By Br. Alexis Bugnolo
In January, it was announced by the Vatican, that Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re was named Dean of the College of Cardinals. Since it it the duty of the Dean to convoke the College, I wrote him a Letter in Latin to express my concerns, in accord with Canon 212, regarding the canonical status of Pope Benedict XVI, in the assumption that he may not be aware of them.
Here is the text of my letter, which he received more than 2 weeks ago:
Vobis scribo ex iure mihi concesso ab papa Ioanne Paolo II in canone 212, ad Vobis manifestandas inconvenientias graves in declaratione quae emissa est ab papa Benedicto XVI in Festo B. V. M. Lapurdensis anno Domini 2013.
In primis, ministerii eius renuntiatio non est conformans normae canonis 332 §2 qui renuntiationem muneris petrini requirit et hinc est actus nullus qui secundum canonem 41 neminem constringat.
Secundo, nemini licet ut interpres sit actus renuntiationis papalis, et hinc omnis interpretatio actus istius invalida ac illicita esto qui munus legat ubi ministerium scribatur.
Tertio, in dicendo ministerium et non munus vir qui est papa Benedictus XVI actum validum non ponere potest sine concessione derogationis secundum canonem 38 et hinc quia aliquid tale non fecit ut Romanus Pontifex actum irritum posuit ut vir qui est Pontifex.
Quarto, in ministerii renuntiatione et non muneris actus apparens papalis renuntiationis irritus est secundum canonem 188 per errorem substantialem quoniam essentia actus necessaria penes canonem 332 §2 est renuntiatio muneris non ministerii.
Quinto, non est libertas ad muneri renuntiandum quo renuntiatio ministerii fiat et hinc actus talis deficit ex debito canonis 332 §2 ad libere faciendum actum renuntiationis muneris et hinc invalidus est.
Sexto, non est ritualis manifestatio ubi non est manifestatio actus debiti, et quia impossibile est quod actus ministerii renuntiationis manifestet renuntiationem muneris, hinc est invalidus secundum canonem 332 §2.
Septimo, quoniam aliquot diebus post declarationis enuntiationem actus integer non habebatur, impossibile est quod actus Cardinalis Decani precedentis validus fuit ad renuntiationem papalis annuntiandam secundum normam canonis 40 et postea ad conclavem convocandam.
Octavo, omnes actiones papae Benedicti XVI per septem annos demonstrant quod Is apprehendat munus ut vocationem et gratiam nunquam abiiciendam et non ut ministerium seu officium ecclesiasticum rentuntiatum, et evidens est quod verum sit, quapropter ille nomen et indumentum et dignitatem papalem adhunc portat ut possessionem personalem, qui demonstratio est clare quod intentionem renuntiationis muneris non haberet et non habeat.
Ex totis rationibus ego supplex Vos precor Ecclesiae Sanctae Dei ut convocatio Cardinalium in praesentiae papae Benedicti XV faciatis in tempore opportuno ad verum quaerendum in materia ista ita ut omne dubium de successione petrina tollatis pro Ecclesia Christi salute. Partibus omnibus in ista controversia eliminatio dubii istius ius et debitum est et nulli vulnera.
Gratias Vobis do pro tempore lectionis litterarum mearum,
In Sancto Francisco servus humilis papatus,
Fra’ Alexis Bugnolo
Here is my English translation of the Letter, for the benefit of the readers of FromRome.Info
I am writing you on account of the right granted me by Pope John Paul II in canon 212, to make known to you the grave problems in the Declaratio which was pronounced by Pope Benedict XVI on the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes, in the year of Our Lord 2013.
First of all, His renunciation of ministry is not in conformity with the norm of Canon 332 §2 which requires the renuntiation of the Petrine Munus, and hence it is an actus nullus which according to canon 41 constrains no one.
Second, it is not licit for anyone to be the interpretor of a papal renunciation, and hence every interpretation of that act of His, which reads “munus” where “ministerium” is written, is invalid and illicit.
Third, in saying “ministerium” and not “munus” the man who is Pope Benedict XVI cannot posit a valid act without the concession of a derogation, according to canon 38, and hence because he never did any such thing, as the Roman Pontiff, he posited, as the man who is the Pontiff, an actus irritus.
Fourth, in renouncing ministry and not munus, the apparent act of papal renunciation is irritus according to canon 188 by means of a substantial error, since the essence of the act necessary under the terms of Canon 332 §2 is a renunciation of munus, not of ministerium.
Fifth, there is no liberty to renounce munus where a renunication of ministerium is made and hence such an act fails from what is due in Canon 332 §2 regarding a free act of renuncaition of munus, and hence is invalid.
Sixth, there is no due manifestation where there is no manifestation of the due act, and because it is impossible that an act of renunciation of ministerium manifest an act of renunciation of munus, hence it is invalid according to Canon 332 §2.
Seventh, since for some days after the pronouncement of the declaration the integral act was not had, it is impossible that the act of the previous Cardinal Dean was valid to announce a papal renunciation, according to the norm of Canon 40 and afterwards to convoke a conclave.
Eighth, all the actions of Pope Benedict XVI throught the last 7 years demonstrate that he understands munus as a vocation and grace never to be rejected and not as a renounced ministerium or ecclesiastical office, and it is evident that this is true, because He bears still that Name and clothing and dignity of a pope as a personal possession, which is clearly a demonstration that he did not have nor has the intention of renouncing the munus.
For all these reasons, I humbly beg you for the sake of the Holy Church of God to call a convocation of the Cardinals in the presence of Pope Benedict XVI, at an opportune time, to seek the truth in this matter so as to bear away all doubt concerning the petrine succession for the sake of the salvation of Christ’s Church. The elimination of this doubt is the right and due to all the parties in this controversy and harms none of them.
Thank you for the time you have taken reading my letter,
In Saint Francis, a humble servant of the Papacy,
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I have published this letter to encourage all of you to write to your own Cardinals and Bishops in your part of the world an urge them to the same thing. You have my permission to copy and paste the test of my Latin or English version of my letter.
As you can see, the reasons for holding that Pope Benedict XVI is still the pope are the most profound and grave and are drawn entirely from Canon Law and historical facts. They are not based on unfounded opinion, misquoted texts or insults, as those of Trad Inc..
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