Truth Does Not Change:
If We Lose Dogma, We Lose Our Soul
by Father Nicholas Gruner, S.T.L.,
As is shown by the book, The
Devils Final Battle, we are living today in the midst of the Great
Apostasy which was foretold in Sacred Scripture. This apostasy, Cardinal Ciappi
tells us, begins at the top of the Church. Cardinal Oddi tells us that in the
Third Secret Our Lady is warning us against
One of the first and greatest bulwarks
and defenses against apostasy is to have a firm grasp of and adherence to the
dogmatic definitions of the Catholic Faith. It is precisely the dogma of the
Faith that Our Lady speaks explicitly about in the beginning of the Third
Secret when She says: "In Portugal, the dogma of the Faith will always be
preserved etc." The "etc." written down by Sister Lucy herself, clearly
indicates that Our Lady said more.
Every Fatima scholar agrees that Our
Lady went on to say that in other parts of the world, the dogma of the Faith
will be attacked and not preserved as it should, it may even be lost
altogether. We must not allow ourselves to be victims of this creeping apostasy
all around us. We must save our souls and save our dogmatic
In our time many
Catholics priests, bishops and Cardinals, as well as lay persons
are losing the sense of dogma. They are forgetting that if they do not
safeguard their faith sufficiently, so that they culpably deny or even doubt
one dogma a doctrine of the Catholic faith that has been infallibly
taught by Jesus Christ through His Catholic Church then they commit a
mortal sin. If they do not repent of this sin and make a worthy confession (or
an act of Perfect Contrition on their deathbed) then they shall go to hell for
all eternity. Saint Thomas Aquinas teaches that sins against Faith are among
the greatest of sins.
Some people are
losing the sense of dogma because they do not sufficiently guard their minds
against false ideas, teachings and doctrines which seek to supplant or to
suppress or to undermine their Catholic faith. Others, by never trying to
understand or not seeking to know what the real teachings of Jesus Christ and
His Catholic Church are, do not even recognize that they have bought into the
lies of the age which exclude them from accepting the teaching of the Gospel in
one or many points.
We are in fact
living through the age of Apostasy: the period of time foretold in Sacred
Scripture by Jesus Christ Himself, as well as by St. Paul. The sin of heresy
constitutes denying one or more dogmas of the Faith, and this is a mortal sin
that sends souls to hell. Yet apostasy is much worse. The sin of apostasy is
the rejecting of all (or much of) the Gospel. And this age of Apostasy is upon
Some fall into
apostasy through ignorance, never knowing even the fundamentals of the Gospel.
Others fall into it because they have learned the fundamentals and held to them
for only a while. These are like the seed that did not fall on good ground;
they do not take precautions to safeguard their Faith against false doctrines,
and these false doctrines choke their faith so that they fall away. Others fall
away because they have followed the bad example of blind priests, bishops and
Cardinals who teach false doctrine. These false teachers who profess heretical
doctrines and there is no shortage of them in the Church today
scandalize the souls entrusted to them into heresy and apostasy.
Sister Lucy, in
the early 1970s, called them "blind guides". It is no wonder that she has been
We must recover
the sense of dogmatic Truth. And if a priest, bishop, Cardinal or even a Pope
were to say something or do something which explicitly or implicitly teaches
some heretical doctrine, we must abhor and resist it. We must defend our own
soul, and to the extent we can, we must defend the souls of others by resisting
the heretical statements from no matter what quarter. Even if it were the Pope
to say such things.
Most Catholics are
unaware that there have been instances in Church history when a Pope either
taught heresy, or failed in his duty to suppress heresy. And if it happened
before, it can happen again.1
Pope Nicholas I said that Baptism was valid whether administered in the
name of the Three Persons of the Most Holy Trinity or in the name of Christ
only. In this Pope Nicholas was mistaken. Baptism in the name of Christ only is
Honorius, in order to justify a compromise with heretics, said in
634: "We must be careful not to rekindle
ancient quarrels." On this argument, the Pope allowed error to spread
freely, with the result that truth and orthodoxy were effectively banished. St.
Sophronius of Jerusalem, almost alone, stood up to Honorius and accused him of
heresy. Eventually the Pope repented, but died without repairing the
immeasurable harm he did to the Church due to his compromising principle. Thus,
the Third Council of Constantinople cast its anathema upon him, and this was
confirmed by Pope St. Leo II. (See D.S. 561)
Pope John XXII
said at Avignon, on the Feast of All Saints, 1331, that the soul does not
enter the Beatific Vision until the resurrection of the body, at the last day.
After which, the Pope was rebuked by the theologians from the University of
Paris. They rebuked the Pope because they knew that this theory of the Pope was
a heresy. It wasnt until shortly before John XXII died in 1334 that he
recanted his error.3
The Deposit of
Faith is the foundation of our salvation. It is the foundation of the papacy.
It is the foundation of the sacraments. If the Deposit of Faith is not
safeguarded, there is nothing in the Church that is safe from attack. This
attitude of the primordial importance of safeguarding each and every one of the
dogmas of the faith is not just my opinion. It is the solemn teaching of the
Catholic Church. One of the Catholic Creeds which we are all bound to believe
starts as follows: "Whoever wishes to be saved, needs above all to hold the
Catholic faith; unless each one preserves this whole and inviolate, he will
without a doubt perish in eternity." (D.S. 75)
surpasses the law of charity to the poor or to our neighbor it is before
all good works. The obligation to the faith is more important than the respect
or deference owed to Pope, bishops, priests or family and friends. St. Paul
said, "But though we, or an angel from Heaven, preach a Gospel to you besides
that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema." (Gal. 1:8) We must
not listen to such a preacher who contradicts traditional Catholic
What will happen
to us, especially at this time of General Apostasy, if we do not love the Truth
above our fellow men, above the love we owe our priests and bishops, above the
love we owe even Popes? What will happen if we do not love the truth above
wealth, position and human respect? Then we can come under the following curse
of God: "And in all seduction of iniquity to them that perish; because they
receive not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. Therefore God
shall send them the operation of error, to believe lying: That all may be
judged who have not believed the truth, but have consented to iniquity." (2
This recovery of
the certitude, of the vital importance and the absolute necessity of dogmatic
truth as infallibly defined for all times is crucial if people are not going to
be taken in by the general apostasy all around us.
To save your soul
it is not enough to follow this or that priest, this or that Cardinal or bishop
not even this or that pope no matter how widely acclaimed they
are, if they contradict one infallibly defined dogma.
priests and teachers say, "We do not pay attention to dogmatic definitions of a
previous age; we follow the 'living Magisterium." (I do not exaggerate; I
heard them with my own ears. At first, I could hardly believe what was being
said by priests who claim to be faithful, fervent and traditional.)
In other words,
what these foolish and ignorant "teachers" are saying is: We will follow
Cardinal Ratzinger or some other Cardinal of the Vatican or even the Pope
himself, no matter what even if one of them contradicts explicitly the
solemn infallible definition of a previous pope, or of a previous Ecumenical
Council infallibly confirmed by a previous pope.4
leaders reason as follows: God is pleased with us because we are humble,
because we are obedient, and God placed those men as Pope and Prefect of the
Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith over us. These people go on to say
that it is you who will not submit who are in error, who will be
punished by God for not believing the "living Magisterium".
Such thinking is,
in fact, "the operation of error" to "them that perish" (see 2 Thess. 2:10-11)
that "God shall send them" because they "have not believed the truth" and they
"have consented to iniquity".
Would God allow a
person to be deceived like this? How could He, someone asks? In answer, we have
the teaching of St. John Eudes and of Sacred Scripture.
St. John Eudes
explains that the most terrible chastisement God can send to His people are bad
priests (that obviously includes bad bishops, Cardinals and could include even
a pope). Here is what St. John Eudes says:
evident mark of Gods anger and the most terrible castigation He can
inflict upon the world are manifested when He permits His people to fall into
the hands of clergy who are priests more in name than in deed, priests who
practice the cruelty of ravening wolves rather than charity and affection of
devoted shepherds ...
permits such things, it is a very positive proof that He is thoroughly angry
with His people, and is visiting His most dreadful anger upon them. That is why
He cries unceasingly to Christians, Return O ye revolting children ...
and I will give you pastors according to My own heart (Jer. 3:14,15).
Thus, irregularities in the lives of priests constitute a scourge upon the
people in consequence of sin." 5
As is documented
in The Devils Final Battle6 and elsewhere,7
we have the infiltration of all kinds of corrupt people into the priesthood. It
is obvious that God is very angry with His people because of all the bad
priests we now see in the Church, most visibly in the clerical scandals.
We must remember
that God sends punishments and chastisements and warnings to us in this life,
as St. Alphonsus notes, so that we will take heed to His warnings while there
is still time, before it is too late for us. The scandals in the clergy are
clear signs that God has very much reached the end of His warning. The hour is
late; we at least must wake up by doing penance for our sins and praying most
fervently for Gods grace and mercy at this time, for ourselves as well as
all those God has entrusted to our care. But those scandals are not limited to
perverted and corrupt priests and bishops. Worse yet is the corruption of our
Catholic faith by so-called "defenders of the Faith". Those who claim the
"living Magisterium" takes precedence over the infallible, unchangeable
dogmatic definitions are misleading countless souls to hell.
The perversion by
priests, bishops and Cardinals who tell us that there is no need for
unbelievers to convert to the Catholic faith8 is a greater
perversion than pedophilia as horrid as pedophilia is. This heresy
even if it is promoted by Vatican Cardinals, even if it were to have the
support, implicit or explicit, of the Pope does not change one bit the
perversity of such teaching. Those who defend such teaching of the "living
Magisterium" have either lost their faith, or have been completely ignorant of
it all their lives. But their ignorance does not necessarily excuse them from
grievous sin in this matter.
The Catholic Faith
the Deposit of Faith handed down to us from Jesus Christ that every
Catholic must believe in order to save his soul teaches us among other
1) God is
the author of our Faith.
2) God must
be believed because what He tells us is the Truth.
- Since God is
all-knowing, He cannot be mistaken or only have part of the truth;
- Since He is all
holy, He cannot lie to us. He may permit us to be deceived because we do not
love the truth, but He would not ever lie to us.
God tells us the Truth and since each and every article of the faith is true
because God has revealed it, it follows that:
1) What was true
in 33 AD is also true in 2003 AD;
2) What was
defined as true by the Church
- in 325 AD at Nicea
- in 1438-45 AD at Florence
- in 1545-65 AD at Trent
- in 1870 AD at Vatican I
is still true
That is, Jesus
Christ is the same, yesterday, today and forever. So when the Council of
Florence defines that neither Jews nor heretics nor schismatics will enter the
Kingdom of God unless they repent of their error before they die, then that is
the truth for all time.
Father Gruner on the set of FATIMA: "The
Moment Has Come", the only television program spreading the full Fatima Message
and the teachings of the Catholic Church.
What the Saints and
Councils Tell Us
Yet the objection
is raised: But if a later pope says something different, says the opposite, is
he also not the Pope? Does he not have the same power as a previous pope? How
therefore can you go wrong following a later pope who contradicts an earlier
Of course the
first thing we must do is to determine if the later pope or even the current
pope really said something that explicitly contradicts the solemn
infallible teaching of an earlier pope. But if in fact he has, then the later
pope is wrong. The reason is that the role of the pope is not to invent new
doctrine, not to teach new doctrine, but to hand on the Deposit of Faith
revealed by God, and to defend and to explain the Deposit of Faith. The First
Vatican Council teaches:
"And the Roman
pontiffs, according to the exigencies of times and circumstances, sometimes
assembling oecumenical councils, or asking for the mind of the Church scattered
throughout the world, sometimes by particular synods, sometimes using other
helps which divine Providence supplied, defined as to be held those things
which with the help of God they had recognized as conformable with the Sacred
Scriptures and Apostolic traditions. For the Holy Spirit was not promised to
the successors of Peter, that by His revelation they might make known new
doctrine, but that by His assistance they might inviolably keep and
faithfully expound the revelation or deposit of faith delivered through the
Apostles."9 (D.S. 3069-3070)
So once a Pope has
taught that something is part of the Deposit of Faith, we know that it is
indeed the Truth that God Himself has revealed.
And since the
first quality of truth is that it cannot contradict itself, we therefore know
that a later pope cannot come along and teach a new doctrine. If he did, the
new doctrine cannot be true, because it is contrary to what God taught and
confirmed by the earlier definition.
So there cannot be
a "living Magisterium" that can come along and teach a new doctrine in
Gods name. Because God is the author of Truth and not falsehood. And God
cannot and would not teach a lie to be the truth, nor could God command someone
to believe a lie. Nor would God authorize, or even pretend to authorize someone
to teach a lie as if it were the truth.
Thus such "living
Magisterium" is attempting to steal teaching authority from God, and usurping
the true, the real, the actual Magisterium.
Now the real
scandal is that today there are high-ranking Churchmen even in the Vatican who
teach heresy and who falsely claim it is the truth and claim it is what the
Catholic Church officially, magisterially teaches. But they are still teaching
heresy. We know this because we know by divine and Catholic Faith that even a
Pope cannot change Catholic Dogma. We know that because we have the solemn,
infallible definition of the First Vatican Council which reads:
faithfully adhering to the tradition received from the beginning of the
Christian faith, for the glory of God our Savior, the exaltation of the
Catholic religion, and the salvation of the Christian people, with the approval
of the sacred council, We teach and define that it is a dogma divinely
revealed: that the Roman Pontiff, when he speaks ex cathedra, that is,
when, in discharge of the office of pastor and teacher of all Christians, by
virtue of his supreme Apostolic authority, he defines a doctrine regarding
faith or morals to be held by the universal Church, is, by the divine
assistance promised to him in Blessed Peter, possessed of that infallibility
with which the divine Redeemer willed that His Church should be endowed in
defining doctrine regarding faith or morals; and that, therefore, such
definitions of the Roman Pontiff are of themselves, and not from the consent of
the Church, irreformable. But if anyone which may God avert!
presume to contradict this our definition, let him be anathema."10
definitions are infallible that is, since they cannot fail to explicitly
enumerate what is the precise truth that God Himself is endorsing, guaranteeing
then such definitions cannot be changed, cannot be reformed. They are
irreformable. They cannot be reformed by a priest, a bishop, a Cardinal, a
whole Council or even by the Pope himself the present one or any future
pope. This is what the Church teaches. If a person does not believe this, he is
no longer a Catholic he has been cut off, excommunicated, put out of the
Church by his heresy.
So you can see we
need to recover the dogmatic definitions of the Catholic Church. We must
recover them in our minds and our hearts and in our daily thinking, speaking
and actions. We must hold onto our Faith whole and entire. We must not allow
ourselves to lose our dogmatic Catholic Faith even if priests, bishops and
Cardinals claim that the Pope agrees with them. Even should a pope contradict
the Faith, we must take the attitude taught us by the Catholic Church of all
ages. We must follow what the Doctors of the Church have taught. These Doctors
were promoted as Doctors because the Church tells us their doctrine is certain;
that we are secure in following their teaching.
Bellarmine, Doctor of the Church, taught in his work on the Roman Pontiff,
even the Pope may be rebuked and resisted if he threatens harm to the
"Just as it is
licit to resist the Pontiff that aggresses the body, it is also licit to resist
the one who aggresses souls or who disturbs civil order, or, above all, who
attempts to destroy the Church. I say that it is licit to resist him by not
doing what he orders and by preventing his will from being executed; it is
not licit, however, to judge, punish or depose him, since these acts are proper
to a superior."11
eminent Sixteenth Century theologian Francisco Suarez (whom Pope Paul V praised
as Doctor Eximius et Pius, i.e. "Exceptional and Pious Doctor") taught
"And in this
second way the Pope could be schismatic, if he were unwilling to be in normal
union with the whole body of the Church, as would occur if he attempted to
excommunicate the whole Church, or, as both Cajetan and Torquemada observe, if
he wished to overturn the rites of the Church based on Apostolic
Tradition. ... If [the Pope] gives an order contrary to right customs
(morals), he should not be obeyed; if he attempts to do something manifestly
opposed to justice and the common good, it will be lawful to resist him; if
he attacks by force, by force he can be repelled, with a moderation appropriate
to a just defense."12
Even the Pope may
legitimately be resisted when he takes actions that would harm the Church.
Quite simply, as Pope St. Felix III declared: "Not to oppose error is to
approve it; and not to defend truth is to suppress it." Members of the laity
and lower-ranking clergy are not exempt from that injunction. All the members
of the Church are subject to it. We thus have a duty to speak out.
St. Thomas stated
that if the faith is in danger because of what a bishop or even a pope says,
the prelate must be rebuked in public to safeguard the faith. Basing himself in
Sacred Scripture Galatians 2:11 St. Thomas Aquinas, the greatest
Doctor of the Church, says:
"It must be
observed, however, that if the faith were endangered, a subject ought to rebuke
his prelate even publicly. Hence Paul, who was Peters subject, rebuked
him in public, on account of the imminent danger of scandal concerning faith,
and, as the gloss of Augustine says on Galatians 2:11, 'Peter gave an example
to superiors, that if at any time they should happen to stray from the straight
path, they should not disdain to be reproved by their subjects.'"
We must preserve
the dogma of the Faith. In the great Apostasy, a great number of people
lose their path because they do not preserve the dogma of the Faith sacrosanct
in their minds, hearts and souls.
Let us also not
forget to take heed to Our Lord Jesus Christs words to Sister Lucy of
Fatima: "Pray a great deal for the Holy Father".
1. To the objection, "The Pope can never
teach or promote heresy because he is infallible", we must answer: The Pope is
not infallible in everything but only in certain conditions which are strictly
defined and solemnly taught by the Catholic Church, particularly at the First
Vatican Council. For more on this subject, see "Mission Infallible" by Jonathan
Tuttle in The Fatima Crusader, Issue No. 66, page 23ff. See it also on
our web site at http://www.fatima.org/library/cr66pg23.html.
2. See John Henry Newman, Certain
Difficulties (London, 1876), cited in Michael Davies, Lead Kindly
Light: The Life of John Henry Newman (Long Prairie, Minnesota:
Neumann Press, 2001), pp. 181-182. See also Dz. 229, Dz. 297A, Dz. 430, Dz.
3. Catholic Counter Reformation, June
1973. For more, see The Popes, a Concise Biographical History, edited by
Eric John, published in 1964. Recently republished by Roman Catholic Books,
Harrison, New York. See also Dz. 530; D.S. 1000.
4. Editors Note: See the example given by
Father Paul Kramer in his article "The Impending Great
Chastisement Revealed in the Third Secret" in this issue.
5. Saint John Eudes, The Priest: His
Dignity and Obligations, (New York: P.J. Kennedy & Sons, 1947) pp.
6. The Devils Final Battle,
edited and compiled by Father Paul Kramer, (The Missionary Association,
Terryville, Connecticut, 2002) pp. 39, 47-48, 51, 53, 58, 61, 124, and see
Footnote #24 on page 299. See also the website at
7. For documentation on the homosexual
infiltration of the Catholic Church, see "Clerical Scandals and the
Negligence of the Pastors" by John Vennari, The Fatima
Crusader, Autumn 2002, Issue 71, pg. 15 ff. See it also on our website at
8. Cardinal Walter Kasper, based in the
Vatican, defied the defined dogma that "outside the Church there is no
salvation" when he said, "...today we no longer understand ecumenism in the
sense of a return, by which the others would be converted and
return to being Catholics. This was expressly abandoned at Vatican
II." Adisti, Feb. 26, 2001. English translation quoted from "Where Have
They Hidden the Body?" by Christopher Ferrara, The Remnant, June 30,
2001. See also The Devils Final Battle, p. 68.
9. Vatican Council I, First Dogmatic
Constitution on the Church of Christ, July 18, 1870. Taken from the book
Dogmatic Canons and Decrees, (TAN Books and Publishers) p. 254.
10. Vatican Council I, First Dogmatic
Constitution on the Church of Christ, July 18, 1870. From Dogmatic Canons
and Decrees, pp. 256-257.
11. De Romano Pontifice, lib. II,
Chap. 29, in Opera omnia, Neapoli/Panormi/Paris: Pedone Lauriel, 1871,
vol. I, p. 418.
12. Francisco Suarez, De Fide, Disp.
X, Sec. VI, N. 16.
13. St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa
Theologica, Pt. II-II, Q33, Art. 4, Ad. 2.
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