Pope Honorius and Roberto de Mattei IIIa: Magisterial Heresy? The Rule of Faith

“How many examples are there in theology of problems that seem unsolvable, simply because they start from badly-posed questions.” Dom Paul Nau OSB[1] This essay continues my response to Professor Roberto de Mattei’s call for Catholics to rally around the Church’s tradition and to form a “new more compact front for orthodoxy.”[2] To this end, …

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Suffering under persecution – the example of Robert Southwell, priest and martyr

One of the great delusions of the modern age is the presumption that human beings today are in some way “better”, more “enlightened”, more “moral” than people in the past, who were were cruel, or ignorant, or incapable of seeing things which are obvious to “modern man”. This attitude reveals itself in the frequent use …

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Pope Honorius and Roberto de Mattei – Part II: “Undoubtedly Magisterial Acts”?

We shall resume our study of Professor Roberto de Mattei’s treatment of Honorius, the so-called “heretic pope” Honorius. I have previously discussed how interpretations of history shape theological principles regarding the crisis in the Church. I hope that this study will, in de Mattei's own words, overcome “the many misunderstandings that often divide the forces …

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Pope Honorius and Roberto de Mattei – Part I: The History

In the chaos of the last sixty years, it has become common for Catholics to look for historical precedents for our situation. But in desperation to find some sort of evidence that the Church has experienced such things before, it is tempting for some to allow history to become a sort of “source of theology.” …

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Theology & History II: the nature of theology, and its relationship to history and other disciplines

This is the second response to the historian Roberto de Mattei’s call for Catholics to unite around the Church’s tradition: It is not possible for us to 'unite around tradition' without accepting the Church's received, traditional doctrine in its integrity. In the previous article, we considered the relationship between liturgical tradition and antiquarianism. We showed …

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Book review – The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise

An important book by Darío Fernández-Morera demonstrates just how much our understanding of the past can be distorted by unsound, or dishonest, approaches to history. [1]   In his book, The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise (2015), he demolishes, point by point, the widely held belief that under Islamic rule Spain enjoyed a golden age …

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