It advances eleven (11) reasons why sedevacantism is allegedly wrong and the "recognize and resist"("R&R") position of those like the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) is the correct view of what has happened to the Church since Vatican II. In this post, you will not be reading anything new in the clash between the two standpoints; rather the main part of each argument will be reproduced below in red font (the article is so long I needed to condense it to the principle contentions), with my response in black below it. You will see the more or less same worn out R&R arguments. Let this post serve as a reminder why every True Catholic should be a sedevacantist.
First Argument: The Catholic Church Will Always Have A Pope
Vatican I infallibly teaches us: If anyone says that it is not by the institution of Christ the Lord Himself (that is to say, by Divine Law) that blessed Peter should have perpetual successors in the primacy over the whole Church; or that the Roman Pontiff is not the successor of Blessed Peter in this primacy, let him be anathema. Vatican I, Session 4, Ch. 2 (bold emphasis and parenthetical words are in the original, italic emphasis added).
It is theological ignorance to suggest that you need a living pope on the throne of St. Peter as a necessary requirement to have perpetual successors. Protestants would often use an interregnum as "proof" that the papacy wasn't "perpetual" because there was no pope for some time. According to theologian Dorsch, "The Church therefore is a society that is essentially monarchical. But this does not prevent the Church, for a short time after the death of a pope, OR EVEN FOR MANY YEARS, from remaining deprived of her head. [vel etiam per plures annos capite suo destituta manet]. Her monarchical form also remains intact in this state.…Thus the Church is then indeed a headless body.… Her monarchical form of government remains, though then in a different way — that is, it remains incomplete and to be completed. The ordering of the whole to submission to her Primate is present, even though actual submission is not…For this reason, the See of Rome is rightly said to remain after the person sitting in it has died — for the See of Rome consists essentially in the rights of the Primate. These rights are an essential and necessary element of the Church. With them, moreover, the Primacy then continues, at least morally. The perennial physical presence of the person of the head, however, [perennitas autem physica personis principis] is not so strictly necessary." (de Ecclesia 2:196–7; Emphasis mine).
Second, according to theologian Salaverri, instead of being a "primary foundation… without which the Church could not exist," the pope is a "secondary foundation," "ministerial," who exercises his power as someone else’s (Christ’s) representative. (See De Ecclesia 1:448)
- Rejection of the thing commanded. This occurs when one disobeys something ( e.g., a fast or restitution enjoined by the Pontiff) because he considers it too difficult. This results in sin, but not separation through schism because he rejects a commandment of the Church, not the Head of the Church.
- Rejection of the command when you regard the pope in his capacity as an individual. As the pope is not above human weakness, he might make a command moved by hatred, envy, or some other sinful motive involving an individual decision (not one affecting the whole Church). The pope might also command something sinful (e.g., kill someone he dislikes). In such a case neither sin nor schism is committed by this refusal to obey.
- The rejection is based on his official capacity as pope. The person is guilty of schism and is no longer a member of the Church because he does not wish to submit to the authority of the pope who gave the command. (See theologians McHugh and Callan, Moral Theology , 1: 542-543)
- Condemned proposition #22 of the Syllabus of Errors, addressed to the whole Church teaches, "22. The obligation by which Catholic teachers and writers are absolutely bound is restricted to those matters only which are proposed by the infallible judgement of the Church, to be believed by all as dogmas of the faith."
- Pope Pius XII condemns the idea popes need not be given assent in their teachings that are not ex cathedra: "It is not to be thought that what is set down in Encyclical Letters does not demand assent in itself, because in these the popes do not exercise the supreme powers of their Magisterium. For these matters are taught by the ordinary Magisterium, regarding which the following is pertinent ‘He who heareth you, heareth me.’; and usually what is set forth and inculcated in Encyclical Letters, already pertains to Catholic doctrine." (See Humani Generis ).