Vatican-centric” nature of the Holy See administration and acknowledged that popes past had been infatuated with the pomp of the
Vatican and its “courtesans.” and then:

“He said the Second Vatican Council, the 1962-65 meetings that brought the church into the modern world, had promised such an opening to people of other faiths and non-believers,
but that the church hadn’t made progress since then.”
1
 

He then went further, to make the paradoxical claim that:

I have the humility and ambition to do so,” he said.” 1


In other words, “I, Francis the celebrated, acclaimed, and famously humble and unpretentious — propose to fully actualize all the nonsense embodied in the equally celebrated (albeit spurious) ‘Spirit of Vatican II’ because I alone among all my predecessors have the real humilityand ambition — that they lacked — and the iron will to do so! Bet on it.”

 

Francis as "the Prince" ... "of this world"?


Let us ponder that for a moment, for it is fraught with significance.

Does a humble man boast of his humility? Of course not, for he sees the contradiction inherent in such a question.

More troubling still is the question: is ambition consonant with humility in  ... of all men ... a pope?

At the apex of power (at which Francis now sits) ambition dangerously verges on becoming Machiavellian. As Niccolo observed  in his famous work, The Prince, Ambition is so powerful a passion in the heart, that however high we reach we are never satisfied.” 1 

There is a very troubling theological and scriptural parallax in this reference that is too recurrent to ignore; indeed a supercession that increasingly and illicitly infringes on ultimate Authority that is not invested in the papal office  ... that even has the hubris to abrogate Sacred Scripture, that seeks to amend the one and only prayer Christ explicitly taught us, that even dares not simply to attenuate, but to countermand the Commandments at will! On what authority? Is the servant greater than the Master? (Saint John 15.20)  Is there a greater than God? Deus solus Rex est ! God alone is King. His Vicar must faithfully represent Him —  not supersede Him!

Apropos of this line of reasoning, we must equally recognize that there is indeed one other who would defy God Himself, and Christ spoke of him, warned us of him, in terms of eschatological enmity: 
For the prince of this world cometh, and in Me he hath not any thing.  (Saint John 14.30)  In other words, he has nothing to do with Me.
 

How Far?

Machiavelli was a vehement atheist. Francis is an unbridled progressivist.  In both cases, however otherwise divergent, the pressing question appears identical: “How far can I go? What can I get away with? To what extent can I push the limits of this power vested in me?”

These are serious questions, especially as they pertain to the Vicar of Jesus Christ on Earth.

Has the Church, as Francis insists, really been stagnant for 50 years — until the epiphany of Francis who alone can achieve what Vatican II proposed — because he alone has the humility to accomplish this, coupled with an unbending determination? Is there something disconcerting about this statement? Even contradictory?

What is more, we need only look at the anemic state of the Church following Vatican II:  the dearth of clergy, religious, seminarians — the aging and emptying pews … to see that no such “stagnation” in the Church occurred. To the contrary, prior to Vatican II it was a Church full of vitality in every conceivable metric — and growing exponentially!

To understand how Francis arrives at this spurious conclusion we must first understand that Francis is the quintessential product of a unique generation.  He is among the last of that now dwindling generation (thank God) who themselves were products of the psychotropic culture of the 1960’s — which, in our rear-view mirror — is a now barely visible, and from which we cannot speed away fast enough. It has long begun to fade to fatuity. Most of us have, by now, come to our senses and recognize this.

 
A Deadly Age

It was a deadly age, a noxious age whose poison still leeches into Western society. At a given stratum it will be percolated through reason, eventually strained of its poison, and become the historical nonsense it was — even if it contaminated so much and so many lives before it was bleached out of our consciousness and finally became innocuous , together with the psychedelic caricature of a reality it had never known. Timothy Leary, et alia, “Turned on, tuned in, dropped out” and in alignment with his not-so-famous literary micropiece “Design for Dying — Dying? Throw a House Party! ” — dropped dead.

The Age of Aquarius and the Psilocybin mushroom are dead and what is left of that sad crop are dying leaves on a withering tree, fretted by songs still strummed by the arthritic hands of the elderly on guitars three times the age of the audience. They are pathetic figures clinging to a youth that betrayed them to an old age that wasn’t supposed to happen in the euphoric Flower Days.

In truth it was a miserable age that opiated America; an age that filled the valleys and made the mountains low — for the coming of the Flower Child who littered it with filth. It was Woodstock after the rain and the music stopped: a wasteland of plastic trash, condoms and roach clips.
 

The Segue into Vatican II

Same time, same culture, same euphoria, same mantra against inhibition, same contempt for authority, same disdain for absolutes. It was the time to experiment with society, with minds, and — most sadly — with souls. While students occupied the chancellor’s office at the university, “liberated” Catholic theologians, together with Avant-guard bishops and their ecumenically requisite Protestant advisors occupied the Vatican.

“The Establishment” was shut out — in academic, ecclesiastic and civil society. “Old school” was out. “New school” was in: a new and radical school of theology and spirituality; new interpretation, “exegesis”, “hermeneutics”, and now “discernment”.  “Dogma” became “anathema” and “anathema” was finally scrubbed from the Catholic lexicon altogether: both became something  pejorative: nothing was incontrovertibly true (itself a reflexive contradiction).

Latin as an Ecclesiastical Marker or Identifier was out. Banality was in. Priests spoke the vernacular and finally realized that they had nothing to say. Homily became comedy. Comedy became skit. The Guitar is King! — no longer Christ Jesus. And the only Choir we know is not of Angels: they ceased their accompaniment with us when “Liturgists” discarded Gregorian Chant in favor of the insipid ditties of Marty Haugen who is Lutheran or the “Saint Louis Jesuits (not all of whom remain Jesuits, or priests, or even Christians.”1)

 

No Going Back: DNR and the Church as a Hospice

New vestments, new language(s), new Mass, new spirituality that emphasized man through a unilateral (Catholics gave up virtually everything. Protestants relinquished nothing) effort at a newly-reformulated notion of “ecumenism” instead of salvation. Nun’s and Sister’s Habits were shortened, then abbreviated, then thrown out. The new “cool” was the collarless priest, the unidentifiable Sister. The various “Conferences of Catholic Bishops” (which have no binding authority) became social, then political. The Church effectively became the “field hospital” envisioned by Francis — but it was also the only patient — mortally wounded, and strapped to it was the purple rescript DNR (“Do Not Resuscitate or Revive”) upon the inauguration of Francis as pope with a ready hand on the plug. Vatican II, it turns out, was really an act of Assisted Suicide as Francis has more than amply demonstrated and the Church has become less a “field hospital” than a hospice. “Better that the one true Church die than acknowledge our mistakes and return to the business of saving souls as we had done for the 2000 years preceding Vatican II.” But even the model of a hospice is inadequate, for after the last Catholic dies, the hospice itself altogether ceases to be. This is nihilism — not Catholicism — and it has been for some time.
 

The Birth of Theo-Politics

Theo-politics
was born. Peace, Poverty, Immigration, Inclusiveness, Equality, Linguistic Neuterization in the Liturgy, Feminism, and “Ministries” without meaning or number became the New Evangel. The salvation of souls?  Not a chance. That outdated mandate belonged to the 2000 years prior to the Second Vatican Council — and is something of an embarrassment to contemporary Catholic priests, theologians, scholars, and … yes … laymen. Ask yourself: when was the last time you so much as even heard that phrase at Church? Modernism — that synthesis of all heresies — replaced every vestige of the theological concept of Tradition that is inseparable from the identity of the Church especially as it is articulated through infallible Church Teaching and Dogma.

The Kingdom of God became the Polity of Man. Language was purged of “salvation”, “soul”,  “Hell”, “Penance”, “repentance”, “Mary”, woman, virgin, man, he, she, her, hers, his, gender, evil, the devil, conversion,  sin, suffering, chastity, mortification — anything that stifled the desires of men and the ambitions of women. Heaven now has Open Borders — and they are coterminous with earth.
 

A Replica or a Counterfeit?

We built a simulacrum, a meretricious and largely plastic replica of the Kingdom of Heaven and placed in on earth — complete with electric votive candles.  And yet, for all its semblance we secretly fear it is counterfeit.  It is little wonder that we fear dying and leaving our Kingdom … for, perhaps, another and fabled Kingdom of which we heard long ago where Someone else ruled and in which the totality of man did not abide, given his sin, selfishness, cruelty, malice and indifference to God — a place of ceaseless Light and no fire divided from a chasm of ceaseless fire with no Light.

 But we know that Vatican II — or at least its true “spirit” abolished all that 50 years ago. “Everyone and everything goes to “Heaven” — despite the explicit teaching of Christ to the contrary (Saint Matthew 7.13-14).

 Does this appalling vision offend you? Have I injured your “sensibilities”?

Reality is like that — much like the “Reality TV Shows” that you probably watch. Not every episode has a good ending. Many do not even have a good beginning — much like Vatican II — and even more apropos of the spectacle that is Francis as its culmination.

__________________________________________

1 Associated Press http://www.oregonlive.com/today/index.ssf/2013/10/pope_francis_urges_reform_want.html

2 https://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/otr.cfm?id=3844

3 Niccolo Machiavelli — The Prince

 

Geoffrey K. Mondello
for the Boston Catholic Journal

 

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