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More on Cardinal Müller’s Blindfold

by Christopher A. Ferrara
January 11, 2017

The excellent Edward Pentin, writing for EWTN’s National Catholic Register, has just (January 9) published a revealing behind-the-scenes account that perhaps explains the mystery surrounding Cardinal Gerhard Müller’s seeming capitulation regarding the unprecedented crisis provoked by Amoris Laetitia — a capitulation that extends to public criticism of the four cardinals who have addressed the crisis by publishing the dubia they submitted to Müller, as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), as well as to Pope Francis.

Pentin reports that “it has emerged the CDF had clear misgivings about the document [Amoris] before it was published — concerns which were never heeded. One informed official recently told the Register that a CDF committee that reviewed a draft of Amoris Laetitia raised ‘similar’ dubia to those of the four cardinals.”

Note well: Pentin reveals that Müller himself submitted the equivalent of the cardinals’ dubia even before Amoris was promulgated. Now, however, he takes the position that there is nothing amiss with the document — that it presents no danger to the faith, and that he is “surprised” by the cardinals’ actions. 

Pentin also recalls, as was first revealed by the French journal Le Figaro back in April, that the CDF — meaning Müller — submitted no fewer than 20 pages of corrections to Amoris before publication. Twenty pages of corrections to a document Müller now claims is perfectly in harmony with Church teaching! It appears that Francis and his team of ghostwriters adopted none of those corrections.

As Pentin further reveals, a senior Vatican official has just informed the Register that the CDF “submitted many, many corrections, and not one of the corrections was accepted…” Moreover, the official added, Müller’s current position, as expressed during the TGCom 24 interview I discussed here, “is exactly the contradictory of everything which he has said to me on the matter until now.” The same official believes that Müller’s about-face suggests “someone who was not speaking for himself but repeating what someone else had told him to say.”

Put these facts together with the order from Francis that Müller immediately dismiss three orthodox priest-theologians who for many years were key contributors to the CDF’s work but were known to be critical of Amoris and other decisions by Francis.  As reported by the respected Vaticanist Marco Tosatti, Müller, dismayed by the order — for which no reason had been given — sought and obtained an audience with Francis, who informed him “I am the pope, I do not need to give reasons for any of my decisions. I have decided that they have to leave and they have to leave” and then abruptly ended the audience with a wave of his hand.

Thus it seems that none other than Francis has placed Cardinal Müller’s blindfold upon his head. Müller will either see no evil or he will see the end of his tenure as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, joining all the other victims of the various Bergoglian purges. Meanwhile, the CDF has been rendered toothless in the defense of doctrine. In like manner, the Congregation for Divine Worship has been rendered toothless by the purging of its entire membership save its head, Cardinal Sarah, who, along with Cardinal Müller, stands in helpless isolation while Francis — who speaks incessantly of decentralizing authority in the Church — does whatever he pleases whenever he pleases. 

The doctrines of the faith and the sacred liturgy are now entirely at the disposal of Francis and a coterie of handpicked ultra-progressives. There must be no resistance. As LifeSiteNews has noted: “Tosatti speaks of an ‘autocratic fever that seems to have broken out in the Vatican.’ Interestingly enough, this authoritative step [dismissing the three priests] is in seeming contradiction with Pope Francis’ hailed ‘mercy’ and his supposedly gentle ways of dealing with people.” 

“I am the pope, I do not need to give reasons for any of my decisions.”  These are not the words of the “merciful Pope” the Vatican public relations apparatus has created for public consumption with the aid of the adoring mass media. They are the words of an autocrat for whom the Petrine office is not a sacred trust but a tool for the imposition of his will.

No one can depose a Pope, for he has no judge on earth. But a tyrant can be resisted — even a papal tyrant, as some of the Church’s greatest theologians, beginning with Saint Thomas Aquinas, have made clear. All it would take in this case is for a sufficient number of cardinals to join the four who have stepped forward to declare publicly that Francis is on the wrong path and that he must regain the right path — the path of Tradition — for the good of the Church and the eternal welfare of souls. 

Even a Pope will find himself unable to abuse his authority when his subordinates unite in rightly standing up to the abuse. There are only so many heads Francis can chop off before he destroys his own credibility as a humble pastor close to the people. And, in the end, the Church is the household of the faithful, not a prison camp run by a warden.

May the Princes of the Church, invoking the assistance of the Mediatrix of All Graces, find the courage to tell the King that he cannot go on this way any longer!

Our Lady of Fatima, come to our aid!