Bishop Vincent Gasser to the fathers of Vatican I on papal faith

Bishop Vincent Gasser: “Now before I end this general relatio, I should respond to the most grave objection which has been made from this podium, viz. that we wish to make the extreme opinion of a certain school of theology a dogma of Catholic faith.”

Pastor Aeternus, chapter 4, n. 7 is discussed here, as something which would be dogma, if the Council fathers pass it, and it was passed. So it is dogma. The charism of truth and of never failing faith is dogma.

“Indeed this is a very grave objection, and, when I heard it from the mouth of an outstanding and most esteemed speaker, I hung my head sadly and pondered well before speaking. Good God, have you so confused our minds and our tongues that we are misrepresented as promoting the elevation of the extreme opinion of a certain school to the dignity of dogma, and is Bellarmine brought forth as the author of the fourth proposition of the Declaration of the French Clergy?”

The false claim was made the Bellarmine asserted an error that was actually asserted by the aforementioned Declaration, the 4th part of which is this:
(4) while it was acknowledged that the pope had the “principal part in matters of faith,” his decisions were not final unless they had been “confirmed by the judgment of the whole Church.” That is a heresy.

“For, if I may begin from the last point, what is the difference between the assertion which the reverend speaker attributes to Bellarmine, viz., “The Pontiff is not able to define anything infallibly without the other bishops and without the cooperation of the Church,” and that well-known 4th article which says: “in questions of faith the judgment of the supreme Pontiff is not irreformable unless the consent of the Church accrues to it”? In reality there is hardly to be found any difference unless someone wants to call the disagreement of the bishops the cooperation of the Church so that a dogmatic definition would be infallible, even though the bishops dissent, but as long as they had been consulted beforehand. These things are said about the opinion of Bellarmine.”

It is heresy to say that the teachings of the Pope are not infallible unless either confirmed by all the Bishops or confirmed or accepted by the whole Church. The Pope teaches with the Authority of Christ. Period.

“As far as the doctrine set forth in the Draft goes, the Deputation is unjustly accused of wanting to raise an extreme opinion, viz., that of Albert Pighius, to the dignity of a dogma. For the opinion of Albert Pighius, which Bellarmine indeed calls pious and probable, was that the Pope, as an individual person or a private teacher, was able to err from a type of ignorance but was never able to fall into heresy or teach heresy.”

On this point Bellarmine and Pignhius agreed. So the opinion of Pighius and the opinion of Bellarmine, being identical, as raised to the dignity of a dogma, that the Pope is never able to fall into heresy or teach heresy. He can err to a limited extent, esp. as a private teacher, though.

“To say nothing of the other points, let me say that this is clear from the very words of Bellarmine, both in the citation made by the reverend speaker and also from Bellarmine himself who, in book 4, chapter VI, pronounces on the opinion of Pighius in the following words: “It can be believed probably and piously that the supreme Pontiff is not only not able to err as Pontiff but that even as a particular person he is not able to be heretical, by pertinaciously believing something contrary to the faith.” From this, it appears that the doctrine in the proposed chapter is not that of Albert Pighius or the extreme opinion of any school, but rather that it is one and the same which Bellarmine teaches in the place cited by the reverend speaker and which Bellarmine adduces in the fourth place and calls most certain and assured, or rather, correcting himself, the most common and certain opinion.”

Therefore, the teaching of Vatican I is dogma which says that the Pope has the charism of truth and of never failing faith, implying also that no Pope can teach or commit heresy.

Vigano, Schneider, Burke, Taylor Marshall, Peter Kwasniewski, Steve Skojec, Phil Lawler, all the signatories of the documents that accuse the Pope of propagating or teaching or committing heresy, and anyone who says or believes the same are all heretics and schismatics (at least materially).


This entry was posted in commentary. Bookmark the permalink.