By Jonathan Ekene Ifeanyi
Some days ago, I went to submit some documents in an office at Ikoyi, Lagos. While on my way back to Victoria Island, I passed through Femi Okunu Road, and when I got to number 15 I decided to stop and greet my brother Mr. Patrick Oke, as it had been a long time we spoke last. When I got to Mr. Oke’s house, however, his security guard said he was at a meeting, so I messaged the guard as well as sent a private text message to him, and then departed. About five hours later, when I had already gotten home, in the evening, my phone rang—it was Mr. Oke. Picking the call, however, what I got was a stern rebuke: “Which Jonathan?”—followed by blasting—and my big laughter as he was doing so!
Of course I was laughing because the person blasting is a Christian brother and I knew he wasn’t serious about all the things he said against me. We just had a disagreement on some issues bothering on private revelations, John Paul II, SSPX, and so on. Some years ago I had told Mr. Oke about the need for all traditional Catholics in Nigeria to put aside their personal interests and work together with the SSPX, and now, when I later met him again at Ikoyi a few days ago, Mr. Oke said to me, “Yes, you’re right...all of us should work together”. I was happy to hear that.
|Mr. Patrick Oke (second left) with his friends|
Mr. Patrick Oke, a journalist—former TV broadcaster, is a typical man of the Church and indeed, a real sign of contradiction to his contemporaries. He is a Catholic who no doubt manifests a great love for Our Lady, hence he is the founder of ‘Marian Awareness and Jesus to Mankind Apostolate’—a prayer group. What attracted me to Mr. Oke, however, wasn’t the prayer group but his massive campaigns against nudism among women in the Catholic Church. On this, he is simply a dogged fighter, and I must confess that—at least judging from appearance—his own beautiful but totally womanly and very simpleminded wife, mother of over ten children, remains a model that should be emulated by today’s carefree, lax and dissolute Nigerian Catholic women, I mean the “city women”. Mr. Oke, though wealthy, associates mostly with the poor and mobilises them always to fight against the errors of the New-church. For years, in fact from the time of John Paul II till date, he has been persecuted—immensely—by the clergy and diabolically abused and insulted by the “lay faithful” just for being “too Catholic”, but he has remained and ever remains indefatigable working assiduously in the Lord’s vineyard. It is really fearful that despite his massive efforts—despite his appeals to the clergy to abandon Novus Ordo and embrace the traditional Latin Mass, despite his appeals to “city women” to dress modestly always and especially while in the Church, etc.—both the clergy and the “lay faithful” have, till date, not only remained deaf but simply multiplied their sins. Today at Church of the Assumption in Falomo, Our Lady Mother of Perpetual Help Catholic Church in Victoria Island as well as Holy Cross Cathedral in Lagos Island—among other Churches where Mr. Oke sounded his warnings for years—very many women, more than ever—go to the Churches almost naked, and they do that because they are encouraged by the priests by words and deed. What has particularly marvelled me is how people who call themselves Catholic priests and even bishops see absolutely nothing wrong in giving what they believe to be the Body of Christ—Holy Communion—to practically everybody, no matter whatever one may wear! Do they still have consciences—and I mean not just as Catholics but as human beings?
When I met Mr. Oke at Falomo, Ikoyi some days ago, looking grief-stricken, he said to me: “All the priests have betrayed the Church...only a few of the lay faithful remain”.
Here, my intention is to discuss those issues that seem to be dividing us—issues bothering on the Mass, SSPX, Private Revelations, and John Paul II.
Mr. Patrick Oke started promoting the Latin Mass in Lagos State more than anyone else
I associated with Mr. Oke for some years and on different occasions tried to discuss some of the problems I found in his ‘Marian Awareness and Jesus to Mankind’ with him privately— issues bothering on private revelations, John Paul II, SSPX—but he hardly listens to anybody but does things just the way he wants, so I quietly withdrew when I got tired of him—hence our current “fight”! But I’m happy for his current positive comments about “working together”—particularly with the SSPX. It is a well known fact that Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre and his priests and bishops worldwide—falsely excommunicated by John Paul II but recalled by Pope Benedict XVI—remain the greatest opponents of Vatican II modernists and the greatest promoters of the traditional Latin Mass, so—except he or she has a bad motive—no one who really sincerely wishes to promote the Latin Mass can be against them, can be against the SSPX, period.
|His Grace, Alfred Adewale Martins, Archbishop of Lagos|
Mr. Patrick Oke started promoting the traditional Latin Mass in Lagos State more than anyone else I’ve ever known. And as far as I know, too, Mr. Oke himself initially associated with SSPX priests. I don’t really know what later happened between them. For years, Mr. Oke’s efforts to promote the Latin Mass were immensely frustrated by Cardinal Okogie who did not allow priests to celebrate the Latin Mass anywhere in the Archdiocese of Lagos. Now, however, Archbishop Alfred Adewale Martins—the Cardinal’s successor—has finally considered those efforts by giving “permission” to some priests to celebrate the Latin Mass for traditional Catholics in his Lagos Archdiocese. The “permission” was given about two years ago, and we all rejoiced over that.
However, with regards to that “permission”, which we consider good but simply not enough, our verdict remains that all Catholics are Traditional Catholics and their Mass is simply the Traditional Latin Mass. Catholics who don’t see themselves as traditional Catholics—who believe that Novus Ordo is the only Catholic Mass—are simply those enemies of the Church who are betraying the Faith and we must unite to denounce them. To the Archbishop of Lagos, we are saying a very big THANK YOU but also maintaining that Novus Ordo Mass—very destructive of the Catholic Faith—should be abandoned altogether. In other words it isn’t just enough for Archbishop Alfred Adewale Martins to give “permission” to some priests (to celebrate the Mass that he himself as the chief shepherd doesn’t celebrate!), the bishop himself should also abandon Novus Ordo Mass, learn how to celebrate the Traditional Latin Mass—which remains the only canonised Catholic Mass—and start celebrating it together with his priests for the entire Catholics in his Lagos Archdiocese. The argument that the Mass is now being celebrated in the vernacular languages instead of Latin so that everyone may understand what is being said is a romantic nonsense—it shows only lack of love and interest for the things of the Church, the things of God.
During my one-year stay in Niger State in northern Nigeria I simply marvelled to see 10-12 years old Hausa-Fulani Muslim children very fluent in reading of Arabic texts. I had taught English language in a secondary school over there and really marvelled at how even the most senior boys and girls in the school could neither speak nor write anything in English. One day, however, I met a junior boy in class 2 reading the Quran—written purely in Arabic—silently. So I halted, approached him and gave him a sign to read it loudly so that I might hear him, and when he did, in fact, not even late Father Joseph Kenny O.P., my personal mentor in Latin and Greek who was originally a professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies, was as fluent as him! Hausa-Fulani children and youths despise English language—the lingua franca of their country Nigeria—but manifest great love and eagerness to learn the Arabic language simply because it is the language of their religion. Now what equally stops Catholic men and women—let alone children and youths!—from learning Latin which remains the only language of the Church if not religious indifferentism as well as lack of interest in the things of the Church, the things of God?
How Latin became a “dead language”
Today in our world Latin language is considered (by some jerks of course) to be an outdated and “dead language” even while Arabic language, its contemporary stretching back to some 16 centuries to unrecorded beginnings in the Arabian Peninsula, has remained ever relevant. The rapid spread of the Islamic faith—and the Catholic Faith is about six hundred years older than Islam!—brought the original literary tradition of the Arabian Peninsula into contact with many other cultural traditions—Byzantine, Persian, Indian, Amazigh (Berber), and Andalusian, to name just a few—transforming and being transformed by all of them.
So if the two languages are contemporaries, or almost so, why is Latin today considered to be a “dead language” even while the Arabic remains ever relevant?
Now when we briefly turn to history to find out the forces behind this revolution we shall see the same anti-Catholic forces at work. Latin literature was primarily produced during the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire, when Latin was a spoken language. For centuries, Latin wasn’t just the language of the Church but simply the most influential language in the world—as Rome was the super power by this time. When Rome fell, Latin remained the language of the Church and later of the universities—the first university in the world, the principal centre for studies in civil and canon law, was founded in the Italian city of Bologna late in the 11th century AD, Università Degli Studi Di Bologna, then came another in Paris, in northern Europe, followed by Oxford, Cambridge and others—as well as the literary language of the Western medieval world until it was superseded by the Romance languages it had generated and by other modern languages. Even then, Latin still remained the language of the Church and of the universities. After the Renaissance—the spirit of which was expressed earliest by the anti-Catholic intellectual movement called humanism, a humanism initiated by secular men of letters rather than by the scholar-clerics who had dominated medieval intellectual life and had developed the Scholastic philosophy—the writing of Latin was increasingly confined to the narrow limits of certain ecclesiastical and academic publications, but it remained ever relevant, still. However, the massive attack finally came after the Reformation, when different governments and nations that followed Martin Luther were not only renouncing their Catholic Faith but also anything viewed to be connected to that Faith. Since Latin was the language of the Church, it became a suspect. The first modern university was that of Halle, founded by Lutherans in 1694. This school was one of the first to renounce religious orthodoxy of any kind in favour of “rational” and “objective” intellectual inquiry, and it was the first where teachers lectured in German (i.e., a vernacular language) rather than in Latin. Halle's innovations were adopted by the University of Göttingen (founded in 1737) a generation later and subsequently by most German and many American universities.
Today Vatican II modernists have renewed the attack on Latin initiated by the Lutherans in the seventeenth century, by doing away with the traditional Latin Mass, the Tridentine Mass, and introducing Novus Ordo Mass in which Latin—the only official language of the Church—is of less relevance than the vernacular languages.
Some of these novelties are often imposed on the faithful, against their wish
Some days ago I met one of the old choir members at Holy Cross Cathedral and asked him: “Sir, you choir members know better. During the time of Cardinal Okogie the readings on Good Friday used to be read in Latin, but now everything is being read in English. Why?” And he answered: “Well, I share your feelings as well...I wish a forum is organised where issues of this nature can be discussed. But they don’t allow all that...they impose all these novelties on us”. Another day I met another choir member, an old man as well, and asked the same question and he answered, sharply: “It was Monsignor Paschal Nwaezeapu who changed all that...Father Tekko has tried to reverse that but hasn’t succeeded...too sad!” Monsignor Paschal Nwaezeapu is a charismatic-minded priest who messed up the cathedral while he was the administrator there. He promoted the charismatic movement—which Mr. Oke also fought against for years—as well as introduced many novelties in the Novus Ordo Mass there.
Mr. Oke’s attitude towards some private revelations scandalised some of his Apostolate members
Most Catholics who currently attend SSPX Masses in Lagos State were initially working with Mr. Patrick Oke. In fact, they were mobilised by him some years ago to fight against the errors and propagators of errors in the Nigerian New-church. They were members of the ‘Marian Awareness and Jesus to Mankind Apostolate’ who later felt scandalised by some things being promoted by the Apostolate—such as teaching that John Paul II was a great pope, the Divine Mercy Devotion of Sister Maria Faustina, private revelations of Sister Maria Divine Mercy, and so on. SSPX opposes all these and some of the members, having taken time to study them and found them to be false, agreed with the SSPX—hence the disagreement, and finally separation.
However, with regards to private revelations, I am aware that Mr. Patrick Oke of many years ago wasn’t someone ever ready to embrace any nonsense appearing in the name of “private revelation”, so I still can’t understand what’s really going on now—I mean his current attitude towards them.
Many Private Revelations are false
|Mrs Veronica Ifeanyi (Mum) in the 1980s|
Many—but certainly not all—private revelations are false. I started studying private revelations while I was a teenager. Then, it was my mother—a teacher and vigilant Catholic simply in love with private revelations of Our Lady and Our Lord—who started inculcating that habit in me. Mum also got to know about Father Gruner’s apostolate and his interpretations of the Fatima message early in life and had no doubt that Father Gruner was right. She used to narrate the story of Fatima to us and was always very happy to see me manifesting a profound interest in that. One day, however, a friend gave me a book by one Emmanuel Eni entitled ‘Delivered from the Power of Darkness’, which I simply digested. In the book, the author claims to have had visions of Christ and to have received several revelations from Christ. Wow! After reading the wonderful stories I quickly ran to my mum and showed her the “great book”. I had expected her to like the book and to praise me—as she used to do—but, to my surprise, she took the book from me, scanned through it and kept quiet for some time. Then she spoke, calmly: “Don’t read this one. It is false”. I was unhappy and displeased for this remark. But she loves issues of this nature and often tells us stories similar to what I read in this book, so why telling me not to read it? I wondered unhappily. Nevertheless, because it was mum who said so—mum who knew about private revelations more than any human being on this planet!—I accepted her verdict, and put the book aside.
Saint Gregory VII in hell?
When I grew older—particularly when I turned twenty—I simply advanced, reading stories of the saints and other marvellous religious books. But by this time I didn’t know much about the difference between Catholic and Protestant books. One day, I got from a friend a book by Prof. Nathan Uzoma entitled “Occult Grand Master Now In Christ”. The story in this book was just similar to the one I had read in Delivered From the Power of Darkness some years back, to the extent that at a point I got confused thinking it was from the same author! The friend who gave me the book praised it immensely but I was cautious as I could remember my mother’s verdict on Delivered From the Power of Darkness some years back. Now in this new book, the author claims to have gone to hell and to have seen there—among other innumerable “evil men and women”—Hildebrand, “a great occult man who reigned here on earth as Pope Gregory VII”. Put simply, the book immensely disturbed my Catholic Faith, but again I remembered my mother’s verdict on Delivered From the Power of Darkness—in fact, that first book which mum condemned doesn’t even condemn Catholicism so openly as this new book does even blatantly. The new book, which contains marvellous stories of heaven and hell, was so appealing to me that I could hardly afford to dismiss it, so I tried imagining that the pope in question might have been a very bad pope. This led me to visit the library and began to study the biography of the pope. To my surprise, I learnt from my studies that Pope Gregory VII (born Hildebrand) is in fact a Catholic Saint!
Knowing the man Hildebrand
|Pope Gregory VII (Hildebrand)|
Hildebrand, one of the greatest popes of the medieval Church, who lived exemplary life and lent his name to the 11th-century movement now known as the Gregorian Reform or Investiture Controversy, was the first pope to depose a crowned ruler, the faithless Emperor Henry IV (1056–1105/06). His staunch advocacy of clerical celibacy and repudiation of simony reshaped the Church and helped establish the ideals of the reformers as the standard for the Church. In fact, Hildebrand’s exemplary life was so widely known that after the death of his predecessor, Pope Alexander II, a tumultuous crowd of Roman citizens and clergy themselves raised Hildebrand to the papacy during the funeral solemnities for Pope Alexander II on April 22, 1073. He was enthroned immediately in the basilica of San Pietro in Vincoli even though he was not ordained a priest until June 29, the feast day of the apostles Peter and Paul, the patron saints of the Apostolic See and the city of Rome. Hildebrand's elevation by the combination of citizens and clergy was a hostile reaction to the reordering of the papal election ordo at the 1059 Lateran Council, which had given the cardinal-bishops the leading voice in papal elections. The Roman people and clergy had been disenfranchised by the ordo, which thus ended the domination of the papacy by various Roman factions. Hildebrand's election, however, followed the ancient rules that had been prominently upheld in the canonical collection of Deusdedit, cardinal-priest of San Pietro in Vincoli. Hildebrand, as Pope Gregory VII, interpreted his election as a special call by God to continue unhesitatingly the fight for what he described as iustitia (“justice”), meaning the restoration of the Church to what Gregory and other faithful Catholics saw as its proper place in the world order. Indeed, they intended to revive the Church's ancient splendour and unquestioned leadership as instituted by Christ when he founded the Church on the rock that was St. Peter (Matthew 16:18). Gregory was convinced that the pope was the living successor of St. Peter and representative of Christ. Because of this link, the pope, and he alone, would always remain a true Christian, never deviating from the faith and always cognizant of the will of God. Therefore, all Christians owed him absolute and unquestioned obedience. Disobedience was regarded as heresy, and obedience to God was simply obedience to the papacy.
Gregory VII was the first pope to try to contact every ruler of his time, asserting the overlordship of the apostle Peter—that is, of the papacy—in several regions of Europe. The most successful example of the use of feudal arrangements by the papacy was the alliance with the Norman leaders of southern Italy, concluded with Richard of Capua in 1073 and Robert Guiscard in 1059. Their obligations included fealty to the pope and his legitimate successors as well as military and financial aid. In return, the pope became their overlord and invested them with the imperial and Byzantine-Muslim territories that they had conquered or would conquer. In Spain, Croatia-Dalmatia, Denmark, Hungary, the kingdom of Kiev, Brittany, Poland, and Bohemia, as well as in England, Gregory also tried to assert overlordship, but with little success.
The pope’s deposition of King Henry IV happened thus: Gregory VII addressed himself to amending the secularised condition of the Church. The feudal standing of the higher clergy, the claims of sovereigns upon temporalities, and the consequent temptation to simony were, he held, the cause of all the evils present in Europe. While he tried to enforce all the details of discipline, it was against investiture that his main efforts were directed. In 1074 he prohibited this practice, under pain of excommunication, and in 1075 he actually issued that sentence against several bishops and councillors of the empire. Emperor Henry IV, disregarding these “menaces”, was summoned to Rome to answer for his conduct. Henry’s sole reply was defiance, and, on January 24, 1076, at the imperial assembly of Worms, Henry and the vast majority of the German bishops replied in even harsher terms to Gregory's letter and oral message. The bishops renounced their obedience to “Frater Hildebrand,” and the king called on Gregory to abdicate and on the Romans to elect a new pope. Northern Italian bishops immediately joined the action and renounced their support for Gregory. The letters reached Gregory during the customary Lenten synod (February 14–20, 1076), and the outraged pope reacted immediately, by simply using a prayer to St. Peter to depose and excommunicate Henry. In the same prayer, Gregory also absolved all of Henry's subjects of their oath of fealty to the king.
In Germany Gregory's action strengthened princely as well as episcopal opposition to Henry in a civil war that raged intermittently throughout his reign. In order to save his crown, Henry IV submitted to the pope at the castle of Canossa on January 28, 1077. Countess Matilda of Tuscany and Abbot Hugh of Cluny, Henry's godfather, had interceded for him. Gregory acted as a pastor of souls when he reconciled the king with the Church. The encounter at Canossa had interrupted Gregory's journey to Augsburg (now in Germany), where he was to meet German princes who had planned to elect a new ruler in opposition to Henry IV. Despite Gregory's absolution of Henry and return to Rome, the princes proceeded with their plan. Their nominee, Rudolf of Rheinfelden, was elected (anti-king) on March 15, 1077.
The quarrel between Henry and Gregory intensified after the pope formally prohibited lay investiture at the council of November 1078. Investiture was the customary ceremony in which the emperor or king bestowed upon the bishops the ring and staff, the symbols of their office as well as of royal authority in and protection of the Church. Nevertheless, Gregory at first tried to arbitrate between Henry and Rudolf, but he excommunicated Henry for a second time at the Lenten synod of 1080 and formally recognized Rudolf as king. However, after the absolution of Canossa, Henry had reasserted himself. The new excommunication—for him—had little effect, and the king was victorious in the civil war. In June 1080 Henry resumed hostilities with the pope, again declaring Gregory VII deposed (by the synod of Brixen) and appointed Archbishop Wibert of Ravenna as “pope”. After a siege of three years, Henry marched on Rome, supported by German and, especially, Italian troops, and took possession of the Eternal City in March 1084, when the Romans, including many cardinals and other clergy, opened the gates to Henry and his army. They had deserted the papal cause in response to Gregory's “inflexibility”. Wibert was enthroned as antipope Clement III, and Henry IV was crowned “emperor”. However, just as Gregory VII was on the point of falling into his hands, Robert Guiscard, the Norman Duke of Apulia, entered the city, set Gregory free, and compelled Henry to return to Germany. But the wretched condition to which Rome was reduced obliged Gregory to withdraw ultimately to Salerno, where he died on May 25, 1085. According to tradition, his last words were a paraphrase of a passage from Psalm 44, “I have loved righteousness and hated iniquity, therefore I die in exile.”
With his revolutionary act, Gregory VII—who as early as December 1073 had called King Philip I of France (reigned 1059/60–1108) the worst of all princely tyrants oppressing the Church because the king refused to invest a canonically elected bishop with the secular properties and rights of the bishopric—translated his personal religious and mystical convictions regarding the role of the papacy into direct action in the world at large. The effect of his excommunication of Henry IV was tremendous. Never before had a pope deposed a king, but Gregory, according to a later letter, believed that he had historical precedents on his side. The deposition of Henry IV was the most hotly debated action taken by Gregory VII, who pursued to its logical conclusion his conviction that papal primacy pertained not only to the spiritual sphere but to the secular sphere as well.
Pope Gregory VII was canonised a Saint by Pope Paul V in 1606. (I felt his powerful heavenly blessing upon me to see that his feast day is May 25, just the time I was amazingly inspired to write about him!).
Thus, mum was right! Nathan Uzoma is a wicked Protestant heretic and false visionary!
Now what I learnt from this experience was how the Devil operates through false visionaries and can easily destroy people’s faith through this means. I expect Mr. Oke to be cautious in matters of private revelations—just like my mum was. As one of his Apostolate members once said to me, “He doesn’t have any problem with even some private revelations coming from non-Catholics provided they say something good!” He was exaggerating of course, but certainly not completely.
On the Messages of Maria Divine Mercy
According to Maria Divine Mercy’s web site, she is “a Roman Catholic married mother of a young family living in Europe [and] says she has been receiving from the Holy Trinity as well as by the Virgin Mary.”
She writes anonymous, stating, “The woman wishes to be known by the name Maria Divine Mercy and says that it is the wish of Jesus that she remains anonymous to protect her family and to avoid any distraction from the messages.” Again, “The messages have been received by her since November 2010 and are still ongoing. Over 650 have been received.”
In a YouTube interview, she claims to have been a business woman and speaks with what appears to be an Irish accent.
According to the messages of Maria Divine Mercy, the papacy apparently ended as of March 20, 2012, on which date we were allegedly told by the Virgin Mary, “The keys of Rome have been handed back to my Father, God the Most High, who will rule from the Heavens”.
In Scripture, it was the “keys of the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 16:19) that Christ gave Peter when instituting the papacy, not the “keys of Rome”; nonetheless, the messages of Maria Divine Mercy convey a correspondence between the handing back of “the keys of Rome” and the end of the papacy of Benedict XVI—whom Maria Divine Mercy calls “the last true pope” (April 12, 2012, February 19, 2013, and March 21, 2013)—and thus the end of the papacy. The messages connect the handing back of the keys with Benedict's then “immanent departure” (June 6, 2011), his “danger of being exiled from Rome” (March 20, 2012), and, finally on February 17, 2013, with his “departure”. A purported message from Maria Divine Mercy's “Christ and Savour” [sic] then informs us that “after Pope Benedict, you will be led by me from the heavens” May 7, 2012), and then, from the “Mother of Salvation”, that “anyone else who claims to sit on the Seat of Peter is an imposter” (July 22, 2013).
In any case, Maria Divine Mercy is saying—in effect—that the papacy has ended, or will end, at which point God the Father “will direct his Church, the true believers, from the heavens” April 7, 2012). There are serious problems with these implications.
The First Vatican Council responds to this in its First Dogmatic Constitution on the Church of Christ (Pastor Aeternus), Chapter II, Sections 1 and 5:
“That which Our Lord Jesus Christ, the prince of shepherds and great shepherd of the sheep, established in the blessed apostle Peter, for the continual salvation and permanent benefit of the church, must of necessity remain forever, by Christ's authority, in the church which, founded as it is upon a rock, will stand firm until the end of time.”
“Therefore, if anyone says that it is not by the institution of Christ the Lord himself (that is to say, by divine law) that blessed Peter should have perpetual successors in the primacy over the whole church; or that the Roman pontiff is not the successor of blessed Peter in this primacy: let him be anathema.”
The problematic nature of what the messages of Maria Divine Mercy are saying can be seen by looking especially at the bulleted points of Section 5 of the above citation.
According to the first point, it is heresy to say that Christ's institution of the papacy would not entail that “Peter should have perpetual successors”. And, Maria Divine Mercy states that Benedict is the “last true pope” (April 12, 2012, February 19, 2013, and March 21, 2013), that, “after Pope Benedict”, the Church will be “led by [Christ] from the heavens” (May 7, 2013), and that “anyone else who claims to sit on the Seat of Peter is an imposter” (July 22, 2013). That is a big lie.
Of course, it is understandable that Francis I—the so-called successor of Benedict XVI—is indisputably an impostor and a usurper. But we have to be on our guard as the Devil is ever vigilant and clever and can—and indeed does—use the sad situation to create more confusion. When we say that Francis is a false pope, our position is not based on this sort of “revelation” by Maria Divine Mercy but on the glaring evidence before us—namely the circumstances that surrounded Bergoglio’s “election”, the St. Gallen’s Mafia and the rest as well as Francis’ own personal heresies which he dishes out every day. In fact whether Francis was validly elected or not is not even the issue. The issue is that he is not only a manifest heretic but also an archenemy of the Catholic Faith who masquerades as the Vicar of Christ just to deceive people and send them to hell—his presence at the Vatican, alone, is a threat to our Faith and for this we simply reject him. As Father Kramer puts it:
“St. Robert Bellarmine, St. Antoninus propose solutions for such a crisis. Once it is clear that the pope is a heretic, then the Church can judge him. Then the Church authorities must go about electing a new pope. It was a similar, but not identical crisis of the papacy that brought about the convening of the Council of Constance, which prevailed upon the three rival claimants to the papacy to resign, and then elected Pope St. Martin V. That ended the crisis. One way or the other, Francis must be replaced, regardless of whether he resigns gracefully or gets thrown out kicking and screaming”.
There are many good Catholics who believe the messages of Maria Divine Mercy because they haven’t really investigated them. I don’t know whether Mr. Oke still believes them. In any case, I advise anyone who does to carefully consider the objections just raised. (See the condemnation of Maria Divine Mercy’s messages by the Archbishop of Dublin, here:
On Sister Maria Faustina’s Divine Mercy Devotion
In his article, ‘We are Under Attack! To Defend Ourselves, We Must Have the Full Third Secret’ (published in Father Gruner’s The Fatima Crusader, 2010 Issue 97, pp. 88-89), Father Paul Kramer writes:
“...As always, to solve a difficult question one must be willing to rethink a problem, no matter how firmly held one’s convictions may be. This was one of the most valuable lessons I learned as a philosophy student in the Angelicum, when our professor, the renowned Dominican scholar Klemens Vansteenkiste, O.P. explained in class that St. Thomas Aquinas always rethought a problem whenever it was put to him anew no matter how many times he had expounded on it before.
“Most people are unwilling to do this, and as a result their mind becomes the prisoner of their own convictions—convictions that are not the fruit of analysis based on solid evidence but the uncritical result of ideas that have been spawned by a nurtured habit of mind which disposes one to accept premises that are based on partial evidence that has been carefully pre-selected and spoon-fed to them and therefore not firmly supported by established factual evidence. We must retrain ourselves to break this habit of mind and insist on making a thorough examination of the evidence ourselves—that means researching and investigating rather than relying on the pre-selected evidence presented to us by government and media both of which are effectively under the control of the ruling financial elite.
“Judgement must once again be objective—based entirely and exclusively on rational analysis of evidence, and not subjected to the influence of political, social or financial pressure. Objectivity requires that we give a fair hearing to an argument and the evidence that supports it and judge on the basis of the evidence alone. Truth is knowledge of reality based on premises that are (a) infallibly revealed (b) self-evident, or (3) rigorously demonstrated.”
Most Catholics all over the world today—members of Mr. Oke’s Apostolate among them—believe that Sister Maria Faustina is a Saint and that her Divine Mercy Devotion came from God. Their belief is based on the fact that John Paul II promoted that Devotion and even made Sister Faustina a Saint. But is there anything wrong if one investigates whether this belief is actually true or false? I don’t think so.
Of course when I hadn’t studied Sister Maria Faustina’s writings I myself was also one of the devotees of her Divine Mercy Devotion—but after doing so and having seen a very clear evidence against that I quickly rejected the “Devotion” even though it was promoted by John Paul II. That is Catholic.
Divine Mercy Diary of Sister Maria Faustina, as I learnt, is a counterfeit of The Way of Divine Love, which is also written in diary form, but of the Sacred Heart's messages to Sister Josefa Menendez. Sister Josefa’s 504-page book is still here with me and I advise anyone who has read Faustina’s Diary to also get Josefa’s book, read it and compare it to that of Faustina. In The Way of Divine Love, Sister Josefa was constantly told by Our Lord, “it is because of your littleness that I chose you.” The book is filled with Josefa’s belief in her unworthiness and Our Lord’s requests over and over for suffering and sacrifice for sinners. She was taken down into hell many times to make reparation for various people the Lord asked her about. It is really balanced, and her superiors at the convent actually were present when the Lord spoke to her, so it is credible. Also, it has been translated into many languages, and she died in the 1920's—just before Faustina came on the scene. The point here is not that Faustina was trying to fake it, but that this writer, like many vigilant Catholics around the world, believes Satan saw the effects of The Way of Divine Love on Catholics all over the world and brought in his counterfeit, period.
Many people may have received “graces” from the devotion to Divine Mercy propagated by Sister Faustina, and she was also pious. However, this does not necessarily mean that this devotion is from God. It is true that Pope John Paul II promoted this devotion, that it was through his efforts that the prohibition was lifted on April 15, 1978, and that he even introduced a feast of Divine Mercy into the Novus Ordo. However, the fact that good and pious people receive graces and that Sister Faustina was pious do not necessarily mean that her messages were from heaven. In fact, these messages were not only not approved before Vatican II, they were condemned, and this despite the fact that the prayers themselves of the chaplet of Divine Mercy are orthodox.
There were two decrees from Rome on this question, both of the time of Pope John XIII. The Supreme Congregation of the Holy Office, in a plenary meeting held on November 19, 1958, made the following decisions:
1. The supernatural nature of the revelations made to Sister Faustina is not evident.
2. No feast of Divine Mercy is to be instituted.
2. No feast of Divine Mercy is to be instituted.
3. It is forbidden to divulge images and writings that propagate this devotion under the form received by Sister Faustina.
The second decree of the Holy Office was on March 6, 1959, in which the following was established:
1. The diffusion of images and writings promoting the devotion to Divine Mercy under the form proposed by the same Sister Faustina was forbidden.
1. The diffusion of images and writings promoting the devotion to Divine Mercy under the form proposed by the same Sister Faustina was forbidden.
2. The prudence of the bishops is to judge as to the removal of the foresaid images that are already displayed for public honour.
What was it about this devotion that prevented the Holy Office from acknowledging its divine origin? The decrees do not say, but it seems that the reason lies in the fact that in Faustina’s messages, there is so much emphasis on God’s mercy as to exclude His justice. Our sins and the gravity of the offense that they inflict on God is pushed aside as being of little consequence. That is why the aspect of reparation for sin is omitted or obscured.
The true image of God’s mercy is the Sacred Heart of Jesus, pierced with a lance, crowned with thorns, dripping precious blood. The Sacred Heart calls for devotion of reparation, as the popes have always requested. However, this is not the case with the Divine Mercy devotion. The image has no heart! It is a Sacred Heart without a heart, without reparation, without the price of our sins being clearly evident. It is this that makes the devotion very incomplete and makes us suspicious of its supernatural origin, regardless of Sister Faustina’s own good intentions and personal holiness. This absence of the need for reparation for sins is manifest in the strange promise of freedom from all temporal punishment due to sin for those who observe the 3:00 p.m. Low Sunday devotions. How could such a devotion be more powerful and better than a plenary indulgence, applying the extraordinary treasury of the merits of the saints? How could it not require as a condition that we perform a penitential work of our own? How could it not require the detachment from even venial sin that is necessary to obtain a plenary indulgence?
The published Diary of Sister Maria Faustina Kowalski (Marian Press, Stockbridge, MA, 2007) also indicates several reasons to seriously question the supernatural origin of the more than 640 pages of voluminous and repeated apparitions and messages. The characteristic of any true mystic who has received supernatural graces is always a profound humility, sense of unworthiness, awareness and profession of gravity of his sins—as we see in Sister Josefa and other saints. Yet this humility is strangely lacking in Sister Faustina’s diary. On October 2, 1936, for example, she states that the “Lord Jesus” spoke these words to her: “Now I know that it is not for the graces or gifts that you love me, but because My will is dearer to you than life. That is why I am uniting Myself with you so intimately as with no other creature.” (§707, p. 288). This gives every appearance of being a claim of being more united to Jesus than anybody else, even the Blessed Virgin Mary, and certainly more than all the other saints. What a pride, to believe such an affirmation, let alone to assert that it came from heaven!
In April 1938, Sister Faustina read the canonization of St. Andrew Bobola and was filled with longing and tears that her congregation might have its own saint. Then she affirms the following: “And the Lord Jesus said to me, Don’t cry. You are that saint.” (§1650, p. 583). These are words that most certainly no true saint would affirm, but rather his sinfulness and unworthiness of his congregation. This presumption in her writings is not isolated. She praises herself on several occasions through the words supposedly uttered by Jesus. Listen to this interior locution, for example: “Beloved pearl of My Heart, I see your love so pure, purer than that of the angels, and all the more so because you keep fighting. For your sake I bless the world.” (§1061, p. 400). On May 23, 1937 she describes a vision of the Holy Trinity, after which she heard a voice saying “Tell the Superior General to count on you as the most faithful daughter in the Order” (§1130, p. 417). It is consequently hardly surprising that Sister Faustina claimed to be exempt from the Particular and General Judgments. On February 4, 1935, she already claimed to hear this voice in her soul: “From today on, do not fear God’s judgment, for you will not be judged” (§374, p. 168). Add to this the preposterous affirmation that the host three times over jumped out of the tabernacle and placed itself in her hands (§44, p. 23), so that she had to open up the tabernacle herself and place it back in there!...tells the story of a presumption on God’s grace which goes beyond all reason, let alone as the action of a person supposedly favoured with innumerable and repeated mystical and supernatural graces.
“One day Jesus said to me, I am going to leave this house... because there are things here which displease Me. And the Host came out of the tabernacle and came to rest in my hands and I, with joy, placed it back in the tabernacle. This was repeated a second time, and I did the same thing. Despite this, it happened a third time, but the Host was transformed into the living Lord Jesus, who said to me, I will stay here no longer! At this, a powerful love for Jesus rose up in my soul. I answered, ‘And I, I will not let You leave this house, Jesus!’ And again Jesus disappeared while the Host remained in my hands. Once again I put it back in the chalice and closed it up in the tabernacle. And Jesus stayed with us.”
For years, Mr. Patrick Oke fought against Reverend Sisters who commit the sacrilege of touching the Host—those who distribute Holy Communion. But has he, as a learned journalist, taken time to study Sister Faustina’s Diary—I mean Sister Faustina whose Divine Mercy he promotes with zeal? “And the Host came out of the tabernacle and came to rest in my hands and I, with joy, placed it back in the tabernacle.” Has Mr. Oke ever read this? If so, then, has he become among the “most people” spoken of by Father Kramer—those who, unlike Thomas Aquinas, are unable to rethink a problem whenever it was put to them anew—whose mind “becomes the prisoner of their own convictions—convictions that are not the fruit of analysis based on solid evidence but the uncritical result of ideas that have been spawned by a nurtured habit of mind which disposes one to accept premises that are based on partial evidence that has been carefully pre-selected and spoon-fed to them and therefore not firmly supported by established factual evidence”?
In fact, I am going too far. In the message given to Rev. Sister Hermana Guadalupe—which Mr. Oke also has and promotes!—Our Lord speaks: “Now the priests no longer distribute the Eucharist, they leave this to lay men, men who have not had their hands consecrated. The lay men distribute the Eucharist and by doing this they don’t give it any importance because the priests say that it is only a banquet, that it is just a simple meal, and that you should sing, dance and do so many things that offend the Eternal Father and Me and which makes my Mother cry. When you do this you are desecrating my Body, you are desecrating my Blood, and all of my children must be conscious that they are receiving God, the God that remains confined in the tabernacle to give you life, to give you the blessings and graces that your soul needs....I also want to tell you dear daughters, the nuns, that you are also in mortal sin because you have changed your habits, and because you dare to touch my Body, and this mustn’t be, because this was also one of the reasons why I instituted the priesthood, because only priests can consecrate.” (Guatemala, April 14, 1989).
Pope St. Sixtus (circa 115AD) taught that “the sacred vessels are not to be handled by others than those consecrated to the Lord”. The Council of Saragossa excommunicated anyone who dared receive Holy Communion by hand, and this was confirmed by the Synod of Toledo. The Sixth Ecumenical Council of Constantinople (680-681) forbade the faithful to take the Sacred Host in their hand, threatening transgressors with excommunication. In his Summa Theologica St. Thomas Aquinas writes: “Out of reverence towards this Sacrament (Holy Eucharist), nothing touches it, but what is consecrated; hence the corporal and the chalice are consecrated, and likewise the priest’s hands, for touching this Sacrament. Hence, it is not lawful for anyone else to touch it except from necessity, for instance if it were to fall upon the ground, or else in some other case of urgency” (Summa Theologica, III, 82, 3). In the sixteenth century the Council of Trent confirmed this: “The fact that only the priest gives Holy Communion is an Apostolic Tradition”.
Hence people like us maintain that the message of Sister Maria Faustina is false! Our Lord cannot approve the sacrilege of un-anointed hands touching His Precious and Sacred Body, as is commonly practised today all over the Catholic world.
It is perhaps not accidental that John Paul II—a promoter of Communion in the Hand—promoted this devotion, for it is very much in line with his encyclical Dives in Misericordia. In fact, the Paschal Mystery theology that he taught pushed aside all consideration of the gravity of sin and the need for penance, for satisfaction to divine justice, and hence of the Mass as being an expiatory sacrifice, and likewise the need to gain indulgences and to do works of penance. Since God is infinitely merciful and does not count our sins, all this is considered of no consequence. This is not the Catholic spirit. We must make reparation for our sins and for the sins of the whole world, as the Sacred Heart repeatedly asked at Paray-Le-Monial. It is the renewal of our consecration to the Sacred Heart and frequent holy hours of reparation that is going to bring about the conversion of sinners. It is in this way that we can cooperate in bringing about His Kingdom of Merciful Love, because it is the perfect recognition of the infinite holiness of the Divine Majesty and complete submission to His rightful demands. Mercy only means something when we understand the price of our Redemption.
John Paul II the greatest pope?
Now on the belief that John Paul II was the greatest pope, I don’t just wish to say much on that because there is simply no time and space to do so—to do so would, put simply, require writing a big book. It may just suffice to quote Father Paul Kramer’s old article, ‘What are the Missing Contents of the Third Secret?’ (published in Father Gruner’s The Fatima Crusader, Summer 2010, p. 39 & pp. 42-43). In the sections entitled Diabolical Disorientation at Every Level, God’s Foundation for Unity, Grace is Necessary for Eternal Salvation, Freemasonic “Unity” and The False One-World Religion Built-up from Ecumenism, Apostasy respectively, Father Kramer writes:
“Sister Lucy referred to the diabolical disorientation in our Church’s hierarchy at the very highest levels. We look in the encyclical letter of Pope John Paul II, Ut Unum Sint, and we see the disorientation was at the very highest level. The disorientation inhibited the mind of the Vicar of Christ on earth, Pope John Paul II. He is the one who declared that the Church has an irrevocable commitment to ecumenism. The problem there is that ecumenism is the greatest threat to the Church. Ecumenism was created by the greatest, most mortal enemies of the Church for the purpose of destroying the Church. Ecumenism is the greatest obstacle to unity, and yet we are told that we must promote ecumenism for the sake of unity.
“To understand just how absurd is the idea that ecumenism promotes unity, we need only to consider what are the bonds of communion, in what does unity consist? There are the three bonds of unity: the bond of Faith, the bond of the Sacraments, and the bond of Ecclesiastical Governance. In the formulation of Saint Paul, he states: “One Lord, one Faith, one Baptism” (Eph. 4:5).
“There is the one Faith, the Catholic Faith outside of which there is no salvation. Or as the First Vatican Council stated, outside of that Faith there is no salvation. There is one religion which is a divine institution—that is the Catholic religion. No other religion on earth is a divine institution. This is why there is no salvation outside of the Catholic Faith, because it is the divine and Catholic Faith.
“Mere human doctrines cannot gain salvation. They do not have the power to confer grace. It is through Faith and the Sacraments, by the supernatural power of God through Faith, and the grace that we receive from Almighty God and the Sacraments that bring about salvation. So there cannot be communion between the Church and any other religion. So there is the bond of Faith, the bond of the Sacraments and the bond of the Ecclesiastical Governance. Where there are these three bonds of communion, there is unity.
“As John Paul II himself declared in Ut Unum Sint, ecumenism has its origin in the Churches of the Reform: the Protestants. We can go back further and we will see that ecumenism, before it invaded the Church and before it invaded the Protestant denominations, was first promoted by Freemasonry. It is of Jewish origin: the idea of natural religion as the vehicle of salvation for the Gentiles. This was the teaching of the Jewish rabbis. And the Jewish philosopher Mendelssohn—the grandfather of the composer Felix Mendelssohn—wrote this and I provide the precise quotation in my book, “The Suicide of Altering the Faith in the Liturgy”.
“Now we can begin to grasp what the Third Secret is dealing with: the Great Apostasy and loss of Faith, and what will bring that about. Because the unity that will be created by ecumenism is the unity sought after for centuries by Freemasonry. It is Freemasonry that would set up in the world a one-world religion with this Jewish/Protestant idea of unity. The idea that all the Christian denominations can co-exist in peace and harmony and unity is absolutely incompatible with the Catholic Faith, the doctrine of unity, the bonds of communion. It is coherent strictly, entirely, logically in the absurd notion of Protestantism that there can be communion in doctrinal diversity.
“So what unity will ecumenism bring? It will not bring unity in Christ, but what Pope Saint Pius X warned about in his 1904 encyclical when he warned about the coming one-world religion. ...This is the Great Apostasy that Bishop Cosme do Amaral was speaking about, referring to the loss of Faith. This is the content of the Third Secret that has not been revealed. Bishop Cosme do Amaral was very impressed by this great spiritual tribulation, the greatest and worst persecution of the Church that there ever will have been and ever will be.”
|Pope Pius XI|
Now on the argument about who was the greatest pope, or rather the belief that John Paul II was in fact the greatest pope, I need not say much on that but only to cite late Cardinal Giacomo Biffi (1928-2015)—a professor of theology and former Archbishop of Bologna, well known as an opponent of “Dialogue” with false religions, who, in fact, was said to have once personally confronted John Paul II on the issue. It is surprising that Cardinal Biffi—who attended the Second Vatican Council and really witnessed all the terrible things that took place there—in his autobiographical volume Memorie e digressioni di un italiano cardinale [Memories and Digressions of an Italian Cardinal], published in 2007, designates as “the greatest pope of the twentieth century” Pope Pius XI, who today is perhaps the most overlooked and forgotten pope!
Had Pius XI lived to witness the ecumenical scandal of John Paul II, he would—no doubt—have excommunicated him without a waste of time. See Pope Pius XI’s verdict on ecumenism here:
It is my hope that we take more time to study the issues raised here, and do so critically—whether we like raising those issues or not—and then teach others. But we must do so with love, not bitterness and backbiting. I say this because there are those who, in the name of being “traditional Catholics”, go about talking utter rubbish and confusing the simpleminded always. In fact I have seen some whose only contribution in the “fight against error” is to always condemn those they perceive to be their enemies instead of facing the errors themselves and condemning them, and in the process what they achieve is to create confusion. And who are those being confused? The ignorant, the simpleminded, those who often sincerely come to learn!
As Our Lord said to one of the seers in one of the private revelations, “You must be able to approach my poor ones even though it will cause you anguish and tears...See every person in my afflicted countenance”. (Divine Appeal 1, 3.00 am, September 8, 1987). No one knows it all—certainly not the present writer. But the little we know we should learn how to share with others, with love! What God expects from all traditional Catholics who understand the current sad situation of the Church is to enlighten those who are ignorant, not to confuse them. To do this successfully, unity among all traditional Catholics is highly needed. As Mr. Oke himself stated, “Yes...all of us should work together”.
We pray, that God, Truth Himself, may enlighten the darkness of our hearts and minds as we take more time to study as well as consider more carefully the issues raised here. Deus pater veritatis, pater sapientiae, pater summaeque vitae, pater beatitudinis, pater boni et pulchri, pater intelligibilis lucis, pater evigilationis atque illuminationis nostrae, pater pignoris quo admonemur redire ad te. Te invocamus, Deus veritatis, in quo et a quo et per quem vera sunt, quae vera sunt omnia.
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