The Second Opinion – Commentary by Fr. Paul Kramer

Refer to this post and this post.

2) That a pope who even internally falls into formal heresy is immediately deposed by God and ceases to be pope.

“Number Two is clearly false, because it would destroy the divine constitution of the Church: 1) because it would be impossible for the Church to judge that the pope has fallen from the pontificate, with the result that the body of the Church would be left headless by being united to a false head. 2) Even worse, if an internal heretic invisibly ceased to be pope, no one would know that he is no longer the pope, and that he is no longer protected by divine assistance from defining false dogmas. If he would invent some new error against the faith, not yet condemned by the Church as a heresy, he could define it as a dogma, and there would be no pope to condemn it. There would be no way to distinguish between a true dogma defined by a true pope, and a false dogma defined by a false pope. There would exist no means by which the false dogma could be infallibly condemned by the Church, and be recognized by the whole Church as infallibly condemned. The attribute of infallibility would cease to exist in the Church. Therefore, even a secret heretic, who has not yet externally denied any already defined dogma, would be able to cause the defection of the Church without there being a remedy by inventing and defining a new heresy. Thus, there would no longer exist a means by which the infallible rule of faith could be authoritatively proposed, which would amount to a defection of the Church from her divine constitution.”

Kramer, Paul. On the true and the false pope: The case against Bergoglio (pp. 50-51). Gondolin Press. Kindle Edition.

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