Saw this tonight:
Just checked in over at Canon212, and noticed this over-the-top story:
"BARNHARDT BLAST: IT DOESN'T MATTER WHETHER THE CONCLAVE VIOLATED UNIVERSI DOMINICI GREGIS BECAUSE BENEDICT STILL CLEARLY CONSIDERS HIMSELF A POPE."
She is "blasting" Bishop Gracida's argument. LINK. Yowsers. No need to blast at each other here in the trenches, Ann, especially at a very traditional and reasonable bishop like + Gracida.
Ann is talking about Bishop Gracida, retired bishop of Corpus Christi, TX, and his proposal to the Cardinals how to remedy the papal crisis, who I interviewed here a few days ago last Sunday. See it as a Featured Post over there in the right hand corner of the blog. Here is her BLAST of His Excellency's conclusions (emphasis mine):
A retired bishop from Corpus Christi, Texas, Bishop Gracida, has recently made headlines by stating that Bergoglio’s validity is in question due to “irregularities” in the faux-conclave of ARSH 2013, specifically the openly admitted electioneering by the Sankt Gallen Mafia supposedly in violation of Universi Dominici Gregis, a document promulgated by Pope John Paul II addressing papal conclaves. While I certainly admire the good bishop for speaking up, I am morally obliged to warn one and all in the clearest possible terms that the “irregularities in the March 2013 conclave” premise IS A FALSE PREMISE, WHICH MUST NOT BE PURSUED. What went on in March of ARSH 2013 is NOT GERMANE to the question of who the Pope is.
Re-stating her filial correction, to show how over-the-top it is: Bishop Gracida's premise -- that the validity of the 2013 conclave may be challenged by the Cardinals to solve the papal crisis -- is a "FALSE PREMISE" (all caps), "WHICH MUST NOT BE PURSUED" (more caps) because he/we all haven't seen the light that BXVI is absolutely, certainly still the pope, as she has!
She is "morally obliged."
Her dogmatic rant, while it references one canon law, doesn't even begin to explain or apply it in logical terms. Are we just supposed to accept her conclusions based on her own internet reputation?
Its her way or the highway? Benedict is still pope, period, she declares?
Seriously though, how can anyone take this argument seriously with statements like this (emphasis mine)?
Pope Benedict XVI Ratzinger, almost certainly despairing and very possibly coerced by the saturation of sodomites and Freemasons infecting the Vatican, college of bishops, and institutional Church as a whole, concocted a scheme allowing him to abandon his responsibilities as the Successor of Peter.
What? Come again? Benedict "concocted a scheme?"
Again, re-stating what she said to show how nonsensical that statement in bold is: she is certain beyond any consideration to the contrary, that Benedict "concocted a scheme allowing him to abandon his responsibilities as the Successor of St. Peter."
Benedict is more like an old, elf-like great-grandfather, praying for the Church like a cloistered monk, than a lazy Machiavelli trying to hold onto power while enjoying the good life of retirement inside Vatican walls.
"Concocted a scheme, Anna?
To abandon my responsibilities as Pope?"
To abandon my responsibilities as Pope?"
Its getting late, so instead of a theological analysis of this truly concocted notion of a tiny fringe that thinks Benedict is still pope, I will just use a reductio ad absurdum argument to rebut her absurdities, about this. Feel free to continue.
The Okie Traditionalist Rebuts Ann Barnhardt:
First, why on Earth, Ann, would Benedict "concoct a scheme," coming up with a novel doctrine about a bi-fold Petrine ministry, to avoid his papal duties, when all he had to do in the first place was just resign? You admit popes in the past have resigned, and that Benedict could have resigned legitimately, but you give absolutely NO reason for us to believe that he would plan such an insane course.
He doesn't exactly have a reputation for being a self-serving man, prone to inventing ecclesiastical novelties in order to shirk his ecclesial duties. The man now just reads, writes, relaxes, and prays all day, waiting for death. He is hardly trying to get out of work, while trying to covertly co-rule the Church as "pope emeritus."
"Ja, das ist richtig, Okie Trad."
Second, you are trying absurdly to read the mind of Benedict, Ann, why he still wears white or retains the regnal name of Benedict. You're taking it all in an absolutely literal way, interpreting his actions as if they are literal statements.
He has never said he still thinks he is the pope. Yes, he has the novel idea of a retired, resigned, former pope living in the Vatican with a special role to advise the next pope and Church, but whatever. Whatever floats his boat.
Its at best a wild west conspiracy theory to think he is sitting there at his monastic retirement home in a corner of the Vatican, thinking that both he and Francis literally possess the Office of the Pope, both sitting on the Chair of St. Peter.
The obvious explanation of 99.999% of the traditional Catholic blogosphere, and beyond, is that while Benedict does have a novel idea about how a pope can retire to be a "pope emeritus," by that title he means a former, retired pope, who could still advise the new pope.
After all, our own retired Bishop Slattery of Tulsa has the title "Bishop Emeritus," as does Bishop Gracida of Corpus Christi, but if they think they are still partially the Ordinary of their diocese, then I am Mickey Mouse. They don't, and neither does Benedict with regards to the See of St. Peter.
Third, if we can still call the deceased popes of the past by their regnal names (ex: JPII or Pius X), what is so invalidating of BXVI's resignation (!!!) about him retaining the name before his death, even if that is unheard of? While 264 popes of the past are now dead, and no longer sitting on the Chair of St. Peter, we still look back on their papal authority, and refer to them by their papal title. If I saw Leo XIII in heaven, in person, I'd still call him Leo, maybe even Pope Leo, even though he and I would know he is no longer the Vicar of Christ on Earth.
As historically novel as it is for a pope to even resign (which is valid, right?!), there is nothing so scandalous about BXVI's monastic lifestyle at the Vatican to actually rise to the conclusion that he never actually intended to resign from the Office of Pope.
And fourth, if there is still ANY doubt whatsoever, then I refer Ann again to these words from Pope Benedict's actual speech to the Cardinals resigning from/vacating the Chair of St. Peter (LINK; emphasis mine):
For this reason, and well aware of the seriousness of this act, with full freedom I declare that I renounce the ministry of Bishop of Rome, Successor of Saint Peter, entrusted to me by the Cardinals on 19 April 2005, in such a way, that as from 28 February 2013, at 20:00 hours, the See of Rome, the See of Saint Peter, will be vacant and a Conclave to elect the new Supreme Pontiff will have to be convoked by those whose competence it is.
Folks, as irregular as it is for Benedict to still use the title "Pope Emeritus" or dress in white, it is clear that he resigned as pope, as of 8 pm, Rome time, on 2/28/13.
This leaves us with a few options, only God and the Cardinals have any control over:
1. PF is confronted by Cardinals in person and asked to resign, and he does (best case scenario).
2. He is deemed a formal heretic and replaced, or
3. His 2013 election is found to be both illicit and invalid (Gracida's reasoned suggestion).