Pius XI…

…judges Francis’ idea on ‘diversified unity’

  • The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship – Let none delude himself with obstinate wrangling

“The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship. This is the fount of truth, this the house of Faith, this the temple of God: if any man enter not here, or if any man go forth from it, he is a stranger to the hope of life and salvation. Let none delude himself with obstinate wrangling. For life and salvation are here concerned, which will be lost and entirely destroyed, unless their interests are carefully and assiduously kept in mind” (Divin. Instit. Iv, 30. 11–12). (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no 11, January 6, 1928)

  • Unity can only arise from one teaching authority, one law of belief and one faith of Christians – a variety of opinions is an easy step to the neglect of religion and to Modernism

How so great a variety of opinions can make the way clear to effect the unity of the Church We know not; that unity can only arise from one teaching authority, one law of belief and one faith of Christians. But We do know that from this it is an easy step to the neglect of religion or indifferentism and to modernism, as they call it. Those, who are unhappily infected with these errors, hold that dogmatic truth is not absolute but relative, that is, it agrees with the varying necessities of time and place and with the varying tendencies of the mind, since it is not contained in immutable revelation, but is capable of being accommodated to human life. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no 9, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on this being the wonderful moments of the Church

  • The Church comes forth from the most violent storms adorned with new triumphs

The Church of Christ, built upon an unshakable rock, has nothing to fear for herself, as she knows for a certainty that the gates of hell shall never prevail against her (Mt 16:18). Rather, she knows full well, through the experience of many centuries, that she is wont to come forth from the most violent storms stronger than ever and adorned with new triumphs. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no.144, May 15, 1931)

…judges Francis’ idea on the role of the Church

  • The Church was not given the commission to guide men to an only fleeting and perishable happiness but to that which is eternal

Certainly the Church was not given the commission to guide men to an only fleeting and perishable happiness but to that which is eternal. Indeed” the Church holds that it is unlawful for her to mix without cause in these temporal concerns” (Ubi Arcano, Dec. 23, 1922); however, she can in no wise renounce the duty God entrusted to her to interpose her authority, not of course in matters of technique for which she is neither suitably equipped nor endowed by office, but in all things that are connected with the moral law. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 41, May 15, 1931)

  • The peace sought by the Church is based on the restoration of the Empire of Our Lord

Men must look for the peace of Christ in the Kingdom of Christ; and that We promised to do as far as lay in Our power. In the Kingdom of Christ, that is, it seemed to Us that peace could not be more effectually restored nor fixed upon a firmer basis than through the restoration of the Empire of Our Lord. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quas primas, no. 1, December 11, 1925)

  • The Church reaffirms the Kingship of Christ to draw attention to the evils which anticlericalism has brought upon society

Moreover, the annual and universal celebration of the feast of the Kingship of Christ will draw attention to the evils which anticlericalism has brought upon society in drawing men away from Christ, and will also do much to remedy them. While nations insult the beloved name of our Redeemer by suppressing all mention of it in their conferences and parliaments, we must all the more loudly proclaim his kingly dignity and power, all the more universally affirm his rights. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quas primas, no. 25, December 11, 1925)

  • The evils that injure souls are all the more to be deplored, for souls have an infinitely greater value than any merely material object

It is surprising, then, that we should no longer possess that security of life in which we can place our trust and that there remains only the most terrible uncertainty, and from hour to hour added fears for the future? Instead of regular daily work there is idleness and unemployment. That blessed tranquillity which is the effect of an orderly existence and in which the essence of peace is to be found no longer exists, and, in its place, the restless spirit of revolt reigns. As a consequence, industry suffers, commerce is crippled, the cultivation of literature and the arts becomes more and more difficult, and what is worse than all, Christian civilization itself is irreparably damaged thereby. In the face of our much praised progress, we behold with sorrow society lapsing back slowly but surely into a state of barbarism. We wish to record, in addition to the evils already mentioned, other evils which beset society and which occupy a place of prime importance but whose very existence escapes the ordinary observer, the sensual man – he who, as the Apostle says, does not perceive ‘the things that are of the Spirit of God’ (1Cor 2:14), yet which cannot but be judged the greatest and most destructive scourges of the social order of today. We refer specifically to those evils which transcend the material or natural sphere and lie within the supernatural and religious order properly so-called; in other words, those evils which affect the spiritual life of souls. These evils are all the more to be deplored since they injure souls whose value is infinitely greater than that of any merely material object. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi Arcano, nos. 1516, December 23, 1922)

  • If we examine all things critically with Christian eyes, what are all these temporal ills compared with the loss of souls?

Minds of all, it is true, are affected almost solely by temporal upheavals, disasters, and calamities. But if we examine things critically with Christian eyes, as we should, what are all these compared with the loss of souls? Yet it is not rash by any means to say that the whole scheme of social and economic life is now such as to put in the way of vast numbers of mankind most serious obstacles which prevent them from caring for the one thing necessary; namely, their eternal salvation. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 41, May 15, 1931)

  • What is most precious to Holy Mother Church: the integrity of the family, the sanctity of marriage, and Christian education of youth

However, we should recognize with sorrow that, despite your diligent and assiduous care, within these regions also – as happens disgracefully in many others, – a war is occurring, at times silently, at times blatantly, against that which is most precious to Holy Mother Church, with the most grievous damage to souls. The integrity of the family is attacked at its foundations by frequent attempts against the sanctity of marriage; Christian education of the youth, interfered with and at times neglected, there as in other nations, is now seriously compromised by errors against faith and morals and by calumnies against the Church, which is presented as an enemy to progress, liberty and the interests of the people; civil society itself is threatened by a harmful propaganda of subversive theories of all social order, while, on the other hand, the worker is being distanced from Christian practices by the frequent violation of the Lord’s day rest and by the excessive thirst for diversions, which is often an easy vehicle for moral perversion. (Pius XI. Apostolic Letter Con singular complacencia to the Bishops of the Philippines, January 18, 1939)

  • All social work should tend to promote the greatest of social goods: the Kingdom of Jesus Christ

That is why the members of Catholic Action also, in a certain degree, propagate and protect the supernatural life of souls. It clearly follows from the foregoing that Catholic Action is a movement not in the material order, but in the spiritual; its character is not profane, but sacred; it seeks not political ends, but religious ones. Its special purpose clearly distinguishes it from any movement o association whose purposes are purely temporal and of this World, however noble and praiseworthy they may be. Nevertheless, Catholic Action is also a social work, since it tends to promote the greatest of social goods: the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. Further, it does not disregard the great problems which are troubling society and which have their repercussions in the religious and moral order; it studies them and sets them on the road to their true solution, according to the principles of Christian justice and charity. (Pius XI. Apostolic Letter Con singular complacencia to the Bishops of the Philippines, January 18, 1939)

  • The Church rises up like a bright lighthouse pointing out the way of truth to one and all

Amidst all the aberrations of human thought, infatuated by a false emancipation from every law and curb; and amidst the awful corruptions of human malice, the Church rises up like a bright lighthouse warning by the clearness of its beam every deviation to right or left from the way of truth, and pointing out to one and all the right course that they should follow. Woe if ever this beacon should be – We do not say extinguished, for that is impossible owing to the unfailing promises on which it is founded – but if it should be hindered from shedding far and wide its beneficent light! We see already with Our own eyes whither the world has been brought by its arrogant rejection of divine revelation, and its pursuit of false philosophical and moral theories that bear the specious name of “science.” That it has not fallen still lower down the slope of error and vice is due to the guidance of the light of Christian truth that always shines in the world. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad catholici sacerdotii, no. 24, December 20, 1935)

…judges Francis’ idea on the use of internet for catholic education

  • One must not become attached exclusively to the passing things of earth

Indeed never has there been so much discussion about education as nowadays; never have exponents of new pedagogical theories been so numerous, or so many methods and means devised, proposed and debated, not merely to facilitate education, but to create a new system infallibly efficacious, and capable of preparing the present generations for that earthly happiness which they so ardently desire. The reason is that men, created by God to His image and likeness and destined for Him Who is infinite perfection realize today more than ever amid the most exuberant material progress, the insufficiency of earthly goods to produce true happiness either for the individual or for the nations. And hence they feel more keenly in themselves the impulse towards a perfection that is higher, which impulse is implanted in their rational nature by the Creator Himself. This perfection they seek to acquire by means of education. But many of them with, it would seem, too great insistence on the etymological meaning of the word, pretend to draw education out of human nature itself and evolve it by its own unaided powers. Such easily fall into error, because, instead of fixing their gaze on God, first principle and last end of the whole universe, they fall back upon themselves, becoming attached exclusively to passing things of earth; and thus their restlessness will never cease till they direct their attention and their efforts to God, the goal of all perfection. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divinii illius Magistri, no. 3-4, December 31, 1929)

  • The true Christian does not renounce the activities of this life but develops them by coordinating them with the supernatural

The scope and aim of Christian education as here described, appears to the worldly as an abstraction, or rather as something that cannot be attained without the suppression or dwarfing of the natural faculties, and without a renunciation of the activities of the present life, and hence inimical to social life and temporal prosperity, and contrary to all progress in letters, arts and sciences, and all the other elements of civilization. […] The true Christian does not renounce the activities of this life, he does not stunt his natural faculties; but he develops and perfects them, by coordinating them with the supernatural. He thus ennobles what is merely natural in life and secures for it new strength in the material and temporal order, no less then in the spiritual and eternal. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divinii illius Magistri, no. 98, December 31, 1929)

  • Every form of pedagogic naturalism which in any way excludes or weakens supernatural Christian formation in the teaching of youth, is false. From tender childhood the mind must be enlightened and the will strengthened by supernatural truth and by the means of grace.

‘Folly is bound up in the heart of a child and the rod of correction shall drive it away.’ (Prov 22:15) Disorderly inclinations then must be corrected, good tendencies encouraged and regulated from tender childhood, and above all the mind must be enlightened and the will strengthened by supernatural truth and by the means of grace, without which it is impossible to control evil impulses, impossible to attain to the full and complete perfection of education intended by the Church, which Christ has endowed so richly with divine doctrine and with the Sacraments, the efficacious means of grace. Hence every form of pedagogic naturalism which in any way excludes or weakens supernatural Christian formation in the teaching of youth, is false. […] But alas! it is clear from the obvious meaning of the words and from experience, that what is intended by not a few, is the withdrawal of education from every sort of dependence on the divine law. So today we see, strange sight indeed, educators and philosophers who spend their lives in searching for a universal moral code of education, as if there existed no decalogue, no gospel law, no law even of nature stamped by God on the heart of man, promulgated by right reason, and codified in positive revelation by God Himself in the ten commandments. These innovators are wont to refer contemptuously to Christian education as “heteronomous,” “passive”, “obsolete,” because founded upon the authority of God and His holy law. Such men are miserably deluded in their claim to emancipate, as they say, the child, while in reality they are making him the slave of his own blind pride and of his disorderly affections, which, as a logical consequence of this false system, come to be justified as legitimate demands of a so-called autonomous nature. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divinii illius Magistri, no. 59–60.62–63, December 31, 1929)

  • Priceless educational treasures are so truly a property of the Church

Such are the fruits of Christian education. Their price and value is derived from the supernatural virtue and life in Christ which Christian education forms and develops in man. Of this life and virtue Christ our Lord and Master is the source and dispenser. By His example He is at the same time the universal model accessible to all, especially to the young in the period of His hidden life, a life of labor and obedience, adorned with all virtues, personal, domestic and social, before God and men. Now all this array of priceless educational treasures which We have barely touched upon, is so truly a property of the Church as to form her very substance, since she is the mystical body of Christ, the immaculate spouse of Christ, and consequently a most admirable mother and an incomparable and perfect teacher. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 100–101, December 30, 1929)

  • Maternal care on the part of the Church in protecting her children from the grave danger of all kinds of doctrinal and moral evil

Nor should the exercise of this right be considered undue interference, but rather maternal care on the part of the Church in protecting her children from the grave danger of all kinds of doctrinal and moral evil. Moreover this watchfulness of the Church not merely can create no real inconvenience, but must on the contrary confer valuable assistance in the right ordering and well-being of families and of civil society; for it keeps far away from youth the moral poison which at that inexperienced and changeable age more easily penetrates the mind and more rapidly spreads its baneful effects. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 24, December 30, 1929)

  • The decadence of the world comes from hindering the light of Christian truth from shining on the world to guide it

Amidst all the aberrations of human thought, infatuated by a false emancipation from every law and curb; and amidst the awful corruptions of human malice, the Church rises up like a bright lighthouse warning by the clearness of its beam every deviation to right or left from the way of truth, and pointing out to one and all the right course that they should follow. Woe if ever this beacon should be — We do not say extinguished, for that is impossible owing to the unfailing promises on which it is founded — but if it should be hindered from shedding far and wide its beneficent light! We see already with Our own eyes whither the world has been brought by its arrogant rejection of divine revelation, and its pursuit of false philosophical and moral theories that bear the specious name of “science.” That it has not fallen still lower down the slope of error and vice is due to the guidance of the light of Christian truth that always shines in the world. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad catholici sacerdotii, no. 19, December 20, 1935)

…judges Francis’ idea on if doctrine can be interpreted against the infallible Magisterium

  • Amidst the awful corruptions of the world, the Church rises up like a bright lighthouse showing the way of truth

Amidst all the aberrations of human thought, infatuated by a false emancipation from every law and curb; and amidst the awful corruptions of human malice, the Church rises up like a bright lighthouse warning by the clearness of its beam every deviation to right or left from the way of truth, and pointing out to one and all the right course that they should follow. Woe if ever this beacon should be – We do not say extinguished, for that is impossible owing to the unfailing promises on which it is founded – but if it should be hindered from shedding far and wide its beneficent light! We see already with Our own eyes whither the world has been brought by its arrogant rejection of divine revelation, and its pursuit of false philosophical and moral theories that bear the specious name of “science.” That it has not fallen still lower down the slope of error and vice is due to the guidance of the light of Christian truth that always shines in the world. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad catholici sacerdotii, no. 19, December 20, 1935)

  • Incoherence and discontinuity in Christian life are avoided by the sure light of Catholic teaching

The minds of men must be illuminated with the sure light of Catholic teaching, and their wills must be drawn to follow and apply it as the norm of right living in the conscientious fulfillment of their manifold social duties. Thus they will oppose that incoherence and discontinuity in Christian life which We have many times lamented. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 5, March 19, 1937)

  • The divinely revealed truth cannot be made a subject for compromise

Shall We suffer, what would indeed be iniquitous, the truth, and a truth divinely revealed, to be made a subject for compromise? For here there is question of defending revealed truth. Jesus Christ sent His Apostles into the whole world in order that they might permeate all nations with the Gospel faith, and, lest they should err, He willed beforehand that they should be taught by the Holy Ghost (cf. Jn 16:13): has then this doctrine of the Apostles completely vanished away, or sometimes been obscured, in the Church, whose ruler and defense is God Himself? If our Redeemer plainly said that His Gospel was to continue not only during the times of the Apostles, but also till future ages, is it possible that the object of faith should in the process of time become so obscure and uncertain, that it would be necessary today to tolerate opinions which are even incompatible one with another? If this were true, we should have to confess that the coming of the Holy Ghost on the Apostles, and the perpetual indwelling of the same Spirit in the Church, and the very preaching of Jesus Christ, have several centuries ago, lost all their efficacy and use, to affirm which would be blasphemy. (Pius XI. Encyclical Moralium animos, no 8, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on interpersonal relationships no longer need to seek purity and perfection

  • Matrimony is different from the union of animals entered into by the blind instinct of nature, in which neither reason nor free will plays a part

By matrimony, therefore, the souls of the contracting parties are joined and knit together more directly and more intimately than are their bodies, and that not by any passing affection of sense of spirit, but by a deliberate and firm act of the will; and from this union of souls by God’s decree, a sacred and inviolable bond arises. Hence the nature of this contract, which is proper and peculiar to it alone, makes it entirely different both from the union of animals entered into by the blind instinct of nature alone in which neither reason nor free will plays a part, and also from the haphazard unions of men, which are far removed from all true and honorable unions of will and enjoy none of the rights of family life. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubii, no. 7, December 31, 1930)

…judges Francis’ idea that preaching the Gospel does not entail doctrinal and moral principles

  • The conscientious observation of the ten commandments of God is an unrivaled school of personal discipline, moral education and formation of character

The conscientious observation of the ten commandments of God and the precepts of the Church (which are nothing but practical specifications of rules of the Gospels) is for every one an unrivaled school of personal discipline, moral education and formation of character, a school that is exacting, but not to excess. A merciful God, who as Legislator, says – Thou must! – also gives by His grace the power to will and to do. To let forces of moral formation of such efficacy lie fallow, or to exclude them positively from public education, would spell religious under-feeding of a nation. To hand over the moral law to man’s subjective opinion, which changes with the times, instead of anchoring it in the holy will of the eternal God and His commandments, is to open wide every door to the forces of destruction. The resulting dereliction of the eternal principles of an objective morality, which educates conscience and ennobles every department and organization of life, is a sin against the destiny of a nation, a sin whose bitter fruit will poison future generations. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge, no. 29)

…judges Francis’ idea on the Church’s rules on matrimony being ‘overly rigid’

  • True marriage carries with it the enduring bond which by divine right is inherent

“And so, whatever marriage is said to be contracted, either it is so contracted that it is really a true marriage, in which case it carries with it that enduring bond which by divine right is inherent in every true marriage; or it is thought to be contracted without that perpetual bond, and in that case there is no marriage, but an illicit union opposed of its very nature to the divine law, which therefore cannot be entered into or maintained.” (Pius VI, Rescript. ad Episc. Agriens., 11 July 1789) And if this stability seems to be open to exception, however rare the exception may be, as in the case of certain natural marriages between unbelievers, or amongst Christians in the case of those marriages which though valid have not been consummated, that exception does not depend on the will of men nor on that of any merely human power, but on divine law, of which the only guardian and interpreter is the Church of Christ. However, not even this power can ever affect for any cause whatsoever a Christian marriage which is valid and has been consummated, for as it is plain that here the marriage contract has its full completion, so, by the will of God, there is also the greatest firmness and indissolubility which may not be destroyed by any human authority. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubii, no. 34–35, December 31, 1930)

  • In certain circumstances, imperfect separation between the spouses is allowed, but the marriage bond is not severed

If therefore the Church has not erred and does not err in teaching this, and consequently it is certain that the bond of marriage cannot be loosed even on account of the sin of adultery, it is evident that all the other weaker excuses that can be, and are usually brought forward, are of no value whatsoever. And the objections brought against the firmness of the marriage bond are easily answered. For, in certain circumstances, imperfect separation of the parties is allowed, the bond not being severed. This separation, which the Church herself permits, and expressly mentions in her Canon Law in those canons which deal with the separation of the parties as to marital relationship and co-habitation, removes all the alleged inconveniences and dangers (CIC., c. 1128). It will be for the sacred law and, to some extent, also the civil law, in so far as civil matters are affected, to lay down the grounds, the conditions, the method and precautions to be taken in a case of this kind in order to safeguard the education of the children and the well-being of the family, and to remove all those evils which threaten the married persons, the children and the State. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubii, no. 89, December 31, 1930)

…judges Francis’ idea that the Orthodox are no longer schismatics

  • In what manner can men who follow contrary opinions, belong to one and the same Federation of the faithful?

These pan-Christians who turn their minds to uniting the churches seem, indeed, to pursue the noblest of ideas in promoting charity among all Christians: nevertheless how does it happen that this charity tends to injure faith? Everyone knows that John himself, the Apostle of love, who seems to reveal in his Gospel the secrets of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and who never ceased to impress on the memories of his followers the new commandment ‘Love one another,’ altogether forbade any intercourse with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ’s teaching: ‘If any man come to you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him: God speed you’ (2Jn 10). For which reason, since charity is based on a complete and sincere faith, the disciples of Christ must be united principally by the bond of one faith. Who then can conceive a Christian Federation, the members of which retain each his own opinions and private judgment, even in matters which concern the object of faith, even though they be repugnant to the opinions of the rest? And in what manner, We ask, can men who follow contrary opinions, belong to one and the same Federation of the faithful? (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

  • The union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church

The union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

  • The false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good

For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. […] Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little. turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 2-3, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on God’s mercy aimed at religious syncretism

  • The power to judge, which the Father granted the Son, also includes the power to confer rewards and punishments upon men

‘For neither doth the Father judge any man, but hath given all judgment to the Son’ (Jn 5:22); by which this also is understood — since the fact cannot be separated from the judgment — that by His own right He confers rewards and punishments upon men while still living. And furthermore that power which is called executive is to be attributed to Christ, since it is necessary that all obey His power, and since no one can escape what has been imposed upon the contumacious in the imposing of punishment. (Denzinger-Hünermann 3677. Pius XI. Encyclical Quas primas, December 11, 1925)

  • The Holy Year attracts those who have the aim of expiating their sins

The many notable and memorable events which have occurred during this Holy Year have given great honor and glory to Our Lord and King, the Founder of the Church. […] All those who in the course of the Holy Year have thronged to this city under the leadership of their Bishops or priests had but one aim – namely, to expiate their sins – and at the tombs of the Apostles and in Our Presence to promise loyalty to the rule of Christ. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quas Primas, no. 2-3, December 11, 1925)

…judges Francis’ idea on the Church having defects

  • The Church is a most admirable mother and an incomparable and perfect teacher

Such are the fruits of Christian education. Their price and value is derived from the supernatural virtue and life in Christ which Christian education forms and develops in man. Of this life and virtue Christ our Lord and Master is the source and dispenser. By His example He is at the same time the universal model accessible to all, especially to the young in the period of His hidden life, a life of labor and obedience, adorned with all virtues, personal, domestic and social, before God and men. Now all this array of priceless educational treasures which We have barely touched upon is so truly a property of the Church as to form her very substance, since she is the mystical body of Christ, the immaculate spouse of Christ, and consequently a most admirable mother and an incomparable and perfect teacher. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no. 100-101, December 31, 1929)

…judges Francis’ idea on renouncing our own culture to receive the refugees

  • There are pontifical documents that show the concern of the Church for the Catholic migrant’s difficulties throughout history

Nor can We fail to mention a duty which in these recent times is ever increasing in importance: the assistance for Mexicans who have emigrated to other countries, who, torn away from their country and their traditions, more easily become prey to the insidious propaganda of the emissaries seeking to induce them to apostatize from their Faith. (Pius XI. Apostolic letter to the Mexican episcopate about the religious situation Firmissiman Constantiam, March 28, 1937)

…judges Francis’ attitude towards public sinners, changing Vatican protocol

  • The infinite charity of Our Redeemer encouraged a vehement hatred of sin

And this indeed was the purpose of the merciful Jesus, when He showed His Heart to us bearing about it the symbols of the passion and displaying the flames of love, that from the one we might know the infinite malice of sin, and in the other we might admire the infinite charity of Our Redeemer, and so might have a more vehement hatred of sin, and make a more ardent return of love for His love. (Pius XI. Encyclical Miserentissimus Redemptor, no. 11, May 8, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on conversion of the papacy

  • The Church is exactly the same as it was at the time of the Apostles

Instead, Christ our Lord instituted His Church as a perfect society, external of its nature and perceptible to the senses, which should carry on in the future the work of the salvation of the human race, under the leadership of one head, (Mt 16:18 seq; Lk 22:32; Jn 22:15 17.) with an authority teaching by word of mouth, (Mk 16:15) and by the ministry of the sacraments, the founts of heavenly grace; (Jn 3:5; 6:48-59; 20:22 seq; cf. Mt 18:18, etc) […] This Church, after being so wonderfully instituted, could not, on the removal by death of its Founder and of the Apostles who were the pioneers in propagating it, be entirely extinguished and cease to be, for to it was given the commandment to lead all men, without distinction of time or place, to eternal salvation: ‘Going therefore, teach ye all nations’ (Mt 28:19). In the continual carrying out of this task, will any element of strength and efficiency be wanting to the Church, when Christ Himself is perpetually present to it, according to His solemn promise: ‘Behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world?’ (Mt 28:20)? It follows then that the Church of Christ not only exists to-day and always, but is also exactly the same as it was in the time of the Apostles, unless we were to say, which God forbid, either that Christ our Lord could not effect His purpose, or that He erred when He asserted that the gates of hell should never prevail against it (Mt 16:18). (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 6, January 6, 1928)

  • Protestants affirm that they would willingly treat with the Church of Rome, but on equal terms…but their assemblies are a false Christianity, quite alien to the one Church of Christ

There are some, indeed, who recognize and affirm that Protestantism, as they call it, has rejected, with a great lack of consideration, certain articles of faith and some external ceremonies, which are, in fact, pleasing and useful, and which the Roman Church still retains. They soon, however, go on to say that that Church also has erred, and corrupted the original religion by adding and proposing for belief certain doctrines which are not only alien to the Gospel, but even repugnant to it. Among the chief of these they number that which concerns the primacy of jurisdiction, which was granted to Peter and to his successors in the See of Rome. Among them there indeed are some, though few, who grant to the Roman Pontiff a primacy of honor or even a certain jurisdiction or power, but this, however, they consider not to arise from the divine law but from the consent of the faithful. Others again, even go so far as to wish the Pontiff Himself to preside over their motley, so to say, assemblies. But, all the same, although many non-Catholics may be found who loudly preach fraternal communion in Christ Jesus, yet you will find none at all to whom it ever occurs to submit to and obey the Vicar of Jesus Christ either in His capacity as a teacher or as a governor. Meanwhile they affirm that they would willingly treat with the Church of Rome, but on equal terms, that is as equals with an equal: but even if they could so act. It does not seem open to doubt that any pact into which they might enter would not compel them to turn from those opinions which are still the reason why they err and stray from the one fold of Christ. This being so, it is clear that the Apostolic See cannot on any terms take part in their assemblies, nor is it anyway lawful for Catholics either to support or to work for such enterprises; for if they do so they will be giving countenance to a false Christianity, quite alien to the one Church of Christ. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 7 8, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on reforming the Church

  • It would be iniquitous for the divinely revealed truth to be made a subject for compromise

Shall We suffer, what would indeed be iniquitous, the truth, and a truth divinely revealed, to be made a subject for compromise? For here there is question of defending revealed truth. Jesus Christ sent His Apostles into the whole world in order that they might permeate all nations with the Gospel faith, and, lest they should err, He willed beforehand that they should be taught by the Holy Ghost: (Jn 15:13) has then this doctrine of the Apostles completely vanished away, or sometimes been obscured, in the Church, whose ruler and defense is God Himself? If our Redeemer plainly said that His Gospel was to continue not only during the times of the Apostles, but also till future ages, is it possible that the object of faith should in the process of time become so obscure and uncertain, that it would be necessary to-day to tolerate opinions which are even incompatible one with another? If this were true, we should have to confess that the coming of the Holy Ghost on the Apostles, and the perpetual indwelling of the same Spirit in the Church, and the very preaching of Jesus Christ, have several centuries ago, lost all their efficacy and use, to affirm which would be blasphemy. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 11, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on the Church’s moral teaching

  • If we faithfully observe God’s law, then it will follow that the particular purposes, both individual and social, shall attain the final end of all things

Even though economics and moral science employs each its own principles in its own sphere, it is, nevertheless, an error to say that the economic and moral orders are so distinct from and alien to each other that the former depends in no way on the latter. Certainly the laws of economics, as they are termed, being based on the very nature of material things and on the capacities of the human body and mind, determine the limits of what productive human effort cannot, and of what it can attain in the economic field and by what means. Yet it is reason itself that clearly shows, on the basis of the individual and social nature of things and of men, the purpose which God ordained for all economic life. But it is only the moral law which, just as it commands us to seek our supreme and last end in the whole scheme of our activity, so likewise commands us to seek directly in each kind of activity those purposes which we know that nature, or rather God the Author of nature, established for that kind of action, and in orderly relationship to subordinate such immediate purposes to our supreme and last end. If we faithfully observe this law, then it will follow that the particular purposes, both individual and social, that are sought in the economic field will fall in their proper place in the universal order of purposes, and We, in ascending through them, as it were by steps, shall attain the final end of all things, that is God, to Himself and to us, the supreme and inexhaustible Good. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo Anno, no. 42–43, May 15, 1931)

…judges Francis’ idea on the Church called to dialogue

  • Christianity: a model and guide to a world which is sick to death and clamors for direction

A Christianity which keeps a grip on itself, refuses every compromise with the world, takes the commands of God and the Church seriously, preserves its love of God and of men in all its freshness, such a Christianity can be, and will be, a model and a guide to a world which is sick to death and clamors for directions, unless it be condemned to a catastrophe that would baffle the imagination. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mit brennender sorge, no. 20, March 14, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea on the Church’s fault for the Anglican schism

  • The sad and disastrous effects of the Reformation are deplored by every fair mind

We are now happily called upon to celebrate the Third Centenary of the entrance into heaven of another great saint, one who was remarkable not only for the sublime holiness of life which he achieved but also for the wisdom with which he directed souls in the ways of sanctity. This saint was no less a person than Francis de Sales, Bishop of Geneva and Doctor of the Universal Church. Like those brilliant examples of Christian perfection and wisdom to whom We have just referred, he seemed to have been sent especially by God to contend against the heresies begotten by the Reformation. It is in these heresies that we discover the beginnings of that apostasy of mankind from the Church, the sad and disastrous effects of which are deplored, even to the present hour, by every fair mind. (Pius XI. Encyclical Rerum omnium pertubationem, January 26, 1923)

  • Dealings with those who profess a mutilated version of Christ teachings forbidden

Everyone knows that John himself, the Apostle of love, who seems to reveal in his Gospel the secrets of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and who never ceased to impress on the memories of his followers the new commandment ‘Love one another’, altogether forbade any intercourse with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ’s teaching: ‘If any man come to you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him: God speed you’ (2Jn 10). (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

  • The heretics do not possess the true Church nor the faith

In his Controversies, [Saint Francis de Sales], although the holy Doctor made large use of the polemical literature of the past, he exhibits nevertheless a controversial method quite peculiarly his own. In the first place, he proves that no authority can be said to exist in the Church of Christ unless it had been bestowed on her by an authoritative mandate, which mandate the ministers of heretical beliefs in no way can be said to possess. After having pointed out the errors of these latter concerning the nature of the Church, he outlines the notes of the true Church and proves that they are not to be found in the reformed churches, but in the Catholic Church alone. He also explains in a sound manner the Rule of Faith and demonstrates that it is broken by heretics, while on the other hand it is kept in its entirety by Catholics. (Pius XI. Encyclical Rerum omium pertubationem, no. 24, January 26, 1923)

…judges Francis’ idea on obtaining spiritual fruits in other religions

  • The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship – let none delude himself

The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship. This is the fount of truth, this the house of Faith, this the temple of God: if any man enter not here, or if any man go forth from it, he is a stranger to the hope of life and salvation. Let none delude himself with obstinate wrangling. For life and salvation are here concerned, which will be lost and entirely destroyed, unless their interests are carefully and assiduously kept in mind. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 17, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on Ecumenical dialogue

  • Since charity is based on a complete and sincere faith, the disciples of Christ must be united principally by the bond of one faith

These pan-Christians who turn their minds to uniting the churches seem, indeed, to pursue the noblest of ideas in promoting charity among all Christians: nevertheless how does it happen that this charity tends to injure faith? Everyone knows that John himself, the Apostle of love, who seems to reveal in his Gospel the secrets of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and who never ceased to impress on the memories of his followers the new commandment ‘Love one another,’ altogether forbade any intercourse with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ’s teaching: ‘If any man come to you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him: God speed you.’ (2Jn 10) For which reason, since charity is based on a complete and sincere faith, the disciples of Christ must be united principally by the bond of one faith. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no.13, January 6 1928)

  • The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship

The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship. This is the fount of truth, this the house of Faith, this the temple of God: if any man enter not here, or if any man go forth from it, he is a stranger to the hope of life and salvation. Let none delude himself with obstinate wrangling. For life and salvation are here concerned, which will be lost and entirely destroyed, unless their interests are carefully and assiduously kept in mind. (Divin. Instit. Iv, 30. 11–12) (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 11, January 5, 1928)

  • The false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy

For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. […] Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little, turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion. (Pius XI. Enyclical Mortalium animos, no. 2-3, January 6, 1928)

  • A variety of opinions are an easy step to the neglect of religion or indifferentism, for dogmatic truth is treated as not absolute but relative

How so great a variety of opinions can make the way clear to effect the unity of the Church We know not; that unity can only arise from one teaching authority, one law of belief and one faith of Christians. But We do know that from this it is an easy step to the neglect of religion or indifferentism and to modernism, as they call it. Those, who are unhappily infected with these errors, hold that dogmatic truth is not absolute but relative, that is, it agrees with the varying necessities of time and place and with the varying tendencies of the mind, since it is not contained in immutable revelation, but is capable of being accommodated to human life. (Pius XI. Enyclical Mortalium animos, no. 2–3, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on Catholic Faith and Lutheran belief

  • Saint John the Evangelist forbade any interaction with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ’s teaching

Everyone knows that John himself, the Apostle of love, who seems to reveal in his Gospel the secrets of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and who never ceased to impress on the memories of his followers the new commandment ‘Love one another,’ altogether forbade any intercourse with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ’s teaching: ‘If any man come to you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him: God speed you’ (2Jn 10). (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

  • The divinely revealed truth should not be made a subject for compromise

Shall We suffer, what would indeed be iniquitous, the truth, and a truth divinely revealed, to be made a subject for compromise? For here there is question of defending revealed truth. Jesus Christ sent His Apostles into the whole world in order that they might permeate all nations with the Gospel faith, and, lest they should err, He willed beforehand that they should be taught by the Holy Ghost: has then this doctrine of the Apostles completely vanished away, or sometimes been obscured, in the Church, whose ruler and defense is God Himself? If our Redeemer plainly said that His Gospel was to continue not only during the times of the Apostles, but also till future ages, is it possible that the object of faith should in the process of time become so obscure and uncertain, that it would be necessary to-day to tolerate opinions which are even incompatible one with another? If this were true, we should have to confess that the coming of the Holy Ghost on the Apostles, and the perpetual indwelling of the same Spirit in the Church, and the very preaching of Jesus Christ, have several centuries ago, lost all their efficacy and use, to affirm which would be blasphemy. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 8, January 6, 1928)

  • A variety of opinions gives rise to neglect of religion or ‘indifferentism’ and ‘modernism’, which holds that dogmatic truth is not absolute but relative

How so great a variety of opinions can make the way clear to effect the unity of the Church We know not; that unity can only arise from one teaching authority, one law of belief and one faith of Christians. But We do know that from this it is an easy step to the neglect of religion or indifferentism and to modernism, as they call it. Those, who are unhappily infected with these errors, hold that dogmatic truth is not absolute but relative, that is, it agrees with the varying necessities of time and place and with the varying tendencies of the mind, since it is not contained in immutable revelation, but is capable of being accommodated to human life. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on God’s love for sinners

  • We admire the infinite charity of Our Redeemer, so that we have a more vehement hatred of sin

And this indeed was the purpose of the merciful Jesus, when He showed His Heart to us bearing about it the symbols of the passion and displaying the flames of love, that from the one we might know the infinite malice of sin, and in the other we might admire the infinite charity of Our Redeemer, and so might have a more vehement hatred of sin, and make a more ardent return of love for His love. (Pius XI. Encyclical Miserentissimus Redemptor, no. 11, May 8, 1928)

  • Like a bright lighthouse, the Church warns against every deviation to right or left from the way of truth

Amidst all the aberrations of human thought, infatuated by a false emancipation from every law and curb; and amidst the awful corruptions of human malice, the Church rises up like a bright lighthouse warning by the clearness of its beam every deviation to right or left from the way of truth, and pointing out to one and all the right course that they should follow. Woe if ever this beacon should be, we do not say extinguished, for that is impossible owing to the unfailing promises on which it is founded, but if it should be hindered from shedding far and wide its beneficent light! […] That it has not fallen still lower down the slope of error and vice is due to the guidance of the light of Christian truth that always shines in the world. Now the Church exercises her ‘ministry of the word’ through her priests of every grade of the Hierarchy, in which each has his wisely allotted place. These she sends everywhere as unwearied heralds of the good tidings which alone can save and advance true civilization and culture, or help them to rise again. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad catholici sacerdotii, no. 24, December 20, 1935)

…judges Francis’ idea on proclaiming the Gospel only with gentleness

  • The world has fallen by its arrogant rejection of divine revelation

Amidst all the aberrations of human thought, infatuated by a false emancipation from every law and curb; and amidst the awful corruptions of human malice, the Church rises up like a bright lighthouse warning by the clearness of its beam every deviation to right or left from the way of truth, and pointing out to one and all the right course that they should follow. Woe if ever this beacon should be We do not say extinguished, for that is impossible owing to the unfailing promises on which it is founded but if it should be hindered from shedding far and wide its beneficent light! We see already with Our own eyes whither the world has been brought by its arrogant rejection of divine revelation, and its pursuit of false philosophical and moral theories that bear the specious name of ‘science.’ That it has not fallen still lower down the slope of error and vice is due to the guidance of the light of Christian truth that always shines in the world. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad catholici sacerdotii, no. 24, December 20, 1935)

  • The priest’s first loving gift to his neighbors is to serve truth and refute error in any of its forms – to fail on this score is to betray God and the real welfare of people

This charity is the apostle’s indispensable weapon, in a world torn by hatred. It will make you forget, or at least forgive, many an undeserved insult now more frequent than ever. This charity, intelligent and sympathetic towards those even who offend you, does by no means imply a renunciation of the right of proclaiming, vindicating and defending the truth and its implications. The priest’s first loving gift to his neighbors is to serve truth and refute error in any of its forms. Failure on this score would be not only a betrayal of God and your vocation, but also an offense against the real welfare of your people and country. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge, no. 35 – 36, March 14, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea that Jesus is only mercy

  • Rewarding and punishing is inseparable from Jesus’ power of judging

He claimed judicial power as received from his Father, when the Jews accused him of breaking the Sabbath by the miraculous cure of a sick man. ‘For neither doth the Father judge any man; but hath given all judgment to the Son’ (Jn 5:22). In this power is included the right of rewarding and punishing all men living, for this right is inseparable from that of judging. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quas primas, no. 13, December 11, 1925)

…judges Francis’ idea on private property

  • The Magisterium of the Church has never put Private property in doubt

First, then, let it be considered as certain and established that neither Leo [XIII] nor those theologians who have taught under the guidance and authority of the Church have ever denied or questioned the twofold character of ownership, called usually individual or social according as it regards either separate persons or the common good. For they have always unanimously maintained that nature, rather the Creator Himself, has given man the right of private ownership not only that individuals may be able to provide for themselves and their families but also that the goods which the Creator destined for the entire family of mankind may through this institution truly serve this purpose. All this can be achieved in no wise except through the maintenance of a certain and definite order. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadregesimo anno, no. 45, May 15, 1931)

  • Commutative justice demands sacred respect for the division of possessions

In order to place definite limits on the controversies that have arisen over ownership and its inherent duties there must be first laid down as foundation a principle established by Leo XIII: The right of property is distinct from its use [Encyclical, Rerum novarum, no. 35]. That justice called commutative commands sacred respect for the division of possessions and forbids invasion of others’ rights through the exceeding of the limits of one’s own property; but the duty of owners to use their property only in a right way does not come under this type of justice, but under other virtues, obligations of which ‘cannot be enforced by legal action’ [Encyclical, Rerum novarum, no. 36]. Therefore, they are in error who assert that ownership and its right use are limited by the same boundaries; and it is much farther still from the truth to hold that a right to property is destroyed or lost by reason of abuse or non-use. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadregesimo anno, no. 47, May 15, 1931)

  • The natural right of owning goods privately and of passing them on in inheritance ought always to remain inviolate

Therefore, public authority, under the guiding light always of the natural and divine law, can determine more accurately upon consideration of the true requirements of the common good, what is permitted and what is not permitted to owners in the use of their property. Moreover, Leo XIII wisely taught ‘that God has left the limits of private possessions to be fixed by the industry of men and institutions of peoples’ (Encyclical, Rerum novarum, no. 14). That history proves ownership, like other elements of social life, to be not absolutely unchanging, We once declared as follows: ‘What divers forms has property had, from that primitive form among rude and savage peoples, which may be observed in some places even in our time, to the form of possession in the patriarchal age; and so further to the various forms under tyranny (We are using the word tyranny in its classical sense); and then through the feudal and monarchial forms down to the various types which are to be found in more recent times’ (Allocation to the Convention of Italian Catholic Action, May 16, 1926). That the State is not permitted to discharge its duty arbitrarily is, however, clear. The natural right itself both of owning goods privately and of passing them on by inheritance ought always to remain intact and inviolate, since this indeed is a right that the State cannot take away: ‘For man is older than the State’ (Encyclical, Rerum novarum, no. 12), and also ‘domestic living together is prior both in thought and in fact to uniting into a polity’ (Encyclical, Rerum novarum, no. 20). Wherefore the wise Pontiff declared that it is grossly unjust for a State to exhaust private wealth through the weight of imposts and taxes. ‘For since the right of possessing goods privately has been conferred not by man’s law, but by nature, public authority cannot abolish it, but can only control its exercise and bring it into conformity with the common weal’ (Encyclical, Rerum novarum, no. 67). (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadregesimo anno, no. 49, May 15, 1931)

  • The legitimacy of increasing one’s fortune in a just and lawful manner

Those who are engaged in producing goods, therefore, are not forbidden to increase their fortune in a just and lawful manner; for it is only fair that he who renders service to the community and makes it richer should also, through the increased wealth of the community, be made richer himself according to his position, provided that all these things be sought with due respect for the laws of God and without impairing the rights of others and that they be employed in accordance with faith and right reason. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadregesimo anno, no. 136, May 15, 1931)

  • Neither capital can do without labor, nor labor without capital

For what else is work but to use or exercise the energies of mind and body on or through these very things? And in the application of natural resources to human use the law of nature, or rather God’s will promulgated by it, demands that right order be observed. This order consists in this: that each thing have its proper owner. Hence it follows that unless a man is expending labor on his own property, the labor of one person and the property of another must be associated, for neither can produce anything without the other. Leo XIII certainly had this in mind when he wrote: ‘Neither capital can do without labor, nor labor without capital’ (Encyclical, On the Condition of Workers, Rerum novarum, no. 28). Wherefore it is wholly false to ascribe to property alone or to labor alone whatever has been obtained through the combined effort of both, and it is wholly unjust for either, denying the efficacy of the other, to arrogate to itself whatever has been produced. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadregesimo anno, no. 53, May 15, 1931)

  • Those who declare that a contract of hiring and being hired is unjust of its own nature are in error

First of all, those who declare that a contract of hiring and being hired is unjust of its own nature, and hence a partnership-contract must take its place, are certainly in error and gravely misrepresent Our Predecessor [León XIII], whose Encyclical not only accepts working for wages or salaries but deals at some length with it regulation in accordance with the rules of justice. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadregesimo anno, no. 64, May 15, 1931)

  • The abolition of the right to private property would result, not to the advantage of the working class, but to their extreme harm

Venerable Brethren and Beloved Children, you know that Our Predecessor of happy memory strongly defended the right of property against the tenets of the Socialists of his time by showing that its abolition would result, not to the advantage of the working class, but to their extreme harm. Yet since there are some who calumniate the Supreme Pontiff, and the Church herself, as if she had taken and were still taking the part of the rich against the non-owning workers certainly no accusation is more unjust than that and since Catholics are at variance with one another concerning the true and exact mind of Leo, it has seemed best to vindicate this, that is, the Catholic teaching on this matter from calumnies and safeguard it from false interpretations. (Pius IX. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 44, May15, 1931)

  • Communism denies any kind or Private property

Communism, moreover, strips man of his liberty, robs human personality of all its dignity, and removes all the moral restraints that check the eruptions of blind impulse. There is no recognition of any right of the individual in his relations to the collectivity; no natural right is accorded to human personality, which is a mere cog-wheel in the Communist system. In man’s relations with other individuals, besides, Communists hold the principle of absolute equality, rejecting all hierarchy and divinely-constituted authority, including the authority of parents. What men call authority and subordination is derived from the community as its first and only font. Nor is the individual granted any property rights over material goods or the means of production, for inasmuch as these are the source of further wealth, their possession would give one man power over another. Precisely on this score, all forms of private property must be eradicated, for they are at the origin of all economic enslavement. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no.10)

  • Those who conserve the integrity of the teaching of the Church define the nature and limits of property do good; those who seek to destroy it are mistaken and in error

Those, therefore, are doing a work that is truly salutary and worthy of all praise who, while preserving harmony among themselves and the integrity of the traditional teaching of the Church, seek to define the inner nature of these duties and their limits whereby either the right of property itself or its use, that is, the exercise of ownership, is circumscribed by the necessities of social living. On the other hand, those who seek to restrict the individual character of ownership to such a degree that in fact they destroy it are mistaken and in error. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 48, May 15, 1931)

  • It is an error to affirm that the fruit of labor belongs only to the worker

For they are greatly in error who do not hesitate to spread the principle that labor is worth and must be paid as much as its products are worth, and that consequently the one who hires out his labor has the right to demand all that is produced through his labor. How far this is from the truth is evident from that We have already explained in treating of property and labor. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 68, May 15, 1931)

…judges Francis’ idea on the poor being the heart of the Gospel

  • The poor in spirit are those who esteem spiritual goods more than earthly ones

‘Blessed are the poor in spirit’ were the first words that fell from the lips of the Divine Master in His sermon on the mount. This lesson is more than ever necessary in these days of materialism a thirst for the goods and pleasures of this earth. All Christians, rich or poor, must keep their eye fixed on heaven, remembering that ‘we have not here a lasting city, but we seek one that is to come’ (Heb 8: 14). The rich should not place their happiness in things of earth nor spend their best efforts in the acquisition of them. Rather, considering themselves only as stewards of their earthly goods, let them be mindful of the account they must render of them to their Lord and Master, and value them as precious means that God has put into their hands for doing good; let them not fail, besides, to distribute of their abundance to the poor, according to the evangelical precept (Lk 11:41). Otherwise there shall be verified of them and their riches the harsh condemnation of Saint James the Apostle: ‘Go to now, ye rich men; weep and howl in your miseries which shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth-eaten; your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be for a testimony against you and shall eat your flesh like fire. You have stored up to yourselves wrath against the last days’ (Jas 5:1-3). But the poor too, in their turn, while engaged, according to the laws of charity and justice, in acquiring the necessities of life and also in bettering their condition, should always remain ‘poor in spirit’ (Mt 5:3), and hold spiritual goods in higher esteem than earthly property and pleasures. Let them remember that the world will never be able to rid itself of misery, sorrow and tribulation, which are the portion even of those who seem most prosperous. Patience, therefore, is the need of all, that Christian patience which comforts the heart with the divine assurance of eternal happiness. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 44-45, March 19, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea that Koran is a book of peace

  • The remedy for the ills which afflict society is the true peace of Christ in the Kingdom of Christ

Is it to be wondered at then that, with the widespread refusal to accept the principles of true Christian wisdom, the seeds of discord sown everywhere should find a kindly soil in which to grow and should come to fruit in that most tremendous struggle, the Great War, which unfortunately did not serve to lessen but increased, by its acts of violence and of bloodshed, the international and social animosities which already existed? Up to this We have analyzed briefly the causes of the ills which afflict present-day society, the recital of which however, Venerable Brothers, should not cause us to lose hope of finding their appropriate remedy, since the evils themselves seem to suggest a way out of these difficulties.

First, and most important of all, for mankind is the need of spiritual peace. We do not need a peace that will consist merely in acts of external or formal courtesy, but a peace which will penetrate the souls of men and which will unite, heal, and reopen their hearts to that mutual affection which is born of brotherly love. The peace of Christ is the only peace answering this description: ‘let the peace of Christ rejoice in your hearts’ (Col 3:15). Nor is there any other peace possible than that which Christ gave to His disciples (Jn 14:27) for since He is God, He ‘beholdeth the heart’ (1Kings 16:7) and in our hearts His kingdom is set up. Again, Jesus Christ is perfectly justified when He calls this peace of soul His own for He was the first Who said to men, ‘all you are brethren’ (Mt 23:8). He gave likewise to us, sealing it with His own life’s blood, the law of brotherly love, of mutual forbearance – ‘This is my commandment, that you love one another, as I have loved you’ (Jn 15:12). ‘Bear ye one another’s burdens; and so you shall fulfill the law of Christ’ (Gal 6:2). From this it follows, as an immediate consequence, that the peace of Christ can only be a peace of justice according to the words of the prophet ‘the work of justice shall be peace’ (Is 22:17) for he is God ‘who judgest justice’ (Ps 9:5). But peace does not consist merely in a hard inflexible justice. It must be made acceptable and easy by being compounded almost equally of charity and a sincere desire for reconciliation. […] It is, therefore, a fact which cannot be questioned that the true peace of Christ can only exist in the Kingdom of Christ – ‘the peace of Christ in the Kingdom of Christ’. It is no less unquestionable that, in doing all we can to bring about the re-establishment of Christ’s kingdom, we will be working most effectively toward a lasting world peace. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi Arcano Dei consilio, no. 31 – 34.49, December 23, 1922)

  • Christian peace dominates sinful passions and promotes the dignity of human life

Of this peace of Christ, which dwells in our hearts and is, in effect, the love of God, We can repeat what the Apostle has said of the kingdom of God which also rules by love – ‘the kingdom of Christ is not meat and drink’ (Rom 14:17). In other words, the peace of Christ is not nourished on the things of earth, but on those of heaven. […] This does not mean that the peace of Christ, which is the only true peace, exacts of us that we give up all worldly possessions. On the contrary, every earthly good is promised in so many words by Christ to those who seek His peace: ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his justice, and all these things shall be added unto you’ (Mt 6:33; Lk 7:31). This peace of Christ, however, surpasses all human understanding – ‘the peace of God which surpasseth all understanding’ (Phil 4:7), and for this very reason dominates our sinful passions and renders such evils as division, strife, and discord, which result solely from the unrestrained desire for earthly possessions, impossible. If the desire for worldly possessions were kept within bounds and the place of honor in our affections given to the things of the spirit, which place undoubtedly they deserve, the peace of Christ would follow immediately, to which would be joined in a natural and happy union, as it were, a higher regard for the value and dignity of human life. Human personality, too, would be raised to a higher level, for man has been ennobled by the Blood of Christ and made kin to God Himself by means of holiness and the bond of brotherly love which unites us closely with Christ, by prayer and by the reception of the Sacraments. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi arcano Dei consilio, no. 37 – 38, December 23, 1922)

  • Only the Church, confided with Christ’s doctrine and the promise of His assistance, can bring about true peace today and secure it for the future

If we stop to reflect for a moment that these ideals and doctrines of Jesus Christ, for example, his teachings on the necessity and value of the spiritual life, on the dignity and sanctity of human life, on the duty of obedience, on the divine basis of human government, on the sacramental character of matrimony and by consequence the sanctity of family life – if we stop to reflect, let Us repeat, that these ideals and doctrines of Christ (which are in fact but a portion of the treasury of truth which He left to mankind) were confided by Him to His Church and to her alone for safekeeping, and that He has promised that His aid will never fail her at any time for she is the infallible teacher of His doctrines in every century and before all nations, there is no one who cannot clearly see what a singularly important role the Catholic Church is able to play, and is even called upon to assume, in providing a remedy for the ills which afflict the world today and in leading mankind toward a universal peace. […] Since the Church is the safe and sure guide to conscience, for to her safe-keeping alone there has been confided the doctrines and the promise of the assistance of Christ, she is able not only to bring about at the present hour a peace that is truly the peace of Christ, but can, better than any other agency which We know of, contribute greatly to the securing of the same peace for the future, to the making impossible of war in the future. […] An attempt in this direction has already and is now being made; its results, however, are almost negligible and, especially so, as far as they can be said to affect those major questions which divide seriously and serve to arouse nations one against the other. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi Arcano Dei consilio, no. 41. 44. 45, December 23, 1922)

  • True peace is impossible unless humans willingly accept the teachings and obey the law of Christ, divinely commissioned to the Church

No merely human institution of today can be as successful in devising a set of international laws which will be in harmony with world conditions […] There exists an institution able to safeguard the sanctity of the law of nations. This institution is a part of every nation; at the same time it is above all nations. She enjoys, too, the highest authority, the fullness of the teaching power of the Apostles. Such an institution is the Church of Christ. She alone is adapted to do this great work, for she is not only divinely commissioned to lead mankind, but moreover, because of her very make-up and the constitution which she possesses, by reason of her age-old traditions and her great prestige, which has not been lessened but has been greatly increased since the close of the War, cannot but succeed in such a venture where others assuredly will fail. It is apparent from these considerations that true peace, the peace of Christ, is impossible unless we are willing and ready to accept the fundamental principles of Christianity, unless we are willing to observe the teachings and obey the law of Christ, both in public and private life. If this were done, then society being placed at last on a sound foundation, the Church would be able, in the exercise of its divinely given ministry and by means of the teaching authority which results there from, to protect all the rights of God over men and nations. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi Arcano Dei consilio, no. 45, 46 – 47, December 23, 1922)

…judges Francis’ idea that spiritual direction is a charism of the laity

  • Christian formation of souls is chiefly the work of priestly activity

This Christian formation of souls, which must chiefly be the work of priestly activity, is such a necessary condition that, if it should be lacking, the apostolate not only will be fruitless but it will not even continue to exist at all. (Pius XI. Letter Vos argentinae episcopos, no. 6, December 4, 1931)

  • It is the priest’s task to guide the faithful to the safe port of faith

It is the priest’s task to clear away from men’s minds the mass of prejudices and misunderstandings which hostile adversaries have piled up; the modern mind is eager for the truth, and the priest should be able to point it out with serene frankness; there are souls still hesitating, distressed by doubts, and the priest should inspire courage and trust, and guide them with calm security to the safe port of faith, faith accepted by both head and heart; error makes its onslaughts, arrogant and persistent, and the priest should know how to meet them with a defense vigorous and active, yet solid and unruffled. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad catholici sacerdotii, no. 44, December 20, 1925)

  • The mandate of teaching was bestowed by Christ on his Church                              

And first of all education belongs preeminently to the Church, by reason of a double title in the supernatural order, conferred exclusively upon her by God himself; absolutely superior, therefore, to any other title in the natural order. The first reason for such a right rests on the supreme authority of the magisterium and on the mission which the divine Founder of the Church bestowed upon her in those words: ‘All power is given to me in heaven and on earth. Going therefore teach ye […] even unto the consummation of the world’ (Mt 28:18-20). (Denzinger-Hünermann, 3686. Pius XI, Encyclical Divini illius magistri, December 31, 1929)

…judges Francis’ idea on adulterine unions

  • The doctrine of Christ always remains the same

It follows therefore that they are destroying mutual fidelity, who think that the ideas and morality of our present time concerning a certain harmful and false friendship with a third party can be countenanced, and who teach that a greater freedom of feeling and action in such external relations should be allowed to man and wife, particularly as many (so they consider) are possessed of an inborn sexual tendency which cannot be satisfied within the narrow limits of monogamous marriage. […] that noble instinct which is found in every chaste husband and wife, and even by the light of the testimony of nature alone, – a testimony that is sanctioned and confirmed by the command of God: ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery’ (Ex 20:14) and the words of Christ: ‘Whosoever shall look on a woman to lust after her hath already committed adultery with her in his heart’ (Mt 5:28). The force of this divine precept can never be weakened by any merely human custom, bad example or pretext of human progress, for just as it is the one and the same ‘Jesus Christ, yesterday and today and the same forever’ (Heb 8:8). Such unworthy and idle opinions are condemned by so it is the one and the same doctrine of Christ that abides and of which no one jot or title shall pass away till all is fulfilled (Mt 5:18). (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubii, no. 73, December 31, 1930)

…judges Francis’ idea that Christians and Muslims share the same faith

  • There can be no true religion other than what is founded on the revealed word of God

In the course of time, namely from the beginnings of the human race until the coming and preaching of Jesus Christ, He Himself taught man the duties which a rational creature owes to its Creator […] From which it follows that there can be no true religion other than that which is founded on the revealed word of God: which revelation, begun from the beginning and continued under the Old Law, Christ Jesus Himself under the New Law perfected. Now, if God has spoken (and it is historically certain that He has truly spoken), all must see that it is man’s duty to believe absolutely God’s revelation and to obey implicitly His commands; that we might rightly do both, for the glory of God and our own salvation, the Only-begotten Son of God founded His Church on earth. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 7, January 6, 1928)

  • The false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy rejects the true religion

For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. For which reason conventions, meetings and addresses are frequently arranged by these persons, at which a large number of listeners are present, and at which all without distinction are invited to join in the discussion, both infidels of every kind, and Christians, even those who have unhappily fallen away from Christ or who with obstinacy and pertinacity deny His divine nature and mission. Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little. turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 8-9, January 6, 1928)

  • The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship

‘The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship. This is the fount of truth, this the house of Faith, this the temple of God: if any man enter not here, or if any man go forth from it, he is a stranger to the hope of life and salvation. Let none delude himself with obstinate wrangling. For life and salvation are here concerned, which will be lost and entirely destroyed, unless their interests are carefully and assiduously kept in mind’ (Divin. Instit. Iv, 30. 11-12). (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 11, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on good-will replacing theological investigation

  • Beneath the enticing words of pan-Christians lies hid a most grave error, by which the foundations of the Catholic faith are completely destroyed

But some are more easily deceived by the outward appearance of good when there is question of fostering unity among all Christians. Is it not right, it is often repeated, indeed, even consonant with duty, that all who invoke the name of Christ should abstain from mutual reproaches and at long last be united in mutual charity? Who would dare to say that he loved Christ, unless he worked with all his might to carry out the desires of Him, Who asked His Father that His disciples might be ‘one’ (Jn 17:21). And did not the same Christ will that His disciples should be marked out and distinguished from others by this characteristic, namely that they loved one another: ‘By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one for another’ (Jn 13:35)? All Christians, they add, should be as ‘one’: for then they would be much more powerful in driving out the pest of irreligion, which like a serpent daily creeps further and becomes more widely spread, and prepares to rob the Gospel of its strength. These things and others that class of men who are known as pan-Christians continually repeat and amplify; and these men, so far from being quite few and scattered, have increased to the dimensions of an entire class, and have grouped themselves into widely spread societies, most of which are directed by non-Catholics, although they are imbued with varying doctrines concerning the things of faith. This undertaking is so actively promoted as in many places to win for itself the adhesion of a number of citizens, and it even takes possession of the minds of very many Catholics and allures them with the hope of bringing about such a union as would be agreeable to the desires of Holy Mother Church, who has indeed nothing more at heart than to recall her erring sons and to lead them back to her bosom. But in reality beneath these enticing words and blandishments lies hid a most grave error, by which the foundations of the Catholic faith are completely destroyed. Admonished, therefore, by the consciousness of Our Apostolic office that We should not permit the flock of the Lord to be cheated by dangerous fallacies, We invoke, Venerable Brethren, your zeal in avoiding this evil; for We are confident that by the writings and words of each one of you the people will more easily get to know and understand those principles and arguments which We are about to set forth, and from which Catholics will learn how they are to think and act when there is question of those undertakings which have for their end the union in one body, whatsoever be the manner, of all who call themselves Christians. We were created by God, the Creator of the universe, in order that we might know Him and serve Him; our Author therefore has a perfect right to our service. God might, indeed, have prescribed for man’s government only the natural law, which, in His creation, He imprinted on his soul, and have regulated the progress of that same law by His ordinary providence; but He preferred rather to impose precepts, which we were to obey, and in the course of time, namely from the beginnings of the human race until the coming and preaching of Jesus Christ, He Himself taught man the duties which a rational creature owes to its Creator: ‘God, who at sundry times and in divers manners, spoke in times past to the fathers by the prophets, last of all, in these days, hath spoken to us by his Son’ (Heb 1:1-2). From which it follows that there can be no true religion other than that which is founded on the revealed word of God: which revelation, begun from the beginning and continued under the Old Law, Christ Jesus Himself under the New Law perfected. Now, if God has spoken (and it is historically certain that He has truly spoken), all must see that it is man’s duty to believe absolutely God’s revelation and to obey implicitly His commands; that we might rightly do both, for the glory of God and our own salvation, the Only-begotten Son of God founded His Church on earth. Further, We believe that those who call themselves Christians can do no other than believe that a Church, and that Church one, was established by Christ; but if it is further inquired of what nature according to the will of its Author it must be, then all do not agree. A good number of them, for example, deny that the Church of Christ must be visible and apparent, at least to such a degree that it appears as one body of faithful, agreeing in one and the same doctrine under one teaching authority and government; but, on the contrary, they understand a visible Church as nothing else than a Federation, composed of various communities of Christians, even though they adhere to different doctrines, which may even be incompatible one with another. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 3-6, January 6, 1928)

  • Many affirm they would willingly unite to the Church of Rome, but do not turn from false opinions whereby they stray from the one fold of Christ

And here it seems opportune to expound and to refute a certain false opinion, on which this whole question, as well as that complex movement by which non-Catholics seek to bring about the union of the Christian churches depends. For authors who favor this view are accustomed, times almost without number, to bring forward these words of Christ: ‘That they all may be one. […] And there shall be one fold and one shepherd’, with this signification however: that Christ Jesus merely expressed a desire and prayer, which still lacks its fulfillment. For they are of the opinion that the unity of faith and government, which is a note of the one true Church of Christ, has hardly up to the present time existed, and does not to-day exist. They consider that this unity may indeed be desired and that it may even be one day attained through the instrumentality of wills directed to a common end, but that meanwhile it can only be regarded as mere ideal. They add that the Church in itself, or of its nature, is divided into sections; that is to say, that it is made up of several churches or distinct communities, which still remain separate, and although having certain articles of doctrine in common, nevertheless disagree concerning the remainder; that these all enjoy the same rights; and that the Church was one and unique from, at the most, the apostolic age until the first Ecumenical Councils. Controversies therefore, they say, and longstanding differences of opinion which keep asunder till the present day the members of the Christian family, must be entirely put aside, and from the remaining doctrines a common form of faith drawn up and proposed for belief, and in the profession of which all may not only know but feel that they are brothers. The manifold churches or communities, if united in some kind of universal federation, would then be in a position to oppose strongly and with success the progress of irreligion. This, Venerable Brethren, is what is commonly said. There are some, indeed, who recognize and affirm that Protestantism, as they call it, has rejected, with a great lack of consideration, certain articles of faith and some external ceremonies, which are, in fact, pleasing and useful, and which the Roman Church still retains. They soon, however, go on to say that that Church also has erred, and corrupted the original religion by adding and proposing for belief certain doctrines which are not only alien to the Gospel, but even repugnant to it. Among the chief of these they number that which concerns the primacy of jurisdiction, which was granted to Peter and to his successors in the See of Rome. Among them there indeed are some, though few, who grant to the Roman Pontiff a primacy of honor or even a certain jurisdiction or power, but this, however, they consider not to arise from the divine law but from the consent of the faithful. Others again, even go so far as to wish the Pontiff Himself to preside over their motley, so to say, assemblies. But, all the same, although many non-Catholics may be found who loudly preach fraternal communion in Christ Jesus, yet you will find none at all to whom it ever occurs to submit to and obey the Vicar of Jesus Christ either in His capacity as a teacher or as a governor. Meanwhile they affirm that they would willingly treat with the Church of Rome, but on equal terms, that is as equals with an equal: but even if they could so act. it does not seem open to doubt that any pact into which they might enter would not compel them to turn from those opinions which are still the reason why they err and stray from the one fold of Christ. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 7, January 6, 1928)

  • Impossible: union with those who retain their own opinions. Can those who follow contrary opinions belong to the same fold?

Who then can conceive a Christian Federation, the members of which retain each his own opinions and private judgment, even in matters which concern the object of faith, even though they be repugnant to the opinions of the rest? And in what manner, We ask, can men who follow contrary opinions, belong to one and the same Federation of the faithful? For example, those who affirm, and those who deny that sacred Tradition is a true fount of divine Revelation; those who hold that an ecclesiastical hierarchy, made up of bishops, priests and ministers, has been divinely constituted, and those who assert that it has been brought in little by little in accordance with the conditions of the time; those who adore Christ really present in the Most Holy Eucharist through that marvelous conversion of the bread and wine, which is called transubstantiation, and those who affirm that Christ is present only by faith or by the signification and virtue of the Sacrament; those who in the Eucharist recognize the nature both of a sacrament and of a sacrifice, and those who say that it is nothing more than the memorial or commemoration of the Lord’s Supper; those who believe it to be good and useful to invoke by prayer the Saints reigning with Christ, especially Mary the Mother of God, and to venerate their images, and those who urge that such a veneration is not to be made use of, for it is contrary to the honor due to Jesus Christ, ‘the one mediator of God and men’ (cf. 1Tim 2:15). (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

  • So great a variety of opinions is an easy step to the neglect of religion

How so great a variety of opinions can make the way clear to effect the unity of the Church We know not; that unity can only arise from one teaching authority, one law of belief and one faith of Christians. But We do know that from this it is an easy step to the neglect of religion or indifferentism and to modernism, as they call it. Those, who are unhappily infected with these errors, hold that dogmatic truth is not absolute but relative, that is, it agrees with the varying necessities of time and place and with the varying tendencies of the mind, since it is not contained in immutable revelation, but is capable of being accommodated to human life. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

  • The union of Christians is in the return to the true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it

The union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it. During the lapse of centuries, the mystical Spouse of Christ has never been contaminated, nor can she ever in the future be contaminated, as Cyprian bears witness: ‘The Bride of Christ cannot be made false to her Spouse: she is incorrupt and modest. She knows but one dwelling, she guards the sanctity of the nuptial chamber chastely and modestly’ (St. Cyprian, Ecclesiae unitate, 6). The same holy Martyr with good reason marveled exceedingly that anyone could believe that ‘this unity in the Church which arises from a divine foundation, and which is knit together by heavenly sacraments, could be rent and torn asunder by the force of contrary wills’ (St. Cyprian, Ecclesiae unitate). For since the mystical body of Christ, in the same manner as His physical body, is one, (1Cor 12:12) compacted and fitly joined together (Eph 4:16), it were foolish and out of place to say that the mystical body is made up of members which are disunited and scattered abroad: whosoever therefore is not united with the body is no member of it, neither is he in communion with Christ its head (Eph 5:30; 1, 22). (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 10, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on family

  • Children have the right to be educated by their mother and father

That this right is inviolable Saint Thomas proves as follows: The child is naturally something of the father, so, by natural right the child, before reaching the use of reason, is under the father’s care. Hence it would be contrary to natural justice if the child, before the use of reason, were removed from the care of its parents, or if any disposition were made concerning him against the will of the parents (S. Th., II-II, q. 10 a. 12). And as this duty on the part of the parents continues up to the time when the child is in a position to provide for itself, this same inviolable parental right of education also endures. ‘Nature intends not merely the generation of the offspring, but also its development and advance to the perfection of man considered as man, that is, to the state of virtue’ (Suppl. S. Th. III, q. 41, a. 1) says the same Saint Thomas. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Illlus magistri, no. 10, December 31, 1929)

  • Matrimony was instituted by God and elevated to a Sacrament by Christ

First, then, let this remain as an unchangeable and inviolable basis; marriage was not instituted or restored by man but by God; not by man but by the very author of nature, God; and by the restorer of the same nature was it fortified, confirmed, and elevated through laws; and these laws, therefore, cannot be subject to any decision of man and not even to any contrary agreement on the part of the spouses themselves. This is a doctrine of Holy Scripture (Gen 1:27 f.; Gen 2:22 f.; Mt 19:3 ff.; Eph 5:23 ff.); this is the continued and unanimous tradition of the Church; this is the solemn definition of the sacred Council of Trent, which declares and confirms that the perpetual and indissoluble bond of marriage, and the unity and the stability of the same emanate from God as their author. (Denzinger-Hünermann 3700. Pius XI, Encyclical Casti Connubii, December 31, 1930)

  • The family is not founded on passing sentiments but rather a firm will

For each individual marriage, inasmuch as it is a conjugal union of a particular man and woman, arises only from the free consent of each of the spouses; and this free act of the will, by which each party hands over and accepts those rights proper to the state of marriage, is so necessary to constitute true marriage that it cannot be supplied by any human power. […] By matrimony, therefore, the souls of the contracting parties are joined and knit together more directly and more intimately than are their bodies, and that not by any passing affection of sense of spirit, but by a deliberate and firm act of the will; and from this union of souls by God’s decree, a sacred and inviolable bond arises. Hence the nature of this contract, which is proper and peculiar to it alone, makes it entirely different both from the union of animals entered into by the blind instinct of nature alone in which neither reason nor free will plays a part, and also from the haphazard unions of men, which are far removed from all true and honorable unions of will and enjoy none of the rights of family life. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubii, no. 6-7, December 31, 1930)

…judges Francis’ idea on the social doctrine of the Church

  • The Social Doctrine of the Church comes from the desire that the unchanged and unchangeable teaching of the Church meet the new demands more effectively

It is not surprising, therefore, that many scholars, both priests and laymen, led especially by the desire that the unchanged and unchangeable teaching of the Church should meet new demands and needs more effectively, have zealously undertaken to develop, with the Church as their guide and teacher, a social and economic science in accord with the conditions of our time. And so, with Leo’s Encyclical pointing the way and furnishing the light, a true Catholic social science has arisen, which is daily fostered and enriched by the tireless efforts of those chosen men whom We have termed auxiliaries of the Church. They do not, indeed, allow their science to lie hidden behind learned walls. As the useful and well attended courses instituted in Catholic universities, colleges, and seminaries, the social congresses and ‘weeks’ that are held at frequent intervals with most successful results, the study groups that are promoted, and finally the timely and sound publications that are disseminated everywhere and in every possible way. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, nos. 19-20, May 15, 1931)

  • Catholics who leave much to be desired in the social-economic field do not sufficiently know the teachings of the Popes on these questions

To give to this social activity a greater efficacy, it is necessary to promote a wider study of social problems in the light of the doctrine of the Church and under the aegis of her constituted authority. If the manner of acting of some Catholics in the social-economic field has left much to be desired, this has often come about because they have not known and pondered sufficiently the teachings of the Sovereign Pontiffs on these questions. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to foster in all classes of society an intensive program of social education adapted to the varying degrees of intellectual culture. It is necessary with all care and diligence to procure the widest possible diffusion of the teachings of the Church, even among the working-classes. The minds of men must be illuminated with the sure light of Catholic teaching, and their wills must be drawn to follow and apply it as the norm of right living in the conscientious fulfillment of their manifold social duties. Thus they will oppose that incoherence and discontinuity in Christian life which We have many times lamented. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 55, March 19, 1937)

  • The Catholic Press can promote the Social Doctrine of the Church by denouncing the enemy, and warning against the insidious deceits of the communists

In this renewal the Catholic Press can play a prominent part. Its foremost duty is to foster in various attractive ways an ever better understanding of social doctrine. It should, too, supply accurate and complete information on the activity of the enemy and the means of resistance which have been found most effective in various quarters. It should offer useful suggestions and warn against the insidious deceits with which Communists endeavor, all too successfully, to attract even men of good faith. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 56, March 19, 1937)

  • The Social Doctrine of the Church maintains a constant equilibrium of truth and justice, far removed from the errors of communists and the parties that follow them

This doctrine is equally removed from all extremes of error and all exaggerations of parties or systems which stem from error. It maintains a constant equilibrium of truth and justice, which it vindicates in theory and applies and promotes in practice, bringing into harmony the rights and duties of all parties. Thus authority is reconciled with liberty, the dignity of the individual with that of the State, the human personality of the subject with the divine delegation of the superior; and in this way a balance is struck between the due dependence and well-ordered love of a man for himself, his family and country, and his love of other families and other peoples, founded on the love of God, the Father of all, their first principle and last end. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 34, March 19, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea on the formation of youth

  • The wrong way to educate: becoming attached exclusively to passing things of earth

Indeed never has there been so much discussion about education as nowadays; never have exponents of new pedagogical theories been so numerous, or so many methods and means devised, proposed and debated, not merely to facilitate education, but to create a new system infallibly efficacious, and capable of preparing the present generations for that earthly happiness which they so ardently desire. The reason is that men, created by God to His image and likeness and destined for Him Who is infinite perfection realize today more than ever amid the most exuberant material progress, the insufficiency of earthly goods to produce true happiness either for the individual or for the nations. And hence they feel more keenly in themselves the impulse towards a perfection that is higher, which impulse is implanted in their rational nature by the Creator Himself. This perfection they seek to acquire by means of education. But many of them with, it would seem, too great insistence on the etymological meaning of the word, pretend to draw education out of human nature itself and evolve it by its own unaided powers. Such easily fall into error, because, instead of fixing their gaze on God, first principle and last end of the whole universe, they fall back upon themselves, becoming attached exclusively to passing things of earth; and thus their restlessness will never cease till they direct their attention and their efforts to God, the goal of all perfection. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 5-6, December 31, 1929)

  • Young people should be forewarned against the seductions of the world

This necessary vigilance does not demand that young people be removed from the society in which they must live and save their souls; but that today more than ever they should be forewarned and forearmed as Christians against the seductions and the errors of the world, which, as Holy Writ admonishes us, is all ‘concupiscence of the flesh, concupiscence of the eyes and pride of life’ (1Jn 2:16). Let them be what Tertullian wrote of the first Christians, and what Christians of all times ought to be, ‘sharers in the possession of the world, not of its error’. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 92, December 31, 1929)

  • The true Christian is the supernatural man who thinks, judges and acts constantly with right reason illumined by the example and teaching of Christ

The proper and immediate end of Christian education is to cooperate with divine grace in forming the true and perfect Christian, that is, to form Christ Himself in those regenerated by Baptism, according to the emphatic expression of the Apostle: ‘My little children, of whom I am in labor again, until Christ be formed in you’ (Gal 4:19). For the true Christian must live a supernatural life in Christ: ‘Christ who is your life’ (Col 3:4), and display it in all his actions: ‘That the life also of Jesus may be made manifest in our mortal flesh’ (2Cor 4:2). For precisely this reason, Christian education takes in the whole aggregate of human life, physical and spiritual, intellectual and moral, individual, domestic and social, not with a view of reducing it in any way, but in order to elevate, regulate and perfect it, in accordance with the example and teaching of Christ. Hence the true Christian, product of Christian education, is the supernatural man who thinks, judges and acts constantly and consistently in accordance with right reason illumined by the supernatural light of the example and teaching of Christ; in other words, to use the current term, the true and finished man of character. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 94-96, December 31, 1929)

  • Education must be directed to man’s last end

In fact, since education consists essentially in preparing man for what he must be and for what he must do here below, in order to attain the sublime end for which he was created, it is clear that there can be no true education which is not wholly directed to man’s last end, and that in the present order of Providence, since God has revealed Himself to us in the Person of His Only Begotten Son, who alone is ‘the way, the truth and the life’, there can be no ideally perfect education which is not Christian education. From this we see the supreme importance of Christian education, not merely for each individual, but for families and for the whole of human society, whose perfection comes from the perfection of the elements that compose it. From these same principles, the excellence, we may well call it the unsurpassed excellence, of the work of Christian education becomes manifest and clear; for after all it aims at securing the Supreme Good, that is, God, for the souls of those who are being educated, and the maximum of well-being possible here below for human society.(Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 7-8, December 31, 1929)

  • Pedagogic naturalism is false. From tender childhood, the mind and the will must be educated with supernatural means

‘Folly is bound up in the heart of a child and the rod of correction shall drive it away’ (Prov 22:15). Disorderly inclinations then must be corrected, good tendencies encouraged and regulated from tender childhood, and above all the mind must be enlightened and the will strengthened by supernatural truth and by the means of grace, without which it is impossible to control evil impulses, impossible to attain to the full and complete perfection of education intended by the Church, which Christ has endowed so richly with divine doctrine and with the Sacraments, the efficacious means of grace. Hence every form of pedagogic naturalism which in any way excludes or weakens supernatural Christian formation in the teaching of youth, is false. […] But alas! it is clear from the obvious meaning of the words and from experience, that what is intended by not a few, is the withdrawal of education from every sort of dependence on the divine law. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 59-60.62, December 31, 1929)

  • Educators spend their lives in searching for a universal moral code of education, as if there existed no Decalogue, or no Gospel law

So today we see, strange sight indeed, educators and philosophers who spend their lives in searching for a universal moral code of education, as if there existed no Decalogue, no gospel law, no law even of nature stamped by God on the heart of man, promulgated by right reason, and codified in positive revelation by God Himself in the ten commandments. These innovators are wont to refer contemptuously to Christian education as ‘heteronomous’, ‘passive’, ‘obsolete’, because founded upon the authority of God and His holy law. Such men are miserably deluded in their claim to emancipate, as they say, the child, while in reality they are making him the slave of his own blind pride and of his disorderly affections, which, as a logical consequence of this false system, come to be justified as legitimate demands of a so-called autonomous nature. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 62-63, December 31, 1929)

  • The priceless educational treasures are property of the Church

Such are the fruits of Christian education. Their price and value is derived from the supernatural virtue and life in Christ which Christian education forms and develops in man. Of this life and virtue Christ our Lord and Master is the source and dispenser. By His example He is at the same time the universal model accessible to all, especially to the young in the period of His hidden life, a life of labor and obedience, adorned with all virtues, personal, domestic and social, before God and men. Now all this array of priceless educational treasures which We have barely touched upon, is so truly a property of the Church as to form her very substance, since she is the mystical body of Christ, the immaculate spouse of Christ, and consequently a most admirable mother and an incomparable and perfect teacher. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 100-101, December 31, 1929)

  • The natural faculties are to be developed by coordinating them with the supernatural

The true Christian does not renounce the activities of this life, he does not stunt his natural faculties; but he develops and perfects them, by coordinating them with the supernatural. He thus ennobles what is merely natural in life and secures for it new strength in the material and temporal order, no less than in the spiritual and eternal. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 5-6, December 31, 1929)

  • It is the inalienable right of the Church to watch over the education of her children

Therefore with full right the Church promotes letters, science, art in so far as necessary or helpful to Christian education, in addition to her work for the salvation of souls: founding and maintaining schools and institutions adapted to every branch of learning and degree of culture (Codex luris Canonici, c. 1375). Nor may even physical culture, as it is called, be considered outside the range of her maternal supervision, for the reason that it also is a means which may help or harm Christian education. […] Again it is the inalienable right as well as the indispensable duty of the Church, to watch over the entire education of her children, in all institutions, public or private, not merely in regard to the religious instruction there given, but in regard to every other branch of learning and every regulation in so far as religion and morality are concerned (Cod. I.C., cc. 1381, 1382). Nor should the exercise of this right be considered undue interference, but rather maternal care on the part of the Church in protecting her children from the grave danger of all kinds of doctrinal and moral evil. Moreover this watchfulness of the Church not merely can create no real inconvenience, but must on the contrary confer valuable assistance in the right ordering and well-being of families and of civil society; for it keeps far away from youth the moral poison which at that inexperienced and changeable age more easily penetrates the mind and more rapidly spreads its baneful effects. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius Magistri, no. 23-24, December 31, 1929)

…judges Francis’ idea that catholics and muslims adore the same God

  • Beware to not abuse the name of God as a meaningless label: God is one in the Trinity of Persons

Beware, Venerable Brethren, of that growing abuse, in speech as in writing, of the name of God as though it were a meaningless label, to be affixed to any creation, more or less arbitrary, of human speculation. Use your influence on the Faithful, that they refuse to yield to this aberration. Our God is the Personal God, supernatural, omnipotent, infinitely perfect, one in the Trinity of Persons, tri-personal in the unity of divine essence, the Creator of all existence. Lord, King and ultimate Consummator of the history of the world, who will not, and cannot, tolerate a rival God by His side. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mit brennender sorge, no. 9, March 14, 1937)

  • Those who say that all religions are good and praiseworthy distort the idea of true religion

For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. For which reason conventions, meetings and addresses are frequently arranged by these persons, at which a large number of listeners are present, and at which all without distinction are invited to join in the discussion, both infidels of every kind, and Christians, even those who have unhappily fallen away from Christ or who with obstinacy and pertinacity deny His divine nature and mission. Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little. turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 2-3, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on sects forming part of the Church

  • Catholic people shall never permit themselves to be outdone by the propagators of false beliefs

Hoping that because of your exhortations and your interest in this work the Catholic people shall never permit themselves to be outdone in generosity by non-Catholics who are wont to assist so liberally the propagators of their false beliefs. (Pius XI. Encyclical Rerum Ecclesiae, no. 17, February 28, 1926)

  • May the principles of Christian truth be also modified to some degree and be tempered so as to meet Socialism half-way?

Yet let no one think that all the socialist groups or factions that are not communist have, without exception, recovered their senses to this extent either in fact or in name. For the most part they do not reject the class struggle or the abolition of ownership, but only in some degree modify them. Now if these false principles are modified and to some extent erased from the program, the question arises, or rather is raised without warrant by some, whether the principles of Christian truth cannot perhaps be also modified to some degree and be tempered so as to meet Socialism half-way and, as it were, by a middle course, come to agreement with it. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 116, May 15, 1931)

…judges Francis’ idea that man is the center of christian life

  • Beware of charitable undertakings that do not seek the sanctification of souls

On the other hand, the spiritual formation and the interior life fostered in these your collaborators, will put them on their guard against dangers and possible deviations. Keeping in mind the ultimate aim of Catholic Action, which is the sanctification of souls, according to the Gospel precept: See ye first the Kingdom of God (Lk 12:31), you will not run the risk of sacrificing principles for immediate and secondary ends, and that supreme end will never be forgotten to which must be subordinated even social and economic works and charitable undertakings. (Pius XI. Encyclical Firmissimam constantiam, no. 14, March 28, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea on selling off churches to feed the poor

  • All, rich or poor, must keep their eye fixed on heaven

All Christians, rich or poor, must keep their eye fixed on heaven, remembering that ‘we have not here a lasting city, but we seek one that is to come’ (Heb 13:14). The rich should not place their happiness in things of earth nor spend their best efforts in the acquisition of them. Rather, considering themselves only as stewards of their earthly goods, let them be mindful of the account they must render of them to their Lord and Master, and value them as precious means that God has put into their hands for doing good; let them not fail, besides, to distribute of their abundance to the poor, according to the evangelical precept (Lk 11:41). […] But the poor too, in their turn, while engaged, according to the laws of charity and justice, in acquiring the necessities of life and also in bettering their condition, should always remain ‘poor in spirit’ (Mt 5:3), and hold spiritual goods in higher esteem than earthly property and pleasures. Let them remember that the world will never be able to rid itself of misery, sorrow and tribulation, which are the portion even of those who seem most prosperous. Patience, therefore, is the need of all, that Christian patience which comforts the heart with the divine assurance of eternal happiness. […] Only thus will be fulfilled the consoling promise of the Lord: ‘Blessed are the poor!’ (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 44-45, March 19, 1937)

  • No one is so poor as he who is deprived of God’s grace

Since no one can be thought so poor and naked, no one so infirm or hungry, as he who is deprived of the knowledge and grace of God, so there is no one who cannot understand that both the mercy and the rewards of God shall be given to him who, on his part, shows mercy to the neediest of his fellow-beings. (Pius XI. Encyclical Rerum Ecclesiae, no. 14, February 28, 1926)

…judges Francis’ idea on anticlericalism

  • He is an instrument in the hands of the Divine Redeemer

The priest is the minister of Christ, an instrument, that is to say, in the hands of the Divine Redeemer. He continues the work of the redemption in all its world-embracing universality and divine efficacy, that work that wrought so marvelous a transformation in the world. Thus the priest, as is said with good reason, is indeed ‘another Christ’; for, in some way, he is himself a continuation of Christ. ‘As the Father hath sent Me, I also send you’. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholice sacerdotii, no.12, December 20, 1935)

  • From the cradle to the grave the priest is ever beside the faithful

And thus the ineffable greatness of the human priest stands forth in all its splendor; for he has power over the very Body of Jesus Christ, and makes It present upon our altars. In the name of Christ Himself he offers It a victim infinitely pleasing to the Divine Majesty. ‘Wondrous things are these,’ justly exclaims St. John Chrysostom, ‘so wonderful, they surpass wonder.’ Besides this power over the real Body of Christ, the priest has received other powers, august and sublime, over His Mystical Body of Christ, a doctrine so dear to St. Paul; […] from the cradle to the grave the priest is ever beside the faithful, a guide, a solace, a minister of salvation and dispenser of grace and blessing. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacerdotii, no. 16, December 20, 1935)

  • Priests – unwearied heralds of the good tidings

That it has not fallen still lower down the slope of error and vice is due to the guidance of the light of Christian truth that always shines in the world. Now the Church exercises her ‘ministry of the word’ through her priests of every grade of the Hierarchy, in which each has his wisely allotted place. These she sends everywhere as unwearied heralds of the good tidings which alone can save and advance true civilization and culture, or help them to rise again. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacerdotii, no. 24, December 20, 1935)

  • Public and official intercessor of humanity before God

The priest, is public and official intercessor of humanity before God; he has the duty and commission of offering to God in the name of the Church, over and above sacrifice strictly so-called, the ‘sacrifice of praise,’ in public and official prayer […] Who can tell how many chastisements priestly prayer wards off from sinful mankind, how many blessings it brings down and secures? (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacerdotii, no. 28, Decemeber 20, 1935)

  • These august powers are stable and perpetual

These august powers are conferred upon the priest in a special Sacrament designed to this end: they are not merely passing or temporary in the priest, but are stable and perpetual, united as they are with the indelible character imprinted on his soul whereby he becomes “a priest forever”; whereby he becomes like unto Him in whose eternal priesthood he has been made a sharer. Even the most lamentable downfall, which, through human frailty, is possible to a priest, can never blot out from his soul the priestly character. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacerdotii, no. 22, December 20, 1935)

  • A dignity so lofty that its splendor is cannot be dimmed even by unworthiness

Most sublime, then, Venerable Brethren, is the dignity of the priesthood. Even the falling away of the few unworthy in the priesthood, however deplorable and distressing it may be, cannot dim the splendor of so lofty a dignity. Much less can the unworthiness of a few cause the worth and merit of so many to be overlooked; and how many have been, and are, in the priesthood, preeminent in holiness, in learning, in works of zeal, nay, even in martyrdom. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacerdotii, no. 31, December 20, 1935)

  • Power over the very Body of Jesus Christ

And thus the ineffable greatness of the human priest stands forth in all its splendor; for he has power over the very Body of Jesus Christ, and makes It present upon our altars. In the name of Christ Himself he offers It a victim infinitely pleasing to the Divine Majesty. ‘Wondrous things are these,’ justly exclaims St. John Chrysostom, ‘so wonderful, they surpass wonder.’ (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacerdotii, no. 16, December 20, 1935)

  • The enemies of the Church direct their first and fiercest blow against the priesthood

A last tribute to the priesthood is given by the enemies of the Church […] they show that they fully appreciate the dignity and importance of the Catholic priesthood, by directing against it their first and fiercest blows; since they know well how close is the tie that binds the Church to her priests. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacerdotii, no. 30, Decmeber 20, 1935)

…judges Francis’ idea on material charity

  • Instructing our neighbors in the true faith is the greatest mark of love

Since Jesus Christ has proclaimed that the special sign of discipleship with Him is that we ‘have love one for another’ (Jn 13:35; 15:12), can we give a mark of greater love for our neighbors than to assist them in putting behind themselves the darkness of error by instructing them in the true faith of Christ? As a matter of fact, this type of charity surpasses all other kinds of good works inspired by love just as the mind surpasses the body, heaven surpasses earth, eternity surpasses time. (Pius XI. Encyclical Rerum Ecclesiae, no. 6, February 28, 1926)

…judges Francis’ prayer in the ecumenical and interreligious Meeting in Sarajevo

  • The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship

‘The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship. This is the fount of truth, this the house of Faith, this the temple of God: if any man enter not here, or if any man go forth from it, he is a stranger to the hope of life and salvation. Let none delude himself with obstinate wrangling. For life and salvation are here concerned, which will be lost and entirely destroyed, unless their interests are carefully and assiduously kept in mind.’ (Divin. Instit. IV, 30. 11-12) (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 17, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea that Christians should always humble themselves

  • Humility is perfectly compatible with self-confidence and not with self-degradation

Humility in the spirit of the Gospel and prayer for the assistance of grace are perfectly compatible with self-confidence and heroism. The Church of Christ, which throughout the ages and to the present day numbers more confessors and voluntary martyrs than any other moral collectivity, needs lessons from no one in heroism of feeling and action. The odious pride of reformers only covers itself with ridicule when it rails at Christian humility as though it were but a cowardly pose of self-degradation. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge, no. 27, March 14, 1937)

  • The priest’s first loving gift to his neighbors is to serve truth

This charity, intelligent and sympathetic towards those even who offend you, does by no means imply a renunciation of the right of proclaiming, vindicating and defending the truth and its implications. The priest’s first loving gift to his neighbors is to serve truth and refute error in any of its forms. Failure on this score would be not only a betrayal of God and your vocation, but also an offense against the real welfare of your people and country. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge, no. 44, March 14, 1937)

  • The Church of Christ: divinely commissioned to lead mankind

There exists an institution able to safeguard the sanctity of the law of nations. This institution is a part of every nation; at the same time it is above all nations. She enjoys, too, the highest authority, the fullness of the teaching power of the Apostles. Such an institution is the Church of Christ. She alone is adapted to do this great work, for she is not only divinely commissioned to lead mankind, but moreover, because of her very make-up and the constitution which she possesses, by reason of her age-old traditions and her great prestige, which has not been lessened but has been greatly increased since the close of the War, cannot but succeed in such a venture where others assuredly will fail. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi Arcano, no. 46, December 23, 1922)

…judges Francis’ vision on the divorced who re-marry

  • Those who lack the interior virtues are not prepared for the apostolate

Those who lack or do not practice the interior virtues […] may not be considered sufficiently prepared or armed against the dangers and battles of life, nor able to dedicate themselves to the apostolate; rather, just as a ‘a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal’ (1 Cor 13,1), they either do not benefit an any way, or perhaps even damage the very cause which they seek to sustain and defend, as has notoriously occurred, and not on only one occasion, in the past. (Pius XI. Apostolic Letter Singulare illud, June 13, 1926)

…judges Francis’ idea on the indissolubility of marriage

  • A Christian marriage which is valid and has been consummated may not be destroyed by any human authority

‘And so, whatever marriage is said to be contracted, either it is so contracted that it is really a true marriage, in which case it carries with it that enduring bond which by divine right is inherent in every true marriage; or it is thought to be contracted without that perpetual bond, and in that case there is no marriage, but an illicit union opposed of its very nature to the divine law, which therefore cannot be entered into or maintained’ (Pius VI, Rescript. ad Episc. Agriens., 11 July 1789). And if this stability seems to be open to exception, however rare the exception may be, as in the case of certain natural marriages between unbelievers, or amongst Christians in the case of those marriages which though valid have not been consummated, that exception does not depend on the will of men nor on that of any merely human power, but on divine law, of which the only guardian and interpreter is the Church of Christ. However, not even this power can ever affect for any cause whatsoever a Christian marriage which is valid and has been consummated, for as it is plain that here the marriage contract has its full completion, so, by the will of God, there is also the greatest firmness and indissolubility which may not be destroyed by any human authority. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubii, no. 34, December 31, 1930)

  • The bond of marriage cannot be loosed even in the case of separation

If therefore the Church has not erred and does not err in teaching this, and consequently it is certain that the bond of marriage cannot be loosed even on account of the sin of adultery, it is evident that all the other weaker excuses that can be, and are usually brought forward, are of no value whatsoever. And the objections brought against the firmness of the marriage bond are easily answered. For, in certain circumstances, imperfect separation of the parties is allowed, the bond not being severed. This separation, which the Church herself permits, and expressly mentions in her Canon Law in those canons which deal with the separation of the parties as to marital relationship and co-habitation, removes all the alleged inconveniences and dangers. It will be for the sacred law and, to some extent, also the civil law, in so far as civil matters are affected, to lay down the grounds, the conditions, the method and precautions to be taken in a case of this kind in order to safeguard the education of the children and the well-being of the family, and to remove all those evils which threaten the married persons, the children and the State. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubii, no. 89, December 31, 1930)

…judges Francis’ idea on divorcees as Godparents

  • The modern means of communication seek to deride the sanctity of marriage

When we consider the great excellence of chaste wedlock, Venerable Brethren, it appears all the more regrettable that particularly in our day we should witness this divine institution often scorned and on every side degraded. For now, alas, not secretly nor under cover, but openly, with all sense of shame put aside, now by word again by writings, by theatrical productions of every kind, by romantic fiction, by amorous and frivolous novels, by cinematographs portraying in vivid scene, in addresses broadcast by radio telephony, in short by all the inventions of modern science, the sanctity of marriage is trampled upon and derided; divorce, adultery, all the basest vices either are extolled or at least are depicted in such colors as to appear to be free of all reproach and infamy. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubi, no. 44-45, December 31, 1930)

  • The advocates of neo-paganism today proclaim that a new and ‘more humane’ legislation take the place of ‘antiquated laws’ on the indissolubility of marriage

The advocates of the neo-paganism of today have learned nothing from the sad state of affairs, but instead, day by day, more and more vehemently, they continue by legislation to attack the indissolubility of the marriage bond, proclaiming that the lawfulness of divorce must be recognized, and that the antiquated laws should give place to a new and more humane legislation. Many and varied are the grounds put forward for divorce [by them]. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti connubii, no. 44-45, December 31, 1930)

…judges Francis’ idea on offering rosaries

  • Those wander from the path of truth consider this devotion merely an annoying formula repeated

This practice of piety, Venerable Brethren, admirably diffused by Saint Dominic, not without the heavenly suggestion and inspiration of the Virgin Mother of God, is without doubt easy for all, even for the ignorant and the simple. But those wander from the path of truth who consider this devotion merely an annoying formula repeated with monotonous singsong intonation, and refuse it as good only for children and silly women! In this regard, it is to be noted that both piety and love, though always renewing the same words, do not always repeat the same thing but always express something new issuing from the intimate sentiment of devotion. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ingravescentibus malis, no.12 -13, September 29, 1937)

  • No benefit for society will be obtained by putting aside the methods consecrated by Christian wisdom and the vast experience of centuries

In this regard, we not unaware that some educators of youth – frightened by the current depravation of customs by which so many youth throw themselves into extreme ruin with incredible detriment to souls – with the aim of distancing from civil society so grave and disastrous an evil, are occupied in inventing new systems of education. But, We wish to make these people understand that it no benefit for society will be obtained by putting aside those methods and those disciplines that, received for the sources of Christian wisdom and consecrated by the vast experience of the centuries, Aloysius Gonzaga personally experienced as most efficacious in himself: lively faith, the fleeing from near occasions of sin, moderation and the fight against the passions, a vigorous devotion to God and the Most Holy Virgin, and finally, a life that is as often as possible comforted and strengthened by the celestial banquet. (Pius XI. Apostolic Letter Singulari illud, June 13, 1926)

…judges Francis’ words that it was not an offense accepting the Cross in the form of a communist symbol

  • A vain hope: the principles of Christian truth modified to meet socialism half-way

Yet let no one think that all the socialist groups or factions that are not communist have, without exception, recovered their senses to this extent either in fact or in name. For the most part they do not reject the class struggle or the abolition of ownership, but only in some degree modify them. Now if these false principles are modified and to some extent erased from the program, the question arises, or rather is raised without warrant by some, whether the principles of Christian truth cannot perhaps be also modified to some degree and be tempered so as to meet Socialism half-way and, as it were, by a middle course, come to agreement with it. There are some allured by the foolish hope that socialists in this way will be drawn to us. A vain hope! Those who want to be apostles among socialists ought to profess Christian truth whole and entire, openly and sincerely, and not connive at error in any way. If they truly wish to be heralds of the Gospel, let them above all strive to show to socialists that socialist claims, so far as they are just, are far more strongly supported by the principles of Christian faith and much more effectively promoted through the power of Christian charity. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 116, May 15, 1931)

  • Socialism, even when ‘tempered’ and ‘modified’ is always Socialism – it cannot be reconciled with the teachings of the Catholic Church – and is utterly foreign to Christian truth

But what if Socialism has really been so tempered and modified as to the class struggle and private ownership that there is in it no longer anything to be censured on these points? Has it thereby renounced its contradictory nature to the Christian religion? This is the question that holds many minds in suspense. And numerous are the Catholics who, although they clearly understand that Christian principles can never be abandoned or diminished seem to turn their eyes to the Holy See and earnestly beseech Us to decide whether this form of Socialism has so far recovered from false doctrines that it can be accepted without the sacrifice of any Christian principle and in a certain sense be baptized. That We, in keeping with Our fatherly solicitude, may answer their petitions, We make this pronouncement: Whether considered as a doctrine, or an historical fact, or a movement, Socialism, if it remains truly Socialism, even after it has yielded to truth and justice on the points which we have mentioned, cannot be reconciled with the teachings of the Catholic Church because its concept of society itself is utterly foreign to Christian truth. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 117, May 15, 1931)

  • Socialist and Christian: contradictory terms

If Socialism, like all errors, contains some truth (which, moreover, the Supreme Pontiffs have never denied), it is based nevertheless on a theory of human society peculiar to itself and irreconcilable with true Christianity. Religious socialism, Christian socialism, are contradictory terms; no one can be at the same time a good Catholic and a true socialist. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 120, May 15, 1931)

…judges Francis’ pro-communist ideas expressed in the Meetings with Popular Movements

  • This organized and militant atheism works tirelessly through its agitators, promoting special expositions and conferences

The wicked were never lacking, nor even those who denied God; but they were relatively few, alone and isolated; and did not dare, or did not believe it opportune to openly reveal their evil thoughts, as the inspired Psalmist seems to insinuate, when he exclaimed: ‘The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God’’ (Ps 14: 1). The impious, the atheist, as one within a multitude, denied God, the Creator, but in the intimacy of the heart. Today, on the contrary, atheism has already invaded great multitudes of the people: with its organizations it penetrates even within the public schools, it is manifested in the theatres and in order to spread employs even the motion pictures, the phonograph, the radio; with its own typography it prints brochures in all languages; promotes special expositions and public manifestations; it has constituted its own political parties, and commercial and military institutions.

This organized and militant atheism works tirelessly through its agitators, with conferences and illustrations, with all of the means of hidden and manifest propaganda, within all classes, in all of the streets, in every salon, affording to this its detrimental activity the moral authority of its own universities, and binding the incautious with the powerful chains of its organizing strength. Truly, in observing so much effort put at the service of such an iniquitous cause, the sad lament of Christ comes spontaneously to mind and lips: ‘The sons of this world are wiser in their own generation than the sons of light’ (Lk 16: 8). (Pius XI. Encyclical Caritate Christi Compulsi, May 3, 1932)

  • Communists put the Holy Cross together with the symbols of modern imperialism, associating the war against God with the battle for bread, land possession, adequate salaries and respectable habitation

The chiefs and authors of all of this campaign of atheism, taking advantage of the current economic crisis, with an infernal dialectic, seek to convince the famished masses that God and religion are the cause of this universal misery. The Holy Cross of Our Lord, symbol of humility and poverty, is put together with the symbols of modern imperialism, as though Religion was allied with those dark forces, which produce so many evils for mankind. In this way they attempt, and not without results, to link the war against God with the battle for daily bread, with the desire to possess one’s own land, to have adequate salaries, respectable habitations, in short, a state of life that is appropriate for man. The most legitimate and necessary desires, as well as the most brutal instincts, all serve for their anti-religious program; as though the divine order was in contradiction with the well-being of humanity and was not, on the contrary, its only and certain guardian; as though human forces with the means of modern technology, could combat the divine forces to introduce a new and better order of things. (Pius XI. Encyclical Caritate Christi compulsi, May 3, 1932)

  • The enemies of all order take advantage of the economic crisis to spread destructive delirium of their opinions

As we have affirmed, an economic crisis persists throughout the whole world, which the poor suffer with greater severity. […] The workers and artisans suffer spiritually and materially because they lack not only what they could earn worthily, such as a just salary, but also the occupation and the work itself; hence, they find themselves doomed to unemployment. […] But certainly there are those who wish to take advantage – of course, a very sad advantage and gain – of this constraint and necessity: the enemies of the public, civil and religious order. They plot to make war against human society, against holy religion and even against God. Without doubt, all know of the destructive delirium of their opinions, which they widely divulge; and the crimes committed a little while ago and even at a recent date demonstrate more than sufficiently that they work decidedly to advance their evil projects and designs; what has already occurred for some time and incessantly within the immense and desolate lands of Russia, what has occurred in Spain, what has occurred in Mexico, and ultimately, what has occurred in within the small and large nations of central Europe, all give clear evidence of what may be hoped for with the arrival – and where has it not already arrived, venerable brothers? – of the propaganda of such evil doctrines and its even more wicked influence. (Pius XI. Allocution Iterum vos, March 13, 1933, Acta Apostilicae Sedis 25 (1933), pp. 12-13)

  • With the dialectical aspect of their materialism, Communists claim that conflict carries the world forward – class struggle becomes a ‘crusade’ for the progress of humanity

The doctrine of modern Communism, which is often concealed under the most seductive trappings, is in substance based on the principles of dialectical and historical materialism previously advocated by Marx, of which the theoricians of bolshevism claim to possess the only genuine interpretation. […] In such a doctrine, as is evident, there is no room for the idea of God; there is no difference between matter and spirit, between soul and body; there is neither survival of the soul after death nor any hope in a future life. Insisting on the dialectical aspect of their materialism, the Communists claim that the conflict which carries the world towards its final synthesis can be accelerated by man. Hence they endeavor to sharpen the antagonisms which arise between the various classes of society. Thus the class struggle with its consequent violent hate and destruction takes on the aspects of a crusade for the progress of humanity. On the other hand, all other forces whatever, as long as they resist such systematic violence, must be annihilated as hostile to the human race. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 9, March 19, 1937)

  • The apostles of Communism take advantage of the needs of the poor to kindle their hearts to envy the rich

To priests in a special way We recommend anew the oft-repeated counsel of Our Predecessor, Leo XIII, to go to the workingman. We make this advice Our own, and faithful to the teachings of Jesus Christ and His Church, We thus complete it: ‘Go to the workingman, especially where he is poor; and in general, go to the poor.’ The poor are obviously more exposed than others to the wiles of agitators who, taking advantage of their extreme need, kindle their hearts to envy of the rich and urge them to seize by force what fortune seems to have denied them unjustly. If the priest will not go to the workingman and to the poor, to warn them or to disabuse them of prejudice and false theory, they will become an easy prey for the apostles of Communism. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 61, March 19, 1937)

  • The Communist doctrines are full of illusions and have shown to be incapable of giving the worker a true and lasting material and spiritual wellbeing

Your paternal solicitude should care with singular attention, for the industrial workers as well as the farmers; they are the predilect of Our heart because they are in a social situation that Our Lord chose for himself during his earthly life, and because the conditions of their material life subject them to greater sufferings, since they are often deprived of the sufficient means for a worthy life of a Christian and of that tranquility of spirit which is born of a secure future. In their great majority, they unfortunately lack the spiritual and moral comforts that could sustain them in their anguish.

Moreover, their situation exposes them to be more easily accessible to those whose doctrines claim, of course, to be inspired for the good of the worker and of the humble in general, but which are full of fateful errors, since they combat the Christian Faith – which assures the bases of rights and of social justice – and reject the spirit of fraternity and charity inculcated by the Gospel, which is the only element that can guarantee a sincere collaboration among the classes. On the other hand, such communist doctrines, founded upon pure materialism and the uncontrolled desire for earthly goods – as though they were capable of fully satisfying man – and because they absolutely forego the eternal goal, in practice they have shown to be full of illusions and incapable of giving the worker a true and lasting material and spiritual wellbeing. (Pius XI. Apostolic letter, January 18, 1939, Acta Apostolicae Sedis, 1942)

  • Communism, long since rejected scientifically and proved erroneous by experience, spreads by making the most extravagant promises to the working classes

How is it possible that such a system, long since rejected scientifically and now proved erroneous by experience, how is it, We ask, that such a system could spread so rapidly in all parts of the world? The explanation lies in the fact that too few have been able to grasp the nature of Communism. The majority instead succumb to its deception, skillfully concealed by the most extravagant promises. By pretending to desire only the betterment of the condition of the working classes, by urging the removal of the very real abuses chargeable to the liberalistic economic order, and by demanding a more equitable distribution of this world’s goods (objectives entirely and undoubtedly legitimate), the Communist takes advantage of the present world-wide economic crisis to draw into the sphere of his influence even those sections of the populace which on principle reject all forms of materialism and terrorism. And as every error contains its element of truth, the partial truths to which We have referred are astutely presented according to the needs of time and place, to conceal, when convenient, the repulsive crudity and inhumanity of Communistic principles and tactics. Thus the Communist ideal wins over many of the better minded members of the community. These in turn become the apostles of the movement among the younger intelligentsia who are still too immature to recognize the intrinsic errors of the system. The preachers of Communism are also proficient in exploiting racial antagonisms and political divisions and oppositions. They take advantage of the lack of orientation characteristic of modern agnostic science in order to burrow into the universities, where they bolster up the principles of their doctrine with pseudo-scientific arguments. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 15, March 19, 1937)

  • The Communists’ perfidious tactic: worming their way even into the Church by inviting collaboration from Catholics in the realm of so-called humanitarianism

On this point We have already insisted in Our Allocution of May 12th of last year, but We believe it to be a duty of special urgency, Venerable Brethren, to call your attention to it once again. In the beginning Communism showed itself for what it was in all its perversity; but very soon it realized that it was thus alienating the people. It has therefore changed its tactics, and strives to entice the multitudes by trickery of various forms, hiding its real designs behind ideas that in themselves are good and attractive. Thus, aware of the universal desire for peace, the leaders of Communism pretend to be the most zealous promoters and propagandists in the movement for world amity. Yet at the same time they stir up a class-warfare which causes rivers of blood to flow, and, realizing that their system offers no internal guarantee of peace, they have recourse to unlimited armaments. Under various names which do not suggest Communism, they establish organizations and periodicals with the sole purpose of carrying their ideas into quarters otherwise inaccessible. They try perfidiously to worm their way even into professedly Catholic and religious organizations. Again, without receding an inch from their subversive principles, they invite Catholics to collaborate with them in the realm of so-called humanitarianism and charity; and at times even make proposals that are in perfect harmony with the Christian spirit and the doctrine of the Church. Elsewhere they carry their hypocrisy so far as to encourage the belief that Communism, in countries where faith and culture are more strongly entrenched, will assume another and much milder form. It will not interfere with the practice of religion. It will respect liberty of conscience. There are some even who refer to certain changes recently introduced into soviet legislation as a proof that Communism is about to abandon its program of war against God. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 57, March 19, 1937)

  • The poor, while trying to better their condition, should always remain ‘poor in spirit’

But the poor too, in their turn, while engaged, according to the laws of charity and justice, in acquiring the necessities of life and also in bettering their condition, should always remain ‘poor in spirit’ (Mt 5: 3), and hold spiritual goods in higher esteem than earthly property and pleasures. Let them remember that the world will never be able to rid itself of misery, sorrow and tribulation, which are the portion even of those who seem most prosperous. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 45, March 19, 1937)

…judges Francis’ ideas on faith being revolutionary

  • The young person’s battlefield is his own interior

Young people are, by nature, inclined to exterior works, and are always willing to throw themselves into the battlefield of action. It is necessary to make them understand that before thinking of others and of the Catholic cause, it behooves them to fight for their own interior perfection, through study, and the practice of virtue. (Pius XI. Apostolic Letter Singulare illud, June 13, 1926)

 …judges Francis’ words in his first appearance

  • From the cradle to the grave the priest is ever beside the faithful as a dispenser of grace and blessing

Besides this power over the real Body of Christ, the priest has received other powers, august and sublime, over His Mystical Body of Christ, […] The Christian, at almost every important stage of his mortal career, finds at his side the priest with power received from God, in the act of communicating or increasing that grace which is the supernatural life of his soul. […] Thus, from the cradle to the grave the priest is ever beside the faithful, a guide, a solace, a minister of salvation and dispenser of grace and blessing. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacrdotii, nos. 17- 19, December 20, 1935)

  • The priest is a public and official intercessor of humanity before God

Finally, the priest, in another way, follows the example of Christ. Of Him it is written that He ‘passed the whole night in the prayer of God’ and ‘ever lives to make intercession for us’; and like Him, the priest, is public and official intercessor of humanity before God; he has the duty and commission of offering to God in the name of the Church, over and above sacrifice strictly so-called, the ‘sacrifice of praise,’ in public and official prayer; for several times each day with psalms, prayers and hymns taken in great part from the inspired books, he pays to God this dutiful tribute of adoration and thus performs his necessary office of interceding for humanity. […] The Christian […] in every distress, in every peril whether private or public, has recourse with special trust to the prayer of the priest. To it the unfortunate of every sort look for comfort; to it they have recourse, seeking divine aid in all the vicissitudes of this exile here on earth. Truly does the ‘priest occupy a place midway between God and human nature: from Him bringing to us absolving beneficence, offering our prayers to Him and appeasing the wrathful Lord.’ (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici sacerdotii, no. 28-29, December 20, 1935)

…judges Francis’ ideas on the norms of the Church

  • The dereliction of the eternal principles of an objective morality is a sin

The conscientious observation of the ten commandments of God and the precepts of the Church (which are nothing but practical specifications of rules of the Gospels) is for every one an unrivaled school of personal discipline, moral education and formation of character, a school that is exacting, but not to excess. A merciful God, who as Legislator, says – Thou must! – also gives by His grace the power to will and to do. To let forces of moral formation of such efficacy lie fallow, or to exclude them positively from public education, would spell religious under-feeding of a nation. To hand over the moral law to man’s subjective opinion, which changes with the times, instead of anchoring it in the holy will of the eternal God and His commandments, is to open wide every door to the forces of destruction. The resulting dereliction of the eternal principles of an objective morality, which educates conscience and ennobles every department and organization of life, is a sin against the destiny of a nation, a sin whose bitter fruit will poison future generations. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge, no. 29, March 14, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea on Laudate Si

  • The Church’s authority conferred by God is on the moral implications of different matters and on what leads to eternal happiness – not technical matters

Certainly the Church was not given the commission to guide men to an only fleeting and perishable happiness but to that which is eternal. Indeed ‘the Church holds that it is unlawful for her to mix without cause in these temporal concerns’ (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi Arcano, Dec. 23, 1922); however, she can in no wise renounce the duty God entrusted to her to interpose her authority, not of course in matters of technique for which she is neither suitably equipped nor endowed by office, but in all things that are connected with the moral law. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 41, May 15, 1931)

  • The Author of nature established an orderly relationship – subordinating immediate purposes, like caring for nature, to our supreme and last end

But it is only the moral law which, just as it commands us to seek our supreme and last end in the whole scheme of our activity, so likewise commands us to seek directly in each kind of activity those purposes which we know that nature, or rather God the Author of nature, established for that kind of action, and in orderly relationship to subordinate such immediate purposes to our supreme and last end. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 43, May 15, 1931)

  • What are temporal upheavals, disasters and calamities compared with the loss of souls?

Minds of all, it is true, are affected almost solely by temporal upheavals, disasters, and calamities. But if we examine things critically with Christian eyes, as we should, what are all these compared with the loss of souls? (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 130, May 15, 1931)

…judges Francis’ idea that the Pope should not judge

  • Confessors have the grave responsibility to guide each penitent according to his spiritual need

Whoever has no aptitude for study and who will be unable to follow the prescribed courses with due satisfaction; all such cases show that they are not intended for the priesthood. By letting them go on almost to the threshold of the sanctuary, superiors only make it ever more difficult for them to draw back; and, perhaps, even cause them to accept ordination through human respect, without vocation and without the priestly spirit. Let Superiors of seminaries, together with the spiritual directors and confessors, reflect how weighty a responsibility they assume before God, before the Church, and before the youths themselves, if they do not take all means at their disposal to avoid a false step. We declare too, that confessors and spiritual directors could also be responsible for such a grave error; and not indeed because they can take any outward action, since that is severely forbidden them by their most delicate office itself, and often also by the inviolable sacramental seal; but because they can have a great influence on the souls of the individual students, and with paternal firmness they should guide each according to his spiritual needs. […] Let confessors remember the words of Saint Alphonsus Liguori on a similar matter: ‘In general . . . in such cases the more severity the confessor uses with his penitents, the more will he help them towards their salvation; and on the contrary, the more cruel will he be the more he is benign.’ Saint Thomas of Villanova called such over-kind confessors: Impie pios – ‘wickedly kind’; ‘such charity is contrary to charity.’(Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici Sacerdotii, no. 70-71, December 20, 1935)

…judges Francis’ idea on the Church reduced to a minority

  • The Pope who does not strive to win over to Christ all who are still without the Fold fails in his obligation

The Church has no other reason for existence than, by developing the Kingdom of Christ on earth, to make mankind participate in the effects of His saving Redemption. Whoever, by Divine Commission, takes the place on earth of Jesus Christ, becomes thereby the Chief Shepherd who, far from being able to rest content with simply guiding and protecting the Lord’s Flock which has beer; confided to him to rule, fails in his special duty and obligations if he does not strive by might and main to win over and to join to Christ all who are still without the Fold. (Pius XI. Encyclical Rerum Ecclesiae, no. 1, February 28, 1926)

  • Evangelization: charity that surpasses all other kinds of good works

Surely the obligation of charity, which binds us to God, demands not only that we strive to increase by every means within our power the number of those who adore Him ‘in spirit and in truth’ (Jn 4:24) but also that we try to bring under the rule of the gentle Christ as many other men as possible […] Since Jesus Christ has proclaimed that the special sign of discipleship with Him is that we ‘have love one for another’ (Jn 13:35; 15:12) can we give a mark of greater love for our neighbors than to assist them in putting behind themselves the darkness of error by instructing them in the true faith of Christ? As a matter of fact, this type of charity surpasses all other kinds of good works inspired by love just as the mind surpasses the body, heaven surpasses earth, eternity surpasses time. (Pius XI. Encyclical Rerum Ecclesiae, no. 19-21, February 28, 1926)

…judges Francis’ idea on Communism

  • Communism seeks to destroy society altogether

Although We, therefore, deem it superfluous to warn upright and faithful children of the Church regarding the impious and iniquitous character of Communism, yet We cannot without deep sorrow contemplate the heedlessness of those who apparently make light of these impending dangers, and with sluggish inertia allow the widespread propagation of doctrine which seeks by violence and slaughter to destroy society altogether. All the more gravely to be condemned is the folly of those who neglect to remove or change the conditions that inflame the minds of peoples, and pave the way for the overthrow and destruction of society. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo Anno, no. 112, May 15, 1931)

  • Socialism cannot be reconciled with the teachings of the Catholic Church

That We, in keeping with Our fatherly solicitude, may answer their petitions, We make this pronouncement: Whether considered as a doctrine, or an historical fact, or a movement, Socialism, if it remains truly Socialism, even after it has yielded to truth and justice on the points which we have mentioned, cannot be reconciled with the teachings of the Catholic Church because its concept of society itself is utterly foreign to Christian truth. […] Socialism, on the other hand, wholly ignoring and indifferent to this sublime end of both man and society, affirms that human association has been instituted for the sake of material advantage alone. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo Anno, nos. 117-118, May 15, 1931)

  • Enemies of all order shamelessly attempt against God

Furthermore – and this may be called the most perilous of all these evils – the enemies of all order, whether they be called Communists or by some other name, exaggerating the very grave straits of the economic crisis, in this great perturbation of morals, with extreme audacity, direct all their efforts to one end, seeking to cast away every bridle from their necks, and breaking the bonds of all law both human and divine, wage an atrocious war against all religion and against God Himself; in this it is their purpose to uproot utterly all knowledge and sense of religion from the minds of men, even from the tenderest age, for they know well that if once the Divine law and knowledge were blotted out from the minds of men there would now be nothing that they could not arrogate to themselves. And thus we now see with our own eyes – what we have not read of as happening anywhere before – impious men, agitated by unspeakable fury, shamelessly liking up a banner against God and against all religion throughout the whole world. (Pius XI. Encyclical Caritate Christi compulsi, May 3, 1932)

  • Despise of the light of evangelic wisdom, and revival of paganism

In some regions the evil had reached such a pitch that it seeks to destroy all private right of property, so that everything might be shared in common. […] they despise the light of evangelic wisdom and endeavor to revive the errors of the pagans and their way of life. […] And while they cast scorn on the hope of heavenly reward, they incite men to seek, even by illicit means, false earthly happiness, and therefore drive them with brazen temerity to the dissolution of the social order, causing disorder, cruel rebellions and even the conflagration of civil war. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ingravescentibus malis, September 29, 1937)

  • Imminent danger aiming at upsetting the social order and the foundations of Christian civilization

This all too imminent danger, Venerable Brethren, as you have already surmised, is bolshevistic and atheistic Communism, which aims at upsetting the social order and at undermining the very foundations of Christian civilization. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 3, March 19, 1937)

  • Communism strips man of liberty, dignity and morality

Communism, moreover, strips man of his liberty, robs human personality of all its dignity, and removes all the moral restraints that check the eruptions of blind impulse. There is no recognition of any right of the individual in his relations to the collectivity; no natural right is accorded to human personality, which is a mere cog-wheel in the Communist system. In man’s relations with other individuals, besides, Communists hold the principle of absolute equality, rejecting all hierarchy and divinely-constituted authority, including the authority of parents. What men call authority and subordination is derived from the community as its first and only font. Nor is the individual granted any property rights over material goods or the means of production, for inasmuch as these are the source of further wealth, their possession would give one man power over another. Precisely on this score, all forms of private property must be eradicated, for they are at the origin of all economic enslavement. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 10, March 19, 1937)

  • Dialectical and historical materialism advocated by Marx, and annihilation of all opposition

The doctrine of modern Communism, which is often concealed under the most seductive trappings, is in substance based on the principles of dialectical and historical materialism previously advocated by Marx, of which the theoricians of bolshevism claim to possess the only genuine interpretation. […] In such a doctrine, as is evident, there is no room for the idea of God; there is no difference between matter and spirit, between soul and body; there is neither survival of the soul after death nor any hope in a future life. Insisting on the dialectical aspect of their materialism, the Communists claim that the conflict which carries the world towards its final synthesis can be accelerated by man. Hence they endeavor to sharpen the antagonisms which arise between the various classes of society. Thus the class struggle with its consequent violent hate and destruction takes on the aspects of a crusade for the progress of humanity. On the other hand, all other forces whatever, as long as they resist such systematic violence, must be annihilated as hostile to the human race. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 9, March 19, 1937)

  • A cold-blooded struggle against all that is divine

This, unfortunately, is what we now behold. For the first time in history we are witnessing a struggle, cold-blooded in purpose and mapped out to the least detail, between man and ‘all that is called God’ (cf. Thess 2:4). Communism is by its nature anti-religious. It considers religion as ‘the opiate of the people’ because the principles of religion which speak of a life beyond the grave dissuade the proletariat from the dream of a Soviet paradise which is of this world. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 22, March 19, 1937)

  • Communist terrorism seeks to all moral sense

After all, even the sphere of economics needs some morality, some moral sense of responsibility, which can find no place in a system so thoroughly materialistic as Communism. Terrorism is the only possible substitute, and it is terrorism that reigns today in Russia, where former comrades in revolution are exterminating each other. Terrorism, having failed despite all to stem the tide of moral corruption, cannot even prevent the dissolution of society itself. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 23, March 19, 1937)

  • The Communist system, with its authors and abettors condemned

We blame only the system, with its authors and abettors who considered Russia the best-prepared field for experimenting with a plan elaborated decades ago, and who from there continue to spread it from one end of the world to the other. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 24, March 19, 1937)

  • Communism is intrinsically wrong and no one may collaborate with it in any undertaking whatsoever

See to it, Venerable Brethren, that the Faithful do not allow themselves to be deceived! Communism is intrinsically wrong, and no one who would save Christian civilization may collaborate with it in any undertaking whatsoever. Those who permit themselves to be deceived into lending their aid towards the triumph of Communism in their own country, will be the first to fall victims of their error. And the greater the antiquity and grandeur of the Christian civilization in the regions where Communism successfully penetrates, so much more devastating will be the hatred displayed by the godless. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 58, March 19, 1937)

  • The Catholic Religion is the only true obstacle to communism, which takes advantage of any possibility of approach and collaboration with the Catholic side

One could say that a satanic preparation has revitalized, and with more strength, in neighboring Spain, that flame of hatred and ferocious persecution unambiguously reserved for the Church and the Catholic Religion, as being the only true obstacle to the eruption of those forces, which have already given evidence and proof of themselves in the pledges in the subversion of all order, from Russia to China, from Mexico to South America – tests and preparation, preceded and accompanied incessantly by a universal, assiduous, most competent propaganda for the conquest of the whole world by those absurd and disastrous ideologies […] It is not superfluous, but rather opportune and unfortunately necessary, and for Us Our duty , to put all on guard against the insidiousness with which the emissaries of the subversive forces try to take advantage of any possibility of approach and collaboration with the Catholic side, distinguishing between ideology and practice, between ideas and action, between the economical order and moral order: an extremely dangerous insidiousness, cunningness, destined solely to deceive and disarm Europe and the World. (Pius XI. Address La vostra presenza to Spanish refugees of the Civil War, September 14, 1936)

  • A system that is subversive of social order, full of errors and sophisms, in opposition to reason and to Divine Revelation

Such, Venerable Brethren, is the new gospel which bolshevistic and atheistic Communism offers the world as the glad tidings of deliverance and salvation! It is a system full of errors and sophisms. It is in opposition both to reason and to Divine Revelation. It subverts the social order, because it means the destruction of its foundations; because it ignores the true origin and purpose of the State; because it denies the rights, dignity and liberty of human personality. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 14, March 19, 1937)

  • Partial truths astutely presented by the preachers of Communism to conceal repulsively crude and inhuman principles

By pretending to desire only the betterment of the condition of the working classes, by urging the removal of the very real abuses chargeable to the liberalistic economic order, and by demanding a more equitable distribution of this world’s goods (objectives entirely and undoubtedly legitimate), the Communist takes advantage of the present world-wide economic crisis to draw into the sphere of his influence even those sections of the populace which on principle reject all forms of materialism and terrorism. And as every error contains its element of truth, the partial truths to which We have referred are astutely presented according to the needs of time and place, to conceal, when convenient, the repulsive crudity and inhumanity of Communistic principles and tactics. Thus the Communist ideal wins over many of the better minded members of the community. These in turn become the apostles of the movement among the younger intelligentsia who are still too immature to recognize the intrinsic errors of the system. The preachers of Communism are also proficient in exploiting racial antagonisms and political divisions and oppositions. They take advantage of the lack of orientation characteristic of modern agnostic science in order to burrow into the universities, where they bolster up the principles of their doctrine with pseudo-scientific arguments. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 15, March 19, 1937)

  • The Communistic fallacy spreads because of the religious and moral misery

If we would explain the blind acceptance of Communism by so many thousands of workmen, we must remember that the way had been already prepared for it by the religious and moral destitution in which wage-earners had been left by liberal economics. Even on Sundays and holy days, labor-shifts were given no time to attend to their essential religious duties. No one thought of building churches within convenient distance of factories, nor of facilitating the work of the priest. On the contrary, laicism was actively and persistently promoted, with the result that we are now reaping the fruits of the errors so often denounced by Our Predecessors and by Ourselves. It can surprise no one that the Communistic fallacy should be spreading in a world already to a large extent de-Christianized. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 16, March 19, 1937)

  • A doctrine shrewdly adapted to the varying conditions of diverse peoples

This explanation is to be found in a propaganda so truly diabolical that the world has perhaps never witnessed it’s like before. It is directed from one common center. It is shrewdly adapted to the varying conditions of diverse peoples. It has at its disposal great financial resources, gigantic organizations, international congresses, and countless trained workers. It makes use of pamphlets and reviews, of cinema, theater and radio, of schools and even universities. Little by little it penetrates into all classes of the people and even reaches the better-minded groups of the community, with the result that few are aware of the poison which increasingly pervades their minds and hearts. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 17, March 19, 1937)

  • A powerful factor in the diffusion of Communism: the conspiracy of silence of a large section of the non-Catholic press

A third powerful factor in the diffusion of Communism is the conspiracy of silence on the part of a large section of the non-Catholic press of the world. We say conspiracy, because it is impossible otherwise to explain how a press usually so eager to exploit even the little daily incidents of life has been able to remain silent for so long about the horrors perpetrated in Russia, in Mexico and even in a great part of Spain; and that it should have relatively so little to say concerning a world organization as vast as Russian Communism. This silence is due in part to shortsighted political policy, and is favored by various occult forces which for a long time have been working for the overthrow of the Christian Social Order. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 18, March 19, 1937)

  • Communism has changed its tactics: it strives to entice the multitudes by trickery, hiding its real designs behind ideas like peace

In the beginning Communism showed itself for what it was in all its perversity; but very soon it realized that it was thus alienating the people. It has therefore changed its tactics, and strives to entice the multitudes by trickery of various forms, hiding its real designs behind ideas that in themselves are good and attractive. Thus, aware of the universal desire for peace, the leaders of Communism pretend to be the most zealous promoters and propagandists in the movement for world amity. Yet at the same time they stir up a class-warfare which causes rivers of blood to flow, and, realizing that their system offers no internal guarantee of peace, they have recourse to unlimited armaments. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 58, March 19, 1937)

  • Communists worm their way into Catholic circles using so-called ‘humanitarianism’ and ‘charity’

Under various names which do not suggest Communism, they establish organizations and periodicals with the sole purpose of carrying their ideas into quarters otherwise inaccessible. They try perfidiously to worm their way even into professedly Catholic and religious organizations. Again, without receding an inch from their subversive principles, they invite Catholics to collaborate with them in the realm of so-called humanitarianism and charity; and at times even make proposals that are in perfect harmony with the Christian spirit and the doctrine of the Church. Elsewhere they carry their hypocrisy so far as to encourage the belief that Communism, in countries where faith and culture are more strongly entrenched, will assume another and much milder form. It will not interfere with the practice of religion. It will respect liberty of conscience. There are some even who refer to certain changes recently introduced into soviet legislation as a proof that Communism is about to abandon its program of war against God. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 57, March 19, 1937)

  • Communism: openly hostile to the Church and to God Himself is incredibly cruel and inhuman when in power

One section of Socialism has undergone almost the same change that the capitalistic economic system, as We have explained above, has undergone. It has sunk into Communism. Communism teaches and seeks two objectives: Unrelenting class warfare and absolute extermination of private ownership. Not secretly or by hidden methods does it do this, but publicly, openly, and by employing every and all means, even the most violent. To achieve these objectives there is nothing which it does not dare, nothing for which it has respect or reverence; and when it has come to power, it is incredible and portent like in its cruelty and inhumanity. The horrible slaughter and destruction through which it has laid waste vast regions of eastern Europe and Asia are the evidence; how much an enemy and how openly hostile it is to Holy Church and to God Himself is, alas, too well proved by facts and fully known to all. Although We, therefore, deem it superfluous to warn upright and faithful children of the Church regarding the impious and iniquitous character of Communism, yet We cannot without deep sorrow contemplate the heedlessness of those who apparently make light of these impending dangers, and with sluggish inertia allow the widespread propagation of doctrine which seeks by violence and slaughter to destroy society altogether. All the more gravely to be condemned is the folly of those who neglect to remove or change the conditions that inflame the minds of peoples, and pave the way for the overthrow and destruction of society. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo Anno, no. 112, May 15, 1931)

  • Subversive sect that nourishes hatred against the Lord and His Christ in Spain, Mexico, Russia…

It has therefore caused Us great amazement and profound anguish to learn that some, as if it were to justify the iniquitous proceedings against the Church, publicly alleged a necessity of defending the new Republic. From the foregoing, it appears so evident that the alleged motive was nonexistent, that we can only conclude the struggle against the Church in Spain is not so much due to a misunderstanding of the Catholic Faith and its beneficial institutions, as of a hatred against the Lord and His Christ nourished by groups subversive to any religious and social order, as alas we have seen in Mexico and Russia. (Pius XI. Encyclical Dilectissima Nobis, June 3, 1933)

  • The Communist persecution: daily writes new and glorious chapters to the Martyrology

The vast and most afflicted Russia, due to a true fury of hatred against God, has destroyed and continues still to destroy all that belongs to religion, especially the Catholic religion: everything, except the unbreakable and true fidelity, admirable heroism that gives – one could well say everyday – new and most glorious chapters to the Martyrology. (Pius XI. Address Siamo ancora on the occasion of the inauguration of the World Exhibit of the Catholic Press, May 12, 1936)

  • Communism strove by every possible means to destroy the Christian religion – assassinations and inhuman persecution

Meanwhile the sorry effects of this propaganda are before our eyes. Where Communism has been able to assert its power – and here We are thinking with special affection of the people of Russia and Mexico – it has striven by every possible means, as its champions openly boast, to destroy Christian civilization and the Christian religion by banishing every remembrance of them from the hearts of men, especially of the young. Bishops and priests were exiled, condemned to forced labor, shot and done to death in inhuman fashion; laymen suspected of defending their religion were vexed, persecuted, dragged off to trial and thrown into prison. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 19, March 19, 1937)

  • Destruction, slaughter, hatred and savage barbarity that would not have believed thought possible

Even where the scourge of Communism has not yet had time enough to exercise to the full its logical effects, as witness Our beloved Spain, it has, alas, found compensation in the fiercer violence of its attack. Not only this or that church or isolated monastery was sacked, but as far as possible every church and every monastery was destroyed. Every vestige of the Christian religion was eradicated, even though intimately linked with the rarest monuments of art and science. The fury of Communism has not confined itself to the indiscriminate slaughter of Bishops, of thousands of priests and religious of both sexes; it searches out above all those who have been devoting their lives to the welfare of the working classes and the poor. But the majority of its victims have been laymen of all conditions and classes. Even up to the present moment, masses of them are slain almost daily for no other offense than the fact that they are good Christians or at least opposed to atheistic Communism. And this fearful destruction has been carried out with a hatred and a savage barbarity one would not have believed possible in our age. No man of good sense, nor any statesman conscious of his responsibility can fail to shudder at the thought that what is happening today in Spain may perhaps be repeated tomorrow in other civilized countries. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 20, March 19, 1937)

  • These atrocities are the natural fruit of a system which lacks all inner restraint

Nor can it be said that these atrocities are a transitory phenomenon, the usual accompaniment of all great revolutions, the isolated excesses common to every war. No, they are the natural fruit of a system which lacks all inner restraint. Some restraint is necessary for man considered either as an individual or in society. Even the barbaric peoples had this inner check in the natural law written by God in the heart of every man. And where this natural law was held in higher esteem, ancient nations rose to a grandeur that still fascinates – more than it should – certain superficial students of human history. But tear the very idea of God from the hearts of men, and they are necessarily urged by their passions to the most atrocious barbarity. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 21, March 19, 1937)

  • The whole Christian people are continually in danger of falling away from the faith or of suffering a most cruel death

For from all sides the cry of the peoples who are mourning comes up to us, and their princes or rulers have indeed stood up and met together in one against the Lord and against His Church (cf. Psalm 2:2). Throughout those regions indeed, we see that all rights both human and Divine are confounded. Churches are thrown down and overturned, religious men and sacred virgins are torn from their homes and are afflicted with abuse, with barbarities, with hunger and imprisonment; bands of boys and girls are snatched from the bosom of their mother the Church, and are induced to renounce Christ, to blaspheme and to attempt the worst crimes of lust; the whole Christian people, sadly disheartened and disrupted, are continually in danger of falling away from the faith, or of suffering the most cruel death. These things in truth are so sad that you might say that such events foreshadow and portend the ‘beginning of sorrows,’ that is to say of those that shall be brought by the man of sin, ‘who is lifted up above all that is called God or is worshipped’ (2 Thess 2:4). (Pius XI. Encyclical Miserentissimus Redemptor, no. 15, May 8, 1928)

  • Neither Socialism nor Communism would have existed if the nations had been faithful to the Church

It may be said in all truth that the Church, like Christ, goes through the centuries doing good to all. There would be today neither Socialism nor Communism if the rulers of the nations had not scorned the teachings and maternal warnings of the Church. On the bases of liberalism and laicism they wished to build other social edifices which, powerful and imposing as they seemed at first, all too soon revealed the weakness of their foundations, and today are crumbling one after another before our eyes, as everything must crumble that is not grounded on the one corner stone which is Christ Jesus. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, March 19, 1937)

  • ‘Charity’ without justice is not charity but only its empty name and hollow semblance

But charity will never be true charity unless it takes justice into constant account. The Apostle teaches that he that loveth his neighbor hath fulfilled the law and he gives the reason: For, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal . . . and if there be any other commandment, it is comprised in this word: Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself (Rom 13: 8- 9). According to the Apostle, then, all the commandments, including those which are of strict justice, as those which forbid us to kill or to steal, may be reduced to the single precept of true charity. From this it follows that a ‘charity’ which deprives the workingman of the salary to which he has a strict title in justice, is not charity at all, but only its empty name and hollow semblance. The wage-earner is not to receive as alms what is his due in justice. And let no one attempt with trifling charitable donations to exempt himself from the great duties imposed by justice. Both justice and charity often dictate obligations touching on the same subject-matter, but under different aspects; and the very dignity of the workingman makes him justly and acutely sensitive to the duties of others in his regard. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 49, March 19, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea on equality as the source of justice and happiness

  • It is not true that all have equal rights in civil society

In view of this organized common effort towards peaceful living, Catholic doctrine vindicates to the State the dignity and authority of a vigilant and provident defender of those divine and human rights on which the Sacred Scriptures and the Fathers of the Church insist so often. It is not true that all have equal rights in civil society. It is not true that there exists no lawful social hierarchy. Let it suffice to refer to the Encyclicals of Leo XIII already cited, especially to that on State powers, (Encycl. Diuturnum Illud, June 20, 1881. Acta Leonis XIII, Vol. I, 210-22) and to the other on the Christian Constitution of States (Encycl. Immortale Dei, Nov. 1, 1885. Acta Leonis XIII, Vol. II, pp. 146-168). (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 32, March 19, 1937)

  • True social order comes from a strong bond between the various members

Because order, as Saint Thomas well explains, is unity arising from the harmonious arrangement of many objects, a true, genuine social order demands that the various members of a society be united together by some strong bond. This unifying force is present not only in the producing of goods or the rendering of services – in which the employers and employees of an identical Industry or Profession collaborate jointly – but also in that common good, to achieve which all Industries and Professions together ought, each to the best of its ability, to cooperate amicably. And this unity will be the stronger and more effective, the more faithfully individuals and the Industries and Professions themselves strive to do their work and excel in it. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo anno, no. 84, May 15, 1931)

…judges Francis’ idea on the role of non-christian religions

  • In error: those who hold the false opinion that all religions are praiseworthy and lead to God

For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. […] Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 2, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on religious liberty

  • There can be no true religion other than that which is founded on the revealed word of God

In the course of time, namely from the beginnings of the human race until the coming and preaching of Jesus Christ, He Himself taught man the duties which a rational creature owes to its Creator […] From which it follows that there can be no true religion other than that which is founded on the revealed word of God: which revelation, begun from the beginning and continued under the Old Law, Christ Jesus Himself under the New Law perfected. Now, if God has spoken (and it is historically certain that He has truly spoken), all must see that it is man’s duty to believe absolutely God’s revelation and to obey implicitly His commands; that we might rightly do both, for the glory of God and our own salvation, the Only-begotten Son of God founded His Church on earth. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928)

  • That all Christians should be as ‘one’: continually repeated by ‘pan-Christians’

But some are more easily deceived by the outward appearance of good when there is question of fostering unity among all Christians. Is it not right, it is often repeated, indeed, even consonant with duty, that all who invoke the name of Christ should abstain from mutual reproaches and at long last be united in mutual charity? Who would dare to say that he loved Christ, unless he worked with all his might to carry out the desires of Him, Who asked His Father that His disciples might be ‘one’ (Jn 17: 21). And did not the same Christ will that His disciples should be marked out and distinguished from others by this characteristic, namely that they loved one another: ‘By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one for another’ (Jn 8:35)? All Christians, they add, should be as ‘one’: for then they would be much more powerful in driving out the pest of irreligion, which like a serpent daily creeps further and becomes more widely spread, and prepares to rob the Gospel of its strength. These things and others that class of men who are known as pan-Christians continually repeat and amplify. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on knowing God’s will from the people

  • Christianity is a model and guide for a world which is sick to death and clamors for direction

A Christianity which keeps a grip on itself, refuses every compromise with the world, takes the commands of God and the Church seriously, preserves its love of God and of men in all its freshness, such a Christianity can be, and will be, a model and a guide to a world which is sick to death and clamors for directions, unless it be condemned to a catastrophe that would baffle the imagination. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge, no. 19, March 14, 1937)

Amidst the aberrations of human thought, the Church indicates the way of truth – Woe if ever this beacon be hindered from shedding far and wide its beneficent light!

 Amidst all the aberrations of human thought, infatuated by a false emancipation from every law and curb; and amidst the awful corruptions of human malice, the Church rises up like a bright lighthouse warning by the clearness of its beam every deviation to right or left from the way of truth, and pointing out to one and all the right course that they should follow. Woe if ever this beacon should be – We do not say extinguished, for that is impossible owing to the unfailing promises on which it is founded – but if it should be hindered from shedding far and wide its beneficent light! We see already with Our own eyes whither the world has been brought by its arrogant rejection of divine revelation, and its pursuit of false philosophical and moral theories that bear the specious name of ‘science.’ That it has not fallen still lower down the slope of error and vice is due to the guidance of the light of Christian truth that always shines in the world. Now the Church exercises her ‘ministry of the word’ through her priests of every grade of the Hierarchy, in which each has his wisely allotted place. These she sends everywhere as unwearied heralds of the good tidings which alone can save and advance true civilization and culture, or help them to rise again. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ad Catholici Sacerdotii, no. 19, December 20, 1935)

…judges Francis’ idea on contemplative life

  • Contemplatives draw down from heaven a shower of divine graces, without which evangelical laborers would reap a scanty crop

It is, besides, easy to understand how they who assiduously fulfill the duty of prayer and penance contribute much more to the increase of the Church and the welfare of mankind than those who labor in tilling the Master’s field; for unless the former drew down from heaven a shower of divine graces to water the field that is being tilled, the evangelical laborers would reap forsooth from their toil a more scanty crop.[…] seeing that since they keep the rule of their Order not only accurately but also with generous ardor, and since that rule easily carries those who observe it to the higher degree of sanctity, it is impossible that those religious should not become and remain powerful pleaders with our most merciful God for all Christendom. (Pius XI. Apostolic Constitution Umbratilem, July 8, 1924)

…judges Francis’ idea on the faith in God

  • An aberration: to consider God a meaningless label. Our God is a Personal God.

Beware, Venerable Brethren, of that growing abuse, in speech as in writing, of the name of God as though it were a meaningless label, to be affixed to any creation, more or less arbitrary, of human speculation. Use your influence on the Faithful, that they refuse to yield to this aberration. Our God is the Personal God, supernatural, omnipotent, infinitely perfect, one in the Trinity of Persons, tri-personal in the unity of divine essence, the Creator of all existence. Lord, King and ultimate Consummator of the history of the world, who will not, and cannot, tolerate a rival God by His side.

The peak of the revelation as reached in the Gospel of Christ is final and permanent. It knows no retouches by human hand; it admits no substitutes or arbitrary alternatives such as certain leaders pretend to draw from the so-called myth of race and blood. (Pius XI, Encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge, March 14, 1937)

…judges the act of seeking blessings from heretics and schismatics

  • Giving countenance to a false Christianity, quite alien to the one Church of Christ

But some are more easily deceived by the outward appearance of good when there is question of fostering unity among all Christians. Is it not right, it is often repeated, indeed, even consonant with duty, that all who invoke the name of Christ should abstain from mutual reproaches and at long last be united in mutual charity? […] These things and others that class of men who are known as pan-Christians continually repeat and amplify; and these men, so far from being quite few and scattered, have increased to the dimensions of an entire class, and have grouped themselves into widely spread societies, most of which are directed by non-Catholics, although they are imbued with varying doctrines concerning the things of faith. […] They add that the Church in itself, or of its nature, is divided into sections; that is to say, that it is made up of several churches or distinct communities, which still remain separate, and although having certain articles of doctrine in common, nevertheless disagree concerning the remainder; […] This being so, it is clear that the Apostolic See cannot on any terms take part in their assemblies, nor is it anyway lawful for Catholics either to support or to work for such enterprises; for if they do so they will be giving countenance to a false Christianity, quite alien to the one Church of Christ. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, nos. 3, 4, 7, 8, January 6, 1928)

  • The Apostle of love forbade contact with those who hold a mutilated version of Christ’s teaching: His disciples must be united principally by the bond of one faith

These pan-Christians who turn their minds to uniting the churches seem, indeed, to pursue the noblest of ideas in promoting charity among all Christians: nevertheless how does it happen that this charity tends to injure faith? Everyone knows that John himself, the Apostle of love, […] altogether forbade any intercourse with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ’s teaching: ‘If any man come to you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him: God speed you.’ For which reason, since charity is based on a complete and sincere faith, the disciples of Christ must be united principally by the bond of one faith. Who then can conceive a Christian Federation, the members of which retain each his own opinions and private judgment, even in matters which concern the object of faith, even though they be repugnant to the opinions of the rest? And in what manner, We ask, can men who follow contrary opinions, belong to one and the same Federation of the faithful? For example, those who affirm, and those who deny that sacred Tradition is a true fount of divine Revelation; those who hold that an ecclesiastical hierarchy, made up of bishops, priests and ministers, has been divinely constituted, and those who assert that it has been brought in little by little in accordance with the conditions of the time; those who adore Christ really present in the Most Holy Eucharist through that marvelous conversion of the bread and wine, which is called transubstantiation, and those who affirm that Christ is present only by faith or by the signification and virtue of the Sacrament; those who in the Eucharist recognize the nature both of a sacrament and of a sacrifice, and those who say that it is nothing more than the memorial or commemoration of the Lord’s Supper; those who believe it to be good and useful to invoke by prayer the Saints reigning with Christ, especially Mary the Mother of God, and to venerate their images, and those who urge that such a veneration is not to be made use of, for it is contrary to the honor due to Jesus Christ. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on sin and mercy

  • Admiring the Redeemer’s infinite charity, we must have a vehement hatred of sin

And this indeed was the purpose of the merciful Jesus, when He showed His Heart to us bearing about it the symbols of the passion and displaying the flames of love, that from the one we might know the infinite malice of sin, and in the other we might admire the infinite charity of Our Redeemer, and so might have a more vehement hatred of sin, and make a more ardent return of love for His love. (Pius XI. Encyclical Miserentissimus Redemptor, no. 11, May 8, 1928)

  • Each fault renews the Passion of the Lord, crucifying and making him a mockery

And the minds of the pious meditate on all these things the more truly, because the sins of men and their crimes committed in every age were the cause why Christ was delivered up to death, and now also they would of themselves bring death to Christ, joined with the same griefs and sorrows, since each several sin in its own way is held to renew the passion of Our Lord:Crucifying again to themselves the Son of God, and making him a mockery’ (Heb 6, 6). (Pius XI. Encyclical Miserentissimus Redemptor, no. 13, May 8, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on communion to divorced in second union

  • Christ Himself lays stress on the indissolubility and firmness of the marriage bond

In the first place Christ Himself lays stress on the indissolubility and firmness of the marriage bond when He says: ‘What God hath joined together let no man put asunder,’ (Mt 19:6) and: ‘Everyone that putteth away his wife and marrieth another committeth adultery, and he that marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery’ (Lk 14:18). And Saint Augustine clearly places what he calls the blessing of matrimony in this indissolubility when he says: ‘In the sacrament it is provided that the marriage bond should not be broken, and that a husband or wife, if separated, should not be joined to another even for the sake of offspring’ (De Gen. ad litt. lib. IX, cap. 7, n. 12). (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti Connubii, nos. 32-33, December 31, 1930)

…judges Francis’ idea on eternal condemnation

  • Jesus declared to the Jews that the Father bestowed judicial power on Him – to impose punishments which no one can escape

Jesus Himself declared to the Jews, who accused Him of violating the quiet of Sabbath by the wonderful healing of the sick man, that the Father had bestowed judicial power on Him: ‘For neither cloth the Father judge any man, but hath given all judgment to the Son’ (Jn 5:22); by which this also is understood – since the fact cannot be separated from the judgment – that by His own right He confers rewards and punishments upon men while still living. And furthermore that power which is called executive is to be attributed to Christ, since it is necessary that all obey His power, and since no one can escape what has been imposed upon the contumacious in the imposing of punishment. (Denzinger-Hünermann 3677. Pius XI, Encyclical Quas primas, December 11, 1925)

…judges Francis’ idea on the harmony among good and evil

  • The divinely revealed truth is not a subject for compromise

Shall We suffer, what would indeed be iniquitous, the truth, and a truth divinely revealed, to be made a subject for compromise? For here there is question of defending revealed truth. […] If our Redeemer plainly said that His Gospel was to continue not only during the times of the Apostles, but also till future ages, is it possible that the object of faith should in the process of time become so obscure and uncertain, that it would be necessary to-day to tolerate opinions which are even incompatible one with another? If this were true, we should have to confess that the coming of the Holy Ghost on the Apostles, and the perpetual indwelling of the same Spirit in the Church, and the very preaching of Jesus Christ, have several centuries ago, lost all their efficacy and use, to affirm which would be blasphemy. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on ‘culture of encounter’

  • The Holy Catholic Church forms good citizens – it is impossible to produce true temporal peace by things opposed to the peace of eternity

The more closely the temporal power of a nation aligns itself with the spiritual, and the more it fosters and promotes the latter, by so much the more it contributes to the conservation of the commonwealth. For it is the aim of the ecclesiastical authority by the use of spiritual means, to form good Christians in accordance with its own particular end and object; and in doing this it helps at the same time to form good citizens, and prepares them to meet their obligations as members of a civil society. This follows of necessity because in the City of God, the Holy Roman Catholic Church, a good citizen and an upright man are absolutely one and the same thing. How grave therefore is the error of those who separate things so closely united, and who think that they can produce good citizens by ways and methods other than those which make for the formation of good Christians. For, let human prudence say what it likes and reason as it pleases, it is impossible to produce true temporal peace and tranquility by things repugnant or opposed to the peace and happiness of eternity (Dell’ educaz. crist., lib. I, c. 43.) (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Illius Magistri, no. 54, December 31, 1929)

  • That all religions are good and praiseworthy: error and distortion of the idea of true religion, that can nowise be approved by Catholics

For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. […] Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion, they reject it and little by little, turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 2, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on the evils in our times

  • The greatest and most destructive scourges of the social order of today lie within the supernatural order, but are not perceived by ‘the sensual man’

It is surprising, then, that we should no longer possess that security of life in which we can place our trust and that there remains only the most terrible uncertainty, and from hour to hour added fears for the future? Instead of regular daily work there is idleness and unemployment. That blessed tranquility which is the effect of an orderly existence and in which the essence of peace is to be found no longer exists, and, in its place, the restless spirit of revolt reigns. As a consequence industry suffers, commerce is crippled, the cultivation of literature and the arts becomes more and more difficult, and what is worse than all, Christian civilization itself is irreparably damaged thereby. In the face of our much praised progress, we behold with sorrow society lapsing back slowly but surely into a state of barbarism. We wish to record, in addition to the evils already mentioned, other evils which beset society and which occupy a place of prime importance but whose very existence escapes the ordinary observer, the sensual man – he who, as the Apostle says, does not perceive ‘the things that are of the Spirit of God’ (1Cor 2:14), yet which cannot but be judged the greatest and most destructive scourges of the social order of today. We refer specifically to those evils which transcend the material or natural sphere and lie within the supernatural and religious order properly so-called; in other words, those evils which affect the spiritual life of souls. These evils are all the more to be deplored since they injure souls whose value is infinitely greater than that of any merely material object. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi Arcano, nos. 15-16, December 23, 1922)

  • When examined with Christian eyes, nothing can be compared to the loss of souls

Minds of all, it is true, are affected almost solely by temporal upheavals, disasters, and calamities. But if we examine things critically with Christian eyes, as we should, what are all these compared with the loss of souls? Yet it is not rash by any means to say that the whole scheme of social and economic life is now such as to put in the way of vast numbers of mankind most serious obstacles which prevent them from caring for the one thing necessary; namely, their eternal salvation. (Pius XI. Encyclical Quadragesimo Anno, no. 130, May 15, 1931)

  • Those who repudiate the supreme authority of God destroy the basis of human society

In fact, because the supreme and eternal authority of God, which commands and forbids, is despised and completely repudiated by men, the result is that the consciousness of Christian duty is weakened, and that faith becomes tepid in souls or entirely lost, and this afterward affects and ruins the very basis of human society. […]

To this is added the clever and lamentable sect of those who, denying and hating God, declare themselves the enemies of the Eternal, and who insinuate themselves everywhere. They discredit and uproot all religious belief from souls. Finally, they trample on every human and Divine right. And while they cast scorn on the hope of heavenly reward, they incite men to seek, even by illicit means, false earthly happiness, and therefore drive them with brazen temerity to the dissolution of the social order, causing disorder, cruel rebellions and even the conflagration of civil war. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ingravescentiubus malis, nos. 4,7, September 29, 1937)

  • We are witnessing a war against the Church, with most grievous damage to souls

However, we should recognize with sorrow that, despite your diligent and assiduous care, within these regions also – as happens disgracefully in many others, – a war is occurring, at times silently, at times blatantly, against that which is most precious to Holy Mother Church, with the most grievous damage to souls. The integrity of the family is attacked at its foundations by frequent attempts against the sanctity of marriage; Christian education of the youth, interfered with and at times neglected, there as in other nations, is now seriously compromised by errors against faith and morals and by calumnies against the Church, which is presented as an enemy to progress, liberty and the interests of the people. (Pius XI. Apostolic Letter Con singular complacencia to the Bishops of the Philippines, January 18, 1939)

  • Catechetical apostolate is more urgent in the current conditions

The catechetical apostolate appears to be more necessary and urgent in the current conditions of your country and of others, where, due to diverse reasons, so many children and youth, in the cities, villages and on farms grow up without religious formation. (Pius XI. Apostolic Letter Con singular complacencia to the Bishops of the Philippines on Catholic Action, January 18, 1939)

…judges Francis’ idea on the impossibility of finding God with entire certainty

  • The task of teaching the truth of Christ belongs preeminently to the Church

And first of all education belongs preeminently to the Church, by reason of a double title in the supernatural order, conferred exclusively upon her by God Himself; absolutely superior therefore to any other title in the natural order. The first title is founded upon the express mission and supreme authority to teach, given her by her divine Founder: ‘All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Going therefore teach ye all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you, and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world’ (Mt 28: 18-20). Upon this magisterial office Christ conferred infallibility, together with the command to teach His doctrine. Hence the Church ‘was set by her divine Author as the pillar and ground of truth, in order to teach the divine Faith to men, and keep whole and inviolate the deposit confided to her; to direct and fashion men, in all their actions individually and socially, to purity of morals and integrity of life, in accordance with revealed doctrine’ (Pius IX, Quum non sine). The second title is the supernatural motherhood, in virtue of which the Church, spotless spouse of Christ, generates, nurtures and educates souls in the divine life of grace, with her Sacraments and her doctrine. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Illius Magistri, nos. 15-17, December 31, 1929)

  • The Church alone possesses the whole of moral truth

It is worthy of note how a layman, an excellent writer and at the same time a profound and conscientious thinker, has been able to understand well and express exactly this fundamental Catholic doctrine (cf. A. Manzoni, Osservazioni sulla Morale Cattolica, c. III): ‘The Church does not say that morality belongs purely, in the sense of exclusively, to her; but that it belongs wholly to her. She has never maintained that outside her fold and apart from her teaching, man cannot arrive at any moral truth; she has on the contrary more than once condemned this opinion because it has appeared under more forms than one. She does however say, has said, and will ever say, that because of her institution by Jesus Christ, because of the Holy Ghost sent her in His name by the Father, she alone possesses what she has had immediately from God and can never lose, the whole of moral truth, omnem veritatem, in which all individual moral truths are included, as well those which man may learn by the help of reason, as those which form part of revelation or which may be deduced from it.’ (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Illius Magistri, no. 20, December 31, 1929)

…judges Francis’ idea on First Holy Communion

  • St. John the Apostle forbade any association with those who profess a mutilated version of Christ’s teaching

Everyone knows that John himself, the Apostle of love, who seems to reveal in his Gospel the secrets of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and who never ceased to impress on the memories of his followers the new commandment ‘Love one another,’ altogether forbade any intercourse with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ’s teaching: ‘If any man come to you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him: God speed you’ (2 John 10). (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium animos, no. 9, January 5, 1928)

…judges Francis’ relations with  ‘ordained’ women of the christian churches

  • One may not unite in any way the ‘pan-Christians’ within one body

But some are more easily deceived by the outward appearance of good when there is question of fostering unity among all Christians. Is it not right, it is often repeated, indeed, even consonant with duty, that all who invoke the name of Christ should abstain from mutual reproaches and at long last be united in mutual charity? Who would dare to say that he loved Christ, unless he worked with all his might to carry out the desires of Him, Who asked His Father that His disciples might be ‘one.’ And did not the same Christ will that His disciples should be marked out and distinguished from others by this characteristic, namely that they loved one another: ‘By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one for another’? All Christians, they add, should be as ‘one’: for then they would be much more powerful in driving out the pest of irreligion, which like a serpent daily creeps further and becomes more widely spread, and prepares to rob the Gospel of its strength. These things and others that class of men who are known as pan-Christians continually repeat and amplify; and these men, so far from being quite few and scattered, have increased to the dimensions of an entire class, and have grouped themselves into widely spread societies, most of which are directed by non-Catholics, although they are imbued with varying doctrines concerning the things of faith. This undertaking is so actively promoted as in many places to win for itself the adhesion of a number of citizens, and it even takes possession of the minds of very many Catholics and allures them with the hope of bringing about such a union as would be agreeable to the desires of Holy Mother Church, who has indeed nothing more at heart than to recall her erring sons and to lead them back to her bosom. But in reality beneath these enticing words and blandishments lies hid a most grave error, by which the foundations of the Catholic faith are completely destroyed. Admonished, therefore, by the consciousness of Our Apostolic office that We should not permit the flock of the Lord to be cheated by dangerous fallacies, We invoke, Venerable Brethren, your zeal in avoiding this evil; for We are confident that by the writings and words of each one of you the people will more easily get to know and understand those principles and arguments which We are about to set forth, and from which Catholics will learn how they are to think and act when there is question of those undertakings which have for their end the union in one body, whatsoever be the manner, of all who call themselves Christians.  We were created by God, the Creator of the universe, in order that we might know Him and serve Him; our Author therefore has a perfect right to our service. God might, indeed, have prescribed for man’s government only the natural law, which, in His creation, He imprinted on his soul, and have regulated the progress of that same law by His ordinary providence; but He preferred rather to impose precepts, which we were to obey, and in the course of time, namely from the beginnings of the human race until the coming and preaching of Jesus Christ, He Himself taught man the duties which a rational creature owes to its Creator: ‘God, who at sundry times and in divers manners, spoke in times past to the fathers by the prophets, last of all, in these days, hath spoken to us by his Son.’ From which it follows that there can be no true religion other than that which is founded on the revealed word of God: which revelation, begun from the beginning and continued under the Old Law, Christ Jesus Himself under the New Law perfected. Now, if God has spoken (and it is historically certain that He has truly spoken), all must see that it is man’s duty to believe absolutely God’s revelation and to obey implicitly His commands; that we might rightly do both, for the glory of God and our own salvation, the Only-begotten Son of God founded His Church on earth. Further, We believe that those who call themselves Christians can do no other than believe that a Church, and that Church one, was established by Christ; but if it is further inquired of what nature according to the will of its Author it must be, then all do not agree. A good number of them, for example, deny that the Church of Christ must be visible and apparent, at least to such a degree that it appears as one body of faithful, agreeing in one and the same doctrine under one teaching authority and government; but, on the contrary, they understand a visible Church as nothing else than a Federation, composed of various communities of Christians, even though they adhere to different doctrines, which may even be incompatible one with another. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, nos 4-6, January 6, 1928)

  • Union among Christians who defend contrary doctrines is not possible

Who then can conceive a Christian Federation, the members of which retain each his own opinions and private judgment, even in matters which concern the object of faith, even though they be repugnant to the opinions of the rest? And in what manner, We ask, can men who follow contrary opinions, belong to one and the same Federation of the faithful? For example, those who affirm, and those who deny that sacred Tradition is a true fount of divine Revelation; those who hold that an ecclesiastical hierarchy, made up of bishops, priests and ministers, has been divinely constituted, and those who assert that it has been brought in little by little in accordance with the conditions of the time; those who adore Christ really present in the Most Holy Eucharist through that marvelous conversion of the bread and wine, which is called transubstantiation, and those who affirm that Christ is present only by faith or by the signification and virtue of the Sacrament; those who in the Eucharist recognize the nature both of a sacrament and of a sacrifice, and those who say that it is nothing more than the memorial or commemoration of the Lord’s Supper; those who believe it to be good and useful to invoke by prayer the Saints reigning with Christ, especially Mary the Mother of God, and to venerate their images, and those who urge that such a veneration is not to be made use of, for it is contrary to the honor due to Jesus Christ, ‘the one mediator of God and men.’ (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

  • Diverging opinions lead to neglect of religion and so-called ‘modernism,’ that claim dogmatic truth is not absolute

How so great a variety of opinions can make the way clear to effect the unity of the Church We know not; that unity can only arise from one teaching authority, one law of belief and one faith of Christians. But We do know that from this it is an easy step to the neglect of religion or indifferentism and to modernism, as they call it. Those, who are unhappily infected with these errors, hold that dogmatic truth is not absolute but relative, that is, it agrees with the varying necessities of time and place and with the varying tendencies of the mind, since it is not contained in immutable revelation, but is capable of being accommodated to human life. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, no. 9, January 6, 1928)

  • The union of Christians will only occur with the return of dissidents to the one true Church

The union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it. During the lapse of centuries, the mystical Spouse of Christ has never been contaminated, nor can she ever in the future be contaminated, as Cyprian bears witness: ‘The Bride of Christ cannot be made false to her Spouse: she is incorrupt and modest. She knows but one dwelling, she guards the sanctity of the nuptial chamber chastely and modestly.’ The same holy Martyr with good reason marveled exceedingly that anyone could believe that ‘this unity in the Church which arises from a divine foundation, and which is knit together by heavenly sacraments, could be rent and torn asunder by the force of contrary wills.’ For since the mystical body of Christ, in the same manner as His physical body, is one, compacted and fitly joined together, it were foolish and out of place to say that the mystical body is made up of members which are disunited and scattered abroad: whosoever therefore is not united with the body is no member of it, neither is he in communion with Christ its head. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, no.10, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on responsible parenthood

  • God’s purpose for instituting the family: the generation and formation of offspring

Education is essentially a social and not a mere individual activity. Now there are three necessary societies, distinct from one another and yet harmoniously combined by God, into which man is born: two, namely the family and civil society, belong to the natural order; the third, the Church, to the supernatural order. In the first place comes the family, instituted directly by God for its peculiar purpose, the generation and formation of offspring; for this reason it has priority of nature and therefore of rights over civil society. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Iliius Magistri, nos. 11-12, December 31, 1929)

  • How great a boon children are is clear from a consideration of man’s sublime end

Thus amongst the blessings of marriage, the child holds the first place. And indeed the Creator of the human race Himself, Who in His goodness wishes to use men as His helpers in the propagation of life, taught this when, instituting marriage in Paradise, He said to our first parents, and through them to all future spouses: ‘Increase and multiply, and fill the earth’ (Gen 1:28). As St. Augustine admirably deduces from the words of the holy Apostle Saint Paul to Timothy (Tim 5:14) when he says: ‘The Apostle himself is therefore a witness that marriage is for the sake of generation: ‘I wish,’ he says, ‘young girls to marry.’ And, as if someone said to him, ‘Why?’ he immediately adds: ‘To bear children, to be mothers of families’ (St. Augustine, De bono coniug., ch. 24, no. 32). How great a boon of God this is, and how great a blessing of matrimony is clear from a consideration of man’s dignity and of his sublime end.  (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti Connubii, nos. 10-11, December 31, 1930)

  • Parents are destined to engender members for the Church of Christ

But Christian parents must also understand that they are destined not only to propagate and preserve the human race on earth, indeed not only to educate any kind of worshippers of the true God, but children who are to become members of the Church of Christ, to raise up fellow-citizens of the Saints, and members of God’s household, that the worshippers of God and Our Savior may daily increase.  […] since it is theirs to offer their offspring to the Church in order that by this most fruitful Mother of the children of God they may be regenerated through the laver of Baptism unto supernatural justice and finally be made living members of Christ. (Pius XI. Encyclical Casti Connubii, nos. 13-14, December 31, 1930)

…judges Francis’ idea on the obedience of a Religious

  • The mission of the Church is to educate, to direct and fashion

The first title [of the Church] is founded upon the express mission and supreme authority to teach, given her by her divine Founder: ‘All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Going therefore teach ye all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you, and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.’ Upon this magisterial office Christ conferred infallibility, together with the command to teach His doctrine. Hence the Church ‘was set by her divine Author as the pillar and ground of truth, in order to teach the divine Faith to men, and keep whole and inviolate the deposit confided to her; to direct and fashion men, in all their actions individually and socially, to purity of morals and integrity of life, in accordance with revealed doctrine.’ (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Illius Magistri, no. 16, December 31, 1931)

  • The Christian spirit is lost without the authority of the Church

There is no doubt that human society will always suffer the most grievous harm whenever the guiding authority of the Church and its salutary influence is eliminated from the private and public education of youth, for on this education depends, in great measure, the good order of spiritual and material matters. Due to this exclusion, human society will lose, little by little, that Christian spirit which alone may sustain the foundation of public order and tranquility and which alone is capable of fomenting real and advantageous progress for civilization, and of providing man with the means necessary to achieve the end that is beyond the frontiers of this life, that is, the acquisition of eternal salvation. (Pius IX. Letter Quum non sine, July 14, 1864)

  • Catholics should love obedience and discipline

With all Our spirit, therefore, We conjure the good Mexican Catholics to hold obedience and discipline dear. […]And let this obedience be full of joy and a stimulus to greater energies. […]He who obeys unwillingly and only through force, venting his interior resentment in bitter criticism of his superiors and companions in work, of all that which is not according to his own way of viewing things, drives away the Divine benedictions, destroys the strength of discipline, and destroys where he ought to construct. (Pius XI. Encyclical Firmissimam Constantiam, no. 34, March 28, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea on the teaching of moral issues

  • Use every care and diligence to exhort the faithful our divine religion

Admonish and exhort them to be strong in our sacred faith, without which it is impossible to please God. Urge them to persevere firmly established in our divine religion, which alone is true and eternal and prepares for salvation and even, to a very great extent, preserves and prospers civil society. Through the parish priests chiefly and other ecclesiastics known for integrity of life, gravity of morals, and constant adherence to sound doctrine, may you teach unremittingly and accurately: at one time preaching the divine word, at another instructing the people in the mysteries of our august religion, its doctrine, precepts, and discipline. You, above all, know that many evils generally arise from ignorance of divine matters essential for salvation. Hence, you will understand that it behooves you to use every care and diligence that so detrimental a condition be prevented.  (Pius IX. Encyclical Quanto Conficiamur, nos. 13-14, August 10, 1863)

…judges Francis’ idea on Catholic Education to the Youth

  • It is the right and duty of the Church to watch over the education of her children

Again it is the inalienable right as well as the indispensable duty of the Church, to watch over the entire education of her children, in all institutions, public or private, not merely in regard to the religious instruction there given, but in regard to every other branch of learning and every regulation in so far as religion and morality are concerned. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no. 23, December 31, 1929)

  • Watchfulness to protect the children of the Church from the dangers of the world

Nor should the exercise of this right be considered undue interference, but rather maternal care on the part of the Church in protecting her children from the grave danger of all kinds of doctrinal and moral evil. Moreover this watchfulness of the Church not merely can create no real inconvenience, but must on the contrary confer valuable assistance in the right ordering and well-being of families and of civil society; for it keeps far away from youth the moral poison which at that inexperienced and changeable age more easily penetrates the mind and more rapidly spreads its baneful effects. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no. 23, December 31, 1929)

  • The Church was able to save treasures of culture, civilization and literature thanks to Her mission to educate

But if we wonder that the Church in all times has been able to gather about her and educate hundreds, thousands, millions of students, no less wonderful is it to bear in mind what she has done not only in the field of education, but in that also of true and genuine erudition. For, if so many treasures of culture, civilization and literature have escaped destruction, this is due to the action by which the Church, even in times long past and uncivilized, has shed so bright a light in the domain of letters, of philosophy, of art and in a special manner of architecture. All this the Church has been able to do because her mission to educate extends equally to those outside the Fold, seeing that all men are called to enter the kingdom of God and reach eternal salvation. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no. 25-26, December 31, 1929)

  • Parents have the duty to seek schools that form their children in true Catholic doctrine

Let it be loudly proclaimed and well understood and recognized by all, that Catholics, no matter what their nationality, in agitating for Catholic schools for their children, are not mixing in party politics, but are engaged in a religious enterprise demanded by conscience. They do not intend to separate their children either from the body of the nation or its spirit, but to educate them in a perfect manner, most conducive to the prosperity of the nation. Indeed a good Catholic, precisely because of his Catholic principles, makes the better citizen, attached to his country, and loyally submissive to constituted civil authority in every legitimate form of government. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no. 73, December 31, 1929)

  • Exclusion of religion is contrary to the fundamental principles of education

From this it follows that the so-called ‘neutral’ or ‘lay’ school, from which religion is excluded, is contrary to the fundamental principles of education. Such a school moreover cannot exist in practice; it is bound to become irreligious. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no.  79, December 31, 1929)

  • There is no education more perfect than Christian education

In fact, since education consists essentially in preparing man for what he must be and for what he must do here below, in order to attain the sublime end for which he was created, it is clear that there can be no true education which is not wholly directed to man’s last end, and that in the present order of Providence, since God has revealed Himself to us in the Person of His Only Begotten Son, who alone is ‘the way, the truth and the life (Jn 14:6),’ there can be no ideally perfect education which is not Christian education. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no. 7, December 31, 1929)

  • Christian education is unsurpassable for it aims at securing the Supreme Good for souls

From these same principles, the excellence, we may well call it the unsurpassed excellence, of the work of Christian education becomes manifest and clear; for after all it aims at securing the Supreme Good, that is, God, for the souls of those who are being educated, and the maximum of well-being possible here below for human society. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no. 8, December 31, 1929)

  • For a Catholic school to be worthy of its title, it is necessary that all the teaching and the whole organization of the school be regulated by the Christian spirit

For the mere fact that a school gives some religious instruction (often extremely stinted), does not bring it into accord with the rights of the Church and of the Christian family, or make it a fit place for Catholic students. To be this, it is necessary that all the teaching and the whole organization of the school, and its teachers, syllabus and text-books in every branch, be regulated by the Christian spirit, under the direction and maternal supervision of the Church; so that Religion may be in very truth the foundation and crown of the youth’s entire training; and this in every grade of school, not only the elementary, but the intermediate and the higher institutions of learning as well. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini illius magistri, no. 80, December 31, 1929)

Young people, unaccustomed to the fear of God, will not endure the restraint of an upright life, they will not venture even to deny anything to their passions, and will easily be seduced into troubling the State. (Leo XIII. Encyclical Nobilissima Gallorum gens, February 8, 1884)

  • When religion is banished from education, materialism is fostered

When religion is banished from the school, from education and from public life, when the representatives of Christianity and its sacred rites are held up to ridicule, are we not really fostering the materialism which is the fertile soil of Communism? Neither force, however well organized it be, nor earthly ideals however lofty or noble, can control a movement whose roots lie in the excessive esteem for the goods of this world. (Pius XI. Encyclical Divini Redemptoris, no. 78, March 19, 1937)

…judges Francis’ idea that the Church should not be a Point of Reference

  • For the unity of charity, it is indispensable to have unity of faith

But some are more easily deceived by the outward appearance of good when there is question of fostering unity among all Christians. Is it not right, it is often repeated, indeed, even consonant with duty, that all who invoke the name of Christ should abstain from mutual reproaches and at long last be united in mutual charity? […] These things and others that class of men who are known as pan-Christians continually repeat and amplify; and these men, so far from being quite few and scattered, have increased to the dimensions of an entire class, and have grouped themselves into widely spread societies, most of which are directed by non-Catholics, although they are imbued with varying doctrines concerning the things of faith. […] These pan-Christians who turn their minds to uniting the churches seem, indeed, to pursue the noblest of ideas in promoting charity among all Christians: nevertheless how does it happen that this charity tends to injure faith? Everyone knows that John himself, the Apostle of love, who seems to reveal in his Gospel the secrets of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and who never ceased to impress on the memories of his followers the new commandment ‘Love one another,’ altogether forbade any intercourse with those who professed a mutilated and corrupt version of Christ’s teaching: ‘If any man come to you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him: God speed you.’ [18] For which reason, since charity is based on a complete and sincere faith, the disciples of Christ must be united principally by the bond of one faith. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, no. 3-4, 9, January 6, 1928)

  • Unity is only possible in the bosom of the Church

For the union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it. […] Furthermore, in this one Church of Christ no man can be or remain who does not accept, recognize and obey the authority and supremacy of Peter and his legitimate successors. Did not the ancestors of those who are now entangled in the errors of Photius and the reformers, obey the Bishop of Rome, the chief shepherd of souls? Alas their children left the home of their fathers, but it did not fall to the ground and perish forever, for it was supported by God. […] Let, therefore, the separated children draw nigh to the Apostolic See, set up in the City which Peter and Paul, the Princes of the Apostles, consecrated by their blood; to that See, We repeat, which is ‘the root and womb whence the Church of God springs,’(S. Cyprian Ep. 48 ad Cornelium, 3) not with the intention and the hope that ‘the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth’ (1 Tim 3:15) will cast aside the integrity of the faith and tolerate their errors, but, on the contrary, that they themselves submit to its teaching and government.  (Pius XI, Encyclical Mortalium Animos, no. 10, 11, 12, January 6, 1928)

…judges Francis’ idea on Ascetism and silence in the Spiritual Exercises

  • Recollection in the Exercises is the best remedy for curing levity and thoughtlessness

The most grave disease by which our age is oppressed, and at the same time the fruitful source of all the evils deplored by every man of good heart, is that levity and thoughtlessness which carry men hither and thither through devious ways.  […] Now, if we would cure this sickness from which human society suffers so sorely, what healing remedy could we devise more appropriate for our purpose than that of calling these enervated souls, so neglectful of eternal things, to the recollection of the Spiritual Exercises? And, indeed, if the Spiritual Exercises were nothing more than a brief retirement for a few days, wherein a man removed from the common society of mortals and from the crowd of cares, was given, not empty silence, but the opportunity of examining those most grave and penetrating questions concerning the origin and the destiny of man: ‘Whence he comes; and whither he is going’; surely, no one can deny that great benefits may be derived from these sacred exercises. (Pius XI, Encyclical Mens Nostra, no. 4, December 20, 1929)

  • The Ignatian method: its primacy among other spiritual exercises

Now it is recognized that among all the methods of ‘Spiritual Exercises’ which very laudably adhere to the principles of sound Catholic asceticism one has ever held the foremost place and adorned by the full and repeated approbation of the Holy See and honored by the praises of men, distinguished for spiritual doctrine and sanctity, has borne abundant fruits of holiness during the space of well nigh four hundred years; we mean the method introduced by Saint Ignatius of Loyola, whom we are pleased to call the chief and peculiar Master of ‘Spiritual Exercises’ […] And in very deed, the excellence of spiritual doctrine altogether free from the perils and errors of false mysticism, the admirable facility of adapting the exercises to any order or state of man, whether they devote themselves to contemplation in the cloisters, or lead an active life in the affairs of the world, the apt co-ordination of the various parts, the wonderful and lucid order in the meditation of truths that seem to follow naturally one from another; and lastly the spiritual lessons which after casting off the yoke of sin and washing away the diseases inherent in his morals lead a man through the safe paths of abnegation and the removal of evil habits. (Pius XI, Encyclical Mens Nostra, no. 22, December 20, 1929)

  • The Ignatian method reforms and teaches obedience to God

Not that We should little worth the methods of exercises used by others, but in those that are carried out according to the Ignatian method, the entire scheme is so wisely arranged, each part leading so well to the next, that where there is no opposition to divine grace, there is, so to say, a radical renewal of the individual and his total submission to the divine will. Prepared in this manner for a life of action, Ignatius concentrated his efforts on forming his chosen companions, desiring their exemplary obedience to God and His Vicar, the Roman Pontiff, and that they consider obedience to be the main characteristic of his Company. Consequently, he not only desired that his followers enhance their spiritual fervor through the Exercises, but he also armed them with this instrument so that they themselves might employ it in their efforts to lead straying souls back to the Church, thus submitting them entirely to the power of Christ. (Pius XI. Apostolic Letter Meditantibus Nobis, December 3, 1922)

  •  Exercises performed in private are preferable to those practiced publically

Wherefore before all things it is necessary that the mind, assisted by solitude should devote itself to the sacred meditations, leaving aside all the cares and solicitudes of daily life. For as that golden book, the ‘Imitation of Christ’, clearly teaches: ‘The devout soul makes progress in silence and in peace’ (De Imit. Chr., L.I., c. 206). For this reason, although we regard those meditations as worthy of praise and pastoral approval in which many make the exercises together in public — for these have received many blessings from God — still we most strongly recommend those Spiritual Exercises which are made in private, and are called ‘closed.’ (Pius XI, Encyclical Mens Nostra, no. 13, December 20, 1929)

  •  Solitude attracts humanity particularly during turbulent epochs

But as time went on men were still held by the desire of placid solitude wherein away from witnesses the soul might give attention; nay more, it is found that in the most turbulent ages of human society men athirst for justice and truth were the more vehemently urged by the Divine Spirit seek the solitude ‘in order being free from bodily desire they might more often be intent on the divine wisdom in the court of the mind where all the tumult of earthly cares being silent, they may rejoice in holy mediations and eternal delights.’ (Pius XI, Encyclical, Mens Nostra, no. 6, December 20, 1929)

  •  Great efforts are necessary to overcome the effects of Original Sin

‘Original sin’ is the hereditary but impersonal fault of Adam’s descendants, who have sinned in him (Rom 5: 12). It is the loss of grace, and therefore of eternal life, together with a propensity to evil, which everybody must, with the assistance of grace, penance, resistance and moral effort, repress and conquer. The passion and death of the Son of God has redeemed the world from the hereditary curse of sin and death. Faith in these truths, which in your country are today the object of vile derision of Christ’s enemies, belongs to the inalienable treasury of Christian revelation. (Pius XI, Encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge, no. 25, March 14, 1937)

  •  No one is exempt from the responsibility to expiate sins

For since we are all sinners and laden with many faults, our God must be honored by us not only by that worship wherewith we adore His infinite Majesty with due homage, or acknowledge His supreme dominion by praying, or praise His boundless bounty by thanksgiving; but besides this we must need make satisfaction to God the just avenger, ‘for our numberless sins and offenses and negligences.’ To Consecration, therefore, whereby we are devoted to God and are called holy to God, by that holiness and stability which, as the Angelic Doctor teaches, is proper to consecration (S.Th. II-II q. 81, a. 8. c.), there must be added expiation, whereby sins are wholly blotted out, lest the holiness of the Supreme Justice may punish our shameless unworthiness, and reject our offering as hateful rather than accept it as pleasing. Moreover this duty of expiation is laid upon the whole race of men since, as we are taught by the Christian faith, after Adam’s miserable fall, infected by hereditary stain, subject to concupiscence and most wretchedly depraved, it would have been thrust down into eternal destruction. (Pius XI, Encyclical Miserentissimus Redemptor, no. 6, May 8, 1928)

  •  The Poverello of Assisi was one of the greatest penitents

And even for men individually, penance is the foundation and bearer of true peace detaching them from earthly and perishable goods, lifting them up to goods that are eternal, giving them, even in the midst of privations and adversity, a peace that the world with all its wealth and pleasures cannot give. One of the most pleasing and most joyous songs ever heard in this vale tears is without doubt the famous “Canticle of the Sun” of Saint Francis. Now the man who composed it, who wrote it and sang it, was one of the greatest penitents, the Poor Man of Assisi, who possessed absolutely nothing on earth, and bore in his emaciated body the painful Stigmata of His Crucified Lord. Prayer, then, and penance are the two potent inspirations sent to us at this time by God, that we may lead back to Him mankind that has gone astray and wanders about without a guide: they are the inspirations that will dispel and remedy the first and principal cause of every form of disturbance and rebellion, the revolt of man against God. (Pius XI, Encyclical Caritate Christi Compuli, nos. 27-28, May 3, 1932)

  •  The Poverello of Assisi was one of the greatest penitents

And even for men individually, penance is the foundation and bearer of true peace detaching them from earthly and perishable goods, lifting them up to goods that are eternal, giving them, even in the midst of privations and adversity, a peace that the world with all its wealth and pleasures cannot give. One of the most pleasing and most joyous songs ever heard in this vale tears is without doubt the famous “Canticle of the Sun” of Saint Francis. Now the man who composed it, who wrote it and sang it, was one of the greatest penitents, the Poor Man of Assisi, who possessed absolutely nothing on earth, and bore in his emaciated body the painful Stigmata of His Crucified Lord. Prayer, then, and penance are the two potent inspirations sent to us at this time by God, that we may lead back to Him mankind that has gone astray and wanders about without a guide: they are the inspirations that will dispel and remedy the first and principal cause of every form of disturbance and rebellion, the revolt of man against God. (Pius XI, Encyclical Caritate Christi Compuli, nos. 27-28, May 3, 1932)

  …judges Francis’ ideas on all being children of God 

  • Meetings which Catholics May Not Approve

For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. For which reason conventions, meetings and addresses are frequently arranged by these persons, at which a large number of listeners are present, and at which all without distinction are invited to join in the discussion, both infidels of every kind, and Christians, even those who have unhappily fallen away from Christ or who with obstinacy and pertinacity deny His divine nature and mission. Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little, turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion. (Pius XI. Encyclical Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928)

  •  The Poverello of Assisi was one of the greatest penitents

And even for men individually, penance is the foundation and bearer of true peace detaching them from earthly and perishable goods, lifting them up to goods that are eternal, giving them, even in the midst of privations and adversity, a peace that the world with all its wealth and pleasures cannot give. One of the most pleasing and most joyous songs ever heard in this vale tears is without doubt the famous “Canticle of the Sun” of Saint Francis. Now the man who composed it, who wrote it and sang it, was one of the greatest penitents, the Poor Man of Assisi, who possessed absolutely nothing on earth, and bore in his emaciated body the painful Stigmata of His Crucified Lord. Prayer, then, and penance are the two potent inspirations sent to us at this time by God, that we may lead back to Him mankind that has gone astray and wanders about without a guide: they are the inspirations that will dispel and remedy the first and principal cause of every form of disturbance and rebellion, the revolt of man against God. (Pius XI, Encyclical Caritate Christi Compuli, nos. 27-28, May 3, 1932)

 …judges Francis’ ideas on peace 

  • Jesus Christ Brought the Solution for Peace in the World: The Only Worthwhile Effort in Favor of True Peace is to Restore the Kingdom of Christ

First and most important of all, for mankind is the need of spiritual peace. We do not need a peace that will consist merely in acts of external or formal courtesy, but a peace which will penetrate the souls of men and which will unite, heal, and reopen their hearts to that mutual affection which is born of brotherly love. The peace of Christ is the only peace answering this description: “Let the peace of Christ rejoice in your hearts.” (Col 3:15) Nor is there any other peace possible than that which Christ gave to His disciples (John 14:27) for since He is God, He “beholdeth the heart” (1Kings 16:7) and in our hearts His kingdom is set up. Again, Jesus Christ is perfectly justified when He calls this peace of soul His own for He was the first Who said to men, “all you are brethren.” (Mt 23: 8) He gave likewise to us, sealing it with His own life’s blood, the law of brotherly love, of mutual forbearance – “This is my commandment, that you love one another, as I have loved you.” (John 15:12) “Bear ye one another’s burdens; and so you shall fulfill the law of Christ.” (Gal 6:2) […]Of this peace of Christ, which dwells in our hearts and is, in effect, the love of God, we can repeat what the Apostle has said of the kingdom of God which also rules by love – “the kingdom of Christ is not meat and drink.” (Rom 14:17) In other words, the peace of Christ is not nourished on the things of earth, but on those of heaven. Nor could it well be otherwise, since it is Jesus Christ Who has revealed to the world the existence of spiritual values and has obtained for them their due appreciation. He has said, “For what doth it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and suffer the loss of his own soul?” (Mt 16:26) He also taught us a divine lesson of courage and constancy when He said, “Fear ye not them that kill the body, and are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him that can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Mt 10:28, Lk 12:14) This peace of Christ, however, surpasses all human understanding – “the peace of God which surpasseth all understanding” (Phil 4:7), and for this very reason dominates our sinful passions and renders such evils as division, strife, and discord, which result solely from the unrestrained desire for earthly possessions, impossible. If the desire for worldly possessions were kept within bounds and the place of honor in our affections given to the things of the spirit, which place undoubtedly they deserve, the peace of Christ would follow immediately, to which would be joined in a natural and happy union, as it were, a higher regard for the value and dignity of human life. Human personality, too, would be raised to a higher level, for man has been ennobled by the Blood of Christ and made kin to God Himself. […] We have already seen and come to the conclusion that the principal cause of the confusion, restlessness, and dangers which are so prominent a characteristic of false peace is the weakening of the binding force of law and lack of respect for authority, effects which logically follow upon denial of the truth that authority comes from God, the Creator and Universal Law-giver.The only remedy for such state of affairs is the peace of Christ since the peace of Christ is the peace of God, which could not exist if it did not enjoin respect for law, order, and the rights of authority. In the Holy Scriptures We read: “My children, keep discipline in peace.” (Sir 41:17) […] Jesus Christ very expressly states: “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s.” (Mt 22: 21) He even recognized that Pilate possessed authority from on High (Jn 14:11) as he acknowledged that the scribes and Pharisees who though unworthy sat in the chair of Moses (Mt 23: 2) […] If we stop to reflect for a moment that these ideals and doctrines of Jesus Christ, for example, his teachings on the necessity and value of the spiritual life, on the dignity and sanctity of human life, on the duty of obedience, on the divine basis of human government, on the sacramental character of matrimony and by consequence the sanctity of family life – if we stop to reflect, let Us repeat, that these ideals and doctrines of Christ (which are in fact but a portion of the treasury of truth which He left to mankind) were confided by Him to His Church and to her alone for safekeeping, and that He has promised that His aid will never fail her at any time for she is the infallible teacher of His doctrines in every century and before all nations, there is no one who cannot clearly see what a singularly important role the Catholic Church is able to play, and is even called upon to assume, in providing a remedy for the ills which afflict the world today and in leading mankind toward a universal peace. […] Since the Church is the safe and sure guide to conscience, for to her safe-keeping alone there has been confided the doctrines and the promise of the assistance of Christ, she is able not only to bring about at the present hour a peace that is truly the peace of Christ, but can, better than any other agency which We know of, contribute greatly to the securing of the same peace for the future. […] An attempt in this direction has already and is now being made; its results, however, are almost negligible and, especially so, as far as they can be said to affect those major questions which divide seriously and serve to arouse nations one against the other. No merely human institution of today can be as successful in devising a set of international laws which will be in harmony with world conditions […] There exists an institution able to safeguard the sanctity of the law of nations. This institution is a part of every nation; at the same time it is above all nations. She enjoys, too, the highest authority, the fullness of the teaching power of the Apostles. Such an institution is the Church of Christ. She alone is adapted to do this great work, for she is not only divinely commissioned to lead mankind, but moreover, because of her very make-up and the constitution which she possesses, by reason of her age-old traditions and her great prestige, which has not been lessened but has been greatly increased since the close of the War, cannot but succeed in such a venture where others assuredly will fail.It is apparent from these considerations that true peace, the peace of Christ, is impossible unless we are willing and ready to accept the fundamental principles of Christianity, unless we are willing to observe the teachings and obey the law of Christ, both in public and private life. If this were done, then society being placed at last on a sound foundation, the Church would be able, in the exercise of its divinely given ministry and by means of the teaching authority which results therefrom, to protect all the rights of God over men and nations. […] It is, therefore, a fact which cannot be questioned that the true peace of Christ can only exist in the Kingdom of Christ – “the peace of Christ in the Kingdom of Christ.” It is no less unquestionable that, in doing all we can to bring about the re-establishment of Christ’s kingdom, we will be working most effectively toward a lasting world peace. (Pius XI. Encyclical Ubi Arcano dei Consilio, On the Peace of Christ, December 23, 1922)

Leave a Reply