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Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Is Christ the King of the Nations on Earth or Just King in Heaven?


I was speaking with a priest after Mass last Sunday morning on the Feast of Christ the King. (In the traditional calendar we celebrate the feast on the last Sunday in October as established by Pope Pius XI in 1925. Pope Paul VI moved it to the last Sunday of the liturgical year.) Father mentioned a number of formerly Catholic countries that removed acknowledgment of the Lordship of Christ and his social Kingship from their constitutions. The only two I remember him mentioning were Ireland and Columbia, although there were several others. 

That any countries ever recognized Christ the King in their constitutions was news to me. It certainly made sense with Ireland, which up until recent generations was one of the most Catholic countries in the world. Keep in mind that none of these countries was imposing the Catholic faith on their populations. They were simply acknowledging a profound truth, i.e., that Jesus Christ is King in heaven and on earth and as a Catholic country they recognized his Kingship. They were not forcing anyone's personal conversion or practice of their faith, but they limited public anti-Catholic proselytizing and assaults against the faith or public advancement of false religions in order to protect the common good.

So why did these countries stop acknowledging the Kingship of Christ in the secular order and as the Lord over their nations?

Was it a revolution from atheists?

NOPE!

A demand from the Protestant churches?

NOPE!

Did an organization, the equivalent of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, launch a petition drive demanding removal?

NOPE!

So who did it? And why? 

Can you guess?

I'll give you a hint. It happened after Vatican II.

And now the answer.

According to the priest, representatives of the Vatican visited the countries involved and advised them to remove the Lordship of Christ as King in the social order because of the Vatican II document Dignitatis Humanae, the Declaration on Religious Liberty (DH). To say the least, this is shocking! For Vatican officials to dethrone Christ is the equivalent of the Jewish elders saying, "We have no king but Caesar."

The Church has always taught that error has no rights. One can tolerate an error for good reason. For example, it's morally wrong to burn down a house because a pagan lives there. But it would also be morally wrong to affirm the beliefs of the pagan and to pray with him to Pachamama. The truth remains at all times and in all places that Jesus Christ is not only the Lord in heaven, but he is Lord on the earth with authority over all the nations. That is biblical and Church doctrine! Jesus Christ is, indeed, the King of heaven and of earth.

The Vatican II document changed that. And, not surpisingly, it was Pope Paul VI who moved the date of the feast of Christ the King from the last Sunday of October, right before All Saints and All Souls days (when we honor all in the Church Triumphant and the Church Suffering who faithfully served Christ our King) to the last Sunday in the liturgical year preceding the beginning of Advent. Moving the feast to precede the first Sunday of Advent, with its emphasis on the return of Christ at the end of time, carries with it the implication that Christ's Lordship is for heaven at the end of the world, not for the earth here and now. But let me repeat: the fact that Christ is Lord of all the nations on earth is a doctrine of the Church.


So let's look at the document. It's short, one of the shortest of the Vatican II lexicon, in fact, only 4 1/2 pages plus endnotes. 

Most of the document is fine and upholds the teachings of the Church on religious liberty. No one can coerce the inner forum of the individual, i.e., the beliefs he holds personally in his conscience. God gave us free will and to coerce the conscience of another violates his freedom which means NO FORCED CONVERSIONS. (Unfortunately, this has sometimes been violated by overenthusiastic clergy and laity.) By the same token, however, we are called by God to give witness to the truth to bring the entire world to Christ. Jesus gave the apostles and their descendants (which includes us) the Great Commission to go forth and baptize all nations. To live in error is no blessing! Think about the cannibals Columbus confronted when he landed in America. Certainly their victims were grateful for their rescue from those who feasted (literally) on that deadly error! People often cling tenaciously to their errors, which is demonstrated by the martyrdom of so many missionaries.

So when the document speaks about respecting the inner forum it is correct and in line with Church teaching. But, like many of the Vatican II documents, there are statements that are ambiguous and open to a novel interpretation, one that contradicts the faith. 

Catholic journalist, Paul H. Hallett, who wrote for the National Catholic Register during the most turbulent years of the 20th century, described some of the ambiguous passages in DH saying, "It is not disloyalty to faith to seek a clarification of its ambiguities. Nothing is gained by pretending they do not exist."

And, in fact, Article 2 of DH directly opposes doctrine by saying:
2. This Vatican Council declares that the human person has a right to religious freedom. This freedom means that all men are to be immune from coercion on the part of individuals or of social groups and of any human power, in such wise that no one is to be forced to act in a manner contrary to his own beliefs, whether privately or publicly, whether alone or in association with others, within due limits.

The term "due limits" was defined in the document to conform to the Masonic Declaration of the Right of Man to mean "public order" rather than the Catholic terminology, "the common good." The shift in meaning has clear consequences. As long as public behavior doesn't result in public disorder, no problem. Hence public espousal of false ideas, like gender fluidity or gay marriage is a-okay. The document acknowledged a right to advance public error in the external forum (as distinguished from personal conscience, the internal forum), a right never before recognized by the Church.

Not surprisingly, the document came to be interpreted in the most liberal way possible (as those developing it wanted) giving man liberty as the sole arbiter of right and wrong for himself, both privately and publicly, whether alone or in association with others. This, despite the fact that the perennial teaching of the popes has been that the Catholic state may regulate public actions. For example, while the state cannot compel Protestants to attend Mass, they can limit a Protestant sect having a tent revival in a public park and advertising it with public notices. The state doesn't have a moral obligation to always discipline error, however. Toleration is sometimes prudent to avoid a worse violation of the public good, for example, civil war. But to say that truth and error have equal rights is, as Pope Gregory VI said in condemning such an idea, "insanity" that is "a monstrous error" (Qui Pluribus) and "most pernicious to the Catholic Church, and to the salvation of souls." (Quanta Cura).

The historian William Durant once said, "When liberty becomes license, dictatorship is near." The freest state is the one that holds to moral principles that follow the natural law implanted in our souls by God. The nation that looks to Christ the King as her ruler, will always be the freest. Today, as Jesus Christ is dethroned and replaced by Baphomet, Pachamama, and the gods of lust and murder,  we are seeing the chaos brought about by unbridled license. And so we move ever more inexorably toward a police state under the rule of tyrants. 

We may not be able to bring about the rule of Christ the King in our nation, but we have the absolute power to enthrone Christ the King in our homes and in the little nation of the family. If you've never done it, don't waste any more time. Enthrone the Sacred and Immaculate Hearts in your home. 

Viva Cristo Rey!

9 comments:

Cynthia said...

Christ is King whether people want to acknowledge it or not. His Kingdom will come and woe to those who worked against it. Hopefully I will be alive because I can’t wait to see what happens !

Sviatoslav said...

What kind of "religious liberty" the Vatican was thinking of? Liberty for Buddhism, which still kills (nay, genocides) people in Myanmar and was only somewhat pacified by the Westernization of India, Japan and China (before that, the "peaceful" Dalai Lama used to own serfs and make souvenirs out of their skins! It was so bad that the Commies had to stop it! Imperial Japanese used to play catch-and-toss with human babies and not a single Buddhist creed has compelled them to repentance to this day - and what of Shinto, which sees the abominable Unit 731 criminals WORSHIPPED by the Japanese?!). Liberty for Islam? This is even worse, as this religion is hardly different from the beliefs of the Norse, who felt entitled to go viking and raid defenceless peoples for slaves and valuables. Paganism? Sure, the Church's work was done well; the paganism of today, for the most part, is a collection of stupid cosplayers who like to feel contrary to their Christian families and societies. The only exception is Zoroastrianism - the only one that can claim unbroken lineage to the times of even before the ancient Greece and, of course, the religion that was so friendly to the Jews that Jews praised Zoroastrian Persian kings in the Bible (and even converting Zoroastrians would require finding them first due to the fact that there's less than two hundred thousand of them in the world). Hinduism is the other paganism that survived with a mostly-unbroken lineage (Trimurti and Dravidian fertility cultism/tantra modifications to the actual Vedic religion nonwithstanding) - unlike Zoroastrianism, this one is genuinely dangerous. Were it not for the civilized British and even some influence of Muslim Mughals, everyone would still be seeing the religion that forcibly burned widows on the funeral pyres of husbands, raided peaceful villagers ('tis not for nothing the Zoroastrian scriptures cursed Angra Mainyu (known as Manyu to the Hindus), Indra, Sarva (also known as Shiva), Naonghaithya (known as Nasatya to Hindus), Taurvi and Zairich (known as Dasra and Soma to the Hindus) and their worshoppers - and, of course, Hinduism still maintains the dehumanizing caste system (which, ironically, actually helps the Christian missionaries - dalits that see that a Christian missionaries and people treat them like humans instead of pieces of garbage on a boot will inevitably ask themselves - "maybe this Christian religion is worth converting to"). And even Judaism - their pagan-inspired monotheism (ironic, right? Especially when they charge Christians with idolatry - but they took their interpretation and perception of "God is one" (known to Muslims as Tawhid) from the Zoroastrian Ohrmuzd), they cosplay an extinct religion and the old covenant (ask them where's the animal sacrifice if the Second Temple is no longer standing and why even the Bible says that the Mosaic Law is no guarantee of salvation), have no priests (no tribe of Levi - no priests) and, like all the pagans out there, believe that you can earn salvation through mere works and whose perception of the Messiah has more in common with the martial warriors akin to the Zoroastrian Astvat-Ereta and Keresaspa (they even believe that Messiah is just a human and not also God) than with the humble carpenter that utterly schooled the Pharisees on both morality and scripture and advocated for winning Roman hearts and minds instead of foolishly throwing bodies at a martially-undefeatable (to the Jews at the time) problem that was the pagan Rome.

reginald jac said...

Vatican I replaced Christ as king with pope as king even before Vatican II.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

Reginald,

The Church has always taught the primacy of Peter. Vatican I did not invent it. The pope is the vicar OF CHRIST. He is not above Christ, but he was made the head of the Church. For centuries the pope wore a tiara to indicate his supreme headship. I haven't read the documents of Vatican I, but thank you for this comment because now I will. Catholic kings of Christendom recognized that their authority as heads of their country came from God and did not belong to them. The same is true of the pope. Those, like Francis, who betray the faith, are usurpers. As the papal motto says, the pope is the "servant of the servants of God." But just as a family needs a head, so does the family of the Church. I think you are misinterpreting the teaching. Have you read the documents of Vatican I? Maybe we can continue the discussion after I read them.

Unknown said...

VII certainly made it difficult to defend (and teach) traditional Catholic positions. It’s getting harder to figure out what church we are..
- Catholic position of the only true church, to the prove.egged church, now just one of many good Christain churches and soon… (see where this is going?)
- The consecrated Eucharist is our Lord and kneel before Him lovingly and accept him in grace, to yes it’s Our Lord and you don’t need to kneel, to now can hold him, to maybe you don’t need to be in grace, and soon… (see where this is going?)
- Latin Universal Mass, to New Order in local dialect, to get out of the way altar boys and give room to Eucharist ministers, to altar girls, to clown masses, and soon… (see where this is going?)
And you can continue this list…
I’m starting to think 144,000 faithful left may be a real number (how Protestant of me!)

Debbie said...

I prayerfully implore all here to look into the SVist position. I understand it is a difficult position for lifelong, JPII loving Catholics to believe. But this one example (Vatican officials telling Ireland to change their constitutions) should give one pause to consider how, exactly the true Church/Pope could do this. I believe once you start reading their arguments you'll see just how Catholic the position is. God bless and the Virgin protect us all.

PatS said...

Debbie,
If SVist means Sedevacantist, then I advise you to abandon that position immediately as it no different than the core position of the Greeks or Russians - a rejection of Papal Authority and a thinking our Lord abandoned us.
Sedevacantism is simply folly and a cop out to facing the hard reality that our Lord has given us what we asked for. It is a punishment that God wants us to wake up from our modernist error. The world has asked for a Pope of the world (a rock star!) and our Lord has given us many.
This is similar to what our Lord gave his chosen people (i.e. King Saul). They wanted a leader like the other people. He was "head and shoulders" over all others. The people were happy with this popular choice. Please consider those popes (Benedict included) just like Saul's reign.
We have had many bad popes in the past, why not many in a row? From what I can tell (I listen to others that know better than I) these Popes have not errored in infallibility as defined in VI, so there is still some supernatural protection keeping the Church together at the core (the worldly exterior is quite a different story).
Sedevacantism is a schismed position, don't fall into schism. The measure of schism is acceptance of Papal Authority. Sede's reject any authority. Tell me how a Sede' will come back to accept a Pope? What would that look like. All it is now is much like the Obama campaign "hope and change" - and empty dream.
Now the guy they call Francis - that's a different story. We have only one Pope and it should be clear who that is.

Debbie said...

PatS, fwiw, Vigano just today blasted B16 for his modernist theology. Modernism, as I'm sure you know, is the synthesis of all heresies. The perennial teaching of the Church regarding the pope has been to recognize and obey, not resist.

The See of Peter always remains unblemished by any error. First Vatican Council.

A true pope has Divine Protection against teaching error. The fact the SSPX even exists proves the VII Church and it's popes have taught error. The Society errors in calling heretics popes and then disobeying them. All this information is available for anyone who cares to look.

PatS said...

Debbie, Cardinal Ratzinger has much modernists theories and thoughts for sure. But Pope Benedict has no teachings from the See which are such. You Sedes are obscuring this issue. Did JPII do things that are problematic? Yes…. Did Pope JPIi teach against dogma or The Deposit of Faith? NO!
We have bad popes, but the Holy Ghost still has a hand on the heart of the Papacy. To think our Lord let it go is a strange thought to me.
Good luck with your Sede stance, how’s that working for ya? How is that helping the Church? You can’t fight for something you abandon.