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Benedict’s biographer blasts Francis’ plan to ‘break away from the continuity of the popes’

David Martin | The Daily Knight

In a recent interview with Katholische Sonntags Zeitung of the Diocese of Regensburg (reprinted by Marco Tosatti), Pope Benedict XVI's biographer Peter Seewald slammed Pope Francis’ description of Benedict XVI as a ‘transitional pope’ and said that Francis throughout his tenure has sought to “break away” from the popes of history to create “chaos.”

“From the very beginning, Bergoglio wanted to break away from the continuity of the popes, to challenge the traditional, to shake things up or simply to cause ‘chaos,’ as he says in the new book by Javier Martinez-Brocal,” Seewald said.

“He describes traditional forms as a ‘nostalgic illness.’ He demonstratively showed who is the master of the house by abolishing Benedict’s liberalized approach to the Old Mass.”

Seewald here speaks of Francis' abrogation of the universal permission to celebrate the Tridentine Latin Mass. On July 21, 2021, Francis issued his Motu Proprio Traditionis Custodes in direct contradiction to Pope Benedict's 2007 document Summorum Pontificum, which gave priests everywhere permission to say the old Mass.

Benedict's long-time secretary Archbishop Georg Gänswein revealed that it was “with pain in his heart” that Benedict read Francis’ orders to oppress the Latin Mass.

Francis Claims He and Benedict had a Good Relationship

In his interview book, The Successor, Francis refers to Pope Benedict as a “transitional pope” to falsely suggest that Benedict's pontificate prepared and paved the way for his own. He stresses that he and Benedict XVI had a good relationship.

However, Benedict’s closest associates, like Archbishop Gänswein and Peter Seewald have stressed how hurt and disappointed Benedict was with some of his successor’s decisions.

“Benedict trusted Francis. But he was bitterly disappointed several times,” Seewald said in an interview published in December 2023. 

Seewald’s Words Ring True


Seewald speaks a pure sentence. Benedict XVI epitomized everything that Francis is against, and Francis indeed has done everything in his power to undo the cause of Benedict, i.e. Apostolic Tradition. He repeatedly has referred to the followers of Benedict as "stubborn," "rigid," and "obstinate," and refers to those who refuse to bow to the idol of change as ‘obstinate idolaters.’


Francis says Adherents to Tradition are “Idolaters”


in his sermon at the Vatican Casa Santa Marta in 2016, Francis all but gave the Church a beating for its "obstinate" adherence to tradition. The following is from his sermon on January 18, 2016, as reported by Vatican Radio.

"Christians who obstinately maintain ‘it’s always been done this way,' this is the path, this is the street—they sin: the sin of divination. It’s as if they went about by guessing: ‘What has been said and what doesn’t change is what’s important; what I hear—from myself and my closed heart—more than the Word of the Lord.’ Obstinacy is also the sin of idolatry: the Christian who is obstinate sins! The sin of idolatry. ‘And what is the way, Father?’ Open the heart to the Holy Spirit, discern what is the will of God."

Francis calls the adherents to tradition 'idolaters' while he bows to the idol of rebellion. According to Francis, it is obstinately sinful to lovingly hold to the traditions and teachings of Christ, yet it’s perfectly fine for him to engage in “smudging” rituals and to call upon pagan spirits (demons) as he did in Canada in 2022. The “idolatrous” Latin Mass is now forbidden at St. Peter’s Basilica yet it was perfectly fine for Francis to publicly venerate the “Pachamama” earth idol in St. Peters in October 2019.


Francis had travelled to Canada in July 2022 to apologize to the indigenous peoples for the Church’s role in converting their ancestors to the Catholic Faith, arguing that the Church had arrogantly imposed its ‘pompous’ religion on the humble. The irony being that these converted Indians were grateful to the shepherds who lovingly brought their souls into the light. It’s only now that the media, Francis, and a minority of dissatisfied Indians are up in arms over the Church’s role in saving the souls of their countrymen.

If the Church did something wrong in Canada then it’s been doing wrong for the past 2000 years. And this is what Francis believes as reflected time and again by his command that we not go out and convert outsiders to the Faith. His whole thrust has been to withhold Catholicism from the Church and from the world.


The words of Christ apply:


“Every one therefore that shall confess me before men, I will also confess him before my Father who is in heaven. But he that shall deny me before men, I will also deny him before my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 10:32)





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