Archbishop Lefebvre and the Conciliar Church – Part I: The Archbishop’s words

"That Conciliar Church is a schismatic Church, because it breaks with the Catholic Church that has always been." Editor’s comment: Whatever some may think about Archbishop Lefebvre, his thoughts, words, and deeds, it is clear that he was an enormously significant figure in the twentieth century response to Vatican II. Hence, while he is not …

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Pope Honorius and Roberto de Mattei – Interlude: The human mind’s ability to apprehend reality without the intervention of authority

Thesis: The Church at least sometimes expects us to apprehend reality and make cognitive judgments without waiting for the intervention of an authority; canon law may include processes for authoritative judgments on such matters, but this does not always absolve a man from the duty of making a cognitive judgment - nor does it prohibit …

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Membership of the Church: Part IV – Schism & Excommunication

Introduction In the first three parts of this series, we have seen that: The Catholic Church is a perpetually visible society which must therefore consist of members whose identity is discernible by the senses;The sacrament of baptism is necessary and sufficient for constituting an individual as both a subject and a member of the Catholic …

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The implicit and tacit expressions of the ordinary magisterium – Chapter IIIb of Fr J.M.A. Vacant’s nineteenth-century work on the magisterium

What is a Father of the Church? What authority do Doctors and theologians have in the Church? And what of the role of the liturgy? This is the second half of Vacant's long Chapter III. The first half considered how the ordinary magisterium teaches directly and explicitly, and how it makes use of secular learning. …

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How the ordinary magisterium expresses itself – Chapter IIIa of Fr J.M.A. Vacant’s nineteenth-century work on the magisterium

Chapter III of Vacant's work is long, and so the WM Review is publishing it in two parts. This first part addresses the express teaching of the ordinary magisterium, and the second will consider its implicit and tacit teaching acts. This part also describes the ways in which the Church makes use of natural sciences …

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The Ordinary and Universal Magisterium of the Church – Chapter I of nineteenth-century work on the magisterium by J.M.A. Vacant

We are pleased to present another section from this study by J.M.A. Vacant, in which he addresses the concept and the authority of the ordinary and universal magisterium. We previously published Chapter VI of this work, on the Pope's personal exercise of this magisterium. Fr Vacant was a professor of the Major Seminary of Nancy, …

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Membership of the Church: Part III – Public Profession of the True Faith

In this part we will examine the second condition of membership, that of public profession of the true faith. In part one of this series, we saw that the Catholic Church could be defined as: “The society of men who, by their profession of the same faith, and by their partaking of the same sacraments, make up, …

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Is the Roman Pontiff infallible in his ordinary magisterium? Chapter VI of nineteenth-century work by theologian J.M.A. Vacant

The WM Review is pleased to present here a translated section from the French text of J.M.A. Vacant’s 1887 study The Ordinary Magisterium of the Church and its Organs. To our knowledge, this may be the first time that it has been published in English. Vacant was a professor at the major seminary of Nancy, …

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Membership of the Church: Part II – Baptism

In the first part of our series on membership of the Church we discussed the Church’s perpetual visibility. We saw that the Catholic Church is a society which is always identifiable by men of good will through her four marks of unity, sanctity, catholicity and apostolicity. These marks are discernible by the senses. We further …

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Membership of the Church: Part I – Visibility

This is the first part of a series which will explore in detail the question of membership of the Catholic Church and the implications of this doctrine for the present crisis facing the Church. The Catholic Church teaches that the following, and the following only, are members of her visible body: “[those] who have been …

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