|Mary, Exterminatrix of Heresies. But since Mary is the perfect type of the Church, we can also think of this as an image of the Church defending us with Truth.|
Some months ago, in this space, we considered St. Thomas More's syllabus of errors emanating from the sect of Luther. Popes have also issued or approved syllabi of errors. In modern times, we have the 1864 Syllabus of Errors condemned by Bl. Pius IX, and the 1907 Syllabus of Errors of the modernists, Lamentabili sane, issued by the Holy Office (now the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith) under St. Pius X. Bl. Pius IX, Pio Nonno, had the great privilege of defining the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, but also the great sorrow of reigning during a time when secular states, stirred up by the doctrines of Freemasonry, warred against the Church and seized the Papal States. St. Pius X also lived through these turbulent times; the sulfuric smell of modernism, against which he worked hard to fortify the Church, stank strongly in his nostrils. In our day, notwithstanding the warnings of St. Pius X, the windows of the Church were opened to let in the smog and poisoned atmosphere of the world, so that even faithful Catholics are not immune to error. It pays to go down these two lists of condemned errors and ponder whether any of them have had any influence over us.
How many of these errors have been voiced in seminaries and RCIA classes, and even from the pulpit? Many will probably sound familiar. For example:
Pius IX, Paragraph 7: The prophecies and miracles set forth and recorded in the Sacred Scriptures are the fiction of poets, and the mysteries of the Christian faith the result of philosophical investigations. In the books of the Old and the New Testament there are contained mythical inventions, and Jesus Christ is Himself a myth.
Pius IX, Paragraph 14: Philosophy is to be treated without taking any account of supernatural revelation.
Pius X, Paragraph 35: Christ did not always possess the consciousness of His Messianic dignity.
Pius X, Paragraph 55: Simon Peter never even suspected that Christ entrusted the primacy in the Church to him.
Pius X, Paragraph 63: The Church shows that she is incapable of effectively maintaining evangelical ethics since she obstinately clings to immutable doctrines which cannot be reconciled with modern progress.
Note well that the Popes hit one or two of our sacred American cows right between the eyes:
Pius IX, Paragraph 47: The best theory of civil society requires that popular schools open to children of every class of the people, and, generally, all public institutes intended for instruction in letters and philosophical sciences and for carrying on the education of youth, should be freed from all ecclesiastical authority, control and interference, and should be fully subjected to the civil and political power at the pleasure of the rulers, and according to the standard of the prevalent opinions of the age.
Pius IX, Paragraph 55: The Church ought to be separated from the State, and the State from the Church.
If our peace has been disturbed by any of the items listed in these Syllabi, then we can rid ourselves of them and not be troubled by them anymore, secure in the knowledge that, since they are condemned, they cannot be true.