Thirty-one scholars/clergy members have signed onto a letter accusing Pope Francis of heresy.
Holy Week, 2019
Your Eminence, Your Beatitude, Your Excellency,
We are writing to you for two reasons: first, to accuse Pope Francis of the canonical crime of heresy, and second, to ask him to take the necessary measures to deal with the grave situation of a heretical Pope.
We take this measure as a last resort to respond to the cumulative damage caused by the words and actions of Pope Francis over several years, which have led to one of the worst crises in the history of the Catholic Church.
We are accusing Pope Francis of the canonical crime of heresy. For the canonical crime of heresy to be committed, two things must happen: the person in question must doubt or deny, through words and / or public actions, some divinely revealed truth of the Catholic faith that must be believed with the consent of divine faith. and Catholic; and this doubt or denial must be persistent, that is, it must be done with the knowledge that the truth that is being doubted or denied has been taught by the Catholic Church as a divinely revealed truth, which must be believed with the consent of the faith, and the doubt or denial must be persistent.
Although accusing a Pope of heresy is, of course, an extraordinary step, which must be based on solid evidence, both conditions have been demonstrably met by Pope Francis. We do not accuse him of having committed the crime of heresy every time he seems to publicly contradict a truth of the faith. We simply accuse him of heresy on the occasions when he has publicly denied some truths of the faith, and then he has acted coherently, in a way that shows that he does not believe these truths that he has publicly denied. We do not claim to have denied truths of the faith in pronouncements that satisfy the conditions for an infallible papal teaching. We affirm that this would be impossible, since it would be incompatible with the guidance given to the Church by the Holy Spirit.
We accuse Pope Francis of having publicly and persistently demonstrated, with his words and actions, his belief in the following propositions that contradict the divinely revealed truth (for each proposition we offer a selection of biblical and magisterial teachings that condemn them as contrary to the divine revelation, these references are conclusive, but not intended to be exhaustive):
I. A justified person does not have the strength, with the grace of God, to carry out the objective demands of the divine law, as if some of the commandments of God were impossible for the justified; or as if it meant that the grace of God, when it produces justification in an individual, does not invariably produce and by its nature the conversion of all grave sin, or is not sufficient for the conversion of all grave sin.
[Council of Trent, session 6, canon 18: “If anyone says that the commandments of God are impossible … to observe even the justified and established man in grace, let him be anathema” (DH 1568).
See also: Genesis 4: 7; Deuteronomy 30: 11-19; Ecclesiasticus 15: 11-22; Mark 8:38; Luke 9:26; Hebrews 10: 26-29; 1 Jn. 5:17; Zosimus, 15th (or 16th) Synod of Carthage, canon 3 on grace, DH 225; Felix III, 2nd Synod of Orange, DH 397; Council of Trent, Session 5, canon 5; Session 6, canon 18-20, 22, 27 and 29; Pío V, Bulla Ex omnibus afflictionibus , On the errors of Michael du Bay, 54, DH 1954; Innocent X, ConstitutionCum occasione , On the errors of Cornelius Jansen, 1, DH 2001; Clement XI, Constitution Unigenitus , On the errors of Pasquier Quesnel, 71, DH 2471; John Paul II, Apostolic Exhortation Reconciliatio et paenitentia17: AAS 77 (1985): 222; Veritatis splendor 65-70: AAS 85 (1993): 1185-89, DH 4964-67.]
II. A Christian believer may have full knowledge of a divine law and voluntarily choose to break it into a serious matter, but not be in a state of mortal sin as a result of this action.
[Council of Trent, Session 6, Canon 20: “If anyone says that a justified man, however perfect he may be, he is not bound to observe the commandments of God and the Church, but is only bound to believe, as if the Gospel was no more than an absolute promise of eternal life, without the condition that the commandments be observed, that it be anathema “(DH 1570).
See also: Mc 8.38; Lk 9.26; Heb 10, 26-29; 1 Jn 5,17; Council of Trent, session 6, canons 19 and 27;
Clement XI, Constitution Unigenitus , On the errors of Pasquier Quesnel, 71, DH 2471; John Paul II, Apostolic Exhortation Reconciliatio et paenitentia 17: AAS 77 (1985): 222; Veritatis splendor, 65-70: AAS 85 (1993): 1185-89, DH 4964-67.]
III. A person can, while obeying a divine prohibition, sin against God by that very act of obedience.
[ Ps. 18: 8 See also: Ecclesiasticus 15:21; Council of Trent, session 6, canon 20; Clement XI, Constitution Unigenitus , On the errors of Pasquier Quesnel, 71, DH 2471; Leo XIII, Libertas praestantissimum , ASS 20 (1887-88): 598 (DH 3248); John Paul II, Veritatis splendor , 40: AAS 85 (1993): 1165 (DH 4953)].
IV. The conscience can truly and correctly judge that sexual acts between people who have contracted a civil marriage with each other, even if one or both of them are sacramentally married to another person, can sometimes be morally correct, or required, or even ordained by God. .
[Council of Trent, session 6, canon 21: “If someone says that Jesus Christ was given by God to men as a redeemer in whom they are to trust, but not also as a legislator whom they are to obey, let him be anathema”, DH 1571 .
Council of Trent, session 24, Canon 2: “If anyone says that it is lawful for Christians to have several wives at the same time, and that this is not prohibited by any divine law, let him be anathema”, DH 1802.
Council of Trent , session 24, canon 5: “If someone says that the marriage bond can be dissolved by heresy or difficulties in living together or by the voluntary absence of one of the spouses, let it be anathema”, DH 1805.
Council of Trent, session 24, canon 7: “If someone says that the Church is wrong to have taught and to continue teaching that, according to the evangelical and apostolic doctrine, the marriage bond can not be dissolved by adultery of one of the spouses and that neither of them, not even the innocent who has not given cause for infidelity can contract another marriage during the life of the other, and that the husband who dismisses an adulterous wife and marries again and the wife who dismisses an adulterous husband and he marries again are both guilty of adultery, let him be anathema. “, DH 1807.
See also: Psalm 5: 5; Psalm 18: 8-9; Ecclesiasticus 15:21; Hebrews 10: 26-29; Santiago . 1:13;1 Jn. 3: 7; Innocent XI, Proposals Condemned by the Laxists, 62-63, DH 2162-63; Clement XI, Constitution Unigenitus , On the errors of Pasquier Quesnel, 71, DH 2471; Leo XIII, encyclical Libertas praestantissimum , ASS 20 (1887-88): 598, DH 3248; Pius XII, Decree of the Holy Office on the ethics of the situation, DH 3918; Vatican Council II, Pastoral Constitution Gaudium et spes , 16; John Paul II, Veritatis splendor , 54: AAS 85 (1993): 1177; Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1786-87].
V. It is false that the only sexual acts that are good and morally licit are acts between husband and wife.
I Corinthians 6: 9-10; “Make no mistake: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor liars, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, will possess the kingdom of God ”
Jude 1: 7; “Like Sodom and Gomorrah, and the surrounding cities, in like manner, having given themselves over to fornication, and following other flesh, they were set an example, suffering the punishment of eternal fire.”
See also: Romans 1: 26-32; Ephesians 5: 3-5; Galatians 5; 19-21; Pius IX, Casti connubii , 10, 19-21, 73; Paul VI, Humanae vitae , 11-14; John Paul II, Evangelium vitae, 13-14.]
SAW. The moral principles and the moral truths contained in divine revelation and in natural law do not include negative prohibitions that absolutely prohibit certain types of actions, since these are always seriously illicit because of their object.
John Paul II, Veritatis Splendor 115: “Each one of us knows how important the teaching is that represents the central theme of this encyclical and that today it is reaffirmed with the authority of the Successor of Peter. Each of us can see the seriousness of what is at stake, not only for individuals but also for the entire society, with the reaffirmation of the universality and immutability of moral commandments, particularly those that always and without exception prohibit acts intrinsically evil “, DH 4971.
See also: Romans 3: 8; 1 Corinthians 6: 9-10; Galatians 5: 19-21; Apoc. 22:15; 4th Lateran Council, chapter 22, DH 815; Concilia de Constanza, Bula Inter cunctas, 14, DH 1254; Paul VI, Humanae vitae , 14: AAS 60 (1968) 490-91; John Paul II, Veritatis splendor , 83: AAS 85 (1993): 1199, DH 4970.]
VII. God not only allows, but positively wants, the pluralism and diversity of religions, both Christian and non-Christian.
[ John 14: 6; “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. Nobody comes to the Father, but by me. ”
Acts 4: 11-12; “This is the stone that you, the builders, rejected, and that has become the head of the angle. Nor is there salvation in any other. Because there is no other name under heaven, given to men, in which we can be saved. ”
See also Exodus 22:20; Exodus 23:24; 2 Chronicles 34:25; Psalm 95: 5; Jeremiah 10:11; 1 Corinthians 8: 5-6; Gregory XVI, Mirari vos , 13-14; Pius XI, Qui pluribus , 15; Singulari quidem, 3-5; First Vatican Council, Profession of Faith: Leo XIII, Immortale dei , 31; Satis cognitum , 3-9; Pius XI, Mortalium Animos , 1-2, 6].
These heresies are interconnected. The basis of Catholic sexual morality consists in the affirmation that sexual activity exists for the sake of procreation within marriage and is morally illicit if it is exercised consciously outside of this sphere. The affirmation that is part of section IV, that people who are civilly divorced from their spouse can have licit sexual relations with another person who is not their spouse repudiates this basis. Therefore, to affirm proposition IV is to allow the legitimation of many types of sexual activity outside of marriage, not only sexual relations between civilly married couples. Pope Francis has protected and promoted active homosexual clerics and clergy apologists for homosexual activity. This indicates that he believes that homosexual activity is not seriously sinful. These beliefs fall within the broader statement made in proposition V, in the sense that not all sexual acts between people who are not married are morally wrong. The claim that a Christian believer can have full knowledge of a divine law and voluntarily choose to break it in a serious matter, and not be in a state of mortal sin as a result of this action, implies that Pope Francis supports Luther’s claim of that justification does not demand the observance of the divine law. Taken together, all these positions amount to a total rejection of Catholic teaching on marriage and sexual activity,
Evidence that Pope Francis is guilty of the crime of heresy
These tests are of two kinds: the public statements of Pope Francis, and his public actions. (Note: the statements cited below of Amoris laetitiashould not be read as isolated statements, but in their true meaning in the context of the entire chapter VIII of that document). These two forms of evidence are related. His public actions serve to establish that the public statements listed below were conceived by him to be understood in a heretical sense  .
(A) The public statements of Pope Francis that contradict the truths of the faith:
- Amoris laetitia 295: “Saint John Paul II proposed the so-called” law of gradualism “, knowing that the human being” knows, loves and performs the moral good in its different stages of growth “. This is not a “graduality of the law”, but a graduality in the prudential exercise of free acts by subjects who are unable to understand, appreciate or fully comply with the objective requirements of the law. (I, II, IV)
- Amoris laetitia298: “Divorcees who have entered into a new union, for example, may find themselves in a variety of situations, which should not be pigeonholed or embedded in overly rigid classifications without leaving room for adequate personal and pastoral discernment. One thing is a second union consolidated in time, with new children, proven fidelity, generous dedication, Christian commitment, awareness of its irregularity and the great difficulty of returning without feeling in conscience that it will fall into new sins. The Church recognizes situations “in which, for serious reasons, such as the education of children, a man and a woman can not satisfy the obligation to separate” [note 329: In such situations, many people, knowing and accepting the possibility of live “as brothers and sisters” that the Church offers them, they point out that if certain expressions of intimacy are lacking, “often it happens that fidelity is threatened and that the good of the children suffers”.] There are also the cases of those who did everything possible to save their first marriage and were unjustly abandoned, or “those who have entered into a second union for the education of their children, and are sometimes subjectively secure in the knowledge that their previous and irretrievably broken marriage had never been valid.” Another thing is a new union that arises from a recent divorce, with all the suffering and confusion that this entails for children and entire families, or the case of someone who has systematically failed to fulfill their obligations to the family. It should be clear that this is not the ideal that the Gospel proposes for marriage and family. The Synod Fathers affirmed that the discernment of pastors should always be carried out by “distinguishing adequately”, with an approach that “carefully discerns situations”. We know that there are no “easy recipes”. (III, IV)
- Amoris laetitia299: “I agree with the numerous Synod Fathers who have observed that” baptized divorced and those who have remarried civilly need to integrate more fully into Christian communities in every way possible, avoiding any occasion of scandal. The logic of integration is the key to their pastoral care, a care that allows them not only to realize that they belong to the Church as the body of Christ, but also to know that they can have a joyful and fruitful experience in it. They are baptized; they are brothers and sisters; the Holy Spirit pours out gifts and talents in their hearts for the good of all. … Such people need to feel not as excommunicated members of the Church, but as living members, capable of living and growing in the Church and experiencing it as a mother who always welcomes them, that he cares for them with affection and encourages them in the way of life and the Gospel. ” (II, IV)
- Amoris laetitia 301: “It can no longer be said simply that all those who find themselves in an” irregular “situation live in mortal sin and are deprived of sanctifying grace. It is about more than just ignorance of the rule. A subject may know the rule well, but have great difficulty understanding “their inherent values, or being in a specific situation that does not allow them to act differently and decide otherwise without further sin.” (II, III, IV)
- Amoris laetitia 303: “Consciousness can do more than recognize that a given situation does not correspond objectively to the general demands of the Gospel. You can also recognize with sincerity and honesty what is for now the most generous response that can be given to God, and come to see with some moral certainty that this is what God himself is asking in the midst of the concrete complexity of their own limits, although it is not yet fully the objective ideal “. (II, IV, V)
- Amoris laetitia 304: “I urge that we always remember a teaching of St. Thomas Aquinas and learn to incorporate it into our pastoral discernment:” In terms of action, truth or practical righteousness is not the same for everyone, in terms of details , but only as regards the general principles; and when there is the same rectitude regarding the details, not everyone knows it equally …. The principle will fail as we delve into the details. ” It is true that the general rules establish a good that can never be ignored or neglected, but that in its formulation can not contemplate absolutely all the particular situations. (SAW)
- On September 5, 2016, the bishops of the Buenos Aires region issued a declaration on the application of Amoris laetitia , in which they declared:
6) In other more complex circumstances, and when a declaration of nullity could not be obtained, the aforementioned option may not be in fact feasible. However, a path of discernment is also possible. If it is recognized that, in a concrete case, there are limitations that mitigate responsibility and guilt (see 301-302), particularly when a person considers that he would fall on a further fault damaging the children of the new union, Amoris laetitia opens the possibility of access to the sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist (see notes 336 and 351). These, in turn, dispose the person to continue to mature and grow with the strength of grace. […]
9) It may be convenient that an eventual access to the sacraments be done in a reserved manner, especially when conflicting situations are foreseen. But at the same time we must not fail to accompany the community so that it grows in a spirit of understanding and acceptance, without implying confusion in the teaching of the Church about indissoluble marriage. The community is an instrument of mercy that is “undeserved, unconditional and free” (297).
10) Discernment is not closed, because “it is dynamic and must always remain open to new stages of growth and new decisions that enable the ideal to be fulfilled more fully” (303), according to the “law of graduality” (295) and trusting in the help of grace. […]
This text affirms that according to Amoris laetitia , although the indissolubility of marriage is not denied, the divorced and those who remarry may receive the sacraments, and that to persist in this state is compatible with receiving the help of grace. Pope Francis wrote an official letter dated the same day to Bishop Sergio Alfredo Fenoy of San Miguel, delegate of the Buenos Aires Region of the Argentine bishops, affirming that the bishops of the Buenos Aires region had given the only possible interpretation of Amoris laetitia :
I received the letter from the Buenos Aires Pastoral Region “Basic criteria for the application of chapter VIII of Amoris laetitia”. Thank you very much for having sent it to me; and I congratulate you for the work that you have taken: a true example of accompaniment to the priests … and we all know how much this closeness of the bishop is necessary with his clergy and the clergy with the bishop. The neighbor “closest neighbor” of the bishop is the priest, and the commandment to love our neighbor as himself begins for us bishops precisely with our cures.
The writing is very good and clearly explains the meaning of chapter VIII of Amoris Laetitia . There are no other interpretations. “
This letter to the bishops of Buenos Aires was published in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis of October 2016, with a note that said that Pope Francis had ordered its publication as an act of authentic magisterium. This note does not affirm that the declarations of Amoris laetitia or of the bishops of Buenos Aires themselves form part of the authentic magisterium; affirms with magisterial authority that the interpretation of the bishops of Buenos Aires of what Pope Francis meant in Amoris laetitia is correct.
It should be noted that the denial of Communion to divorced couples and those who have become invalidly married or cohabited is, in itself, a doctrine based on Sacred Scripture and founded on the divine law.  Affirming the possibility of giving Holy Communion to divorced and invalidly married couples implies, by necessary inference, the belief in heresies II, IV and V, or a denial of the dogma of indissolubility of marriage. 
- On June 16, 2016, at a Pastoral Congress for the Diocese of Rome, Pope Francis declared that many “cohabiting” couples have the grace of marriage. (II, IV, V)
- In a press conference on June 26, 2016, Pope Francis declared:
“I think Martin Luther’s intentions were not wrong. He was a reformer. Maybe some methods were not correct. […] And today, Lutherans and Catholics, Protestants, we all agree on the doctrine of justification. On this point, which is very important, he was not wrong. (I)
- In a homily at the Lutheran Cathedral in Lund, Sweden, on October 31, 2016, Pope Francis declared:
“The spiritual experience of Martin Luther challenges us to remember that apart from God we can not do anything. “How can I get a propitious God?” This is the question that pursued Luther. In effect, the question of a just relationship with God is the decisive issue for our lives. As we know, Luther found that propitious God in the Good News of Jesus, incarnate, dead and risen. With the concept “only by grace”, it reminds us that God always takes the initiative, before any human response, even when he seeks to awaken that response. The doctrine of justification thus expresses the essence of human existence before God. (I)
- On October 31, 2016, Pope Francis signed the Joint Declaration on the occasion of the Joint Catholic-Lutheran Memorial of the Reformation, which included the statement: “We are deeply grateful for the spiritual and theological gifts received through the Reformation.” (I)
- On February 4, 2019, Pope Francis and Ahmad Al-Tayyeb, the Grand Imam of the Al-Azhar Mosque, publicly signed and issued a statement entitled “Document on Human Brotherhood”. In it, they made the following statements:
“Freedom is a right of every person: each individual enjoys the freedom of belief, thought, expression and action. The pluralism and diversity of religions, colors, sexes, races and languages are dear to God in his wisdom, through which he created human beings. This divine wisdom is the source from which derive the right to freedom of belief and the freedom to be different.  (VII)
(B) The public actions of Pope Francis that indicate a rejection of the truths of the faith.
Understood in their most obvious sense, the statements listed above are heretical. This was pointed out, with regard to many of them, in the Filial Correction sent to Pope Francis and in the theological censures of Amoris laetitia that were sent to the College of Cardinals by 45 Catholic scholars. They have been understood in a heretical sense by a large part of the Church, which has led them to legitimize the beliefs and actions that conform to them. Pope Francis has not corrected anyone who has publicly interpreted these statements in a heretical sense, even when the people who defend these heretical understandings have been bishops or cardinals.
However, these statements are not the only evidence of Pope Francis’ public adherence to heresy. It is possible to demonstrate belief in a proposition with both actions and words. Canon law has always admitted nonverbal actions as proof of heresy; For example, it has been considered that refusing to kneel before the Blessed Sacrament is a proof of disbelief in the doctrine of the Real Presence. Nonverbal actions alone may indicate belief in a heresy, or may do so in conjunction with verbal and written statements. In this last case, they provide a context that makes the verbal and written statements in question must be understood in a heretical sense. A large number of public actions by Pope Francis have manifested their belief in the heresies listed above, in one or other of these two ways. Below, we present a summary list of such actions. This list is not intended to be exhaustive. Nor is it necessary to be exhaustive; When taken in conjunction with the statements of Pope Francis given above, the number and severity of the actions listed below are sufficient to establish beyond reasonable doubt that Pope Francis has publicly stated his belief in the heresies we accuse him of. to believe.
The actions of Pope Francis manifest their belief in the heresies listed above in various ways. Such actions include the protection, promotion and praise of clergy and laity who have manifested their beliefs in these heresies, or who have acted consistently in ways that challenge the truths that these heresies contradict. Canon law has traditionally considered that protecting, promoting and helping heretics can be in itself proof of heresy. By electing clerics and laymen to promote these heresies, or naming them for influential positions, or by protecting clerics of this type from punishment or degradation, when they have committed gravely immoral and criminal acts, it helps them to spread their heretical beliefs. By choosing heretical prelates for the most important positions in the Roman Curia, It manifests the intention to impose these heresies on the whole Church. By protecting clerics who are guilty of immoral and criminal sexual acts, even when this protection causes a serious scandal to the Church and threatens to lead to calamitous actions on the part of civil authorities, it manifests disbelief in Catholic teaching on sexual morality , and shows that support for heretical clerics and criminals is more important to him than the welfare of the Church. By publicly praising people who have dedicated their careers to oppose the teaching of the Church and the Catholic faith, and to promote and commit crimes condemned by divine revelation and natural law, he communicates the message that the beliefs and actions of These people are legitimate and worthy of praise.
It should be noted that its approval and public approval are not indiscriminate; It does not often praise Catholics who are known to be totally faithful to the teaching of the faith, or who hold the behavior of Catholics of this type as examples to follow. And we must also observe how he has degraded or marginalized those of faithful and orthodox seal.
The following is a list of actions that indicate belief in previous heresies.
Cardinal Domenico Calcagno
Cardinal Calcagno was known to have protected priest Nello Giraudo, convicted of sexual abuse of minors, before the election of Pope Francis. Pope Francis kept him in office as president of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Holy See until he reached the age of retirement in 2017. (II, V)
Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio
Cardinal Coccopalmerio publicly declared in 2014 that Catholic leaders should emphasize the positive elements in homosexual relationships, and that in certain circumstances it would be a mistake to deny communion to people living in adulterous relationships or to require them to dissolve their relationship. He has shown other signs of approval of homosexual activity. Pope Francis has appointed him to a series of important positions, including a working group charged with accelerating the process of evaluating the nullity of marriage, and for the review board within the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith that reviews the Appeals of clerics convicted of sexual abuse of minors. (II, IV, V)
Cardinal Blase Cupich
At the 2015 Synod on the Family, Cardinal Cupich supported the proposals that people living in adulterous relationships and sexually active homosexuals can receive the Eucharist in good conscience, under certain circumstances. Pope Francis named him Archbishop of Chicago in 2014, appointed him Cardinal in 2016 and appointed him a member of the Congregation for Bishops and the Congregation for Catholic Education. (II, IV, V)
Cardinal Godfried Danneels
Cardinal Danneels received a request in 1997 and 1998 to take action on the catechetical textbook Roeach, which was used in the Catholic schools of Belgium under his authority. This textbook corrupted minors with a sexual education contrary to Catholic principles, teaching them to look for any sexual desire that they like: solitary, heterosexual or homosexual. It included standard propaganda themes used to legitimize the sexual abuse of prepubertal children. Danneels defended the textbook and refused to modify or eliminate it, even when the Belgian parents argued that it favored pedophilia. He acted to protect the pedophile bishop Roger Vangheluwe, after it was learned that he sexually abused his own nephew, beginning when the nephew was 5 years old. When the nephew, already an adult, he asked Danneels to take some action against Vangheluwe, Danneels refused, told the nephew to keep silent about the abuse and also told him that he should acknowledge his own guilt. All these actions were public knowledge in 2010. Cardinal Danneels was next to Pope Francis on the balcony of St. Peter’s when the Pope made his first public appearance after his election. Pope Francis appointed him special delegate to the 2015 Synod on the Family. Upon his death, in 2019, Pope Francis praised him as a ‘jealous pastor’ who ‘served the Church with dedication’. (II, IV, V) Cardinal Danneels was next to Pope Francis on the balcony of St. Peter’s when the Pope made his first public appearance after his election. Pope Francis appointed him special delegate to the 2015 Synod on the Family. Upon his death, in 2019, Pope Francis praised him as a ‘jealous pastor’ who ‘served the Church with dedication’. (II, IV, V) Cardinal Danneels was next to Pope Francis on the balcony of St. Peter’s when the Pope made his first public appearance after his election. Pope Francis appointed him special delegate to the 2015 Synod on the Family. Upon his death, in 2019, Pope Francis praised him as a ‘jealous pastor’ who ‘served the Church with dedication’. (II, IV, V)
Cardinal John Dew
Cardinal Dew advocated the admission of adulterous couples to the Eucharist at the Synod on the Eucharist in 2005. Pope Francis appointed him cardinal in 2015 and appointed him special delegate to the 2015 Synod on the Family. (II, IV, V )
Cardinal Kevin Farrell
Cardinal Farrell has expressed support for the proposal that divorced and remarried receive Communion. Pope Francis has appointed him prefect of the newly established Dicastery for the Laity, the Family and Life, has promoted him to the rank of cardinal, and has made him Cardinal Camerlengo.
(II, IV, V)
Cardinal Oswald Thank you
Cardinal Gracias has publicly expressed the opinion that homosexuality can be an orientation given to people by God. Pope Francis named him as one of the organizers of the Vatican summit on sexual abuse in February 2019. (II, IV, V)
Cardinal Jozef de Kesel
In 2014 Cardinal de Kesel, then bishop of Brugge, named Father Tom Flamez as pastor, after being convicted of sexual abuse. He did not remove Fr. Antoon Stragier from the ministry until 2015, although Stragier’s crimes were known to the diocese in 2004. Pope Francis elected Msgr. De Kesel as Archbishop of Mechelen-Brussels in November 2015 and appointed him Cardinal in November of 2016. (II, IV, V)
Cardenal Rodríguez Maradiaga
In a speech to the University of Dallas in 2013, Cardinal Maradiaga declared that the Second Vatican Council “meant the end of hostilities between the Church and modernity, which was condemned at the First Vatican Council,” and affirmed that “modernity it was, most of the time, a reaction against injustices and abuses that belittled the dignity and rights of the person “. He declared that “within the people, there is no double classification of Christians -laws and clerics, essentially different,” and that “in order to speak correctly, we should not speak of clergy and laity, but of community and ministry.” He affirmed: Christ himself did not proclaim or preach himself, but the Kingdom. The Church, as his disciple and his servant, must do the same. “
Cardinal Maradiaga did not act before the accusations of sexual misconduct with the seminarians, and embezzlement, by José Juan Pineda Fasquelle, auxiliary bishop of Tegucigalpa. These accusations were the subject of an apostolic visit made by Bishop Alcides Jorge Pedro Casaretto, who presented a report to Pope Francisco in May 2017. Bishop Fasquelle resigned his post in July 2018 at the age of 57 years. Maradiaga refused to investigate the complaints made by 48 of the 180 seminarians about homosexual misconduct at the Honduran seminary, and attacked the plaintiffs. Pope Francis appointed Maradiaga as a member and coordinator of the council of nine cardinals he established in 2013 to advise him in the government of the universal church. (II, IV, V)
Former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick
According to numerous credible accusers, former Cardinal McCarrick pressured seminarians to maintain homosexual relationships with him. The Holy See was already aware of those allegations in 2002. Between 2005 and 2007, the Diocese of Metuchen and the Archdiocese of Newark paid financial compensation to two priests who had accused McCarrick of abuse. Pope Francis was personally informed of this behavior in 2013, and was informed that Pope Benedict XVI had imposed restrictions on him. Pope Francis freed McCarrick from his retirement and used him for many important tasks, including travel as a representative of the Holy See to Israel, Armenia, China, Iran and Cuba. He accompanied Pope Francis on his trips to Israel and Cuba. When Archbishop Carlos María Viganò affirmed in August 2018 that Pope Francis had known since 2013 that McCarrick was a serial sexual predator, the Pope refused to respond to this assertion. In February 2019, the former cardinal was returned to the lay state. Despite the example of the behavior of the former cardinal, the issue of homosexual abuse of adults, and in particular of seminarians, was excluded from the discussion at the summit on sexual abuse that took place in Rome that same month. (II, IV, V) was excluded from the discussion at the summit on sexual abuse that took place in Rome that same month. (II, IV, V) was excluded from the discussion at the summit on sexual abuse that took place in Rome that same month. (II, IV, V)
Cardinal Donald Wuerl
Cardinal Wuerl allowed Father George Zirwas to continue in ministry after learning that he had committed numerous crimes of sexual abuse. Wuerl resigned as Archbishop of Washington after his actions in this and other cases of sexual abuse were criticized by a report by the Pennsylvania Grand Jury. When Wuerl resigned, as a result of these failures, Pope Francis praised him for his nobility, kept him in charge of the Archdiocese of Washington as apostolic administrator and kept him as a member of the Congregation for Bishops. (II, IV, V)
Archbishop Mario Enrico Delpini
As vicar general of the Archdiocese of Milan, Delpini moved Fr. Mauro Galli to a new parish after being informed that Galli had sexually abused a young man. Delpini admitted this in a court statement in 2014. The Holy See was informed of this. Pope Francis appointed him Archbishop of Milan in 2017. (II, IV, V)
Mons. Juan Barros Madrid
Barros covered up the serious sexual crimes of Fr. Fernando Karadima, who was convicted of sexual abuse by a Church court in 2011. Pope Francis appointed Barros bishop of Osorno in 2015 despite the strong protests of the faithful and qualified his critics of slanderers. Mgr. Barros accepted the responsibility and resigned in 2018 after Pope Francis admitted that he had committed “serious errors” in handling his case. (II, IV, V)
Bishop Juan Carlos Maccarone
Bishop Maccarone was bishop of Santiago del Estero in Argentina and dean of the Faculty of Theology of the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Buenos Aires. In 2005, a video of Maccarone being sodomized by a taxi driver was made public. Later he retired as bishop. After this incident, Archbishop Bergoglio signed a declaration of solidarity with Maccarone issued by the Argentine Episcopal Conference, of which he was then the chief. (II, IV, V)
Mons. José Tolentino Mendonça
In 2013 Mendonça praised the theology of Sr. Teresa Forcades, who defends the morality of homosexual acts and affirms that abortion is a right, and who affirmed that “Jesus of Nazareth did not codify nor establish rules”. Pope Francis appointed him archbishop and head of the Vatican Secret Archive in 2018. He also chose him to preach the Lenten retreat to the Pope and to high-ranking officials in 2018. (II, IV, V, VI)
Bishop Gustavo Óscar Zanchetta
Zanchetta had been named by Pope Francis as Bishop of Oran in Argentina in 2013. Zanchetta became involved in inappropriate homosexual behavior, including sexual harassment of seminarians. The photographic proof of this was presented to the Holy See in 2015. In December 2017, Pope Francis appointed Zanchetta advisor to the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See. (II, IV, V)
Mons. Battista Mario Salvatore Ricca
Battista Ricca was involved in serious homosexual behavior while working at the papal nunciature in Uruguay. This included getting caught in an elevator with a male prostitute and having to be rescued by the fire department. After these scandals were made public, Pope Francis put him in charge of his residence, the Santa Marta House, and appointed him prelate of the Istituto delle Opere di Religione. (II, IV, V)
Grassi was convicted in 2009 for sexually abusing a teenager. The Argentine Episcopal Conference, presided over by Cardinal Bergoglio, made great efforts to avoid the condemnation of Grassi. The Episcopal Conference commissioned a work in four volumes for this purpose, which defamed the victims of Grassi. Grassi stated that throughout his legal process, Archbishop Bergoglio had “had him by the hand”. (II, IV, V)
Inzoli was convicted of sexual abuse of minors to the secular state reduction by the CDF in 2012 in the first instance, but the execution of this sentence was suspended after he appealed, and in 2014 Pope Francis made it a much smoother prescription to a retired life. In 2016 he was arrested and convicted by an Italian court. Only after he fell under civil trial, Francisco finally reduced him to the lay state (2017). (II, IV, V)
James Martin SJ
Martin is a well-known defender of the legitimation of homosexual relationships and homosexual activity. In 2017, Pope Francis appointed him consultant to the Secretariat of Communications of the Holy See. (II, IV, V)
Father Timothy Radcliffe OP
In 2013 Radcliffe declared that homosexual activity can be expressive of Christ’s gift of self. Pope Francis appointed him consultant to the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace in May 2015. (II, IV, V)
Emma Bonino is the main political activist in favor of abortion and euthanasia in Italy, and has presumed to perform many abortions personally. In 2015, Pope Francis received her at the Vatican, and in 2016 he praised her as one of the “forgotten great women” of Italy. (II, IV, V, VI)
Pontifical Academy for Life
In 2016, Pope Francis dismissed the 132 members of the Pontifical Academy for Life. It eliminated the requirement that members of the Academy swear to defend Catholic teachings on human life and not conduct destructive research on the embryo or fetus, elective abortion or euthanasia. Among the 45 new members of the Academy he named are several people who reject Catholic moral teaching. Fr Maurizio Chiodi has defended euthanasia by denying food and water, and has rejected Catholic teaching on the morality of contraception. Father Alain Thomasset has rejected the idea of intrinsically evil actions and has affirmed that some homosexual relationships can be paths of holiness. The p. Humberto Miguel Yáñez argues that artificial contraception can be legal in some circumstances. Professor Marie-Jo Thiel rejects the teaching of the Church that homosexual acts are intrinsically evil and her teaching that contraception is morally wrong. Prof. Nigel Biggar argues that abortion up to 18 weeks of pregnancy may be lawful, and accepts that euthanasia may be justified in some cases. (II, IV, V, VI)
Promote the reception of the Eucharist by the divorced and those who have remarried.
Pope Francis has persistently promoted the reception of the Eucharist under certain circumstances by persons who have divorced themselves civilly from their spouses and live in a sexual relationship with another person. His letter to the bishops of Buenos Aires, cited above, explicitly supports this practice. He participated in the composition of the Relatio post disceptationem for the Synod on the Family of 2014. His addition to the Relatioproposed to allow Communion for divorced and married Catholics on a “case by case” basis, and said that pastors should emphasize the “positive aspects” of lifestyles that the Church considers to be seriously sinful, including the new civil marriage after of divorce and premarital cohabitation. These proposals were included in the Relatio due to their personal insistence, despite the fact that they did not receive the two-thirds majority required by the synodal regulations to include a proposal in the Relatio . Issued guidelines for the diocese of Rome that allow the reception of the Eucharist under certain circumstances by civilly divorced and remarried Catholics who live more uxoriowith your civil partner. These teachings and actions are in themselves an offense to the faith, since the teaching that Catholics with living spouses who cohabitate openly with another person can not receive the Eucharist is at least a truth that belongs to the secondary object of the infallible magisterium of church. It is, at least, a truth whose acceptance is necessary so that the deposit of faith can be effectively defended or proposed with sufficient authority. We do not deny that it is part of the Sacred Tradition divinely revealed. Its denial has not been classified as a heresy advocated by Pope Francis because some Catholic theologians worthy of respect have maintained that it is not part of the divinely revealed deposit of faith. The denial of this truth supports the heresies (IV) and (V) mentioned above.
On June 9, 2014, Pope Francis received in the Vatican the leaders of the militantly pro-homosexual organization Tupac Amaru of Argentina, and blessed their coca leaves for use in their pagan religious rituals, which imply the recognition of the Coca plant as sacred. (II, IV, V, V, VII)
Pope Francis has not uttered a single word in support of popular campaigns to protect Catholic countries from abortion and homosexuality, for example, before the referendum to introduce abortion in Ireland in May 2018. (II, IV, V , SAW)
At the opening mass of the Synod on Youth in 2018, Pope Francis carried a cane in the form of “stang”, an object used in satanic rituals. (VI, VII)
During the Synod on Youth in 2018, Pope Francis used a distorted rainbow-colored cross, the rainbow being a popularly promoted symbol of the homosexual movement. (II, IV, V)
Pope Francis has concluded an agreement with China that allows the Chinese government to elect Catholic bishops in that country, and has ordered several faithful Catholic bishops to cede their dioceses to bishops appointed by the state. China is an atheist state that persecutes Christians and applies an immoral demographic policy that includes the promotion of contraception and forced abortion on a large scale. This population policy is a high priority for the Chinese government and has caused untold damage. The control of the Church by the Chinese government will ensure that the Church in China can not resist this policy. (II, VI)
Pope Francis has refused to deny that Amoris laetitia teaches the heresies IV, V, and VI, enumerated above, when he was asked to do so in the questions ( dubia ) presented to him by Cardinals Brandmüller, Burke, Caffarra, and Meisner in September 2016 These questions specifically mention the serious disorientation and great confusion of many faithfuls with regard to the matters of faith and morals that result from Amoris laetitia . The submission of dubia by the bishops and the provision of an answer to them is a totally traditional and normal procedure, so the refusal to answer these questions is a deliberate choice on the part of Pope Francis.
(C) The persistence of Pope Francis in adhering to heretical propositions
Pope Francis completed the theological studies necessary for ordination, obtained a degree in philosophy and a degree in theology, and became a university professor of theology at the Faculties of Philosophy and Theology of San Miguel, a Jesuit university and seminary in Argentina. Later he became Rector of these faculties. The apostolic exhortation Familiaris consortio and the encyclical Veritatis splendor , which condemn many of the heresies mentioned above, were issued while he was priest and bishop respectively. He has quoted Familiaris consortio in his writings, and participated in a theological conference on Veritatis Splendorin 2004, in which he contributed affirming the doctrine denied in the aforementioned heresy VI. The dubia mentioned above, sent to Pope Francis in private in September 2016 and published in November of the same year, recall the passages in Veritatis splendor and Familiaris consortio . Therefore, it can be presumed that he is sufficiently well informed about Catholic doctrine to know that the heresies he professes are contrary to Catholic doctrine. His heretical nature was also documented and pointed out in a filial correction addressed to him by 250 Catholic scholars in August of 2017, and made public in September of the same year. 
The petition that we make to you as bishops
Therefore, we ask your Excellencies to urgently deal with the situation of Pope Francis’ public adherence to heresy. We recognize with gratitude that some of you have reaffirmed the truths contrary to the heresies that we have enumerated, or you have warned of grave dangers that threaten the Church in this pontificate. We remember, for example, that His Eminence Cardinal Burke already declared in October 2014 that the Church appears as a ship without a rudder, and together with His Eminence Cardinal Pujats, the late Cardinal Caffarra, and several other bishops, signed a Declaration of Fidelity to the unchanging teaching of the Church on marriage in September 2016. We recall also the statement of His Eminence Cardinal Eijk in May of last year that the current inability to faithfully convey the doctrine, on the part of the bishops in union with the successor of St. Peter, evokes the great deception predicted for the last days; and some similar observations made more recently by His Eminence Cardinal Gerhard Müller in his Manifesto of Faith. For these and other interventions of cardinals and bishops, who have helped to reassure the faithful, we thank God.
However, in such a grave and unprecedented emergency, we believe that it will no longer be enough to teach the truth in an abstract way, or even to lament the “confusion” in the Church in rather general terms. Because Catholics will hardly believe that the Pope is attacking the faith, unless this is expressly stated; and therefore, purely abstract denunciations run the risk of providing coverage for Pope Francis to advance and achieve his goal.
Despite the evidence we have presented in this letter, we recognize that it is not for us to declare the Pope guilty of the crime of heresy in a way that would have canonical consequences for Catholics. Therefore, we ask you, as our spiritual fathers, vicars of Christ within your own jurisdiction and not vicars of the Roman Pontiff, to publicly warn Pope Francis to abjure the heresies he has professed. Even leaving aside the question of their personal adherence to these heretical beliefs, the behavior of the Pope with respect to the seven propositions that contradict the divinely revealed truth, mentioned at the beginning of this letter, justifies the accusation of the crime of heresy. Undoubtedly, he himself promotes and disseminates heretical teachings on these points. The promotion and dissemination of heresy provides in itself sufficient grounds for the accusation of heresy. There is, therefore, an overwhelming reason for the bishops to take the accusation of heresy seriously and to try to remedy the situation.
Since Pope Francis has manifested heresy both by his actions and by his words, any abjuration must imply repudiating and reversing these actions, including his nominations of bishops and cardinals who have supported these heresies with their words or actions. This admonition is a duty of fraternal charity towards the Pope, as well as a duty towards the Church. Yes – God forbid! – Pope Francis will not show true repentance in response to these warnings, we ask you to fulfill your duty to declare that he has committed the canonical crime of heresy and that he must suffer the canonical consequences of this crime.
These actions do not need to be taken by all the bishops of the Catholic Church, not even by most of them. A substantial and representative part of the faithful bishops of the Church would have the power to undertake these actions. Given the open, comprehensive and devastating nature of the heresy of Pope Francis, the willingness to publicly warn Pope Francis for heresy seems now to be a necessary condition for being a faithful bishop of the Catholic Church.
This course of action is supported and required by canon law and the tradition of the Church. Here we present a brief account of the canonical and theological bases of it.
We ask the Blessed Trinity to enlighten Pope Francis so that he rejects all heresy contrary to sound doctrine, and we pray that the Blessed Virgin Mary, mother of the Church, obtain for her Excellencies the light and strength to defend the faith of Christ . Allow us to say with all audacity that in acting thus, you will not have to face the reproach of the Lord: “You have not gone up to face the enemy, nor have you erected a wall for the house of Israel, to be in battle on the Lord’s day” ( Ezekiel 13: 5).
We humbly ask for your blessing and we assure you of our prayers for your ministry and for the Church.
The Open letter to the bishops of the Catholic Church is the third stage in a process that began in the summer of 2016. At that time, an ad hoc group of Catholic clergy and scholars wrote a private letter to all the cardinals and Eastern Catholic patriarchs, pointing out heresies and other serious errors that appeared to be contained in or favoured by Pope Francis’s Apostolic Exhortation Amoris laetitia. The following year, after Pope Francis had continued by word, deed, and omission to propagate many of these same heresies, a ‘Filial Correction’ was addressed to the pope by many of the same people, as well as by other clergy and scholars. This second letter was made public in September 2017, and a petition in support of it was signed by some 14,000 people. The authors of that letter stated however that they did not seek to judge whether Pope Francis was aware that he was causing heresy to spread.
The present Open letter to the bishops of the Catholic Church goes a stage further in claiming that Pope Francis is guilty of the crime of heresy. This crime is committed when a Catholic knowingly and persistently denies something which he knows that the Church teaches to be revealed by God. Taken together, the words and actions of Pope Francis amount to a comprehensive rejection of Catholic teaching on marriage and sexual activity, on the moral law, and on grace and the forgiveness of sins.
The Open letter also indicates the link between this rejection of Catholic teaching and the favour shown by Pope Francis to bishops and other clergy who have either been guilty of sexual sins and crimes, such as former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, or who have protected clergy guilty of sexual sins and crimes, such as the late Cardinal Godfried Danneels. This protection and promotion of clerics who reject Catholic teaching on marriage, sexual activity, and on the moral law in general, even when these clerics personally violate the moral and civil law in horrendous ways, is consistent enough to be considered a policy on the part of Pope Francis. At the least it is evidence of disbelief in the truth of Catholic teaching on these subjects. It also indicates a strategy to impose rejection of these teachings on the Church, by naming to influential posts individuals whose personal lives are based on violation of these truths.
The authors consider that a heretical papacy may not be tolerated or dissimulated to avoid a worse evil. It strikes at the basic good of the Church and must be corrected. For this reason, the study concludes by describing the traditional theological and legal principles that apply to the present situation. The authors respectfully request the bishops of the Church to investigate the accusations contained in the letter, so that if they judge them to be well founded, they may free the Church from her present distress, in accordance with the hallowed adage, Salus animarum prima lex (‘the salvation of souls is the highest law’). They can do this by admonishing Pope Francis to reject these heresies, and if he should persistently refuse, by declaring that he has freely deprived himself of the papacy.
While this Open letter is an unusual, even historic, document, the Church’s own laws say that “Christ’s faithful have the right, and, indeed, sometimes the duty, according to their knowledge, competence, and dignity, to manifest to the sacred pastors their judgment about those things which pertain to the good of the Church” (Code of Canon Law, canon 212.3). While Catholics hold that a pope speaks infallibly in certain strictly defined conditions, the Church does not say that he cannot fall into heresy outside these conditions.
The signatories to the Open Letter include not only specialists in theology and philosophy, but also academics and scholars from other fields. This fits well with the central claim of the Open Letter, that Pope Francis’s rejection of revealed truths is evident to any well-instructed Catholic who is willing to examine the evidence. The signatures of Fr Aidan Nichols OP and of Professor John Rist will be noted. Fr Nichols is one of the best-known theologians in the English-speaking world, and the author of many books on a wide range of theological topics, including the work of Hans Urs von Balthasar and Joseph Ratzinger. Professor Rist, who is known for his work in classical philosophy and the history of theology, has held chairs and professorships at the University of Toronto, the Augustinianum in Rome, the Catholic University of America, the University of Aberdeen, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
The Open Letter is released just after the celebration of Holy Week and Easter Week, in the hopes that the present ‘passion’ of the Church will soon give way to a full resurrection of God’s saving truth.
Clergy and academics who wish to sign the open letter may send their name and credentials to organizers at this email address: [email protected]. All requests will be thoroughly vetted.
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