Open Letter from a Priest in Exile

Across the transom. I know this priest personally, and can vouch for his credibility, seriousness, and holiness. Take it to the bank. His personal situation requires him to remain anon, but can I beg you an Ave for Father Anonymous, please? The best part is, Father gets every point correct in this essay. Read it all, and share with confused or scandalized faithful. The synod next month will be another disaster. Bergoglio is not the pope. Warn people. Blessed Michaelmas, everyone.-nvp

Open Letter from a Priest in Exile

Upon his presentation to the waiting world on March 13th, 2013, Pope Francis struck me with a disquieting impression. Seeing the man in white on the loggia of St. Peter’s that night hit me like an unexpected punch to the gut. Dear God, I whispered, a diabolical horror mocking Holy Church has just been thrown defiantly into the Face of Christ.

For more than ten years, I have sought to understand why I experienced such an unusual reaction that night, especially since I am not inclined to be shocked by the depth and breadth of human depravity and malice. There was something different here. I could not shake off the sense that Satan was attempting a decisive assault to mortally wound the Church and sweep more souls to eternal damnation.

Deserving mention for aiding my efforts to understand what has happened in the Church are priests and bishops, as well as intrepid and tenacious laity. Special mention goes to Miss Ann Barnhardt, Mr. Mark Docherty, and Dr. Edmund Mazza.

Endowed with all the means to fulfill her mission, the Catholic Church is able, with the divine assistance promised by Jesus Christ, to extricate herself from her current woes. Men steeled by faith, sustained by hope, and moved by charity for God and souls, need only heed what St. Joan of Arc commanded: “Act, and God will act!”

Of all the ills burdening the Church today, perhaps none is more damaging than the perversion of authority by its apparent possessors, who often divorce it from the service of goodness and divinely revealed truth. Without authority—an authority licitly wielded for the good of souls and the building up of the Church—the Church, in her living members, descends into chaos and confusion. Unless the authority vested by Christ in the Sovereign Pontiff and the bishops is exercised, and exercised as Christ intends, it is replaced by a fraudulent version parading as the real thing, at worst a vicious deceiver and destroyer of the flock of Christ, a cruel and tyrannical cudgel to beat down the faithful striving to be good sons and daughters of the Church. Christ is not to be found where true authority is absent or where it is put to perverted use.

Today we witness and are all too often subjected to this perversion of authority. This abuse of authority renders null and void whatever is proposed or commanded. Yes, null and void, not worthy of our assent, cooperation, or obedience, but deserving our fitting rebuke and opposition.

I state my deep conviction regarding the problem of authority in the Church today fully aware that I am fallible. I am nonetheless grieved to see that many serious Catholics, who want to understand why their leaders are so deviant and delinquent, avoid what appears to be the proverbial elephant in the room. Notwithstanding whatever virtue and learning they might otherwise possess, they are unable to admit the possibility, let alone the reality, that Francis is not the Successor of Peter and never has been. Perhaps such an evil is too blinding to gaze upon with eyes wide open.

It is my considered opinion that Francis cannot be the reigning Sovereign Pontiff. Why not? Canon law. According to the law of the Church regarding the validity of juridical acts—a law from which the pope himself is not exempt—Pope Benedict XVI never validly resigned the papacy. Hence, no conclave could lawfully convene and elect his successor until his death.

The issue with Francis which concerns me here is not his apparent lack of the Catholic Faith. I agree with others that he is ostensibly not Catholic by any reasonable measure. However, Pope Francis is firstly a problem for the Church because he was never elected in a lawful conclave. Let me express it this way: the conclave of 2013 was a chimera and an unlawful exercise by the cardinals because Benedict XVI, failing to validly resign the papacy, remained the reigning Supreme Pontiff until his death on December 31st, 2022. The conclave of March 2013 was unlawful, and the man then elected is no pope at all. These are the indisputable conclusions drawn from the crystal-clear provisions of canon law.

Benedict’s desires, subjective state of mind, or his fanciful Teutonic theology of the Petrine primacy in no way validate so as to make operative the renunciation he announced on February 11th, 2013, and supposedly executed seventeen days later. His juridical act of resignation was invalid according to canon law itself, to whose particular relevant provisions he was bound, since he had not changed them, although he had the power to do so.

Benedict did not resign the papal office (munus), but renounced only its active exercise (ministerium). He did not give up being pope, but merely relinquished “doingpope,” if you will pardon the expression. Keep in mind that Benedict also retained the external signs, comportment and some actions proper to the pope alone until his death. He believed he could remain a pope still possessing his office (munus) and exalted station, while the active governance of the Church (ministerium) could at the same time pass to another man elected in conclave as a genuine pope. In short, he wrongly believed that the papacy could be shared and exercised by two popes at once. This is contrary to the divine constitution of the Church and the nature of the papacy established by Christ.

Given this grave and substantial error regarding the nature of the papal office, Benedict posited an act of resignation that was invalid, as canon law stipulates. He was attempting to commit himself to doing something impossible, thus rendering his act of resignation invalid. His act effected no resignation from office at all. His unique dignity as Supreme Pontiff remained as it had been before: the status quo ante held until his death.

Suppose for the sake of argument that Francis were overtly Catholic and even a saint. He would still not be pope nor could he be, unless he were elected in a lawful conclave following the valid resignation or death of Benedict.

The near-universal acceptance of Francis as pope for ten-plus years by the members of the Church is not sufficient to validate his supposed claim to the papacy. Such an argument presupposes that he was elected in a lawful conclave, and he was not. This makes him since March 13th, 2013, until the present a usurper of the papal throne, an anti-pope.

To suggest that we have no way to solve the problem of Francis but must endure him until the Church in the future judges his status and relationship to the Church Militant is an implicit denial of the Church’s ability as a perfect society to recognize the ills that afflict her and to remedy them for the good of souls. It is to deny her ability in our present circumstances to recognize in real time what I have just expounded above about Benedict and Francis.

Many observers of our current crisis in the Church would object to my assessment of Francis as the anti-pope and usurper of the Roman See that he is as a violation of the principle that “[t]he first see is judged by no one.” In other words, the Roman See, precisely the Roman Pontiff, is to be judged by no one. This is to say that no one may lawfully render a juridical judgment against a reigning pope. I agree. I am not handing down a juridical judgment at all. Not one of us, myself included, can render a legal judgment against a reigning pope. None of us has the authority to do so; we are all subject to him. I am not hereby judging Francis in the strict juridical sense. I am judging him according to the common, broader meaning of that term, that is, to evaluate, assess or discriminate. I am recognizing that the man, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, is no pope at all. I arrive at this reasonable and logical conclusion based on observable facts and common sense in light of canon law.

Furthermore, those are not to be considered schismatic who reject Francis for the reasons I have laid out above. Theologians make this clear. For example, the Spanish Jesuit theologian Francisco de Lugo (1580-1652) states: “Neither is someone a schismatic for denying his subjection to the Pontiff on the grounds that he has solidly founded [‘probabiliter’] doubts concerning the legitimacy of his election or his power [refers to Sanchez and Palao].” (Disp., De Virt. Fid. Div., disp xxv, sect iii, nn. 35-8). (Tip of the hat to Miss Ann Barnhardt.)

How can the problem of Francis and his anti-papacy be solved on the practical level? It would seem necessary and reasonable for members of the hierarchy, especially the cardinals, to expose and explain to the Church the ecclesial reality since February 11, 2013, and to make clear the cardinals’ duty and intention to proceed to the election of a worthy successor to Pope Benedict by lawful conclave. While this appears utterly impossible and ridiculous at first glance given the current state of the hierarchy, we cannot forget how God and men have moved in concert in the past. Remember, it only takes one man to stand up and declare the truth to shake the foundations of a lying and tyrannical regime. Recall also Hans Christian Andersen’s tale, The Emperor’s New Clothes. One boy from the crowd declared the truth: “The Emperor is not wearing anything at all.” At this, the crowd abandoned its collective fear and delusion, embracing the reality that the emperor was naked indeed. The Bergoglian house of cards cannot abide the full force of truth, no matter how few proclaim it. Nor can it survive if the ranks of the truth-tellers swell.

History proves that the Church can set things aright regarding her internal affairs, even though solutions have not been spelled out in detail by popes, theologians, canon lawyers, scholars or saints for all the various problems that can arise. We need only look at the actions of St. Bernard in the 12th century. He supported the lawful pope, Innocent II, against the anti-pope Anacletus II. The Roman population supported the anti-pope, but the saint eventually convinced them to give their allegiance to the rightful pope. The saint had no qualms about assessing the situation and taking action against the popular acceptance of an anti-pope. We can also note the unconventional healing of the Great Western Schism at the Council of Constance nearly 300 years later. In each case, we see that bold action was both possible and necessary on the part of human agents.

Perhaps the appeal to divine intervention as the only way out of our present impasse is but a shameful excuse for a kind of paralyzing despair or quietism that leaves the Bride of Christ naked to her enemies, scorned and humiliated, abandoned even by those who should be her friends and defenders. I would propose in response to such bystanders that divine intervention did occur in the resolution of past crises, but not independent of human cooperation. God intervened by moving generous and bold souls to action, and He was with them in all their efforts for the advancement of His kingdom. “Act, and God will act!”

Some voices now publicly proclaim that Francis is not pope because he is a heretic and has excommunicated himself from the Mystical Body of Christ. Some of them assert that he may very well have never been fit for the Petrine office, believing he was a heretic at the time of his supposed election.

Others dispute this claim of automatic excommunication in light of the various distinctions that must be made between the internal dispositions of the man and his juridical status as pope. They presume, of course, that he had been participating as a rightful cardinal-elector in a lawful conclave. They say we must consider Francis as pope until the Church formally judges the matter and declares the invalidity of his reign. By then, Francis and the rest of us may be long dead. There is nothing to do while Francis lives but to suffer and wait for some future official judgment from the Church.

Still others insist that it would be impossible to ever have a true pope who was at the same time a formal heretic. In other words, a formal heretic, manifest, public and pertinacious in his heresy, has never occupied the throne of Peter, nor could he. Otherwise, Christ’s promise to Peter to make him the “rock” upon which the Church is built and by whom his brethren are strengthened would be a lie. Impossible and blasphemous!

You see what a mess we are in today. We are attempting to slog through it while maintaining, please God, our sanity, our Catholic Faith, and the state of grace. We should all agree that we must at a minimum resist the evils of Francis and distance ourselves from the harm he is inflicting on the Church. Beyond this, you may not agree with my conclusions, nor would I impose them on you. Do your own investigation of the matter. You may be surprised by what you find. Sadly, many refuse to investigate at all, even though they know something is foul and amiss with Francis. Perhaps they prefer a comfortable and dishonest ignorance. I do not know their motives, but I deplore their failure.

Each of us must do his best to understand and navigate the current crisis in order to please God and save his soul in the Barque of Peter. That requires a solid Catholic life, a commitment to prudence coupled with magnanimity and an unwavering trust in God. It requires a lively charity that seeks God above all and desires to draw all men, even the most ignorant, sinful and despicable, to a participation in the divine life here below and in the world to come.

Still something more is asked of us. It seems to me that until we seriously and thoroughly address Benedict’s actions and the Bergoglian terror unleashed in the Church, we will continue to be burdened by chaos, confusion, and division. Francis’ usurpation and attempted destruction of the papacy must be recognized and denounced, as the man himself must be for his daring sacrilege. We must admit that Benedict remained pope until his death on December 31st, 2022.

My hope is that we may awaken fellow Catholics, most importantly members of the hierarchy who still possess the Catholic Faith, to help lift the Bride of Christ from the depths of her public humiliation and to relieve the misery of her bitter captivity. She is suffering at the hands of those who hate and despise her. Her enemies are no less Christ’s enemies. May we, with His help, expose and defeat them, so that His reign may advance in the minds and hearts of men and in the world presently ensnared in a mesh of monstrous lies. Let us accomplish what God asks of us, for His greater glory, for the triumph of His Church, and for the salvation of souls.

23 thoughts on “Open Letter from a Priest in Exile”

  1. 76. Should the election take place in a way other than that prescribed in the present Constitution, or should the conditions laid down here not be observed, the election is for this very reason null and void, without any need for a declaration on the matter; consequently, it confers no right on the one elected.

    From UDG by JPII, the only law on the conclave. The rules were violated by pre agreement, by violating voting rules, and by keeping AV equipment inside (turning it off not sufficient). Note that no declaration necessary of nullity is necessary, and the one so elected has no rights. JPII was prescient. All the violations were publicly attested to. The Lord gave us double assurance that Francis is not pope: the faux resignation, and the invalid election. The resignation case is now moot, so focus should be on the election.

    1. Sorry, MaryP, but the invalid resignation is the root of the issue, and always will be. The conclave was invalid even before the shenanigans took place. So citing UDG to invalidate a conclave that was already invalid is actually moot.

      1. Benedict being pressured to leave is also obvious. Remember the Swift banking system turning off the Vatican bank?
        To me the Providence of God is apparent in the total nullity of the bergoglio usurpation.
        Credible witness’s state he is a mason…therefore not Catholic. NULL
        Prohibited lobbying for him took place and comically this is common knowledge due to some of the St Gallen
        group boasting about it. Automatic Excommunication to all involved. NULL
        Voting rules were violated as well. NULL
        Bergoglio was already a public heretic before his usurpation. NULL
        No matter which way you examine the affair…no matter which direction you approach it from…
        the answer is total nullity of the usurpers claim to be Pope.

        It is so totally null the Cardinals should be deeply ashamed for their tepidity and cowardice in failing to act.
        The inaction is a scandal of the highest order.

        At best, bergoglio is a chastisement from God. I personally believe he fulfills the prophecy attributed to St Francis regarding a destroyer to the letter. Cooperation with a destroyer is a crime!

      1. It’s not a cult. I’m not one, I happen to think it’s by Chesterton’s definition “insane” – an idea just slightly too small for reality – but it’s not a cult, and it exists because of a very real problem.

        Finally, as this very letter reminds us, it is not schismatic to doubt the identity of the Roman Pontiff – so long as one intends to be in communion with the Holy Father. Is that not the definition of a sede?

        1. The difference is that the 58 Sedes have their own masses, etc. They have positioned themselves outside the Church.

          Is the Church rotten? Yes. Do you fight it from within? Yes. You don’t start a separate movement.

          I will bet that if we had a pope that embraced the TLM and disregarded V2, there would still be a sede movement. They would still have some problem. That’s the danger. That’s the reality.

          1. I don’t know about you jmy, but I certainly don’t believe I cannot be fooled by the AC. I totally believe Scripture when it says even the elect, if possible may be fooled. If we are leading up to the AC in our lifetime, do you really think he’s going to look anything like Jorge?

  2. A lot of people were horrified when “Francis” appeared on the loggia. I remember feeling cold and slightly nauseous on seeing him and that shook me up badly because I believed then (not now) that I was looking at the Vicar of Christ on earth with revulsion. “Francis” has made or created or appointed – I don’t want to say consecrated but don’t know what verb to use – quite a few Cardinals. If he is not validly Pope, are they legitimately Cardinals? Are they a majority? If they are not legitimately Cardinals but are a majority, how can there be a true conclave when “Francis” dies? If there can’t be a conclave, how can a Pope be elected? I wonder if for this (and other reasons) we will see a divine intervention.

    1. 1. Yes, Bergoglio’s Cardinals are in the majority. 2. When antipopes were deposed in the past, their Cardinals were generally allowed to keep the red hat, but they were not allowed to vote in the subsequent Conclave.

      1. That sounds like reason for hope! — but how many real Cardinals are left? But then — how many would there need to be for a true conclave (inspired and guided by the Holy Spirit)? Maybe only two or three (elderly, yes but so what) — but one of them could be elected Pope by the other one or two? It could work without necessarily divine intervention — maybe politically messy with the cardinals appointed by “Francis” but God works as He wills….

        1. Hi Deborah. Sadly, the College of Cardinals is nothing more than a big, political circus with the bad guys and the controlled opposition. Just like the American democrat and republican political theatre! Unless there is some type of an event, spurring a massive conversion and change of hearts, I think all of these men are going to have to go and be replaced with just 12, non-celebrity, holy and humble men.

    2. In Dr. Rudolf Graber’s book “Athanasius and the Church of Our Time”, he quotes passages from an ex-canon named Roca in the 19th century who insisted “that the divine cult in the form of… the Roman Church will shortly undergo a transformation at an ecumenical council, which will restore to it the venerable simplicity of the golden age of the Apostles in accordance with the dictates of conscience and modern civilisation….

      There is a sacrifice in the offing which represents a solemn act of expiation… The Papacy will fall; it will die under the hallowed knife which the fathers of the last council will forge. The papal caesar is a Host crowned for the sacrifice.”

      And when I read that, the possibility occurred to me that Benedict’s “impossible” resignation was a means by which he neatly put the Papacy out of reach. The modernists could not but follow through as though the resignation was valid, and run headlong to effect Bergoglio’s election in the conclave.

      I appreciate the anonymous priest’s recalling for us St. Bernard’s course of action.

    3. I don’t know anyone who had a positive reaction to Francis upon first seeing him. A lot of people got a cold punch-in-the-gut feeling, though.

  3. Excellent piece of writing succinctly putting it all together. There is simply no way the current hierarchy will deal with the problems. I believe the Lord will allow the foretold Muslim/Russian European invasion and overrun of Rome to take out these cowards and infiltrating scoundrels, perhaps in the midst of a greater worldwide chastisement, the beginnings of which we are clearly already seeing. The Faithful can expect mass martyrdom, seeking refuge, and a small protected remnant beginning again when Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart triumphs. That’s my tuppence worth. Pray, hope and don’t worry 🙏 and stay confessed!

  4. I too can testify to a strange uncomfortable feeling the moment Bergolio first stepped out into the balcony LIVE on TV… Many others have also said likewise. I dismissed it then, but as others also mentioned it and events transpired, I truly believe it means something.

    I will also add that there is another possible way to begin to reconcile this – similarily to the 3-pope claimant era – appeal to Francis that for the good of the Church and unity that he should consider voluntarily resigning (properly), and a new man be validly elected (and he is also welcome to run again).

    But, heh, fat chance he’ll take that into consideration. His ‘position’ is the only thing protecting him. Beside ‘the plan’ clearly needs him at the wheel of the hijacked vessel to proceed.

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