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Blessed Pope Pius IX on liberal Catholicism November 11, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, catachesis, Christendom, disaster, episcopate, error, General Catholic, horror, Papa, scandals, secularism, Society, the enemy, Tradition, true leadership.

I promised last week that I would start posting portions of formal, doctrinal condemnations by Popes from Pius VI to Benedict XV regarding liberalism in general and religious liberty in particular.  Before I get into that – which I may do later today – I wanted to include this denunciation of liberal Catholicism from Blessed Pius IX.  The below are not doctrinal statements in the form of encyclicals, but they certainly correspond with those doctrinal statements Pius IX made. They are from letters or briefs communicated to bishops and/or faithful lay Catholics in Quimper (Brittany, France) and Milan, both from 1873:

…..the enemies of the Church would doubtless have less success if a great number among those who carry the name of Catholic did not extend to them a friendly hand. Yes, alas! There are those who seem to want to walk in agreement with our enemies, and do their best to establish an alliance between the light and the 393px-PioIXadarkness, and accord between justice and iniquity, by means of those doctrines that are called “liberal Catholic,” which, resting on the most pernicious principles, flatter the secular power when it invades spiritual things and impel minds to respect, or at least to tolerance, of the most iniquitous laws, absolutely as if it were not written that no one can serve two masters. Now these are assuredly more dangerous and more deadly than declared enemies….In this way, they divide the minds, tear up unity, and weaken the forces that must be reunited in order to turn them all together against the enemy…

….the so-called Catholic liberalism, which, counting a great number of adherents among upright men themselves, and seeming to deviate less from the truth, is more dangerous for the others; [the others being open, avowed enemies of the Church or heresiarchs]  more easily deceives those who do not keep themselves on their guard; and, destroying the Catholic spirit imperceptibly and in a hidden manner, diminishes the forces of the Catholics and increases those of the enemy.

————End Quote———–

Again, the above was written in 1873 – 140 years ago.  Does that make it passe’?  Does that mean it can be dismissed out of hand?  The Church condemned liberalism in toto, and often quite vehemently, for at least a period of 150 years.  The condemnations were numerous, one could say, constant.  But today, we are told that these condemnations are passe’, or have to be passe’, due to pius ixsome ethereal change in “modern man” which is never quantified, but constantly referred to.

The very condemnations of modernism under Popes Leo XIII and St. Pius X made plain that modernism, as the synthesis of all heresies, was merely an attempt to somehow make Catholicism “acceptable” or “functional” from a liberal perspective, but – and this is the key fact that underlies all – with the liberalism completely dominating the “Catholicism.”  That is the essence of modernism, it is the rump of Catholicism left over after the Faith has been denuded of all that is offensive to the liberal mindset.  This is error the popes from Pius VI to Pius XII condemned.

But it’s not merely an error. It is the destruction of the Faith.  Being a bit coy, I’ll say, the Church has made a sort of flirtation – generally informally, non-doctrinally – with liberalism over the past 50 years.  Some of the ideas of liberalism/modernism have found their way into the practice of the Faith.  And to the extent those frequently-condemned errors have been proclaimed acceptable, or in practice accepted and acted upon, they have caused mass calamity in the Church.  Ideas regarding religious liberty which stem from enlightenment opposition to the close Church-state relations of the Counter-Reformation, have led to novamissawidespread religious indifferentism.  That same indifferentism spills out in a thousand different directions, from denial of the reality of hell as a populated place to the collapse of the Church’s evangelizing efforts to pathetically low Mass attendance and material support for the Church……etc.  I could go on for thousands of words.

We must pray. We must pray with incredible fervor, greater fervor than we have ever attempted, for souls to understand the dangers liberalism poses to the Faith, at all levels of the Church. We must pray that our popes and cardinals and bishops, once again, heed the condemnations of their predecessors.  We must pray that the great mass of souls comprising the laity develop at least an awareness that the liberal ideas the suffuse this culture are highly dangerous and often antagonistic to the Faith (if not entirely so). And we must mortify ourselves to give physical emphasis to the prayers, and for our own conversion. We must pray that we do not fall into these errors, we who exist in a culture totally subsumed in them.  And we must fight, by bringing to new generations generally totally ignorant of almost anything of substance related to the Church, especially her history, those great acts of warning and condemnations of error so many popes and prelates made for generation after generation against the rise of liberalism.

One way to do that, is to make more souls aware of the great book by Don Felix Sarda Y Salvany, Liberalism is a Sin.  It is online and available for free.  Check it out. Read it.  Take your time. Pray about what it says. Examine your conscience (as I examine mine) with relation to the errors denounced in this book.  See if they have not found some way into your thinking.  And share it with others.

Dominus vobiscum!





1. Baseballmom - November 11, 2013

My parents had this great little book on their shelf for as long as I can remember…. I still have it…. Somewhere… Time to go brush up a bit!

2. Branch - November 11, 2013

It’s difficult for me to reconcile what Pius IX taught with VII.

tantamergo - November 11, 2013

You are far from alone.

3. Don - November 11, 2013

Is there a Francis effect in Italy? Italians returning to Church.


4. Martina Katholik - November 11, 2013

Thank you especially for this post and for your very good blog!
God bless.

5. Bill Deville - November 11, 2013

As I read this blog, I started to laugh and yell out to my wife that you have published quotes that state what she has been saying for many months.

Our previous parish has a history of an openly liberal pastor. His replacement is also very liberal, but very “covert”. Most parishioners have NO CLUE what you are talking about when we mention anything about the presence of liberalism there. Then we hear of all the changes made to the RCIA program that gut traditional thinking of the Catholic church — like stripping mention of condulgences. That topic comes to mind, since I just heard a sermon on condulgences

Beverly said out loud as I was reading it to her “You know, I have a book called ‘Liberalism is a sin’ “. Then I got to the reference to that book at the bottom and laughed again.
Tantamergo is right on target here. It’s a good thing there is no hell. At least, these liberals will be safe (TIC).

6. Lorra - November 12, 2013

Now isn’t this strange! On Saturday afternoon, I pulled the little book “Liberalism Is A Sin” out and began to read it. And now this thread.
Nothing much has changed in a century, has it?

7. TG - November 12, 2013

I just read last night about this pope in a book “Catholism in Crisis”by Father Joseph Esper. Father Esper is a good writer and makes history interesting. His books are an “easy read” as my sister would say.

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