In these confusing times, we have to educate ourselves on our Faith. In these times, we have particularly to educate ourselves on the scope of the Pope’s powers and prerogatives, and the limits of his authority. It is providential that Ryan Grant, an Idaho (!) Latinist, has been busying himself with the long-overdue task of translating the works of St. Robert Bellarmine into English. On the Roman Pontiff is a must-read for all faithful Catholics who find themselves suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous pontiffs. We are bound to suffer even more, and needlessly, if we are laboring under misconceptions about the limits on papal authority, when the Pope can legitimately bind Catholics, and when the Pope is and is not protected by the charism of infallibility.
Taylor Marshall interviews Christopher Ferrara about the meaning of the message of Fatima for our time. The entire interview is fascinating. If you struggle to reconcile the errors of Pope Francis with his authenticity as Pope, then pay attention, starting at 37:28. Here Ferrara explains why the errors of Pope Francis do not trouble him about the Church’s indefectibility, even though the current Pope’s audacity exceeds anything we have ever seen before in the history of the Church. He explains in particular how to cope with bad teaching from the Pope, and how to distinguish teachings that are truly magisterial from those that aren’t, even if they are labeled as such.
The key point is that God is not mocked. He is not fooled by false labels; nor does He require us to accept false labels, even when they are applied by the Pope and his minions. On the contrary, we are bound to reject that which is false. Therefore, God does not put us in a Catch-22 even when He allows us to be governed by a bad Pope who purports to change doctrine.