PopeWatch: Is the Schism Here?



PopeWatch is beginning to fear that it is no longer a question of whether there will be a major schism in the current pontificate but rather a question of when.  Steve Skojec at One Peter Five believes the schism may already have started:

I was reading an article thisKasper-und-Marx-die-Gesichter-der-deutschen-Kirche1-300x216 evening at the National Catholic Register about the secret meeting (the one I told you about last Friday) in Rome yesterday in advance of the second half of the Synod. The article was so good, the reporting was so thorough, I said to myself, “This must be the work of Edward Pentin.” I scrolled back to the byline, and so it was.

You see, Edward Pentin is the same man who caught Cardinal Kasper’s racist remarks, then proved that they had actually happened when Kasper denied them by producing the audio file. He’s also the man who did the lion’s share of the the investigative journalism on the Great Catholic Book Heist of 2014 – the disappearance of some 200 copies of Remaining in the Truth of Christ that disappeared from the mailboxes of Synod fathers last October, allegedly at the hands of Cardinal Baldisseri, the pope’s hand-picked Secretary General of the Synod.

In other words: he’s doing the Lord’s work as he uncovers much of the conniving going on in the episcopacy with the aim of undermining the Sixth Commandment.

But I digress. The line in the sand I was talking about? Well, here it is:

A one-day study meeting — open only to a select group of individuals — took place at the Pontifical Gregorian University on Monday with the aim of urging “pastoral innovations” at the upcoming Synod of Bishops on the Family in October.

Around 50 participants, including bishops, theologians and media representatives, took part in the gathering, at the invitation of the presidents of the bishops’ conferences of Germany, Switzerland and France — Cardinal Reinhard Marx, Bishop Markus Büchel and Archbishop Georges Pontier.

One of the key topics discussed at the closed-door meeting was how the Church could better welcome those in stable same-sex unions, and reportedly “no one” opposed such unions being recognized as valid by the Church.

Participants also spoke of the need to “develop” the Church’s teaching on human sexuality and called not for a theology of the body, as famously taught by St. John Paul II, but the development of a “theology of love.”

One Swiss priest discussed the “importance of the human sex drive,” while another participant, talking about holy Communion for remarried divorcees, asked: “How can we deny it, as though it were a punishment for the people who have failed and found a new partner with whom to start a new life?”

Marco Ansaldo, a reporter for the Italian daily newspaper La Repubblica, who was present at the meeting, said the words seemed “revolutionary, uttered by clergymen.”

French Biblicist and Ratzinger Prize-winner Anne-Marie Pelletier praised the dialogue that took place between theologians and bishops as a “real sign of the times.” According to La Stampa, another Italian daily newspaper, Pelletier said the Church needs to enter into “a dynamic of mutual listening,” in which the magisterium continues to guide consciences, but she believes it can only effectively do so if it “echoes the words of the baptized.”

The meeting took the “risk of the new, in fidelity with Christ,” she claimed. The article also quoted a participant as saying the synod would be a “failure” if it simply continued to affirm what the Church has always taught.

The closed-door meeting, masterminded by the German bishops’ conference under the leadership of Cardinal Marx, was first proposed at the annual meeting of the heads of the three bishops’ conferences, held in January in Marseille, France.

The study day took place just days after the people of Ireland voted in a referendum in support of same-sex “marriage” and on the same day as the Ordinary Council of the Synod of Bishops met in Rome. Some observers did not see the timing as a coincidence.

I wish I could excerpt the whole thing. You’ll just have to read the rest of it for yourself. It may not be obvious yet, but I’d wager that this carefully-structured bit of reporting by Pentin is going to be one of the most important things written about the upcoming Synod. It shows the pre-planning, the forming of cabals, the willingness to undermine Church teaching, the revolutionary language, the subversion by secrecy, and the blatant disregard for the natural law as a manifestation of God’s own Divine Will.

In other words: this is what a schism looks like.

Go here to read the rest.  The forces that almost tore the Church asunder in the wake of Vatican II have become emboldened under the current Pontificate.  John Paul II may be looked upon by historians as the Pope who made a last valiant effort to maintain the unity of a Church that was destined to split.  The resignation of Pope Benedict, which looks more mysterious and sinister the farther we get from it, may be regarded as the beginning of a process that will cause the Church to confront a crisis of at least the dimensions of the Protestant Reformation of almost five centuries ago.  Jesus, Mary and Joseph, pray for us.

More to explorer


  1. Is schism such a bad thing? Perhaps it is Jesus pruning the tree of useless branches.
    Although in this case, perhaps the word “poisonous” branches or “rotting” branches might be more accurate.

  2. I am reading Walker Percy’s Love in the Ruins right now. In the book the Catholic Church was split into three different factions. It’s a bit uncomfortable reading that at this moment in time.

  3. “Schism is the refusal of submission to the Roman Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him.” [Code of Canon Lawc.751]
    Who, except a few Lefebvrists and Sedevacantists, is proposing that?

  4. ‘ … but the development of a “theology of love.”
    One Swiss priest discussed the “importance of the human sex drive,” … ‘

    Twisting in their worldly minds for a way to rewrite the Sixth Commandment is costing the Church’s integrity, and depriving our Lord of souls. Going out to teach the whole world to sin no more indeed.

  5. “Thus understood, schism is a genus which embraces two distinct species: heretical or mixed schism and schism pure and simple. The first has its source in heresy or joined with it, the second, which most theologians designate absolutely as schism, is the rupture of the bond of subordination without an accompanying persistent error, directly opposed to a definite dogma. This distinction was drawn by St. Jerome and St. Augustine. “Between heresy and schism”, explains St. Jerome, “there is this difference, that heresy perverts dogma, while schism, by rebellion against the bishop, separates from the Church.”


    “Cardinal Marx, the archbishop of Munich and Freising, said as far as doctrine is concerned, the German episcopate remains in communion with the Church, but on individual issues of pastoral care, “the synod cannot prescribe in detail what we have to do in Germany.”

    The German bishops want to publish their own pastoral letter on marriage and family after the synod, the article says.

    “We are not just a subsidiary of Rome,” Cardinal Marx said. “Each episcopal conference is responsible for the pastoral care in their culture and has to proclaim the Gospel in its own unique way. We cannot wait until a synod states something, as we have to carry out marriage and family ministry here.””


  6. Methinks the new “forbidden apple” will come in the way of the “pastoral virus” that was birthed with the smoke of Satan.
    No evil is ever done without first painting it with a glowing halo…just as it was when Satan dared to use God’s own scripture in order to tempt Him.

    My fear is for those poor souls that are ignorant of the fact that you can’t have true faith or love, devoid of truth (doctrine) and that they will run with any Roman collar that bids them to follow..
    As Christ told Pilate, “I’ve come to bring the truth.”

  7. We humans never learn. Ever.

    “Theology of love” – can we not see the danger in this? JPII sure did…and he took great pains to explain the danger in his writings.

    If Francis takes the church toward a “theology of love” he will be a heretic, and his followers will not be with God.

  8. There has been a schsim developing for many decades now. Modernists – those like +Kasper, +Marx, +Rodriguez Maradiaga and so many of the American hierarchy have been heading down this path since the Second Vatican Council began.

    The Church rarely speaks out against the evils of sin. Abortion, fornication, sodomy, the breakdown of the family and the garbage produced by Western entertainment that infiltrate almost every home with a television are never confronted. Poverty and war are the sins of the age. Pacifism and wealth redistribution are hailed as the solutions.

    The Church has become effiminate. The Church has grown weak. A Pontiff with a backbone would have removed Kasper, Marx, Maradiaga, Bergoglio and a bunch of Americans and Canadians and put them in a Trappist monastery. They only raise their hackles at those who try to live by the teachings of the Church as they have always been taught before the 1960s.

    Western Europe has been doing the equivalent of sucking on the business end of a Glock for a very long time. Abortion, sodomy, Muslim immigration and euthanasia are what Western Europe produce today and our so-called American elite see this as something to admire.

    England hates it that Poles have emigrated there seeking work. England whines more about the Poles living there than it does about the Pakistanis who live there.

    Twice, American blood was spilled and American treasure spent to keep tyranny out of Western Europe and look at what they have done with this freedom.

  9. Anne-Marie Pelletier said it all!

    She praised the meeting between theologians and Bishops and said it was “a real sign of the times.”
    Whooa yeeah….it sure is!

    When she spoke of; “echos the words of the baptized” I wondered if she was recalling the words of renouncing Satan and all of his works? Or was it the baptizer’s echo of ” A voice of one crying out in a desert, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight his paths.”

    Prepare indeed. John the baptist said to prepare ye the way of the Lord! The way of the Lord, not false Gods nor idols. Pruning is underway. No doubt.

  10. Anne-Marie Pelletier is a remarkable scholar, who held the chair of Semitic Languages at the Paris-X University. She now holds a chair of linguistics and comparative literature at Marne-la-Vallée University. She is a philologist, a biblical scholar and exegete, who has done notable work on Isaiah and Canticles. She is not, and would not claim to be, a theologian.

  11. The Chair of St. Peter remains in the present place in Rome. The time when this Chair will move from Rome to elsewhere is coming, but that time is not yet here.
    When that time comes everyone will see it since it will be marked by the physical demise of Rome itself.
    But there will be no schism.
    Faithful Catholics will remain loyal to the Chair of St. Peter in Rome till the time, prophesied in Sacred Scriptures, comes.

  12. The Church approved prophecy of Akita says such as thing as “cardinal against cardinal, bishop against bishop.” This will explode as part of or somewhat after the 2015 Synod.

    Why don’t people recognize the second beast of Rev 13 is now sitting on the Throne of Peter, whereby the real pope, Benedict XVI has fled the Vatican? It is Benedict who is the bishop in white in the 3rd secret of Fatima – “we thought he was the holy father”. Strange way of saying pope.

  13. DJH-Whether Jesus prunes or not, He does curse fruitless fig trees-like the “Chief Priests and Scribes”; and once He curses them, they cease to bear fruit. They will cease to bear their wicked evil fruit. Our timeline for solutions may not be God’s timeline – but He always cares for, and takes care of, his priests, bishops, cardinals and popes. My daily prayer: “Thank you, God, for answering my prayers, whether it be in my time of in Your time.” Guy McClung, San Antonio

  14. The one hundredth anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima’s approved apparitions is nearing. Two years away to be exact.
    Something to ponder…”souls are falling into hell like snowflakes falling from the sky.” (from memory..)

    Hell is real and our times are foretold.

    The actions of Church leadership will define / are all ready defining the times we live in. Cardinal Burke, a true honorable prelate, is a good compass to gauge ones direction during this storm.
    Fr. John Hardon….pray for us.
    St. Michael the archangel…pray for us.
    Star of the Sea, Mary most holy, guide us to safe harbor.

  15. No to schism! We do not separate from Rome. The pope and his ‘advisors’ may seem to separate from us but we must stay faithful at all costs. God will only let things go so far. These men can plan and manipulate all they want and wink at sin but the truth never changes. We who know the truth must uphold it and be prepared to pay the price. This is a time of great trial and testing. Prepare well, dear brothers and sisters!

  16. I think God is simply separating the sheep from the goats by allowing these pressures to build upon the Church. Mary said we are living in decisive times. Everyone must choose once and for all; there is no riding on the fence. Without such pressure, bad ideas and sentiments of the heart never come to flower by actions and words for which we can be held accountable.

    Isn’t it true that the Church has always had enemies within? There is nothing new here, except it coming to light. The down side of a schism is that it will make the targets of persecution so much easier to find and target. Those faithful to the magisterial teaching of the Church are going to stand out like a sore thumb and be left to fend for themselves.

    As for standing by the Church, for heaven sakes, that is an easy one: simply stand by the Truth as always taught and written in the Catechism and historical and official Church documents. Anyone who strays from the Truth has strayed from the Church, not the other way around.

  17. JMS wrote, “As for standing by the Church, for heaven sakes, that is an easy one…”
    It is even easier than you suggest. Cardinal Manning summarised it, when he said, “But perhaps it may be asked: If you reject history and antiquity, how can you know what was revealed before, as you say, history and antiquity existed? ‘I answer: The enunciation of the faith by the living Church of this hour, is the maximum of evidence, both natural and supernatural, as to the fact and the contents of the original revelation. I know what are revealed there not by retrospect, but by listening.”
    He added, “The first and final question to be asked of these controversialists is : Do you or do you not believe that there is a Divine Person teaching now, as in the beginning, with a divine, and therefore infallible voice ; and that the Church of this hour is the organ through which He speaks to the world ? If so, the history, and antiquity, and facts, as they are called, of the past vanish before the presence of an order of facts which are divine”
    By contrast, any attempt to identify the true Church by her teaching, or Catholics by their tenets inevitably produces a vicious circle. “The true faith is taught by the true Church” and “The true Church is the Church that teaches the true faith”; this is not a test, but a tautology. That “the true Church consists of those in visible communion with the see of Rome” is a real test. Mgr Ronald Knox, when still an Anglican, asked himself, “Why did those who anathematized Nestorius come to be regarded as “Catholics” rather than those who still accept his doctrines?” He came to see that the only credible answer is that one party had the bishop of Rome in its camp and the other did not and that there can be little doubt that, in the West, our labelling of this party as orthodox and that as heterodox in early Church history comes down to us from authors who were applying this test of orthodoxy and no other.

  18. Who can rewrite the Bible? The pope? The theologians? Can Truth be re-defined/changed, or is Truth always the same? No one can rewrite the Bible and Truth does not change. Anyone who does these things is not of Jesus Christ, founder of the Catholic Church. In last Sunday’s sermon, the deacon stated that he had just come from a retreat and the bishop had said, “It is the Catholics that doggedly cling to pro-life beliefs and traditional family values who are dividing the Church.” O Father in Heaven, protect the faithful from the wolves in sheep’s clothing. Give Your heart to the remnant who will follow you that we may love and save the souls of those who reject You, Your teachings, Your Truth.

  19. Janet Graham asks, “Who can rewrite the Bible? The pope? The theologians? Can Truth be re-defined/changed, or is Truth always the same?”

    It is certainly true that, as Bl John Henry Newman observed, “Doubtless, a certain interpretation of a doctrinal text may be so strongly supported by the Fathers, so continuous and universal, and so cognate and connatural with the Church’s teaching, that it is virtually or practically as dogmatic as if it were a formal judgment delivered on appeal by the Holy See, and cannot be disputed” but he adds this qualification, “except as the Church or Holy See opens its wording or its conditions.”

    The same holds true for deliverances of the Magisterium: “instances frequently occur, when it is successfully maintained by some new writer, that the Pope’s act does not imply what it has seemed to imply, and questions which seemed to be closed, are after a course of years re-opened.”

    Truth is one thing; what seems to us to be true, or what we took to be true is quite another.

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