I've received more responses from my post "No Dimond In The Rough" (7/22/14), than any other in the four years I've been maintaining this blog. Few topics generate such controversy in Traditionalist circles as the discussion over Baptism of Blood (BOB) and Baptism of Desire (BOD). I have further comments I would like to respond to in this separate post, rather than make the comments to July 22 longer than the post itself. The main comments come from one calling himself "Vox Clamantis,"i.e., "The voice of one crying."
I will post his comments below and respond in red
font below. I would like the readers of this post to notice one overarching theme: The Feeneyites, like the Vatican II sect and the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) must (a) de facto
declare that all that was taught pre-Vatican II was defective/heretical/incomplete and/or (b) the popes (real or thought to be real) actually didn't mean what they said in order to make their novelties ( e.g. no BOD or BOB, sedevacantism isn't true) seem plausible.
Vox: Sorry. Just passed by this topic randomly while perusing the internet. May I offer some commentary?
A point that some believe refutes the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation is how the canon reads: “If any one saith…that, without [the sacraments], or without the desire thereof, men obtain of God, through faith alone, the grace of justification…let him be anathema.” This is understood by many to mean that sacraments or the desire thereof are two methods that bring justification. However, a contextual analysis will cast doubt on that notion. The phrase ‘and that, without them, or without the desire thereof’ is a translation of the original Latin: et sine eis aut eorum voto. ‘Sine’ is indeed correctly translated as ‘without’, but the ‘without’ meant by ‘sine’ means ‘lack’ or ‘lacking’ (http://www.latin-dictionary.org/sine). There are several ways among others that the term ‘without’ can mean.
Here, the author--whose credentials in Latin are unknown---is about to embark on an analysis of a Latin word. Apparently, HE has more insight than all the pre-Vatican II theologians and popes who just didn't understand the Latin until Fr. Feeney and his followers came along.
1) ‘The people in the house felt a wind that came from without.’ This way of using ‘without’ bespeaks spatial relations. The wind did not originate within the house, so it came from outside, or without.
2) ‘You can’t get to London from New York without traveling by plane or by boat.’ This way of using ‘without’ bespeaks method. Since one can’t get to London except by using one of these two methods, one says that ‘without a plane or a boat’ one can’t get to London. A better way of articulating this meaning would be ‘You can’t get to London from New York except by plane or boat.’ Here, ‘without’ refers to a limitation of methods for achieving an end. One must use one or the other, but both are not needed.
3) ‘You can’t have a wedding without a bride or a groom’. Another way of articulating this phrase is: Lacking a bride or a groom, you can’t have a wedding. This way of using ‘without’ refers to the conditions for achieving something. Here, it is said that if one lacks either a bride or a groom, you can’t have a wedding. This is quite unlike the aforementioned use of ‘without’, which allows for multiple, though limited, methods of achieving an end. It is perfectly sensible to say that one can get to London from New York with either a plane or a boat, but not both or by any other method. It would be foolish to say that one can have a wedding without a bride or a groom, that is, with only the bride, but no groom, or vice versa. If both conditions are not met then one cannot have a wedding.
I assert that the term ‘without’ (sine) used in that canon from Trent provides the 3rd meaning explained above. As we can see through the definition of the word ‘sine’ and the syntax of the sentence stating the doctrine, the relevant part of the phrase reads: without [that is, lacking] x or without [that is, lacking] y. I assert that a more accurate reading of the text explains that, lacking the one condition (the sacrament itself) or lacking the other condition (the desire for the sacrament), justification will not take place.
Some might suggest that this is sophistic word-twisting to accommodate my predilection. A few months ago, I wouldn't have disagreed. But a further investigation of authoritative documents will dispel that doubt.
This is the typical Feeneyite ploy: you must have BOTH the sacrament and the desire of the said sacrament for validity, This was not the understanding of the Ordinary and Universal Magisterium, to which we must submit. It must be noted that desire is NOT all that is needed for adults in the reception of the Sacraments. The Council should have stated "WITHOUT FAITH" not "DESIRE" because most Protestant baptisms are invalid for lack of intent to do what the Church does. The One True Church teaches that Baptism is for the remission of all sins (both original and actual) with the infusion of sanctifying grace and the bestowal of an indelible character on the soul. Since most Protestant ministers don't intend to do this, (and the recipients don't desire it for this is not what they have been taught and believe), it would be invalid both for lack of intention on the part of the minister, and an obex (invalidating impediment) on the part of the recipient. Therefore, just having a desire for baptism is not sufficient, you must know what you desire(at least implicitly), for if you don't intend to receive the sacrament, it is invalid. So, either the interpretation given by such theological giants as St. Alphonsus Liguori is correct regarding Trent and BOD, or the Council of Trent actually taught something ambiguous (at best), or heretical (at worst) and all the theologians with their papally-approved teachings didn't understand. Vox writes about "authoritative documents" but gives no citations at this point.
Firstly, the Catechism of the Council of Trent, commissioned by the Council of Trent itself, explains that the fruits of the Passion of Christ, notably justification, are applied though reception of the sacraments:
A third reason [why the sacraments were instituted] is that the Sacraments, to use the words of St. Ambrose, may be at hand, as the remedies and medicines of the Samaritan in the Gospel, to preserve or recover the health of the soul. For, through the Sacraments, as through a channel, must flow into the soul the efficacy of the Passion of Christ, that is, the grace which He merited for us on the altar of the cross, and without which we cannot hope for salvation. Hence, our most merciful Lord has bequeathed to His Church, Sacraments stamped with the sanction of His word and promise, through which, provided we make pious and devout use of these remedies, we firmly believe that the fruit of His Passion is really communicated to us. (http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/romancat.html)
Yes, and this citation does not rule out the extraordinary way one can be saved with sanctifying grace. God so created us that we need food to survive (normally), but in certain instances, saints have lived on just the Eucharist for many years (miraculous). This doesn't mean we should depend on a miracle and not eat, but God can do it if He wishes.
Vox: That same Catechism further states that:
…sins can be forgiven only through the Sacraments, when duly administered…Hence it follows that in the forgiveness of sins both priests and Sacraments are, so to speak, the instruments which Christ our Lord, the author and giver of salvation, makes use of, to accomplish in us the pardon of sin and the grace of justification. (http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/romancat.html)
Moreover, as the 7th Session of the Council of Trent begins:
For the completion of the salutary doctrine on Justification, which was promulgated with the unanimous consent of the Fathers in the last preceding Session, it hath seemed suitable to treat of the most holy Sacraments of the Church, through which all true justice either begins, or being begun is increased, or being lost is repaired. (http://history.hanover.edu/texts/trent/ct07.html)
Clearly then, the sacraments are needed to live a Christian life since they are how grace and justification are given to us. Relevant to our discussion, we also know from reading the 6th Session with completeness that desiring Baptism is preparation for receiving justification, while the Sacrament of Baptism itself is the method by which justification takes place:
Be careful Vox! An Act of Perfect Contrition with the DESIRE for sacramental Confession will absolve a person OUTSIDE the sacrament of Penance. If you deny this, you are a heretic.
A description is introduced of the Justification of the impious, and of the Manner thereof under the law of grace.
By which words, a description of the Justification of the impious is indicated,-as being a translation, from that state wherein man is born a child of the first Adam, to the state of grace, and of the adoption of the sons of God, through the second Adam, Jesus Christ, our Saviour. And this translation, since the promulgation of the Gospel, cannot be effected, without [sine] the laver of regeneration, or the desire thereof, as it is written; unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God.
The manner of Preparation.
Now they (adults) are disposed unto the said justice, when, excited and assisted by divine grace, conceiving faith by hearing, they are freely moved towards God, believing those things to be true which God has revealed and promised,-and this especially, that God justifies the impious by His grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus; and when, understanding themselves to be sinners, they, by turning themselves, from the fear of divine justice whereby they are profitably agitated, to consider the mercy of God, are raised unto hope, confiding that God will be propitious to them for Christ's sake; and they begin to love Him as the fountain of all justice; and are therefore moved against sins by a certain hatred and detestation, to wit, by that penitence which must be performed before baptism: lastly, when they purpose to receive baptism, to begin a new life...
What the justification of the impious is, and what are the causes thereof.
This disposition, or preparation, is followed by Justification itself, which is not remission of sins merely, but also the sanctification and renewal of the inward man, through the voluntary reception of the grace, and of the gifts, whereby man of unjust becomes just, and of an enemy a friend, that so he may be an heir according to hope of life everlasting.
Of this Justification the causes are these: the final cause indeed is the glory of God and of Jesus Christ, and life everlasting; while the efficient cause is a merciful God who washes and sanctifies gratuitously, signing, and anointing with the holy Spirit of promise, who is the pledge of our inheritance; but the meritorious cause is His most beloved only-begotten, our Lord Jesus Christ, who, when we were enemies, for the exceeding charity wherewith he loved us, merited Justification for us by His most holy Passion on the wood of the cross, and made satisfaction for us unto God the Father; the instrumental cause is the sacrament of baptism...” (http://history.hanover.edu/texts/trent/ct06.html)
Yes, and none of this is at odds with BOD as explained above!
Vox: Identifying the Sacrament of Baptism as the instrumental cause of justification is key. What does it mean to say something is an instrumental cause? An instrumental cause is “a cause that does not begin an action but is applied and directed as a help to its efforts and purpose by the principal agent.” (Fr. John Hardon, Modern Catholic Dictionary) To understand this example, imagine a man, a stick, and a book. The man uses the stick to move the book. The man is the principal actor in the sequence, because it is his power that moves the book. The stick is the instrumental cause, because it is through the stick that the man applies his power to move the book. To say, then, that the Sacrament of Baptism is the instrumental cause of justification is to say that God as the principal agent uses the Sacrament of Baptism as His instrument to convey to the recipient His Justice by which a man is rendered just.
Some here have quoted Pius XII to the effect that only those who received Baptism and professed the Catholic Faith were the members of the Catholic Church. I at first figured him to be the only source on the subject, but there are a few more that I have found. Perhaps they are not the only ones, but it’ll do for now. To iterate:
For it is through Baptism we are made members of Christ and compacted into the Body of the Church. ~ Pope Eugene IV, Exultate Deo
All multitude of the faithful are regenerated from water and the Holy Ghost, and through this truly incorporated into the Church. ~ III Council of Valence
Furthermore, St. Augustine says that Cornelius the Centurion, although praised in the Scriptures, was not yet such that he could have been saved unless he became incorporated in the Church through the Sacrament of Baptism. ~ St. Robert Bellarmine, On the Sacrament of Penance
Holy baptism holds the first place among all the sacraments, for it is the gate of the spiritual life; through it we become members of Christ and of the body of the church. Since death came into the world through one person, unless we are born again of water and the spirit, we cannot, as Truth says, enter the kingdom of heaven. The matter of this sacrament is true and natural water, either hot or cold. The form is: I baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit. ~ Council of Florence
After his discourse on instrumentality, he now tries to prove that only water Baptism (the sacrament properly so-called) will unite one to the Church, outside of which there is no salvation. This is answered simply enough: In water baptism you are united to the Body of the Church, and by BOD/BOB to the soul of the Church. Pope Leo XIII in Statis Cognitum clearly taught that the Church is made up of "visible and invisible elements" You can be united to one and not the other. A baptized man in mortal sin belongs to the Body of the Church but not the Soul, as he is a dead member devoid of sanctifying grace. Likewise, someone who receives BOD/BOB can be united to the Soul without perfecting union in the Body "in actu" as taught by Aquinas.
Vox: You've said that all the pre-Vatican 2 Catechisms have taught BOD and BOB. I have two.
The first is the Catechism of the Council of Trent. Some have focused on the following passage to prove that the CCT teaches BOD:
However, let's look at the series of paragraphs immediately following that statement:
(there was no statement here--Introibo)
So, the impossibility being spoken of is something that is only temporary, ie. the catechumen hasn't died before Baptism.
Once again, Vox has a private interpretation that he thinks is correct, and all the theologians and catechisms got wrong! Arrogance on steroids is what propels the Fenneyites.
Vox: Moreover, The Catechism of St. Pius X is not written by Pius X. Indeed, it's real title is Catechismo della dottrina Cristiana, Pubblicato per Ordine del Sommo Pontifice San Pio X, implying that it was created by his order, not his personal scholarship. It contains heresy, notably the following:
It contains heresy? Really? And YOU found it! How did the Church survive before Leonard Feeney, the so-called Dimond "Brothers", and Vox? The Catechism was APPROVED by St. Pius and was praised by his successors Popes Benedict XV, Pius XI, and Pius XII. This would make St. Pius X a heretic and he could not possibly have been either a pope or a saint! His approval would be all that's needed here to be a heretic, not his "personal scholarship."
<29 a="" be="" but="" can="" church="" div="" fault="" he="" his="" if="" is="" man="" no="" of="" outside="" own="" q.="" saved="" the="" through="">29>
A. If he is outside the Church through no fault of his, that is, if he is in good faith, and if he has received Baptism, or at least has the implicit desire of Baptism; and if, moreover, he sincerely seeks the truth and does God's will as best he can such a man is indeed separated from the body of the Church, but is united to the soul of the Church and consequently is on the way of salvation.>
This doctrine was contradicted by his immediate predecessor Leo XIII in his letter Satis Cognitum:
Baloney. Pope Leo was arguing against those who reject the Church as a visible Body, and those that deny it is a Divine Institution. The Church is both human and divine (like Her Invisible Head), and has human's visibly bestowing God's invisible Grace. As I cited above, the encyclical actually works against his position.
and his successor Pius XI in Mortalium Animos:
Nope. Once again, his private interpretation trumps over popes and saint-theologians! You mean Pope Pius XI, allowed the heretical catechism to be taught under his nose while allegedly "condemning" it? Please.
Vox:And this catechism - Christian Doctrine, published in 1583, not long after the Council of Trent. http://www.catholicapologetics.info/apologetics/protestantism/catechsm.htm
In chapter one, the second question asks: Whom do you call a Christian Catholic man?
The answer is: Him that has received the Sacrament of Baptism, whereby he is made a member of the Catholic Church, & does profess in heart, word, and deed, the wholesome doctrine of Jesus Christ & of the Catholic Church, and does not consent nor agree to any strange sects, or opinions, that the Catholic Church does disavow or condemn.
So, the members of the Church are those that have received the Sacrament of Baptism.
The citation takes us to a catechism of the late 1500s and simply doesn't mention BOB and BOD. It was short and concise on the SACRAMENTS. BOB and BOD are NOT sacraments and so were not touched upon. The same catechism makes clear that sins after Baptism can ONLY be forgiven in the Sacrament of Penance without mentioning an Act of Perfect Contrition which is not a sacrament and can do the same. So members of the Church are those who have received Sanctifying Grace via Baptism or BOB/BOD as taught by the universal and Ordinary Magisterium to which all Traditionalist Catholics MUST submit.
Notice how hard the Feeneyites try to make their "square doctrine" fit in the "round hole" of what was always taught? Just like the SSPX, popes approve of heresy, yet remain popes and even saints. Just like the Vatican II sect, where "spin is in" and novel doctrines are taught which had always been condemned, but there is "continuity in Faith."
Finally there was this comment by an anonymous author:
Well and good, argue about theological speculations until the cows come home, or until a real pope issues a solemn definition. Meanwhile back at the ranch, where are the conversions? How many people are you bringing into the Church, calling a priest for the sick, handing out scapulars and rosaries, catechizing on the street, inviting to your home for discussions? Why is your Protestant neighbor or co-worker not converted yet? Do you care?
Don't you realize that talk is cheap in God's eyes?
The harvest is great, but the workers are few.
Hypocrites, all of you. Myself included.
Don't be so hard on my readers, yourself, and me. What we are discussing is the Integral Catholic Faith--whole, entire, and inviolate--and to convert people to a falsehood, doesn't move them towards Heaven. This is not a discussion on how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. The point is well taken that conversions must be sought. I personally converted both my parents before their deaths. I also converted a long time friend from law school who now lives in the Southwest USA. He, in turn, converted both his parents, and his mom is still alive--going with him each Sunday to the Holy Sacrifice. So before issuing condemnations and name-calling, try and find out the facts.
Conversions? Of course! But converted to what? The counterfeit Catholicism of Vatican II, the confused lunacy of the SSPX that wants to be both Catholic and non-Catholic, or the denial of a Truth of Faith in the teachings of Fr. Feeney? For those so concerned with belonging to the Church, make sure you know where to find it in these days of near universal apostasy first.