Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Blessed Paul VI?

Paul VI being on track to being Beatified?
There are so many conjectures about his private life, his friendships, those he allowed influence; there are so many questions which are unanswered, so many hints of scandal, of all the twentieth centuries Popes Paul VI should be left to sleep quietly in his grave, with prayers of the faithful.

Even his predecessor Pope St John XXIII dubbed him Hamlet.

Nine years after his election he wrote: "Perhaps the Lord called me to this service not because I have any aptitude for it, or so I can govern and save the Church in its present difficulties, but so I can suffer something for the Church so that it will be clear that it is the Lord, and not anyone else, who guides and saves it."


JARay said...

Well Paul VI certainly stunned the world when he issued his encyclical firmly re-stating the traditional teaching of the Church on artificial contraception.
That one publication makes him stand out amongst the postwar Popes.
His comment that the smoke of Satan had entered the Church is another thing for which he will always be remembered. It is common for him to be spoken of as a lightweight but he certainly was the man for the job at the right time.
God bless the late Paul VI. I'm sure that God knew well what he was doing when He appointed him.

Fr. Michael LaRue said...

We get the pope we deserve. I think Paul VI was God's judgment on our wickedness and infidelity. I trust he is saved, despite the horrible things done under his pontificate, and authority. Let him rest in peace.

Woody said...

I fear that the hints of scandal are more related to his own behavior. You can Google for more if you wish. Of course, who am I to judge?

The Keeper said...

So a Pope not giving in and preaching heresy is sign that he is saintly?

I would take Fr. Blake's word on this one.

While we all can agree that the "EFers" are the worst possible examples of Catholicism, are we really willing to ignore the numbers?

Are we really such company men that we are willing to believe "it would have been even worse" without all the huge changes that Paul VI instituted? How much worse could it have been?

Are we really going to forget about all the cronyism and sexual abuse and the complete collapse of Catholic teaching in parishes and universities and schools over the last 50 years?

Good thing we have had saint, after saint, after saint leading our heroic charge! It's all about keeping the right frame of mind apparently.

Sean W. said...

Humanae Vitae was certainly positive, but it was also not the whole of his Pontificate (and even the catastrophe which followed it was accomplished in part by his catastrophic mishandling of the whole affair). We simply cannot forget that the vast majority of the destructive work of the 60s was waged under his reign, that he was the one who repeatedly installed modernists in positions of power and ruled in their favor both during and after the Council, that he personally presided over a really quite pitless and brutal campaign to root out and destroy the traditional practice of the faith -- a campaign which drove many from the Church, including not a few clerics, some of whom continue to molder in the catacombs -- a campaign waged on the basis of an intellectual fashion wedded to a sickening obsession with novelty and a monstrous breed of ultramontane hubris -- the fruits of all of which have been a very real impoverishment of the Church in virtually every way.

So he did some good, yes, and much bad. He is like many past Popes in that respect (past Popes who are not, I note, saints). Why rush him to the altars, when we are still living with the aftershocks of his reign? Why not let future generations, once we have worked out way out of the mess, decide how comfortable they are with venerating him?

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...

Is anyone else finding these numbers a bit on the 'fixed' side. There have been five vii popes (excluding jpi for obvious reasons). A few weeks ago, two popes decided to cannoise two popes and now the third. 500 hundred years of the Church and only Pius V and Pius X were canonized popes, and during all those years when the Popes had to hold the flock together and defend the Faith against a brutal, stomach turningly brutal, protestantism.

the new church triumphant seems rather more on the subito side than the santo.

Chloe said...

It's not enough. It's nowhere near enough. Read the lives of the saints.

Jacobi said...

I couldn’t care less what sort of man Paul VI was personally.

We can, now some fifty years having elapsed, step back and begin to view this critical period in the history of the Church.

The Vat II and post-Vat II period has been a disaster. The Church is at as low an ebb now as ever in the last 600 years, possibly lower. We have not been well served by the Popes of this period, however saintly they may now be judged to be.

The only solution now is to start again. Go back to basics. Education, apologetics, sound doctrine, Catholic practises, and above all, an acceptance of the sinful, fallen nature of Man which was why Christ suffered a horribly cruel death on the Cross.

And after that, perhaps in two or three generations, we can then all go “over the top” and evangelise the world.

Athelstane said...

"While we all can agree that the "EFers" are the worst possible examples of Catholicism,"

Talk about painting with a broad brush.

Adulio said...

The whole beatification and canonisation process is a complete parody of something that was once, thought of as the most rigorous tribunals in the world.

We have already had the political canonisations of John Paul II and John XXIII (the latter who didn't even have a miracle attributed to him). An effort to canonise the "fruits" of the post conciliar church and silence the traditionalists.

Paul VI, for all his bravery regarding Humanae Vitae, is responsible for the culmination of the wholesale destruction of the Roman Rite as we knew it (a process sadly began by Pius XII). The mass confusion and apostasy that ensued under Paul VI, continues to devastate the church today. A pope who refused to govern and discipline those who made a mockery of the faith. Just what exactly saintly about that?

A recently deceased priest (Don Luigi Villa) was charged by St. Padre Pio to devote this whole life to exposing the masonic infiltration of the church. He wrote a book during the reign of John Paul II, whole completely put the lid on any process for Paul VI. It is probably time to revisit it again.

Jane said...

It`s the next step in the canonisation of V2, isn`t it? Or could it be, wonderfully, the `Canonisation of Humanae Vitae`?

TLMWx said...

Where will this madness end!

The Keeper said...


I was being sarcastic, which is always silly to do in writing. I think they often get a very bad rap.

Genty said...

Gone is the Devil's Advocate and the requirement for two miracles, so why not get it over with and declare that every pope (apart from one or two exceptions) is automatically a saint.

M. Prodigal said...

Randy Engel wrote a book called "The Rite of Sodomy"...

Johnny Death said...

Here's a much better idea, how about we get Mother M. Richard Beauchamp Hambrough, O.SS.S beatified and forget all about Paul VI of unhappy memory.

Sadie Vacantist said...

I had no interest in the Catholic faith when this man was Pope. Looking back, he was placed in an impossible situation and it seems absurd that Anglo-Saxons should abuse him now. He and the Vatican bought into the post-war paradigm of American hegemony on the basis that it was the only game in town. It was World that he never understood no more than anyone did. The decision to visit New York in 1965 was meant to seal the deal but by 1972, in his famous 'smoke of satan' quote, he denounced the pact as Faustian. As long as we remain in this "postwar" World, the Church will continue to collapse.

Supertradmum said...

This Pope should be canonized for the promulgation of the most important encyclical of the last 100 years, Humanae Vitae. He was up against tremendous opposition and was a prophet as to all the horrible sins which have invaded the Western world.

May we see him a Blessed Paul VI, Pope of Life.

JARay said...

I have just read that he is likely to be beatified on 19th October. The requisite miracle has been approved.

JARay said...

Take a look at:-
This is where I read about it.

Anonymous said...

What say the Congregation studies indepth "Canonisations for Dummies"? Read "Requirements for Sainthood" at Dummies.com? Have the conditions for sainthood evolved? Surely, if saints are proclaimed to aid in the salvation of souls, the souls need to be shown how by a reliable procedure the candidate's life was found to have become one of heroic virtue? Humanae Vitae stands on its own merits as teaching of the Magisterium.

Unknown said...

It's nice to know, at long last, that being a Saint, and heroic Christian virtue, have - despite centuries of boring old nonsense to the contrary - nothing to do with another.

That now being clear, forget Venerable Pius XII & the martyrs to Fascism & Communism - why not canonise Bugnini, Maciel, and other such Pauline characters ?

"This is [the NuChurch's] hour, and the hour of darkness"

What a pity the CC doesn't have a commination, as the Book of Common Prayer does; we - and they - definitely need it:


"Now seeing that all they are accursed (as the prophet David beareth witness) who do err and go astray from the commandments of God..."

## AKA P6 & JP2... Maybe they thought that slaughtering Christ's sheep was implied in His charge to St Peter (who really is a Saint, unlike them).

Unknown said...

It is sad to see how quickly and uncritcally people accept the denigration of the high office of the papacy. All the sites listing the "rumours" or "facts" about Paul VI are extremist anti-Vatican II conspiracy sites. I could not find a single site with a verifiable reputation repeating these allegations. The cry of the Third Reich was "Jews, Communists, Freemasons and Homosexuals" and this is the same cry of those who deny the validity of Vatican II.

Православный физик said...

If we're going to canonize councils, let's canonize Pope Paul III...

I'm with you, his cause should not be brought up...may he rest in peace.

Fr Ray Blake said...

I am not sure what you mean you the 'validity' of Vatican II. No-one could doubt it was a valid Council but some might suggest it was of a different order to say the first three or seven Ecumenical Councils.

No Council has ever taught every thing that emerged from it is binding on the all the faithful, only those teachings which had anathemas attached, even then a lot depends on its reception. Look at the Canons of Nicea for example.

Or do you mean such VII statements as 'Latin should be retained' are equal to 'the Church is inerrant when ...' are these of the same magnitude?

Cosmos said...


Quickly and uncritically? You do know Paul VI died in 1977? You do know that there was a massive cover up of sexual abuse in the Church that was overwhelmingly homosexual in nature, that was dismissed as a conspiracy by much of the hierarchy, including the last Saint we elected? You do know we are talking about canonization, which used to involve a "devil's advocate" a person who was assigned to take EVERYTHING seriously, since holding up a human being as a universal model for imitation is a big deal that implicates the Churches teaching authority? That has been eliminated, creating some pretty obvious concerns. You do realize that communists did take over Russia and China, killing tense of millions?

But thanks for comparing a tiny minority of Catholics with traditional beliefs Nazis! How thought-provoking!

Anonymous said...

One needs to separate the issues of 1) respect for the Papacy, and 2) the Vatican II Council - from the issue of the conditions (dogmatic?) and prerequisite procedures for canonisation of a soul by the Magisterium of the Church.

Supertradmum said...

Vatican II did not make any new dogmatic statements. I have studied the documents in depth and there are vagaries, which were put in on purpose by some, but nothing out and out erroneous. The council has been presented by many good trad priests as pastoral and not dogmatic.

The abuses of liturgy and the problems in the Church, including homosexual priests and pedophilia pre-date Vatican II by up to two generations. Four people in my family were abused by a priest thirty years before Vatican II. The list of pedophile priests given by the dioceses on their website included many who were dead long before Vat II and who were active priests before Vat II.

The council members were results of deep problems already in the Church, since the Enlightenment.

To blame Vat II for all the errors of the Church also ignores the take-over of seminaries by the heresies of Modernism, Jansenism and Americanism, which happened over a hundred years before Vatican II.

Those who have not studied either European and American history or Church history should do so before making paint-brush comments.

As to Pope Paul VI, imagine the holiness it took to stand up against the MAJORITY of cardinals and bishops, as well as clergy, all fallen away from the true faith, and promulgate Humanae Vitae. That is reveals heroic virtue.

If anyone thinks the clergy was supportive of this document only have to look at the disobedience of one country with regard to this noble encyclical-Great Britain. Much of the evil in the Church in GB is owing to this disobedience.

Supertradmum said...

And, a big post-script. Those who judge this man as evil should look at the sins of the laity and into their own hearts.

Self-righteousness is a sin.

Adulio said...

Supertradmum - extending the logic of your reason, why not canonise every single pope? Paul VI could do nothing other than profess the church's traditional teaching on birth control.

In fact, judging by the pontificate of Paul VI as a whole, I would even venture to say that Humanae Viate is proof that the Holy Spirit protects the church despite the popes leading them.

Unknown said...

Fr. Ray, by invalid I speak of those people who say it should never have taken place and none of its documents have any validity.
Given the processes and tensions in the church during the council and some of the subsequent "fruits", some critical analysis is not out of place.
The sites I refer to deny that neither JP II nor Benedict XV were good popes either.
To Cosmos, the site I went to said that Paul VI was a communist spy as well as a homosexual, that his election was the work of Freemasons and that his "softness" on Judaism was evil. That's 4 out of 4. If it got wings, quacks and waddles, it's probably a duck.
I'm not trying to fulfil Goodwin's theorem but there are some very marginal people in the church. I have to decide do I go with my PP, My Bishop and the Pope or do I presume all these are wrong?
I'm not personally mad keen on canonising everybody and, although we may need “Saints for our age”, there is nothing like the passage of a generation or two to clarify the impact of someone’s lasting example.

Supertradmum said...

Adulio, Pope Paul VI did not HAVE to promulgate Humanae Vitae, which IS the point.

Some popes did nothing but eat, drink, fight wars and be merry...

These are not saints.

There was nothing inevitable about Paul VI's encyclical.

Katalina said...

I have said this before and have to say it again. This cause was opened up in 1993 and in the course of the decade he worked a miracle that has been declared authentic. He wore a hair shirt so he practiced heroic virtue. As far as his orientation or personal life he stated publicly during his Papacy that he was NOT a homosexual. Those are the facts

umblepie said...

'Sister Caterina's Miracle' -
'Adulio'- to those who deny that there have been any miraculous cures in the canonisation of St Pope John XXIII, please read the post of Saturday, January 19, 2013,on the 'Transalpine Redemptorists at home'blogsite. It is a long post about Sedevacantism, you will find full details of this amazing miracle involving Sister Caterina, towards the end of the post.
'St Pope John XXIII pray for us'.

Anita Moore said...

Adulio said...Supertradmum - extending the logic of your reason, why not canonise every single pope? Paul VI could do nothing other than profess the church's traditional teaching on birth control.

I am not crazy about the idea of beatifying Paul VI -- at least not now. But, although it is true that Paul VI could not have changed the doctrine on birth control, it is not true that he had to come out and reaffirm it. He could have just simply buried the issue and said nothing.

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...

it's not out of the question that soon every single post-Pius XII pope, even jpi, will be raised to the altars, and probably the big name cardinals, kasper included, who will be 're'membered as that great man of D.I.V.O.R.C.E., who releived the worldy suffering of millions of sinners in the world, so they could suffer forever in hell, because his church was so merciful.

p.s. one thing paul vi did do, when bugnini also wanted to get rid of the sign of the cross from the Novus Ordo mass, Montini drew the line and said something like, 'the peasants will rise up' if we go that far. hardly heroic. This is mentioned in bugnini's monstrous autobiography.

p.s.s. cosmos, i was called a satanic-anti-catholic once for pointing out that protestants and the current pope called into question the sinlessness of the Blessed Virgin.

Athelstane said...

This Pope should be canonized for the promulgation of the most important encyclical of the last 100 years, Humanae Vitae.

I'm perplexed here, because I'm left to wonder why Pius XI should not also be canonized for issuing Casti Connubii, which said the same thing, only more coherently, almost four decades earlier. And, more to the point, actually enforced it among the clergy. Unlike Paul VI, who took time out of his day to reprimand Cardinal O'Boyle and forced him to remove the canonical penalties he had imposed on 17 priests of his diocese for relentless and outspoken condemnation of Humanae Vitae.

Yes, Humanae Vitae is a bright shining moment for Paul VI. Unfortunately, his conduct leading up to and following the encyclical almost completely vacated it of any authority over praxis. But that was true of so much of his pontificate, which resembles a bleak and barren vineyard, full of betrayals of the best, like O'Boyle and Mindszenty, and rewards and authority for the worst, who were legion.

The real problem here is not the miracle, which may well be genuine. The problem is the other half of the equation, the bizarre and incredulous determination in 2012 that Paul VI lived a life of heroic virtue. As Fr. Blake says, his record as Pope is too grim, and too many questions remain about his character to believe that this was a credible determination, or that this move to beatify him is a good idea.

Anonymous said...

Of course, Athelstane. The basis of what was a painstaking procedure of investigation for canonisation was that no stone would be left unturned and it would be clearly shown that a life of heroic virtue had been led (sometimes there was conversion from an earlier sinful life) and there could be no reasonable question that it was otherwise. If there is any question, a person ought not to be canonised. Canonisation is primarily about the salvation of souls by holding up a soul as a model for the rest of us. There should be no scandal involved - doing harm to the salvation of souls. The whole process ought to be painstaking and so comprehensive that no reasonable doubt as to heroic virtue can remain. HV is a great magisterial teaching and stands on its own merits - it cannot, however, show a life of heroic virtue (either ab initio or after a conversion from a sinful lffe). It may be tempting to propose a canonisation for HV when so many are purporting that there have been canonisations for VII - but both would be wrong.

Gabriel Syme said...

Paul VI was a disgrace.

That he is lionised for Humane Vitae shows just what a real state the modern Church is in. Its like praising a competent adult for managing to use the toilet without soiling themselves or making a mess on the floor.

And the response to Humane Vitae was so cold and bitter that he spent the remainder of his Papacy paralysed with fear and inaction. He never issued another encyclical following that.

(The Church does not even teach Humane Vitae anyway, just as it does not teach anything much these days. The first time I ever heard the Church talk about marriage and sex and reproduction etc was at my marriage preparation class, aged 34. By this time I had been sexually active for 14 years, and secular society had long-since formed my basic attitudes to sex.)

Paul VI was a weak man, one easily manipulated - he was in tears at one point during the Council, such was his failure to steer or control proceedings. He was a softie, a push-over, a well-meaning but dangerous fool of the type the Church is inundated with in the modern era.

His weakness was, I tend to think, the main reason he was elected in the first place. He didn't even have the spine as Pope to reject Council documents he was unhappy with. Instead he was seen to attach "clarifying notes" to the documents, notes which are now as forgotten and erroneous as the documents themselves.

He even knew at the time his Papacy was a disaster and he would frequently lament - which was all he seemed capable of doing - the fall out of the Council during his own lifetime.

That he is also being nudged along the line to Sainthood is every bit the calculated political scheme that the recent dual canonisations were.

Jorge Bergoglio is attempting to canonise "The spirit of Vatican II" in an effort to place it beyond criticism or question.

Francis said...

I don't buy the idea that Paul VI was so haunted by the reaction to Humanae Vitae that he never wrote another encyclical.

After 1968, he continued to issue apostolic exhortations and other papal documents prolifically. Just no more encyclicals.

I would argue that his decision not to issue further encyclicals after HV served the purpose of double underlining it. "This is my last major utterance." And as something to be taken up by future pontiffs.

Damask Rose said...

One wonders if the canonisations of John XXIII and JPII is just a matter of "circling". That in fact an additional motive for the so-called "canonisation of VII" is the beatification/canonisation of Paul VI because of his alleged homosexuality. Even if one could argue that his homosexuality was merely hearsay, if a credible witness came forward to any papal homosexual acting out, the media would have a field day and rainbow activists a poster-boy.
Gay priests could come out and happily celebrate Mass in their gay status with nary a word from the congregation who would no doubt give such priests ovations because of the "merciful" Church and the diminution of their and their children's sinfulness. Parishioners upset over such developments, perhaps finding no recourse from their bishops over such blatant witness to homosexuality from priests wouldn't even be able to appeal to the state because they could end up being called "haters". How convenient. One wonders if this whole gay priest thing is going to explode in our faces and even is such priests would get laicised.

Conversely, of course, one could argue that Paul VI's HV is the ultimate witness of a (to be charitable, a hypothetical) homosexual to the only natural and sacramental marriage bond between a man and a woman and the conjugal act of their "being one" for the sake of children. This would surely confound homosexualists.

I only mention this because there seems to be an increase in bringing aberrosexuality to the fore (eg baptisms...and rehabilitating chastity-smashing priests such as Fagan, so far) without even expecting people practising such to repent or convert. I'm worried about the stance taken in this papacy and pray for the upcoming Synod of the Family' to uphold Catholic teaching. I'm concerned with Pope Francis kissing the hand of an openly pro-homosexualist priest, Don Michele De Paolis (see Eponymous Flower blog), and wonder what it all means and where it's going to lead.

With this endless ad nauseam implication that the Catholic Church began with VII, pious Catholics are going to find they have no recourse to anything, not even a right to expect authentic Catholicism as expressed in its doctrines and dogma or that they can teach their children an authentic faith. They'll just be written off as old-fashioned Catholics that choose to follow an out-of-date faith that's rather twee.

This whole papacy so far this year seems to be scandalously "dirty".

Unknown said...

The Papal Tiara was abandoned, we were told, because it was too 'triumphalist'. Now, it seems, a Pope can expect almost certain Canonisation instead! I pity the poor Pope who bucks the trend in the future. People will be wondering,'Well, what was wrong with him then?'

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...

RE: paul vi and the papal tiara:

"it’s Montini’s turn to be Raised to the Tables—the man famous for wrecking the Mass and the last pope to wear the papal tiara, having given his to the United States in a dramatic gesture symbolizing democracy’s triumph over the old “triumphalist” Catholic Church. Pope Paul literally uncrowned himself after some 800 years of Roman pontiffs wearing theirs in kingly service of Christ’s bride. After Paul, never again. Because he was a humble man and, by implication, all of his 261 predecessors evidently were not, he stepped off the papal throne at the end of the second session of the Second Vatican Council in 1963 and dramatically set his crown on his altar in St. Peter’s, thus renouncing papal kingship in deference to the aggiornamento of the Second Vatican Council."


it doesn't take a genius to see that it really is Vatican II that is being 'canonized' - a departure from most of what was Catholic that preceded it in almost 2000 years.

Matthew M said...

This pope did more to destroy traditions and TRADITION in the Church Catholic than any one person since Martin Luther. In spite of his brave encyclical on artificial contraception, He destroyed the Liturgy so completely it may never recover. Now we have his clone who IMO will revert the Church back to the 1970's once again. The pope of sad memory has no business being 'Blessed" or canonised.

Anonymous said...

This move by Francis is more a statement of agenda than anything else as far as I can tell. It is extremely disheartening to my mind no matter how faithful Catholics try to positively spin it. How is what happened under Paul VI different from what happened under ant of the potentates ruling at the time of the Reformation. He did not become a Protestant himself but what he signed off on most certainly laid the foundations the the protestantisation of Catholic life and worship that has been going on since his pontificate. When Paul VI is declared blessed I will sadly just give up.

James said...

If ever he is beatified, that will, paradoxically, be a good reason *not* to leave. Catholics must not leave the Church, ever.

"23 When He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him. 24 And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being covered with the waves; but Jesus Himself was asleep. 25 And they came to Him and woke Him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing!” 26 He said to them, “Why are you afraid, you men of little faith?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and it became perfectly calm. 27 The men were amazed, and said, “What kind of a man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?”"


## That is the Church today, and throughout history - it won't capsize, despite the wost that men and devils can do. We need to hold on precisely when it seems there is no reason to do so. And things that are not yet that bad. To leave the Church is a false solution - it would not heal the Church, and it would not help us. It's a temptation - something on no account to be listened to, ever.

FWIW, that passage presents Jesus as a Jonah-figure, which connects it with His Death, and thus, with the attempts of the underworld to "prevail against" the Church: His Death and Resurrection, and the victory of the Church over the underworld that could not hold Him, are intimately connected. It is His Resurrection, that guarantees that the Church will prevail over the gates of the underworld. So we have nothing to fear.

geoff kiernan said...

Having Just read the preceding comments one thing is clear... Let me say that confusion is not one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Confusion is rampant among catholic at the moment. That was not the state of the Church 40/50 years ago. I know because I was there. How many of the above commentators are of the same vintage??
Is there a shred of truth in my comment about confusion in the Church?

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