Obedience to God or Obedience to the Pope?
Alexandra Clark | The Daily Knight
This is a serious question that is being asked by many Catholic Priests and the Faithful Laity after the wake of Pope Francis’ Motu Proprio that was released to the world on July 16th, 2021. The devil’s tactic since the promulgation of the Second Vatican Council has be this blind obedience. This “obedience” has been used within the Church to make those that question radical uncatholic changes, that do not align with what the Church has always taught or always done, to be silent and simply just “obey.” Yet, the reality & end of our act of obedience is that:
“We will be judged, not for the scandals of Bergoglio and his accomplices, but for our fidelity to the teaching of Christ.” ~ Archbishop Vigano
Therefore, with so many scandals, heresies and lies being told today, it is very important to know what is true obedience and what is false obedience, so that we do not fall into the devil’s trap and displease God. For we owe God obedience before men!
Note well that Obedience is not the highest virtue in the Faith. It is only a moral virtue and above it are the 4 Cardinal virtues (Justice, Temperance, Prudence, Fortitude) and then above those, are the 3 Theological virtues (Faith, Hope, Charity). It follows therefore, that Obedience then in the order of the virtues cannot contradict, for example, the virtue of Faith. As St. Thomas Aquinas says in the Summa, Article 3: Question 104 regarding Obedience: “And so those, namely the theological, virtues whereby he adheres to God in Himself, are greater than the moral virtues, whereby he holds in contempt some earthly thing in order to adhere to God.”
Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano had this to say concerning obedience: (emphasis mine)
“The Church does not belong to the Pope, and even less does she belong to a clique of heretics and fornicators that has succeeded in coming to power by deception and fraud.
Therefore, we ought to unite our supernatural faith in the constant action of God in the midst of His people with a work of resistance, as counseled by the Fathers of the Church
... Catholics have the duty of opposing the infidelity of their Shepherds, because the obedience that they owe them is aimed at the glory of God and the salvation of souls.
We therefore denounce everything that represents a betrayal of the mission of the Shepherds, imploring the Lord to shorten these times of trial. And if one day we are told by Bergoglio that, in order to remain in communion with him, we must perform an act that offends God, we will have further confirmation that he is an impostor, and that as such he has no authority.
Therefore, let us pray. Let us pray very much and with fervor, mindful of the words of the Savior and of His final victory.
We will be judged, not for the scandals of Bergoglio and his accomplices, but for our fidelity to the teaching of Christ.
... a fidelity that begins with living in God’s grace, receiving the Sacraments frequently, and offering sacrifices and penances for the salvation of the Ministers of God...”
His Excellency Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre said it well and stated that: (emphasis mine)
“Obedience is a serious matter; to remain united to the Church’s Magisterium and particularly to the Supreme Pontiff is one of the conditions of salvation…
…We are attached to the Pope for as long as he echoes the apostolic traditions and the teachings of all his predecessors. It is the very definition of the successor of Peter that he is the keeper of this deposit. Pius IX teaches us in Pastor Aeternus: ‘The Holy Ghost has not in fact been promised to the successors of Peter to permit them to proclaim new doctrine according to His revelations, but to keep strictly and to expound faithfully, with His help, the revelations transmitted by the Apostles, in other words the Deposit of Faith.’…
…The authority delegated by Our Lord to the Pope, the Bishops and the priesthood in general is for the service of faith. To make use of law, institutions and authority to annihilate the Catholic Faith and no longer to transmit life, is to practice spiritual abortion or contraception…
… We therefore choose to keep it and we cannot be mistaken in clinging to what the Church has taught for two thousand years. The crisis is profound, cleverly organized and directed, and by this token one can truly believe that the master mind is not a man but Satan himself. For it is a master-stroke of Satan to get Catholics to disobey the whole of Tradition in the name of obedience.
St. Paul has warned us: “Even if an angel from Heaven came to tell you anything other than what I have taught you, do not listen to him.”
Such is the secret of true obedience.”
Fr. Hesse, rightly said: (emphasis mine)
Obedience itself can only be defined by the Ten Commandments and Church Tradition….Holy Mass the way you and I know it,(the Traditional Tridentine Latin Mass) is part of the state of the Church, status Ecclesiae. If the Pope tries to change that, you say: “Sorry, Holy Father, but we can’t follow that. Too bad!” If the Pope tries to change anything that is part of the status Ecclesiae and you follow him, and you should know better, then you’re in the state of mortal sin, unless you don’t know better. But to follow the Pope into error means not obedience but sin. Remember what St. Paul says: if an angel out of heaven was to bring you another Gospel, don’t accept it. Even an Angel himself. So those of you who understand poetry, what Chesterton means when he says: “If an angel out of heaven brings you other things to drink, thank him for his kind attentions, go and pour them down the sink.” - this is what he really means. Chesterton himself drank beer and barrels of it, so what he says in this poem means: don’t allow anything to creep into the Gospel in its purity as is was preserved by the Church. You see this in a way is the Gospel, because Father and I, up there on the altar - we’re not allowed to do that, but Father and I up there on the altar can turn this innocent looking glass of wine into the Blood of Christ, if we used it for Mass. We’d be committing a sin, because we’re not allowed to use a glass chalice and we’re not allowed to use this type of wine, we have to use Mass wine. The point is, we can do it. So this is representing the purity of the Gospel, and that’s what Chesterton meant. Anybody who dares to interfere with the purity of Church teaching, to interfere with the purity of Church tradition, to interfere with the purity of the Gospel, is a messenger of the devil, not an angel. Even if it is the Pope himself.
The full transcribed talk is here in PDF form. It is a must read for all Faithful Catholics. The talk tilted “Obedience and the Pope” by Fr. Gregory Hesse, S.T.D., J.C.D., S.T.L., J.C.L., a Canon Lawyer, Doctor of Thomistic Theology, Lifelong Friend and Personal Secretary of Cardinal Stickler at the Vatican from 1986-1988 gives a no-nonsense, intelligent, learned, and witty exposition and explanation of relevant topics facing contemporary faithful Catholics. Take note that John Paul II was Pope at the time of this talk. In this important discussion he also answers the question, What are the limits to the Pope’s freedom of decision? And explains the 4 things a Pope cannot go against.
"Not to oppose error is to approve it; and not to defend truth is to suppress it; and indeed to neglect to confound evil men, when we can do it, is no less a sin than to encourage them." – Pope St. Felix III