The Object of the Renunciation Must Be the Munus for Effecting the Vacating of the Office – Fr. Paul Kramer

“Since the expressed object of the act of renunciation was not the munus itself, but only the activity connected with it, namely, the ministerium, i.e. the exercise of ‘power of governance’, the subjectively intended effect of the act to vacate the office, and to thereby vacate the Chair of Peter and forfeit the power of governance is not brought about.1 That can only be validly brought about by renouncing the munus itself. The object of a valid papal renunciation must be the munus itself, and not merely the ministerial activity connected with it. The act of renunciation was null and void, so that Benedict XVI remains in office the only legitimate pope of the Catholic Church. Benedict remains in office in spite of the defectively expressed intention to effect the vacating the office by his renunciation of his ministry but not his office. Only by expressly and unconditionally renouncing the munus he received from Christ upon his acceptance of his papal election, would the act have the effect of vacating the office and the forfeiture of the full and supreme jurisdiction of that office. What Prof. Violi’s analysis of the term munus and of Pope Benedict’s use of that term in his act of renunciation actually proves is that by renouncing his ministry, even if by renouncing the ministry he intended to renounce the office, the office is not vacated, because Benedict clearly expressed his intention to retain in some manner his munus while intending by that qualified act the forfeiture of the office and its jurisdiction. By qualifying the act in this manner, he nullified the act and thereby rendered it incapable of any valid juridical effect. The sine qua non condition for a valid resignation of the papal office is a rightly expressed intention to renounce the munus…..”

Kramer, Paul. On the true and the false pope: The case against Bergoglio (pp. 372-373). Gondolin Press. Kindle Edition.

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Note: Footnote 1 in this post is actually Footnote 528 in the Kindle Edition.

  1. The distinction between intending the object, as opposed to intending the effect of an act is most clearly illustrated in the administration of the sacraments. A person who has the intention of baptising might even be an atheist, who has no intention to effect the forgiveness of sins by the sacrament he administers, but because he intends to baptise, the effect of the sacrament is the remission of sins, even if the minister does not intend this effect.

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