What was that “Is Bergoglio the Pope?” Live Chat on Church Militant about?

by Antonio Ghislieri

Special Correspondent for FromRome.Info

Voris: Warrior against Schism?

As many readers of FromRome.Info may already know, Mr. Michael Voris, STB, founder of the Church Militant journalism enterprise, devoted a special, post-newshour broadcast last Friday dedicated to examining four propositions concerning who may or may not currently hold the Chair of Peter. https://www.churchmilitant.com/video/episode/live-is-bergoglio-the-pope. Without claiming to be a comprehensive analysis of that production, my report offers a number of critical observations about what transpired during it.

Mr. Voris was most transparent about his motivation for his special production: the convert from Anglicanism, Taylor Marshall, PhD had, on his own YouTube channel, shared publicly his belief that Pope Bergoglio had forfeited the Chair by his recent claim that heretics and apostates yet abide in the Communion of Saints. Dr. Taylor Marshall’s opinion, declared Mr. Voris, was scandalous: leading souls out of the true Church and into the embrace of the schismatic SSPX was something he, Voris, could not let to stand without challenge. Though he claimed to be reluctant to do so, Mr. Voris ended his presentation with what amounted to an invitation to public debate between himself and Dr. Marshall on the matter, a debate for which Church Militant would pick up the entire tab.

Despite the — at moments, heated — zeal for “truth,” Mr. Voris demonstrated repeatedly his own inability to maintain both theological and canonical standards for the arguments he rejects and the ones he accepts.

He dismissed the argument that Benedict XVI remains pope with a condemnation of the distinction between “munus” and “ministerium” as “the stuff that rises to full-fledged conspiracy theory” — without ever examining the canons which demonstrate this argument. Rather, he claims that Pope Benedict has himself dismissed these canonical arguments, so the matter ends there.

Moreover, Voris averred, any claim that Benedict has tacitly allowed a conclave and new papacy to arise whilst knowing himself yet to be true Pontiff, would make Benedict complicit in making the Church to collapse as his death would bring it to the brink of having no legitimate cardinals to elect a replacement.

Let’s stop there for a moment.

It would appear that Mr. Voris contends that a future consequence contradicts a present circumstance as impossible. Hmm. It is understandable that one would want to follow an argument to a conclusion, but doing so does create a number of temptations — including that of denying present reality: a great many folk — perhaps even Pope Benedict himself — may never have anticipated him to arrive upon his 95th birthday; indeed, such is an extremely rare phenomenon amongst the successors of Peter. However, Mr. Voris does not even consider the possibility that Benedict could outlive Bergoglio, nor what may attend such a sequence. This is a grave oversight, for it fails to take into account that — to quote a notorious prelate — “the Lord of surprises” might just spring one on us all.

By Voris’ judgment, that should Benedict be sitting as “secret Pope,” he would be the most wicked — wicked — wicked of men, for causing such grave confusion, he implies is that a) Benedict couldn’t possibly lead everyone into such confusion, b) therefore his “resignation” [sic] must have been valid.

There are no few curiosities about this “evaluation,” if it be apt to call it such. In first place, it dismisses what Benedict did not do nine years ago as standing in for the opposite. This is particularly ironic, given how very much Voris will stand on Canon Law to condemn the judgment of Taylor Marshall on heresy. Secondly, is it accurate to say that the only validly-appointed Cardinal-Elector would be dead or past 80 when God should gather Benedict to Himself? — Benedict isn’t dead, yet! — so such remains to be seen. Let’s not say the sky is falling until it actually is. Thirdly, have we not received any mystical insight regarding a future conclave in the midst of chaos and that Sts. Peter and Paul themselves will have a role in settling the solution? Why not trust that Christ will provide for such an eventuality? Is not the Church being purified by the manifestation of so much error?

As regards relying on Benedict’s assertions that the abdication was intentional and valid: Voris did not say that he personally witnessed these; how reliable are the claims that such assertions have been made?

Moving on to the other possibilities concerning who is pope: Voris quite validly observes that none of the Cardinals going into the “conclave” in 2013 publicly objected to either the legitimacy of the abdication, nor the liceity of the Conclave. What that observation does not take into account is the characteristic which attends any wedding later found to have been null. The marriage — especially to protect the rights of any children it may have produced — is referred to as “putative.”

Voris does not for a moment consider the possibility that the Cardinals — the many of whom are not, it would seem, Latin scholars — did not question that Benedict effected what he seemed to do in consistory. Now it is entirely understandable that one would be scandalized by such an act; to deceive not only the Church, but even the world as to who is truly Peter does, indeed, seem to be gravely wicked — and especially when our Lord had given us explicit instruction on the Eighth Commandment (Mt 5:37). What needs to be examined — and Voris does not concede either the need, nor possibility of the need to do so — is whether Benedict’s “abdication” was, in fact valid. If he intended it to be such, then he did not execute it; if he did not have this intention, might we be re-visiting the scenario of 1 Kings 22?

As to Voris’ “Burke-is-my-buddy” assurance that the “greatest living canonist” would surely have intervened had something been askew with the actual decree: let us not forget that that man of many silk yards promised years ago that a papal correction would be forthcoming were the dubia in wake of Amoris Laetitia ignored for too long. Mercifully, the Church hasn’t been holding its breath for that outcome. Nor has the former Prefect of the Segnatura Apostolica been willing to engage in any public explanation as to why those who recognize the difference between “munus” and “ministerium” as being at once relevant and substantial are incorrect in their thinking.

Voris also claims that not one bishop — i.e., no member of the hierarchy — has disputed the validity of either the “abdication,” or the Conclave. This claim is false and that Voris has enjoyed a personal interview with one of two who have quite public about their strong reservations in this regard makes one question just how selective is his memory: for the Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi, TX, Msgr. René Garcia, a Canon lawyer in his own right, has made no secret of his finding wanting the 11 February 2013 decree on his personal website. Voris may not be fluent in Polish, but has not retired Ardhbishop Bishop Jan Pawel Lenga likewise given voice to the same concern?

With respect to the remainder of the Voris presentation, there ought be attention drawn to his extraordinarily shoddy discussion of “divine and Catholic Faith.” In this section, Voris confuses the act of Supernatural Faith itself with doctrine that is de fide and de fide definita. His handle on these concepts is so wildly incompetent as to make one shudder that Voris enjoys possession of a pontifical degree and a signal of just how much trust anyone ought place in his judgment of matters ecclesiastical. Such is enhanced when he demonstrates an inability to articulate the difference between invalid and illicit ordinations — as though apostolic succession were merely a matter of law and not of sacramental ontology.

For those with a memory serving, it wasn’t that many years ago that Voris condemned another layman’s criticisms of Bergoglio as “spiritual pornography,” leading souls astray from unity with Peter. Of course, that was then, this is now: whether he ever produced an apology to the fellow Catholic whom he slighted (now deceased) is by no means clear, but Voris’ makes no bones about his latter-day credentials as Bergoglian critic.

There is something disturbingly haughty about Voris’ brand of zeal: that he would have everyone believe that his way is not simply the way, but the Catholic way to go when defending the Faith, confronting error or resisting injustice. No one, he claims, will be held accountable for being mistaken about who is or is not pope when the hierarchy hasn’t ruled on the matter. Was the same true back in long-ago Constantinople when it took the laity to denounce that bishop who denied the divinity of Christ? Is it true when a priest who decides that while “signing” Mass for the deaf has a laywoman say all his words — including those of Consecration — that the Faithful don’t need to recognize that their Sunday Mass obligation has been compromised? To whom much is given, much is expected and Mr Voris is in no position to vouch for universal inculpability on a matter of truth.

While avoiding the presumption of counting one’s self amongst the Elect, one must concede that false prophets deceive many (Mt 24:24). How can Voris defend the proposition that the man who tampers with the Catechism to suit his own purposes, is not giving the impression of invoking infallibility if — as Voris wants to claim — Bergolio is “just” (note: this is the English adverb, not the adjective) a “bad” pope?

It is interesting that yet another Catholic layman with an online apostolate has moved in the direction of recognizing that the Petrine munus was not renounced in 2013. Patrick Coffin, though recognizing he may well be greatly ostracized by doing so, has laid out evidence on his webpage’s video to the proposition that the Bergoglian “papacy” is a fraud (https://www.patrickcoffin.media/seven-pieces-of-evidence-that-francis-is-an-antipope/).

The feast of the Chair of Peter grows nigh. May it please our Lord that its celebration may occasion holy wisdom within and for His Mystical Body.

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39 thoughts on “What was that “Is Bergoglio the Pope?” Live Chat on Church Militant about?”

    1. Which is the exact argument of most of trad Inc including Michael Matt, jd Flynn, Eric Sammons, etc. Their argument is “you’re a laughable conspiracy theorist”. For me it’s quite easy to see they have zero spiritual life because if they did, they would not have the thick veil of their invincible ignorance. I personally can’t wait until they’re proven dead wrong. If Pope Benedict flees Rome with a few cardinals, crowns the French Monarch, or consecrated Russia, any of these acts (pivotal acts of the future mentioned over and over in approved private revelation), they will immediately be proven as WRONG. The time is coming soon, let’s see how this plays out.

  1. Some years ago, Kevin Annette made what at the time seemed preposterous claims regarding abominable (ritual satanic abuse) activities of Berglio back when Berglio was a lesser cleric, residing in Argentina.

    However, since then significant information has come to light about the stock & trade of the globalists is enslaved children and the adrenochrome produced from that.

    Many of us would not at all be surprised if this year Mr. Annette would be proven correct.

    The dominoes began to fall with Epstein and Prince Andrew. But anyone can go read the emails of the people surrounding Obama & Podestas; read about their luv of pizza, pasta, hotdogs and icecream and walnut sauce. It’s been out there for a few years now.

    In other words, these guys split hairs like it’s the late middle-ages, meanwhile the world is in the midst of the biggest change since the collapse of the Roman Empire. But this time things happen in months rather than decades and centuires because of the internet.

  2. For all those holding their breath that heavenly powers will drain the Vatican swamp, perhaps it would do some good to visit Auschwitz, Poland and walk the railroad tracks leading into the camp. Then after a while stop walking and turn around and look back at yonder gates and double fenced electrical barbed-wire permiter. . . . Many, many had a similar experience as you now. On the train they imagined God would stop the train and open its doors and liberate them. But instead they ended up there at Auschwitz or on the way perished in the boxcars from dehydration and lack of sleep.

    1. It has to get worse — even to the point of losing one’s life– before it gets better (Resurrection)
      God is not mocked.
      The day +++B16 resigned, lightening struck the dome of St Peter’s not once, –but twice.
      In God’s good time the reckoning will come and He will sweep the wicked away.
      It matters not whether I am in this life or the next when I see it.

    2. Ah, but there are such persons as “Holocaust survivors,” are there not?
      And slavery was abolished, was it not?
      And martyrs look to the Resurrection, do they not?
      The gates of hell shall not prevail, but they’re doing the damnedest before the King takes the field.
      No pilgrimage to Auschwitz necessary; even as many of us persevere in our beads upon abortuary sidewalks, so do we trust that God will upset the imposter & his cabal.

  3. Thank you for all you do! Much needed and an excellent article. There are many red flags for me regarding Voris. Bless you and AJ and the whole team for all you do.

    1. 3 months ago I was blocked from commenting on the CM website for recommending that he (or anybody reading my comment) read the material on the “From Rome” website .

      The moderator said he was banning me for being a “sedevacationist.” I wrote him privately to say this wasn’t true, and to politely reason with him; however he replied that he didn’t want to discuss the matter, and not to contact him again.

      I shall share this excellent analysis of the Voris “chat” widely.

      1. I was accused also of being a sedi-vacatanist as well by the local sspx lay leader about a year back, church militant banned my comments 3 years ago. Had the police called on me twice at my modernists parish. I’m running low on places to turn. Thanks brother B.

  4. Fine– Bro Bugnolo and Bishop René Gracida are both Canon Lawyers; that makes them experts, –which Mr Voris is not.

  5. Pope Francis said he wanted to make a mess.
    Encouraging the youth publicly to do so.
    He awarded the push bike lady for service to the community.
    He did the deal with the Mao Zedong crowd. What a mess that is.
    We are all at each others throats as evident in our lay blogs.
    The biggest thing Dear Pope Francis has done is to reveal just how hateful and nasty we can be/are
    to our dearly beloved brother and sister Christians on utube.

    Guess! if there is one thing that is obvious. He has certainly lanced the boil and the puss is flowing free.
    Our “Just Deserts ” perhaps?

  6. I’m going to have to study this in the attempt to comprehend it;because whoever wrote this appears to me to be a genius, while I am not.

    1. Amen.
      I found a website frequented by Simon Rafe, the CM website comments moderator and (because I am banned from the CM website) posted him –as a reply to one of his comments– a link to this brilliant critique.
      I’d hate for him to miss it, even if in cognitive dissonance he refuses to engage with what Canon Law says, and the logic to understand reality.
      Hopefully he will alert Michael Voris to it, even if nobody else does.
      (I suspect & hope many will call MV’s attention to it.)

    2. In my humble opinion, it was likely written a bit too hastily; there are some moments in obvious need of a bit of editing. However, I believe the author has made some decent points — which ones weren’t clear to you? It might be helpful to everyone were you to pinpoint these.

  7. Voris and his entire staff get all of their funding primarily from huge Opus Dei donors. The bottom line is this: Pope Benedict did not change Canon Law regarding papal resignations. Benedict renounced ONLY the Ministerium- NOT the Munus. That so many prelates- especially the Cardinals (Burke in particular) refuse to see that the requirements of Canon Law Benedict did NOT fulfill! Finally, nearly every provision of Universi Dominici Gregis was violated. Thus, the 2013 conclave remains invalid. Church Militant also banned me several years ago after my comments challenged Voris on his position that Benedict did not validly resign, and that Bergoglio is an antipope. I am not the only one. God bless Pope Benedict! May he live a long life beyond the antipope!

  8. Well, this puts the cat amongst the proverbial pigeons …

    The Church certainly could do with the spirit of Pius V to steer the course.
    May God bless the endeavour.

  9. Dear Brother Bugnolo-
    What are we to do for sacraments? Already being called schismatic- I cannot go along with a lie – when I hear bergolio named ‘holy father’ I want to vomit – if there is no priest to find who acknowledges Pope Benedict – what do we do ?

    1. For those who cannot obtain the Sacraments in communion with Pope Benedict, The Lord Himself, the only High Priest in the Christian Religion and Catholic Faith, will supply with great abundance and facility the graces of repentance and renewal to all who humbly and contritely ask it of Him, or of His Immaculate Mother, through the intercession of the Saints, if you need to approach indirectly because of a quantity of sins. We who are in communion with Pope Benedict XVI here at Rome and finding this true every day.

    2. “The Christian faithful for whom it is physically or morally impossible to approach a Catholic minister are permitted to receive the sacraments of penance, Eucharist, and anointing of the sick from non-Catholic ministers in whose Churches these sacraments are valid.” — Code of Canon Law 844

      1. This is because they are not in communion with an antipope. But this canon presupposes only those Churches which are in latent schism not heresy or open schism. Open schism is deliberate intentional. Latent is ancient and ancestral. In the latter case the members are not formally schismatic only materially. However, the Church has never permitted communion in the Schismatic Churches where that would lead to apostasy from the Catholic faith or the pretense that it does not matter where you go to Mass. And indeed, except in extreme cases of death, where the Sacrament is necessary, it has never been considered morally acceptable to receive the Sacraments from any heretic or schismatic or even from a Catholic priest who was defroked.

  10. Jorge Bergoglio isn’t just a “bad pope” or “a problematic pope,” as Voris says; he’s not a pope at all. Popes must be Catholic. But Bergoglio isn’t Catholic. He’s instead a pertinacious and manifest heretic (indeed the most public heretic in the history of the world). Thus Bergoglio has been automatically (ipso facto) excommunicated.

    No authority is needed to simply recognize this stark reality spitting in our faces daily, any more than one must be a traffic judge in order to simply recognize the reality of one speeding at 100mph in front of his face. Juridical authority is a separate issue. Any future judgment will simply be a ratification of the current reality, the reality now spitting in our faces daily.

    Here’s that really real reality:

    One cannot be the head of a body of which one is not a member.
    “Conservatives” speak much of the dangers of not following a true pope. But they’re grossly negligent in refusing to speak of the dangers of following a false pope, a manifestly false pope. And that’s exactly what “Pope” Francis is. No one in history has been a more manifest heretic.

  11. Long before his erroneous attack on Dr. Marshall, Michael Voris exhibited himself as a fraudulent morally/intellectually superior narcissist. He appears to be developing an even more vicious character than in the past, undermining anything he might have to contribute. Voris has consigned himself role of a verbal pugilist, nothing but a comic character — unworthy of notice, let alone credence.

  12. After being a charter member and long time premium church militant with 2 cruises, I can now not watch even 10 seconds of that vortex dude. As Ann B. Says, “the worst harm you can do to the papacy is to refer to an anti-pope (fwancis) as if he is pope.” The fwancis amen corner is shrinking fast.

    1. As for the debate invitation… Which I believe would be helpful, I wonder if Brother Bugnolo has any idea who would best be paired with Voris, and with Marshall…? Anyway I’m glad this subject came to light this way. Bless all of your efforts Bother B

      1. I do not think Voris or Marshall are personally yet disposed to debate with me on the crucial points. That time may come, but we are not there yet.

  13. Actually, Brother B, I was referring to the invitation to a debate Michael Voris made to Taylor Marshall on that podcast… Although the idea of you debating Voris is awesome too-

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