Fear was a major weapon effectively welded. Benedict had asked for courage in facing the pack of wolves surrounding him. Fear had driven Vigano underground. Fear had spurred 19 theologians and scholars to sacrifice their careers to protest heresy. Benedict did not leave the papacy freely but under coercion. For me, this was a reasonable conclusion from the public facts. A choice must be free to be true. It would be Ann Barnhardt who would provide me the relevant sections of the Code of Canon Law to back up this conclusion in a precise manner.
The Petrine privilege binds Christ to Peter, and his validly elected successors. Mat 16:19 “Whatsoever you bind on earth is bound in heaven”. This statement of the Lord’s is demonstrated by the Lord paying the Temple Tax (Mat 17:24-27). Peter had bound the Lord to the tax, our Blessed Lord corrected Peter, while at the same time honoring his decision. The Lord’s action is more than just preserving Peter’s honor. Matthew is tying Peter’s office as Prime Minister to the Lord as King.
The Lord has bound himself to the teaching office of the Church. The norms instituted by John Paul II is what governs the validity of ‘resignations’ and ‘elections’. It is not personal preference or the prior Code of 1917 or even how things were done in the era of the Borgia popes. How I long for that woe begotten era.
The movement of the Holy Spirit in my soul that Benedict was still validly the Pope was confirmed. It did not matter a whit to me that Marshall or anyone else did not agree with my conclusion. Epistemology 101.
Lent 2020 with the closing of the Churches globally, I had the needed time to research fully the attempted resignation of Benedict. Thank you, Jorge.
A friend now deceased, let’s call him Pete for the sake of ease, had asked me about Ann Barnhardt’s thesis in 2018. I had skimmed her proposal and distracted by other questions (Masonic deliverance in familial bloodlines being one) gave the prevailing dismissal of the Barnhardt proposal prevalent among Catholic thought leaders.
With time on my hands, Pete’s inquiry about Ann Barnhardt years earlier resurfaced in my mind Lent 2020. In January 2020, I had an insight that the year 2020 would be a year unveiling. Little did I know how correct that insight would turn out to be for me. Deo gratis.
I make a public dedication to Pete. You were right about Ann Barnhardt’s thesis. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.
You were right to have listened to her thesis in its entirety and I was wrong to have merely skimmed over it. I was wrong to have relied on other Catholic thought leaders to form my opinion. Allowing other individuals, irrespective of rank, position, or notoriety to determine what I believed was not going to happen a second time.
I made my decision with moral certitude about Benedict still being the Pope, prior to encountering Ann Barnhardt, the Code of Canon Law, and Brother Alexis. These various thought leaders confirmed my decision in a more refined manner. I knew this because I believed that valid councils teach truth, including Vatican I. Ann and Brother Alexis do not cause my decision to know truth. Rather, they provided information and help to clarify and better articulate my decision. Happily, they arrive at my decision from somewhat different but complementary paths. I like having multiple solutions to the same problem.
Thomas Aquinas gave 5 proofs for the Existence for the God. These proofs are the summit of human endeavor. It is to each person which of the five makes the most sense. Similarly, different souls might prefer my reasoning, Ann’s, Brother Alexis. de gustibus non disputandum est,..