Dialogue with a Cardinal, who refused dialogue

By Br. Alexis Bugnolo

Christian charity requires that we not refuse to speak with our superiors or inferiors. The Crisis in the Church now is so grave that we should all be seeking to speak with our superiors about it and about how to remedy it. One thing we must discuss is the canonically erroneous declaration of Feb. 11, 2013 by the man who is Pope Benedict XVI.  Erroneous, manifestly, because no one had the respect for his Office or person to point out that the act needed to be redone, IF it was his intention to posit an act in conformity with Canon 332 §2.

For this reason I have written more than 50 Cardinals, I think — I am not sure I have lost count — to raise the issue. And recently one of them had the Christian charity to respond to me in writing. I cannot divulge the actual text, for the sake of my respect for his person and office, but I can divulge my text in reply, because I think it addresses a problem we all are having when we speak with out superiors about Pope Benedict’s Declaratio.

The Cardinal wrote to me that we must presume that Pope Francis is validly elected and holds the petrine munus, and therefore, he told me that he did not want to speak with me in person about the Renunciation.

Here is my reply to this prince of the Church:

Your Eminence,

If you ask any Doctor of Law, you will see that the reason you give, namely, “We must assume Pope Francis is a validly elected pope, who actually represents the petrine munus”, is a statement which compounds several errors:

1. First, that a man is the pope is not a presumption of fact, but the conclusion of law. For example, he is not the pope, whom the Cardinals say is the pope, rather, he is the pope who was elected according to the norm of Universi Dominici Gregis. To say the first, that is, that he whom the Cardinals says is the pope, is the pope, confuses the means whereby we know a canonical fact with the cause of the legitimacy of a canonical fact. They are two different things.

2. Second, in all law, whether Roman, Napoleonic or Common, the cessation of power is never presumed. This is an ancient principle, the ignoring of which would cause chaos in society. The corollary is that the cessation of right is never presumed. Now a Papal renunciation is the first moment in a petrine succession. And a succession of legal right is judged as a cessation of power. As Mons. Arrieta, of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, affirmed in my presence on Dec 11, 2019, such an act of renunciation must be clear in itself, it cannot be interpreted to be valid, because no one has the right to interpret it. This is because, interpretation of a law is the cause of its being understood other than what it is. And the Code of Canon Law does not grant that right, in papal renunciations, since they must be manifestly a renunciation of petrine munus.

3. Third, your affirmation that Pope Francis must be assumed to be validly elected, is the supposition of a conclusion as the first premise of your thought. In other words, you have taken what you should, in virtue of a series of illations based on facts and law, hold as a conclusion, and make it the first principle whereby your mind refuses to presuppose that from which it is illated. This is the logical error called petitio principii.

4. In truth, if you read Universi Dominici Gregis n. 37, Pope John Paul II required that a sede vacante be verified as a legal one. But Mons Arrieta assured me that no such verification was done in Feb. 2013. In fact, canon 40 invalidates everything done by a subject receiving an administrative act, before he verifies the integrity of the act itself. Yet the Vatican was publishing different versions of the Declaratio for many days, so an integral act was never had prior to the announcement minutes after the Consistory of Feb. 11, that the act meant a renunciation of the papacy. Indeed, as a Latinist who has published both a Grammar and translated over 9000 pages of Scholastic texts, I have found more thn 40 errors in the Latin text. There are moreover at least 6 canonical errors in the central act, which render it invalid, null or irritus. Furthermore, canon 41 gives each of us the duty to refuse an actus nullus and requires that we have recourse to the authority issuing the act. As Mons. Arrieta affirmed again to me, in the case of a papal resignation, if the act is null it must be redone, and if it is unclear the recourse to the superior must be to solicit another valid act, since he himself cannot make it valid by an interpretation. Thus, the mere fact that Pope Benedict said he renounced the ministerium, when Canon 332 §2 requries the renunciation of munus, means that the act is also irritus in virtue of canon 188, for substantial error, and irritus in virtue of canon 38 for not containing a derogation of the requirement to name the munus.

I can understand that as a Cardinal you would be disinclined to broach the issue of the legitimacy of the previous apparent Conclave, in which you never participated, but as Catholics we risk the penalty of eternal damnation, if we allow the Petrine Succession to falter for reasons so grave. Words have meaning, and if we reject that, then we will not find mercy before the terrible seat of Judgement of the Divine Word, who said of Pope John Paul II when he foresaw his Code of Canon Law in 1983: Whatsoever you bind on earth, shall be bound also in Heaven.

Finally, I have not demanded a meeting with Your Eminence, but I have pointed out the grave reasons why you should act, and at least do the due diligence required of you in Canon 41 and seek a private audience with Pope Benedict, before he loses his mental faculties. I assure you that he will tell you that it was never his intention to renounce the petrine munus, only to renounce the petrine ministerium and office. I say this based on a complete study of everything he said from Feb. 11, 2013 to today. And Antonio Socci agrees with me, as he said in his interview with Aldo Maria Valli just last week.

Sincerely in Saint Francis,

Br. Alexis Bugnolo


CREDITS: The Featured Image is my own photo of a bas-relief in the Basilica of the Most Holy Savior, here at Rome, showing a Pope kneeling in adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament, Truth Incarnate.

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7 thoughts on “Dialogue with a Cardinal, who refused dialogue”

  1. Thank you for holding this Cardinal’s feet to the fire. It seems that many were hoping that Benedict XVI would die before a sh&t-storm erupted over this supposed renunciation of office.

  2. Good work, Bro. Bugnolo.

    When I was ferreting out in-house fraud at a life insurance co. some years ago my rule of engagement was primarily just that: Engage; engage; engage. Engage all parties and observe how they respond. You never know what might shake out.

    Here, our good cardinal orders that, “We must assume Pope Francis is a validly elected pope, who actually represents the petrine munus.”

    Really? Why’s that, Your Eminence? Because you say so? Like “that man behind the curtain,” or perhaps the Emperor Without Clothes?

    Naked appeals to authority don’t cut it today with a hierarchy so unbelievably discredited. Therefore a reason must be given, and like most of Bergoglio’s followers and supporters, they decline to give any. Glad you point out the blatant falsehood of the prelate. Circular reasoning; begging the question. Fallacies all.

    It all reveals that behind Bergoglio stands only force. There is no logic. There is no law. With the facts and the law against him, like a good shyster lawyer out of luck, he pounds the table. (That’s why they stow the plates at la Casa Sta Marta!)

    Therefore, the False Pope is rapidly not only losing his hold on the narrative, but also losing the battle of public opinion.

    Overton Shift, big time.

    Thus, the dumb sheep are coming to know: Beware Bergoglio, the False Pope, Leading the People Into Hell.

    How can such a man be pope?

    And also, Bergoglio Beware! Repent and get thee to a monastery before it is too late. Lest the Corner Stone grinds thee to powder.

  3. Br. Bugnolo, would you clarify the difference here? You say above, “I assure you that he will tell you that it was never his intention to renounce the petrine munus, only to renounce the petrine ministerium and office.” Is not the petrine munus equivalent to office here? Thank you.

    1. Dear Islam,

      Here we must distinguish between what a person understands and what is objectively true. Now when the understanding conforms to reality, then the personal testimony will regard what is true. But when the understanding is corrupted by error, the testimony will only manifest that error.

      Therefore, when I said he will tell you he only intended to renounce the ministerium and the office, not the munus, I speak of what I discern he means by what he has said. It really is not necessary to question Pope Benedict to know the resignation is invalid, because the act is objectively non conforming to the law. But asking Benedict will help those who confuse a renunciation for a contract, when he says he never intended to renounce the munus, because that is the key claim made by those who say the resignation is valid, as Cardinal Burke and Mons. Arrieta seem to hold. Though they are dead wrong.

  4. THERE IS ANOTHER ERROR, EVEN MORE GRAVE in the statement made by the Cardinal, when he says that Francis represents the petrine munus. The munus is a grace conferred, not a dignity which is represented. It is nonsensical to speak of the man who is pope representing the Office or Munus of the Papacy. The man who is pope, by being pope, represents Jesus Christ. Period. Not the Church, as Cardinal Sarah holds. Not anything else. Of course Bergoglio pretends to represent these other things, but pretense does not make a claim to be valid. Here the Cardinal seems to veer into the error of the Eminent Canonist which I spoke with in November, who said that doing the ministerium means you have the munus. That is protestant nonsense. And it shows you why thought like this separates you from Jesus Christ, because it rejects the historical fact that Jesus conferred offices of power, grace and authority to the Apostles to be handed down in the Church until the end of time. If they want a Church with a faker as Pope, they will get — and indeed now have — a fake communion. Because Jesus is not in communion with fakers. And you may be able to fool men, but you cannot fool God. So what the Cardinal’s statement about representing the munus really means, is that there is no God, and Jesus Christ is not God, and the Catholic Church’s claims are all false.

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