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Summary of Changes Since Vatican II (Page 3)

Latin Mass / Catholic Trad. | Mass Changes | Fruits of Vatican II

Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass

Summary of Changes Since Vatican II (Page 3)

A Revolution in the Church?

Primary Sources Include: Davies, Amerio

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Does God Desire the Changes? 

Although we cannot speak for God, common sense tells us that the changes - which have caused a loss of faith, rampant sacrilege, widespread heresy, a "near collapse" of the Church, and include changes which are contrary to the teachings / warnings / practice of many popes, saints, councils, and even those which oppose Scripture (e.g. 1 Cor. 14:33-35, 1 Cor. 11:4-10) - could not be positively willed by God. In fact, not even Vatican II called for - or wanted - all the changes which have occurred.

We must remember that the mere fact that something has happened, does not mean that God positively willed it, but rather that He tolerates it. In fact, we know that God tolerates many bad (and even evil) things - and the fact that they have occurred in no way means that God directly wills them.

It may be helpful when assessing the events in the Church over the last several decades to look into exactly how they have happened. When one does, he or she may find that many of the changes were implemented due to disobedience, misrepresentation/distortion, conspiracy, political maneuvers, "agreements of silence", "dubious alliances", "shameful propaganda", etc. Does that sound like the work of the Holy Spirit? Does it not rather sound like another spirit was involved?

Are we supposed to believe that the Holy Spirit wants a "one world" Church that rejects Catholic doctrine? That He now wants us to attempt the impossible - to be a friend to God and to the World? That the unchangeable God actually sought the wholesale abandonment of Tradition? That the Holy Spirit wanted the Mass to be aligned with "Protestant sensibilities"? That He wanted exorcisms - used against His fierce enemy - "watered down"? That God - Truth itself - now seeks to give equal rights to error? Are we to believe that the many popes and saints who took a firm stand against error in the past - even to the point of martyrdom - were all wrong? That God desired that "professed enemies of the Church" be involved in Her reform? That those "theologians" which previous popes had condemned or put under suspicion should now set the tone for the whole Church? Are we to believe that nineteen centuries of popes, saints, councils, etc. were in error about many things and the Holy Spirit sought to fix them only in the drug-infested culture of the 1960's? Are we to believe that God sought the widespread loss of faith, the falling away from the Church, the reduction of vocations, reduced conversions, increased sinfulness, disunity, confusion of dogma that would result from the changes? How then are we to believe that the unchangeable, infinitely good, and infinitely holy God positively desired the changes which have sought or led to these occurrences?

"And somehow or other those who please the world most who please Christ least." (St. Jerome, Doctor of the Church)  

"Jesus Christ expressly tells us that it is impossible to be for God and the World at the same time, because when we want to please the one, it means becoming the enemy of the other." (St. John Vianney) 

Isn't the Church Allowed to Change? 

With regard to change in the Church, one must keep in mind various important points, such as:

  • God is unchanging

  • Truth is unchanging

  • "Change implies imperfection"

  • The Church is not supposed to change - but rather exists to pass on what it has already received 

  • The Church is a divine institution and cannot simply change because her members want her to

  • The Church's teachings are timeless and never need to be "modernized" (although the Church is in time, She is in a sense above time as well)

  • Change involves consequences

  • Not all change is good

  • "Things belonging to immemorial custom have rights"

Furthermore, the dogmas of the Church are not subject to changing interpretations over time. As stated by the First Vatican Council: 

"The meaning of Sacred Dogmas, which must always be preserved, is that which our Holy Mother the Church has determined. Never is it permissible to depart from this in the name of a deeper understanding."

And: 

"If anyone says that it is possible that at some time, given the advancement of knowledge, a sense may be assigned to the dogmas propounded by the Church which is different from that which the Church has understood and understands: let him be anathema." 

Other condemnations include the following:

"If anyone rejects any written or unwritten tradition of the church, let him be anathema." (Second Council of Nicaea)

Error CONDEMNED by Pope Pius IX in the Syllabus of Errors: "The Roman Pontiff can and should reconcile and adapt himself to progress, liberalism, and the modern civilization." (Bl. Pope Pius IX, This proposition was condemned in the Syllabus of Errors, Dec. 8, 1864 A.D.) 

Error CONDEMNED by Pope St. Pius X in "Lamentabili": "The organic constitution of the Church is not immutable; but Christian society, just as human society, is subject to perpetual evolution." (Pope St. Pius X, This proposition was condemned in "Lamentabili", 1907 A.D.)

Error CONDEMNED by Pope Pius IX in the Syllabus of Errors: "Divine revelation is imperfect, and therefore subject to continuous and indefinite progress, which corresponds to the progress of human reason." (Bl. Pope Pius IX, This proposition was condemned in the Syllabus of Errors, Dec. 8, 1864 A.D.) 

It is important to note that the Church's traditional motto is "Semper idem" ("always the same") and that the pope is to be the guardian and defender of tradition. As indicated scripture, the Church is to hand down of what was received - not something that has been newly invented:

"O Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you. Avoid profane babbling and the absurdities of so-called knowledge. By professing it, some people have deviated from the faith. Grace be with all of you." (1 Tm. 6:20-21)

"Take as your norm the sound words that you heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. Guard this rich trust with the help of the Holy Spirit that dwells within us." (2 Tm. 1:13-14)

"I praise you because you remember me in everything and hold fast to the traditions, just as I handed them on to you." (1 Cor. 11:2)

"Remember your leaders who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teaching." (Heb. 13:7-9)

"Let what you heard from the beginning remain in you. If what you heard from the beginning remains in you, then you will remain in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that he made us: eternal life. I write you these things about those who would deceive you." (1 Jn. 2:24-26)

Regard for tradition assures that the purity of the faith is retained and passed on. Furthermore, regard for tradition has always been held in high repute by the Church, as evidenced by quotations such as...

"Let them innovate nothing, but keep the traditions." (Pope St. Steven I, 3rd century A.D.)

"[N]othing of the things appointed ought to be diminished; nothing changed; nothing added; but they must be preserved both as regards expression and meaning." (Pope Agatho)

"It is absurd, and a detestable shame, that we should suffer those traditions to be changed which we have received from the fathers of old." (Decretals, as quoted by St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"Plainly it is a falling away from faith and an offense chargeable to pride, either to reject any of those things that are written or to introduce things that are not written [i.e. in Scripture]." (St. Basil the Great, Doctor of the Church, c. 371 A.D.)

"It behooves us unanimously to observe the ecclesiastical traditions, whether defined or simply retained by customary practice of the Church." (St. Peter Canisuis, Doctor of the Church)

"The best advice that I can give you is this. Church traditions - especially when they do not run counter to the faith - are to be observed in the form in which previous generations have handed them down" (St. Jerome, Doctor of the Church, 4th century A.D.)

"The Church appeals to the faithful not to abandon or make light of the traditions of the Fathers but to receive them reverently as a precious possession of the Catholic family and to honor those traditions." (Pope Paul VI)

"The customs of God's people and the institutions of our ancestors are to be considered as laws. And those who throw contempt on the customs of the Church ought to be punished as those who disobey the law of God." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, 5th century A.D.)

"To announce, therefore, to Catholic Christians something other than that which they have received is never permitted, is nowhere permitted, and never will be permitted. And to anathematize those who announce anything other than that which has been received once and for all has never been unnecessary, is nowhere unnecessary, and never will be unnecessary". (St. Vincent of Lerins, c. 434 A.D.)

"'Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you have been taught, whether by word or by our letter.' From this it is clear that they did not hand down everything by letter, but there was much also that was not written. Like that which was written, the unwritten too is worthy of belief. So let us regard the tradition of the Church also as worthy of belief. Is it a tradition? Seek no further." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church, c. 400 A.D.)

"If then you adhere to the ancient faith, and which has been transmitted to us by the Holy Fathers...and if you in nothing deviate from the doctrine of the universal Church, (for neither are we wiser than our Fathers, nor is it lawful for us to take upon ourselves some novelty or other than our Fathers learned and taught,) this faith let us all mutually hold in sincerity of mind and truth of heart, and there is peace. Let us keep inviolate the rules which the Church has received from those same Fathers, and there is peace." (Pope Gelasius I)

"Those, therefore, who dare to think or to teach otherwise or to spurn according to wretched heretics the ecclesiastical traditions and to invent anything novel, or to reject anything from these things which have been consecrated by the Church...or to invent perversely and cunningly for the overthrow of anyone of the legitimate traditions of the Catholic Church; or even, as it were, to use the sacred vessels or the venerable monasteries as common things; if indeed they are bishops or clerics, we order (them) to be deposed; monks, however, or laymen, to be excommunicated" (Second Council of Nicaea, 787 A.D.)

"The Church of Christ, zealous and cautious guardian of the dogmas deposited with it, never changes any phase of them. It does not diminish them or add to them; it neither trims what seems necessary nor grafts things superfluous; it neither gives up its own or usurps what does not belong to it. But it devotes all its diligence to one aim: to treat tradition faithfully and wisely; to nurse and polish what from old times may have remain unshaped and unfinished; to consolidate and strengthen what already was clear and plain; and to guard what already was confirmed and defined." (St. Vincent of Lerins, 5th century A.D.)

"For the Church of Christ, watchful guardian that she is, and defender of the dogmas deposited with her, never changes anything, never diminishes anything, never adds anything to them; but with all diligence she treats the ancient documents faithfully and wisely; if they really are of ancient origin and if the faith of the Fathers has transmitted them, she strives to investigate and explain them in such a way that the ancient dogmas of heavenly doctrine will be made evident and clear, but will retain their full, integral, and proper nature, and will grow only within their own genus - that is, within the same dogma, in the same sense and the same meaning." (Pope Pius IX, "Ineffabilis Deus", 1854 A.D.)

"Truth and its philosophic expression cannot change from day to day, least of all where there is a question of the self-evident principles of the human mind or of those propositions which are supported by the wisdom of the ages and by divine revelation. Whatever new truths the sincere human mind is able to bind certainly cannot be opposed to truth already acquired, since God, the Highest Truth, has created and guides the human intellect, not that it may daily oppose new truths to rightly established ones, but rather that having eliminated errors which may have crept it, it may build truth upon truth in the same order and structure that exist in reality, the source of truth. Let no Christian therefore, whether philosopher or theologian, embrace eagerly and lightly whatever novelty happens to be thought up from day to day, but rather let him weigh it with painstaking care and a balanced judgment, lest he lose or corrupt the truth he already has, with grave danger and damage to his faith." (Pope Pius XII)

"But perhaps someone is saying, 'Will there, then, be no progress of religion in the Church of Christ?' Certainly there is, and the greatest. For who is there so envious toward men and so exceedingly hateful toward God, that he would try to prohibit progress? But it is truly progress and not a change of faith. What is meant by progress is that something is brought to an advancement within itself; by change, something is transformed from one thing to another. It is necessary, therefore, that understanding, knowledge, and wisdom grow and advance strongly and mightily as much in individuals as in the group, as much in one man as in the whole Church, and this gradually according to age and the times; and this must take place precisely within its own kind, that is, in the same teaching, in the same meaning, and in the same opinion. The progress of religion in souls is like the growth of bodies, which, in the course of years, evolve and develop, but still remain what they were... [A]lthough in the course of time something evolved from those first seeds and has now expanded under careful cultivation, nothing of the characteristics of the seeds is changed. Grated that appearance, beauty, and distinction has been added, still, the same nature of each kind remains." (St. Vincent of Lerins, c. 434 A.D.)

"'Guard.' he says, 'what has been committed.' What does it mean, 'what has been committed'? It is what has been faithfully entrusted to you, not what has been discovered by you; what you have received, not what you have thought up; a matter not of ingenuity, but of doctrine; not of private acquisition, but of public Tradition; a matter brought to you, not put forth by you, in which you must not be the author but the guardian, not the founder but the sharer, not the leader, but the follower. 'Guard,' he says, 'what has been committed.' Keep the talent [see Mt. 25:14-30] of the Catholic Faith inviolate and unimpaired. What has been faithfully entrusted, let it remain in your possession, let it be handed on by you. You have received gold, so give gold. For my part, I do not want you to substitute on thing for another; I do not want you imprudently to put lead in place of gold, or fraudulently, brass. I do not want the appearance of gold, but the real thing. O Timothy, O priest, O interpreter, O teacher, if a divine gift has made you suitable in genius, in experience, in doctrine to be the Bezalel [i.e. skilled craftsman] of the spiritual tabernacle, cut out the precious gems of divine dogma, shape them faithfully, ornament them wisely, add splendor, grace and beauty to them! By your expounding it, may that now be understood more clearly which formerly was believed even in its obscurity. May posterity, be means of you, rejoice in understanding what in times past was venerated without understanding. Nevertheless, teach the same that you have learned, so that if you say something anew, it is not something new that you say." (St. Vincent of Lerins, c. 434 A.D.)

"Of the dogmas and kerygmas preserved in the Church, some we possess from written teachings and others we receive from the tradition of the Apostles, handed on to us in mystery. In respect to piety both are of the same force. No one will contradict any of these, no one, at any rate, who is even moderately versed in matters ecclesiastical. Indeed, were we to try to reject unwritten customs as having no great authority, we would unwittingly injure the Gospel in its vitals; or rather, we would reduce kergyma to a mere term. For instance, to take the first and most general example, who taught us in writing to sign with the sign of the cross those who have trusted in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ? What writing has taught us to turn to the East in prayer? Which of the saints left us in writing the words of the epiclesis at the consecration of the Bread of Eucharist and the Cup of Benediction? For we are not content with those words the Apostle or the gospel has recorded, but we say other things also, both before and after: and we regard these other words, which we have received from unwritten teaching, as being of great importance to the mystery. Where is it written that we are to bless the baptism water, the oil of anointing, and even the one who is being baptized? Is it not from silent and mystical tradition?... And the rest of the things done at Baptism - where is it written that we are to renounce Satan and his angels? Does this not come from that secret and arcane teaching which our Fathers guarded in a silence not too curiously meddled with and not idly investigated, when they had learned well that reverence for the mysteries is best preserved by silence... In the same way the Apostles and Fathers who, in the beginning, prescribed the Church's rites, guarded in secrecy and silence the dignity of the mysteries; for that which is blabbed at random and in the public ear is no mystery at all. This is the reason for our handing on of unwritten precepts and practices: that the knowledge of our dogmas may not be neglected and held in contempt by the multitude through too great a familiarity." (St. Basil the Great, Doctor of the Church, c. 375 A.D.)

Click Here For More 'Tradition' Reflections

Also, it should be remembered that novelty / modernism has been strictly condemned by the Church. In fact, modernists / liberals have been referred to as "the worst enemies of the Church" (Bl. Pope Pius IX) and "the most pernicious of all the adversaries of the Church" (Pope St. Pius X). Click here for more on modernism.

It should further be noted that such prohibitions against change do not mean that nothing in the Church is subject to change, but rather that any change should not be sought for its own sake and that any changes made should never contradict what has always been held. Changes, where permissible, should only be made for the glory of God and for the good of the Church and souls (e.g. making truths more clear, removing error, etc.) - and never to their detriment. 

"And to radiate this [holy] light is one of the glorious characteristics of the holy Church. It is her task to confront in the light of Christ all those new problems which emerge from various situations. She must ever and again let us hear the voice of Christ and she should never adapt herself to the spirit of the times. For we should never forget that if the Church is in the world, she is not of the world. In spite of all the imperfections of her members she bears witness even in her external structure that she is of divine origin." (Von Hildebrand)

"How short-sighted are such Catholic as these, who hope to make [the Church] acceptable to the world by giving thee the semblance of a human institution! The world is too shrewd: it knows thee to be essentially supernatural, and this is what it can never tolerate. Wiser and more Christian by far are they who, detesting profane theories, have, like devoted Machabees, drawn the sword against thine enemies, O Church of Christ! And even in an age like this, when faith has grown weak, have so well understood their Christian duty as to die in thy defense, and, by so doing, to win the crown of martyrdom. Yes, it is our duty to confess thee: to disguise thee is to belie thee. Thou art one of the articles of our Creed: 'I believe the holy Catholic Church.' Thou hast been known these [two thousand] years; and shall men now pretend that thou must conform to the world's capricious views? This cannot be. Jesus made thee be like himself - a sign of contradiction: and a such we must receive thee. We must listen to the protestations against false principles and practices, and not attempt to remodel thee." (Dom Gueranger) 

Final Note 

It may be helpful to keep in mind some final points:

  • Some of the changes made in the so-called "Spirit of Vatican II" are actually contrary to the expressed directives of the Second Vatican Council. For example, if the directives of Vatican II were really being followed, the Traditional Mass would be available everywhere, there would be no harmful novelties in the New Mass, the Latin language would be in wide use, Gregorian Chant would be given "pride of place", the pipe organ would be commonly used, etc.

"Finally, in faithful obedience to tradition, the sacred Council declares that Holy Mother Church holds all lawfully recognized rites to be of equal right and dignity; that she wishes to preserve them in the future and to foster them in every way." (Second Vatican Council, Sacrosanctum Concilium, The constitution on the sacred liturgy, December 4, 1963, emphasis added) 

"[T]here must be no innovations unless the good of the Church genuinely and certainly requires them, and care must be taken that any new forms adopted should in some way grow organically from forms already existing." (Second Vatican Council, Sacrosanctum Concilium, The constitution on the sacred liturgy, December 4, 1963, emphasis added) 

"The use of the Latin language, with due respect to particular law, is to be preserved in the Latin rites." (Second Vatican Council, Sacrosanctum Concilium, The constitution on the sacred liturgy, December 4, 1963, emphasis added)

"Nevertheless care must be taken to ensure that the faithful may also be able to say or sing together in Latin those parts of the Ordinary of the Mass which pertain to them." (Second Vatican Council, Sacrosanctum Concilium, The constitution on the sacred liturgy, December 4, 1963, emphasis added)

"The Church recognizes Gregorian chant as being specially suited to the Roman liturgy. Therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services." (Second Vatican Council, Sacrosanctum Concilium, The constitution on the sacred liturgy, December 4, 1963, emphasis added) 

"The pipe organ is to be held in high esteem in the Latin Church, for it is the traditional musical instrument, the sound of which can add a wonderful splendor to the Church's ceremonies and powerfully lifts up men's minds to God and higher things." (Second Vatican Council, Sacrosanctum Concilium, The constitution on the sacred liturgy, December 4, 1963, emphasis added) 

  • It has been argued that the Second Vatican Council was taken over by progressive prelates and that said that "the [other] council Fathers never imagined what was going to happen". The "takeover" of the council has been well documented.

  • Clinging to the observances of the past is safe. Remember that the Church has always been protected over the centuries by the unchanging Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit has never changed and will never change.

  • The Church was not invented by the Second Vatican Council of the 1960's, nor can a council change the Church into another entity. Further, the pronouncements of her previous pontiffs do not simply become obsolete. "It was truly absurd to maintain that the laws of previous Pontiffs become obsolete, if they are not confirmed expressly by one's successors" (Pope Leo XII, "Quo Graviora") 

  • To criticize the Church of the past is to criticize nearly all of the popes, councils, and saints. It also seems to question whether the Holy Spirit was guiding the Church for so many years. 

  • The argument that the changes bring the Church closer to the earliest days of Christianity is fallacious. Not only have certain changes made since the Second Vatican Council been selective (they exclude many primitive practices that innovators don't like - e.g. long penances, public penances, penitential practices, penalties for sin, etc.), but the entire concept of reverting the Church back to the earliest days has been condemned by the Pope. Remember that it would be wrong to "try to shrink the Church back to its infancy" - to a time when the Church was weaker and less developed - to a time when she was persecuted and 'illegal'. Remember that the Church did not even have a complete Bible in the earliest days. Note: For more on this topic, click here.

  • It may be well to consider what the martyrs, previous popes, and saints would think of the changes. Would Our Lord actually prefer such changes? If the Church was so in need of the changes which have occurred in the wake of the Second Vatican Council, why was the Church so much healthier before the changes? Why had she produced so many saints and done so much good? Why is it that the "overthrow of the wisdom and practices of hundreds and even a thousand or more years" is considered progress? If it really is progress, why does all the evidence point elsewhere (e.g. vocations crisis, drop in mass attendance, reduced belief in the tenets of the faith, etc.)?

  • Remember that "that Council of Trent has equal authority with Vatican II." In fact, one may argue that the Council of Trent is superior since it was clearly dogmatic, whereas the Second Vatican Council was merely pastoral...

"There are those who ask what authority, what theological qualification the Council intended to give to its teachings, knowing that it avoided issuing solemn dogmatic definitions engaging the infallibility of the ecclesiastical Magisterium. The answer is known by whoever remembers the conciliar declaration of March 6, 1964, repeated on November 16, 1964: given the Council's pastoral character, it avoided pronouncing, in an extraordinary manner, dogmas endowed with the note of infallibility." (Pope Paul VI, General Audience, Jan.12, 1966) (emphasis added)

As Cardinal Ratzinger, council father and the future Pope Benedict XVI has said, "There are many accounts of it which give the impression that, from Vatican II onward, everything has been changed, and that what preceded it has no value or, at best, has value only in the light of Vatican II. The Second Vatican Council has not been treated as a part of the entire living Tradition of the Church, but as an end of Tradition, a new start from zero. The truth is that this particular Council defined no dogma at all, and deliberately chose to remain on a modest level, as a pastoral council; and yet many treat it as though it had made itself into a sort of super-dogma which takes away the importance of all the rest." (emphasis added)

"I was relieved when we told that this Council was not aiming at defining or giving final statements on doctrine, because a statement of doctrine has to be very carefully formulated and I would have regarded the Council statements as tentative and liable to be reformed." (Bishop Morris)  

"Taking into account conciliar practice and the pastoral purpose of the present Council, the sacred synod has defined as binding on the Church only those matters of Faith and Morals which it has expressly put forward as such." (Cardinal Felici, Secretary General of the Council) (emphasis added)

If certain items are pitted against each other, how could it be right to be "obedient" to one "pastoral council" and "disobedient" to all other clearly doctrinal councils? Remember that pastoral matters are not infallible - and not always best for the Church. As Davies has said (emphasis added): "There had been twenty councils prior to Vatican II, but anyone reading the Catholic press today, or listening to the typical bishop or theologian, would imagine that no other general council had ever been held, or even that the Church had begun with Vatican II. From a dogmatic standpoint, Vatican II is the least important of all the councils. It settled no disputed question, it promulgated no dogmatic definition binding upon the faithful, it deliberately refrained from investing any of its teaching with the note of infallibility." Finally, it has been claimed that one Cardinal asserted that "the protection of the Holy Ghost at the Council is seen in His withholding of the seal of defining infallibility from any of the documents of Vatican II."  

  • Some have boldly claimed that if we look at various condemned councils (e.g. Constance, Basel, Pistoia), we will find "points of affinity" with the Second Vatican Council. 

  • The serious changes made in the Church in the wake of the Second Vatican Council have been authorized by and made by men who took an oath against Modernism [which, among other things said that "I entirely reject the heretical misrepresentation that dogmas evolve and change from one meaning to another different from the one which the Church held previously" and "with due reverence, I submit and adhere with my whole heart to the condemnations, declarations, and all the prescripts contained in the encyclical Pascendi and in the decree Lamentabili" and "I declare that I am completely opposed to the error of the modernists who hold that there is nothing divine in sacred tradition... The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way."].

  • It is unacceptable to attribute dogmatic changes to a "deeper understanding". As the First Vatican Council has stated: 

"Hence, too, that meaning of the sacred dogmas is ever to be maintained which has once been declared by holy mother church, and there must never be any abandonment of this sense under the pretext or in the name of a more profound understanding." 

And:

"May understanding, knowledge and wisdom increase as ages and centuries roll along, and greatly and vigorously flourish, in each and all, in the individual and the whole church: but this only in its own proper kind, that is to say, in the same doctrine, the same sense, and the same understanding."

And: 

"If anyone says that it is possible that at some time, given the advancement of knowledge, a sense may be assigned to the dogmas propounded by the church which is different from that which the church has understood and understands: let him be anathema." 

  • The changes imposed on the faithful in the wake of the Second Vatican Council notably showed no respect for tradition, a practice unthinkable prior to the 1960's. As Pope Leo XIII has said, "It has been and always will be the intent and tradition of the Apostolic See to make a large allowance, in all that is right and good, for the primitive traditions and special customs of every nation."

  • The faithful have the right - if not the duty - to request that harmful changes be rescinded. "The subjects for whose benefit a law is passed have always had - more than the right - the duty, if it should instead prove harmful, of asking the legislator with filial trust for its abrogation." (Cardinals Ottaviani & Bacci) 

Finally, it should be noted that an honest and well-intentioned discussion of various negative fruits of the Second Vatican Council does not mean that one "doesn't accept the council" or is "disobedient." As Catholics, we are not forced to keep our heads in the sand and deny truth. Remember that Jesus is Truth. Instead, we must remember that we are confirmed as "Christian soldiers" and are part of a "Church Militant". We are not simply to ignore evils - including widespread sacrilege - as if such were the "will of God". No, we must fight them with all our might. Eternal souls are clearly on the line.

Unfortunately, tradition-minded Catholics are often simply written off as "divisive" or "disobedient" or are attacked on a personal level simply because they wish to follow the hundreds or thousands of saints, over 250 popes, the authors of scripture, numerous councils, etc. Their accusers may claim to be good Catholics, and they may be, but one wonders how good Catholics can simply discard the entire patrimony of the Church (including advice/warnings of popes, saints, councils, and even points of Scripture) in favor of practices resulting from a single revolutionary council whose fruits have included the near tearing of the Church "from top to bottom". 

If one wishes to argue against certain contentions of traditional Catholics, one cannot simply level unwarranted charges against individuals, but must base arguments on facts. This, of course, will be a difficult proposition since the fruits of the last four decades speak for themselves (click here). Further, it is baseless to argue points of doctrine repeated by traditional Catholics who simply parrot what those before them have said (e.g. popes, saints, councils, early church fathers, and even the authors of Scripture). Those disputing certain contentions of traditional Catholics should take it up with those who originally uttered them - especially the hundreds or thousand of saints, the authors of scripture, other council fathers, dozens of popes, etc.

They may want to further ask themselves when, in the entire history of the Church, have those in charge of protecting the faith ever had to remark that...

"...for on many points [the New Mass] has much to gladden the heart of even the most modernist Protestant." (Cardinals Ottaviani & Bacci)

When, again, in the entire history of the Church, has a pope ever had to lament that... 

 "[T]hrough some crack, the smoke of Satan has penetrated the temple of God." (Pope Paul VI, 6/29/72)

Or that the results of a council...

"appear cruelly different from everyone's expectations, beginning with those of John XXIII and later of Paul VI. A new Catholic unity was expected; instead, there was a dissention that...went from self-criticism to self destruction... The balance, therefore, appears to be negative... It is undeniable that this period was decidedly unfavorable to the Catholic Church." (Cardinal Ratzinger, the future Pope Benedict XVI, 11/9/1984)

Or that...

"in the years following the post-conciliar liturgical reform, as a result of a misguided sense of creativity and adaptation there have been a number of abuses which have been a source of suffering for many. A certain reaction against 'formalism' has led some, especially in certain regions, to consider the 'forms' chosen by the Church's great liturgical tradition and her Magisterium as non-binding and to introduce unauthorized innovations which are often completely inappropriate." (Pope John Paul II, 2003 A.D.)

And finally, what other pope in history ever had to note that the fruits of a council must be carefully discerned from the fruits which come from Satan, 'the prince of this world'?:

"[O]ne must learn how to 'discern' [the salvific fruits of the Spirit bestowed in the Council] carefully from everything that may instead come originally from the 'prince of this world'. This discernment in implementing the Council's work is especially necessary in view of the fact that the Council opened itself widely to the contemporary world" (Pope John Paul II, 1986 A.D.)

"If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you." (Our Lord Jesus Christ, Jn. 15:18-19)

"Adulterers! Do you not know that to be a lover of the world means enmity with God? Therefore, whoever wants to be a lover of the world makes himself an enemy of God." (Jms. 4:4)

"Do not love the world or the things of the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, sensual lust, enticement for the eyes, and a pretentious life, is not from the Father but is from the world. Yet the world and its enticement are passing away. But whoever does the will of God remains forever." (Jn 2:15-17)

"Finally, draw your strength from the Lord and from his mighty power. Put on the armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the tactics of the devil. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens. Therefore, put on the armor of God, that you may be able to resist on the evil day and, having done everything, to hold your ground. So stand fast with your loins girded in truth, clothed with righteousness as a breastplate, and your feet shod in readiness for the gospel of peace. In all circumstances, hold faith as a shield, to quench all (the) flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God." (Eph. 6:10-17)

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