by Father Nicholas Gruner
Our Lady of Fatima said, “In Portugal, the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved, etc.” What is dogma? And what does this have to do with the Third Secret? Father Gruner masterfully shows us how we can protect our souls; how we can know, without a shadow of a doubt, what our Catholic Faith asks of us; and how this helps us to understand the innermost contents of the Third Secret.
In this question-and-answer essay, I seek to address the following three fundamental questions concerning the Third Secret of Fatima: 1) Is it crucial for you to know it? 2) What is the Third Secret? 3) What can we do about it?
Q: What has the Pope told us concerning the Third Secret?
Pope John Paul II told us essential elements of the Third Secret in his sermon on May 13, 1982, as well as in his sermon during the beatification ceremony of Blessed Jacinta and Francisco Marto at Fatima on May 13, 2000.
Q: What did the Pope tell us about the Third Secret on May 13, 1982?
On May 13, 1982, Pope John Paul II asked in his sermon, “Can the Mother with all the force of the love that She fosters in the Holy Spirit and desires everyone’s salvation, can She remain silent when She sees the very basis of Her children’s salvation undermined?” The Pope then answered his own question, “No, She cannot remain silent.” Here the Pope himself tells us that the Fatima Message concerns Our Lady’s warning that the foundation of our salvation is being undermined. Then, on May 13, 2000, the Pope in his sermon during the beatification ceremony warned the faithful to beware of the tail of the dragon, and he cited Chapter 12 verses 3 and 4 of the Book of the Apocalypse. The Book of the Apocalypse, Chapter 12 verse 4 speaks of the tail of the dragon sweeping one-third of the stars from heaven, which is commonly understood to mean one-third of the Catholic Clergy.
Q: But where in the Message of Fatima does the Blessed Virgin speak about the basis of our salvation being undermined?
It is clearly not in the first two parts of the Secret of Fatima, which say nothing about the basis of our salvation being undermined or the tail of the dragon sweeping consecrated souls down from their exalted state. The only evident reference in the text of the Message of Fatima about the basis of our salvation being undermined or consecrated souls falling from their state is found in Sister Lucy’s fourth memoir, where she added to the integral text of the Message a phrase she had held back before: “In Portugal the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved, etc.” Here, and only here, the revealed portion of the integral Message of Fatima touches upon the question of the dogmas of the Faith, and how they will be preserved in Portugal.
But what would be the point of Our Lady mentioning this, if dogma were going to be preserved everywhere else as well? Clearly, the reference to Portugal as a place where dogma will be preserved introduces the notion that elsewhere it will not be preserved, and the “elsewhere” is undoubtedly described in the words comprised by Sister Lucy’s “etc.” Yet the vision published on June 26, 2000 contains no further words of Our Lady. Where, then, are the words comprised in the “etc.” which terminates the obviously momentous reference to dogma being preserved in Portugal, but evidently not elsewhere preserved? I can only conclude that the missing words of Our Lady are found in the “sound track”, as it were, of the Third Secret, where Our Lady would explain the vision published on June 26 by Cardinal Ratzinger and Monsignor Bertone. And I note that very recently Mother Angelica said on her live television show that she, too, “is one of those people who happen to believe that we didn’t get the whole thing” — meaning the whole Third Secret. Mother Angelica went on to explain that she believes we didn’t get the whole thing because “I think its scary.” I agree completely. It is very scary indeed, because it must concern the greatest danger of all — the danger to the Faith and to the salvation of souls. The vision published on June 26 simply does not contain anything so frightening, or even controversial, that the Vatican would have kept it under lock and key for forty years.
Q: What did the Pope mean in 1982 when he spoke of “the basis of our salvation”? What is the basis of our salvation?
It is the Catholic Faith. We know this from the Athanasian Creed which says, and I quote: “Whoever wishes to be saved must before all else adhere to the Catholic faith. He must preserve this faith whole and inviolate; otherwise he shall most certainly perish in eternity.”
So the basis, the foundation of our salvation is belonging to the Catholic Church and holding on to our Catholic Faith whole and inviolate. And that is what the Third Secret is about. And this we know, not only from the Pope’s remark but also from Our Lady Herself saying, “In Portugal, the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved,” indicating – just as every Fatima expert has said – that the Third Secret concerns the Catholic Faith. Of course, we have Frère Michel’s book (The Third Secret) and Father Alonso’s writings which confirm that. As well, we have Bishop Amaral — the third Bishop of Fatima — confirming this point in his speech in Vienna, Austria on September 10, 1984. There, he told us that the Third Secret concerns the apostasy of nations. Apostasy takes place with, of course, the loss of faith.
“Its content,” he insisted, “concerns only our faith. To identify the Secret with catastrophic announcements or with a nuclear holocaust is to deform the meaning of the message. The loss of faith of a continent is worse than the annihilation of a nation; and it is true that faith is continually diminishing in Europe.”(1)
We also have Cardinal Ratzinger confirming the whole thesis of the Secret referring to the danger of apostasy in the Church in his famous interview in Jesus magazine of November 11, 1984, where he tells us the Third Secret concerns “the dangers threatening the Faith and life of the Christian, and therefore the life of the world.” Every word of his interview was approved by Cardinal Ratzinger before being published.
Q: Why should we be concerned about the content of the Third Secret?
The Secret is very important to us — it can’t be any more important — because it concerns the salvation of our very own individual souls. It also concerns the salvation of the souls of the Pope, the cardinals, the bishops, the priests and of every living person. So, the Third Secret concerns every man, woman and child on the face of the earth, but particularly Catholics. This is the most important concern of all because it means our eternal salvation. Our Lord said, “What does it profit a man to gain the whole world if he loses his own eternal soul?” If a person loses his soul for the New World Order, the One World Religion, or the promise of peace and prosperity in the world, it doesn’t serve him any purpose at all because he will burn in hell for all eternity. Therefore, the Third Secret is of the highest concern to every man, woman and child, including, obviously every priest, bishop, and cardinal and even the Pope himself.
Q: What is the essence of the Third Secret?
The Third Secret is a prophecy. We know that from Cardinal Ottaviani who read it and said so, and from Cardinal Ratzinger who said in the 1984 interview that if the Secret was not published at least for now it was to “avoid confusing religious prophecy with sensationalism.” It is a prophecy that began to be realized at least by 1960, which Sister Lucy said was the year by which the prophecy of the Third Secret will be “much clearer.” It is a prophecy that tells us about our time. It is a loving warning from Our Lady and also advice on how to act in these circumstances.
We are told by the Third Secret of Our Lady of Fatima that the dogma of Faith will be preserved in Portugal, and this is clearly understood by all the Fatima experts to mean that the dogma of Faith will not be preserved elsewhere. That is the first essential point of the Third Secret.
Therefore, the Third Secret concerns, first of all, the dangers to the Faith, just as Cardinal Ratzinger said in 1984. St. John tells us what it is that overcomes the world: he says it is our faith. For the world to overcome the Church, it has to overcome our faith first of all. And so that is what the Secret concerns: our faith. We know this from Our Lady’s words given to us by Sister Lucy in the beginning of the Third Secret; we know it from Cardinal Ratzinger; we know it from the Bishop of Fatima; we know it from the remarks of the Pope at Fatima in 1982 and 2000. It concerns our faith. There is no question about that.
Secondly, it concerns the dogma of the Faith. Our Lady of Fatima spoke about the dogma of the Faith as always being preserved in Portugal. Why did Our Lady speak about the dogma of the Faith? She spoke about dogma because that would be the target of those who would attack the Church from within. What is dogma? Dogma is what has been infallibly defined. The dogma of the Faith is known by the solemn, infallible definitions of the Magisterium of the Church. The word infallible means “cannot fail”. Therefore, the definitions of the Faith, solemnly defined by the Church, cannot fail. So we know what the Faith is, what the dogma of the Faith is, by the infallible definitions.
The problem is that since Vatican II we have new notions being passed off in the Church as “new” Catholic doctrine which appear to contradict or at least “revise” the infallible definitions. But as Vatican I clearly taught, the infallible Magisterium — which means the Pope definitively teaching the universal Church either alone or together with all the bishops — cannot give us new doctrine. The Magisterium can only pass on and fully explain what God revealed through the apostles. There is no new doctrine being revealed by God since the death of the last Apostle, Saint John. So this “new” doctrine is really pseudo-doctrine. This pseudo-doctrine is being taught very subtly; but when it contradicts the doctrine which has been infallibly defined, then we have to believe the infallible doctrine and we must reject the “new” doctrine. And so, it’s important for us to realize that it is the dogma of the Faith that cannot fail. Men can fail; lay people can fail; priests can fail; bishops can fail; cardinals can fail; and even the Pope can fail in matters which do not involve his charism of infallibility, as history has shown us with more than one pope (e.g. after Pope Honorius died, he was condemned by the Third Council of Constantinople [680 A.D.] for aiding and abetting heresy, and that condemnation was approved by Pope Leo II and repeated by later popes). But the solemn definitions of the Faith by the Pope, or the Pope together with all the bishops in a Council of the Church, cannot fail.
Everything should be judged by those definitions that cannot fail. And so if a pope, a cardinal, a bishop, a priest, or a layman teaches us something contrary to any definition of the Faith, we can know that that layman, priest, bishop, cardinal, or pope is wrong. For example, when John XXII, back in the 14th Century, gave sermons (but not solemn definitions) in which he insisted that the blessed departed do not enjoy the Beatific Vision until the day of General Judgment, he was denounced and corrected by theologians, and he finally retracted his heretical opinion on his deathbed.
And how can we be so sure? Because the definition is infallible, it cannot fail. As I said – a pope, a cardinal, a bishop, a priest and a layman can fail. Yes, even the Pope can fail, and he does fail if he expresses an opinion which is contrary to a solemn, infallible definition of the Catholic Church. This does not mean the Church fails when this happens, but only that the Pope has made a mistake without imposing it on the whole Church. As we see with the example of John XXII, the Pope can make a mistake in some teaching or opinion which has not been imposed upon the Church with a solemn, infallible definition. And so when Our Lady speaks about the “dogma of the Faith”, She indicates to us that the danger to the Faith is clearly seen when the solemn dogmatic definitions of the Catholic Faith are contradicted. The definitions themselves cannot fail.
Q: Do we have any other examples of priests, bishops, cardinals or even popes failing?
Yes, of course. We have Martin Luther who was a priest, who failed — who taught heresy. We have Bishop Nestorius, who taught Nestorianism — that was condemned by the Council of Ephesus. We also have the priest Arius who failed in his Arian doctrine. We have even popes who have failed on occasion, such as John XXII and Pope Honorius. Even the first pope, St. Peter, failed, as shown in Sacred Scripture — not by what he said but by the example he gave. Peter refused to sit at table with Gentile converts, in Antioch about 50 A.D. By shunning these converts he gave the false impression that the First Council of Jerusalem was wrong in its infallible teaching that the Mosaic ceremonial law, including the prohibition against Jews eating with “unclean” Gentiles, was not binding on the Catholic Church. This was the incident for which St. Paul rebuked St. Peter to his face in public.
Another example is Pope Liberius in 357 A.D. (or thereabouts), who failed by publicly arguing in support of an equivocal statement of the Faith which could be interpreted in an heretical Arian sense. And he also failed (under duress while in exile) by wrongly condemning and excommunicating — in reality, only giving the appearance of excommunicating – St. Athanasius, who was defending the faith in this matter. Pope Liberius, the first pope not to be proclaimed a saint by the Church, was wrong because Athanasius was teaching the Catholic doctrine – the true doctrine, the infallible doctrine – taught infallibly by the Council of Nicea. In the case of Pope John XXII, which I have already mentioned, the pope who followed him defined infallibly against the doctrine of John XXII. Also, Pope Honorius was condemned for aiding and abetting heresy, which I also mentioned earlier. So yes, it is an historical fact that popes can fail in the Catholic Faith; they can teach heresy; they can fail in their sacred duty to defend the dogmas of the Faith. But the definitions cannot fail — not ever.
Whenever we come to the question of “well do we believe the Pope or do we believe the infallible definition?”, we must believe the infallible definition or we could end up falling into error, and possibly losing our souls. When the Pope is not speaking infallibly by means of a solemn definition, it is certainly possible that he could say something erroneous, just as Pope John XXII did when he gave his sermons denying the immediacy of the beatific vision. If a Pope can make a mistake, then certainly cardinals, bishops and priests can make mistakes in their teaching and opinions. Bishops can fail, priests can fail, certainly Father Gruner can fail. But the dogmatic definitions of the Church can never fail. That is why God has provided them through the infallible Magisterium of His Church, so that in times of crisis we will always be able to find the truth.
Q: But how can a priest disagree with the Pope or, say, a Vatican cardinal on some question of the faith?
Another point that needs to be understood is that just because a priest like Father Gruner or Father Smith is of a lower rank than Cardinal Ratzinger or the Pope, that does not mean that anything the Pope or Cardinal says is necessarily right and that any priest who may disagree with them on some theological point they make is necessarily wrong.
That is why the Church has infallible definitions. It is by measuring any given teaching against the solemn, infallible definitions that we find out if something is true or false – not by what rank in the clergy a person has. In fact, it was a lay person, a lawyer named Eusebius, who pointed out that Nestorius, a high-ranking archbishop in Ephesus, was wrong when he denied that Mary is the Mother of God. Eusebius stood right up in the pews on Christmas Day, during Mass, and denounced Nestorius for preaching heresy. Yet all the “high ranking” priests and bishops had remained silent in the face of Nestorius’ heresy. So, a mere layman was right and all the rest of them were wrong. So the truth is not a matter of numbers or rank; the truth is a matter of what Christ and God have revealed in Sacred Scripture and Tradition and what has been solemnly defined by the Catholic Church and what the Catholic Church has always taught.
Q: You also mentioned that the danger to the Faith is clearly seen when the solemn dogmatic definitions of the Catholic Faith are contradicted. Can you give an example that illustrates this point?
This is how the heresy of Arianism brought about confusion in the Church from 336 A.D. to 381 A.D. People should know the history of Arianism. Arianism was condemned in 325 A.D.; and yet in 336, it started up again. Starting from 336, it eventually took over about 90% of the bishops before it was defeated 50 years later, so that even the great St. Athanasius was “excommunicated” by the Pope by the year 360. By 381 Arianism had been defeated by the First Council of Constantinople. However, it was still in full bloom for some time between 360 and 380.
Now one reason why the Arians were able to succeed for a time, was that they “successfully” attacked a dogma that had been solemnly and infallibly defined at the Council of Nicea in 325 — that Christ is God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God; begotten not made, consubstantial with the Father. This solemn and infallible definition is in the Credo of the Council of Nicea, which we say every Sunday at Mass.
They overturned the definition by getting many of the “faithful” to argue for replacing it with a false definition which was not infallible. In 336 they replaced the Greek word Homoousion with another word Homoiousion. The word Homoousion basically means “consubstantial” with the Father. For God the Son to be consubstantial with the Father, the Son must not only be God but the same one God as the Father, so that the substance of the Father is the substance of the Son, even though the Person of the Father is not the Person of the Son. Thus, there are three Persons in one God — Father, Son and Holy Ghost — but there is only one God in the three Persons. That is the mystery of the Trinity.
The new word Homoiousion, however, means “of similar substance” to the Father. Thus, the phrase “consubstantial with the Father” – a crucial phrase, which we say in the Nicene Creed – was changed to “of similar substance to the Father” or “like the Father.” So the Arians brought about confusion by adding one letter to the word Homoousion to create a new word with a new meaning: Homoiousion. They attacked a solemn definition, saying that their new definition would be better than the solemn definition. But, of course, the new definition could not be better than the solemn definition, because the solemn definition is infallible.
By adding one letter to one word, the Arians got rid of the infallible definition. This opened the way for the Arians and the semi-Arians, leading to actual warfare. People were martyred, persecuted, driven out into the desert, driven into exile and so forth over this one change to one infallible dogma. St. Athanasius was driven into exile five different times by the Bishops Synod of Egypt. But he was right and they were all wrong — because he clung to the infallible definition, no matter what everyone said.
Q: What can we learn by this example?
In 325, the solemn definition of the Council of Nicea was infallible, but many people then didn’t fully realize that definitions of the Faith were infallible. The difference between then and now is that in 325 A.D. the faithful didn’t have a solemn definition saying that the definitions of Faith are infallible. In 1870, the First Vatican Council solemnly and infallibly defined the infallibility of solemn definitions. Now we know, infallibly, that solemn definitions are infallible. They cannot fail — ever.
So maybe the faithful of that time can be excused for allowing themselves to be taken in by the heretics. But in our day, we cannot be excused for being taken in by heretics and giving up the defense of solemn definitions. In 1870 the Church defined that solemn definitions are infallible, and so our defense — our first line of defense and our last line of defense — is the solemn definitions. Solemn definitions judge everybody. They are infallible of themselves — ex sese — to use the Latin phrase used by the First Vatican Council. Had the people fully realized that back in 325 and 336, they would not have given up the old definition – the infallible one – for the new one.
But that’s what we’re doing today, all over again. We are judging things in light of the Second Vatican Council instead of judging the Second Vatican Council in the light of the infallible definitions. The infallible definitions are the unchanging standard by which one measures every doctrine, just like a 36-inch yardstick is the unchanging standard for measuring a yard. We don’t suddenly decide that the new standard for measuring a yard is a 35-inch stick. Everything in the Faith must be measured against the yardstick of the infallible definitions. Even the pronouncements of the popes must be measured and weighed against this standard. And that is the crucial point, and that is why Our Lady spoke about the dogma of the Faith.
And so, what we’ve had since the Second Vatican Council is an attack, a subtle attack on the solemn definitions. We have had a so-called pastoral council which refused to speak with solemn definitions and — in the views of some — actually went against certain solemn definitions. It is the solemn definitions that must judge the council, not the other way around. Vatican II cannot be a super council that overrides all the other councils. On the contrary, Vatican II must be judged in light of the solemn definitions of previous councils and previous popes, since Vatican II did not give us any solemn, infallible definitions. But the excuse that has been used by some highly-placed bishops is: we want to be pastoral, we don’t want to have the voice of condemnations.
Q: What’s wrong with not wanting to have the voice of condemnations?
The very decision not to condemn errors and heresies is the explanation offered for why Vatican II refrained from any solemn definitions. Solemn definitions, by necessity, must say “this is the Catholic Faith” and therefore, by strict logical implication, also say, “those who say the opposite are anathema” — meaning, they are cut off from the Faith and the Church. In other words, you must believe this in order to be saved. So by necessity, the definitions also must state or imply that those who don’t believe this are condemned. This is the reason why solemn anathemas are generally included with the definitions.
By the subtle mistake of refusing to make solemn definitions, the door is opened for using words and language which can go contrary to solemn definitions, and that is exactly the trick which was used by the Arians in the Fourth Century in order to bring about confusion. And they almost succeeded in overcoming the whole Church. And that is what has been going on now for 39 years since the opening of the Second Vatican Council. Here we see what Our Lady of Fatima speaks about. She goes right to the heart of the matter. She says that the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved in Portugal — but clearly there will be a loss of dogma elsewhere. Otherwise the observation about Portugal would be pointless.
Q: Concerning the Third Secret, what else must we remember from the Pope’s speech of May 13, 1982?
We must not forget that the Pope said that our Faith was being undermined. Now to undermine the basis, the foundation, of our salvation is to undermine the Faith, and to undermine something is to attack it by stealth – by trickery, not attacking openly. And undermining is, generally speaking, done from within a given structure. So Our Lady was telling us that we must be especially alert to sneak attacks on our Faith at this time in Church history.
Q: What did the Pope tell us about the Third Secret on May 13, 2000?
In his sermon during the beatification of Blessed Jacinta and Francisco, Pope John Paul II warned us about the dangers to our salvation today by telling us that “The message of Fatima is a call to conversion, alerting humanity to have nothing to do with the ‘dragon’ whose ‘tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven, and cast them to the earth’ (Apoc. 12:4).”
By this statement, Pope John Paul II reveals that one-third of the Catholic clergy is being dragged down by “the serpent” — he is speaking in the present tense. He informs us that the biblical prophecy cited in Apoc. 12:3-4 applies to our time: “And there was seen another sign in heaven: and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads, and ten horns: and on his heads seven diadems: And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and cast them to the earth ...” (Apoc. 12:3-4)
But the Pope doesn’t say “one-third of the Catholic clergy”; he says (citing Apoc. 12:3-4) that one-third of the stars of heaven are cast down to the earth by the tail of the dragon. He does not explain what the “stars of heaven” are. We have to go to Catholic commentaries in order to know that the “stars of heaven” are consecrated souls of the clergy: cardinals, bishops, priests. So while Pope John Paul II did not say “one-third of the Catholic clergy”, he did say “one-third of the stars of heaven”.
In the language of the Bible, the “stars of heaven” are those who are set in the heavens to illumine the way for others to go to heaven. This passage has been classically interpreted in Catholic commentaries to mean that one-third of the clergy — i.e. cardinals, bishops, priests — fall from their consecrated state and are actually working for the devil. These clergy are undermining the Catholic Faith, undermining our salvation.
Commenting on Apoc. 12:3-4, Father Herman B. Kramer, in The Book of Destiny, points out that the red dragon — a sign of the devil which could also symbolize Communism because red is Communism’s emblematic color — brings the Church into great distress by undermining it from within. Father Herman Kramer tells us that, in reference to the one-third of the stars of heaven, “This is one-third of the clergy” and that “‘one-third’ of the stars shall follow the dragon”.(2) Thus, one-third of the Catholic clergy will work for the devil, possibly under the influence of Communism, to destroy the Church from within.
Father Herman Kramer goes on to say that, by means of the apostate clergy, the devil will probably enforce upon the Church “the acceptance of unchristian morals, false doctrines, compromise with error, or obedience to the civil rulers in violation of conscience.” In addition, he suggests that “The symbolic meaning of the dragon’s tail may reveal that the clergy who are ripe for apostasy will hold the influential positions in the Church, having won preferment by hypocrisy, deceit and flattery.” The clergy who will follow the dragon – i.e. the devil — would include those “who neglected to preach the truth or to admonish the sinner by a good example, but rather sought popularity by being lax and the slaves of human respect,” as well as those “who fear for their own interests and will not remonstrate against evil practices in the Church” and bishops “who abhor upright priests who dare to tell the truth”.(3) Father Herman Kramer also observes as follows concerning the state of the Catholic Church in the times prophesied by Apoc. 12:3-4:
“The apostolic democracy founded by Our Lord may have given way to an absolute monarchy, in which the episcopate rules with oriental despotism. The priests may be reduced to a state of servility and fawning sycophancy. The rule by reason, justice and love may have been supplanted by the absolute will of the bishop, whose every act and word are to be accepted without question, without recourse to fact, truth or justice. Conscience may have lost its right to guide the actions of the priests and may stand ignored or condemned. Diplomacy, expediency and other trickery may be upheld as the greatest virtues.”(4)
Therefore, it seems very clear that Pope John Paul II has sent the Church a warning that the Third Secret concerns the clergy; that one-third of the Catholic clergy are following the devil and taking souls with them. What else could the Pope have meant, in view of the commentaries which are certainly known to him, when he quoted Apoc. 12:3-4, and warned about the tail of the dragon? As we have just seen, this is not my opinion; it is understood that the stars of heaven are the Catholic clergy.
So, the Holy Father himself reveals what is in the Third Secret. Because, you see, the reference to Apocalypse 12:3-4 is nowhere in the revealed part of the Fatima Message, so it must be in the Third Secret in the words of Our Lady which have not yet been published although their publication the Pope had just ordered at the time he gave his sermon at Fatima.
In conclusion, we can see that the undermining of the Catholic Faith from within the Catholic Church by one-third of the Catholic clergy today is an essential part of the Third Secret. The treason of one-third of the clergy is cited in the Message of Fatima, and this treason is happening in our time. Many clergy are betraying the Church with scandalous behavior. The evidence of the unfolding of the Third Secret is there for all to see. In his sermon at Fatima, the Pope himself warned us about what is happening today. Thus, one-third of the Catholic clergy are promoting, directly or indirectly, false doctrines which go against the dogma of the Faith, against defined doctrines. Now, definitions by strict implication must anathematize error. It is in their very nature that whoever believes the contrary error is cut off from the Catholic Faith and, by that fact, is cut off from the Catholic Church. In order to be saved one has to belong to the Catholic Church.
Q: How do you belong to the Catholic Church?
You must be baptized into the Church; you must continue to accept the authority of the Pope to rule the Church as taught by Jesus Christ and as defined by His Church; and you must hold on to the Catholic Faith whole and inviolate. So, if somebody believes the opposite of a defined dogma, then he is not only cut off from the doctrine of the Faith, he is also cut off from the Church by this very act. If he is cut off from the Church, he is of course anathema – he is damned for believing that condemned doctrine. That is just the essence of any definition: the definition is saying this is true and the opposite of what they defined is then false. And those who follow this false doctrine are going to hell.
And so, St. Paul said, “If I or an angel from heaven or anyone should teach a doctrine different from the doctrine that I have taught you, then let him be anathema.” Let him be accursed, let him be cut off from God and from the saints, and let him go to hell. So all definitions — either explicitly or implicitly — condemn error, but Vatican II refused to solemnly define doctrine or condemn error. At the Second Vatican Council, they tried to have a so-called pastoral council, which did not condemn error. By not condemning error, in effect the Second Vatican Council refused by and large to exercise its infallible Magisterium. Therefore, anything taught by Vatican II has to be judged by the infallible teachings of the Church – not the other way around. The infallible teachings of the Church cannot be judged by Vatican II.
Vatican II is not authoritative to the extent it did not exercise its supreme Magisterium, its power to define doctrine and its power to anathematize error. And to that extent, since it did not exercise its authority, everything at Vatican II that was not yet taught infallibly, previously to Vatican II, has to be examined in the light of the dogmatic definitions of the Catholic Church. However, that is not what is happening today. What’s happening today is people are redefining “the faith” – it’s not the faith – they’re redefining it in light of Vatican II, even against solemn definitions of the Catholic Church. What we must hold on to is the solemn, infallible, unfailing definitions — which are incapable of failing.
So that is why it is especially relevant in our time to remember Our Lord said “When the Son of Man comes again, will He find faith on the earth?” and He said, apparently referring to the same age, that “if it were possible even the elect would be deceived.” So how are we to avoid being deceived by the appearance of Catholic teaching, which is in reality not Catholic teaching but in fact the opposite of it? We’re to avoid being deceived by holding on to — with all our might, with all our heart, strength and will, and our mind especially – the infallible definitions. These cannot fail; by holding on to them, we will then hold on to the Catholic Faith. If we don’t hold on to them, we could well be deceived along with everybody else. That is why it is important for us to remember that Our Lady spoke about the dogma of the Faith. The dogma of the Faith is defined by solemn Catholic definitions.
Q: Why wasn’t Pope John Paul II more clear with his warning?
Just like his statement in 1982, the Pope did not say that the Faith would be undermined, but he did say that the basis of our salvation was being undermined. But what is the basis of our salvation? It is our faith. We have to understand that the Pope is telling us these things, but yet not that openly.
On the one hand, the Pope feels he has to speak because — like Our Lady — he cannot remain silent; and he is speaking very publicly and he is speaking in a very public place, among devoted servants of Our Lady – that is, before the crowd in Fatima, before a million people in 1982 when he talks about the basis of our salvation being undermined. He also talks about the apocalyptic menaces – or almost apocalyptic menaces – looming over mankind in 1982. In the year 2000, he speaks about “one-third of the stars of heaven”. But he doesn’t speak that clearly that the average person can understand without just a little bit of explanation. The Pope is telling us that the Third Secret concerns the dangers to the Faith and that one-third of the Catholic clergy are involved. However, the Pope does not say these things directly – but in a somewhat hidden manner, in language for the learned to grasp. He may not want to turn off the simple folk without them being given a chance for an explanation.
Sister Lucy said over and over again that in this time of confusion, this time of “diabolical disorientation”, there would be persons of high authority within the Church – persons who have heavy responsibility (to be clear, cardinals and bishops and priests) who would be “blind and leaders of the blind”. It is a spiritual chastisement for our sins of not listening to the warning already published at Fatima.
It comes to our knowledge and attention that the Pope does not feel that he can speak freely, because he is surrounded somewhat by priests, bishops and cardinals who are undermining the Faith, who are part of that one-third. But the Pope either doesn’t know who they are or he does know who they are, but he doesn’t feel that he can speak safely and survive to the next day. Whatever his reason, he is not speaking that clearly — but he is speaking clearly enough that we can figure it out. Jesus told His disciples on one occasion, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear” (i.e.: let him who has ears to hear, let him understand).
Q: How is the basis of our salvation – the Catholic Faith – undermined?
The Pope pointed out that the attack on the Catholic Faith is coming from within. He said, “Can the Mother with all the force of the love that She fosters in the Holy Spirit and desires everyone’s salvation, can She remain silent when She sees the very basis of Her children’s salvation undermined?” The word “undermine” implies that you weaken a foundation from within. You attack from without; you undermine from within, where the attack is not expected and everyone’s guard is down – where you are viewed as being among “friends”.
The Faith is always being attacked from the outside; but as the Third Secret tells us, in our time the Faith is also being attacked by “false brethren” inside the Church. We know from the studies of Frère Michel and Frère François that the Third Secret is a prophecy for our time that began in 1960 (The Third Secret and the booklet The Secret of Fatima ... Revealed, both written by Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité and available from this apostolate) and that we are living through the Third Secret now (actually, from 1960 — when it was to be released — until the consecration of Russia is finally done).
The Catholic Faith is being undermined specifically by one-third of the clergy (undoubtedly, with the help and support of some of the “faithful”) speaking outside of the infallible definitions — pushing and brushing aside the dogmas of the Faith and speaking in language that can easily be misinterpreted so that people misunderstand or are misled and no longer depend upon the infallible definitions. Again, the attack on the Faith is coming from within the Church.
And this leads to the Pope’s point in the year 2000: today, one-third of the Catholic clergy are working for the dragon and working for the devil. They are undermining the faith – they are doing it from within. And that is the Pope who is giving us this clue that Apoc. 12:3-4 means the undermining of the Catholic Faith from within.
So we have Pope John Paul II telling us that the Catholic Faith is being undermined from within (May 13, 1982: “the very basis of Her children’s salvation undermined”) by the Catholic clergy (May 13, 2000: “one-third of the stars of heaven”). In addition, the 1963 issue of the German publication Neues Europa revealed a part of the Third Secret as involving cardinal opposing cardinal, bishop opposing bishop.
Q: Why would the cardinals and bishops oppose each other?
It would be wrong for cardinals and bishops to oppose each other unless there was something essential at stake. St. Augustine says, “In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; and in all things, charity.” What are essentials? Essentials are, among other things, the Faith. And so, if a cardinal is heretical, the other cardinals should oppose him. Whereas, if it is something non-essential, then they should not oppose him.
But the fact is, cardinals and bishops opposing each other is mentioned in the 1963 version of the Secret published in Neues Europa. From the following account, we know that Cardinal Ottaviani encouraged the publication of that 1963 version when asked whether it should be published or not. We know that the Cardinal had a very dry personality and was pretty much indifferent to most apparitions. However, when asked by a priest in 1964 about whether the 1963 Neues Europa version of the Third Secret should be published, Cardinal Ottaviani exclaimed very emphatically, “Publish 10,000 copies! Publish 20,000 copies! Publish 30,000 copies!”
Then we have the testimony of Father Malachi Martin telling us that the message of Garabandal contains the Third Secret or parts of the Third Secret. Malachi Martin, who knew the Third Secret because he read it himself, and who read the message of Garabandal, says that because the Vatican chose not to release the Third Secret in 1960, Our Lady appeared at Garabandal in 1961 and gave us the Third Secret. What is in the Garabandal message? The Garabandal message says, among other things, that many cardinals, bishops, and priests are on the road to hell and taking many more souls with them.
Q: But why should we talk about Garabandal in The Fatima Crusader when it is not an approved apparition?
A very good, valid question. But I must point out to our readers that although the apparitions themselves are not approved, the Bishop of Garabandal — that is, the Bishop of Santander — said that the message itself is not contrary to the Catholic Faith, that there’s nothing in the message that could be taken as being contrary to the Catholic Faith. So, when you have Malachi Martin saying that the message of Garabandal contains the Third Secret or parts of the Third Secret – and he said that on the Art Bell Radio Show just before he died – and the message of Garabandal does say that many cardinals, bishops and priests are going to hell and taking many more souls with them, then it all ties in with everything else we know about the Third Secret – that one-third of the clergy (it may not only mean one-third of the Catholic priests but also can mean one-third of the bishops and one-third of the cardinals themselves) are working to undermine the Catholic Faith.
FOOTNOTES TO PART ONE: (1) Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité, The Whole Truth About Fatima, Volume III - The Third Secret, Immaculate Heart Publications, Buffalo, New York, 1990, p. 676. (2) Father Herman Bernard Kramer, The Book of Destiny, first published 1955, republished by TAN Books and Publishers, Inc., Rockford, Illinois, 1975, pp. 279-284. (3) Ibid. (4) Ibid.
In Part I of this article (Issue 67), I examined what Pope John Paul II has told us concerning the Third Secret in his sermons of May 13, 1982 and May 13, 2000 and what this means to us. I discussed how the Pope has revealed to us the essence of the Third Secret - that the Catholic Faith is being undermined in our time by (among others) one-third of the clergy. Which now leads us to ask who are these persons in the Church who are undermining the Faith.
Q: Why is it important to know the identity of those persons in the Church who are undermining the Catholic Faith?
Pope St. Pius X answers this question for us in his 1907 encyclical Pascendi, wherein he writes: "The partisans of error are to be sought not only among the Churchs open enemies; but ... in her very bosom, and are the more mischievous the less they keep in the open." These enemies are lay people and priests "thoroughly imbued with the poisonous doctrines taught by the enemies of the Church", and who put themselves forward "as reformers of the Church".(5)
St. Pius X insists:
"The Church has no greater enemies. For they put into operation their designs for Her undoing, not from without but from within. Hence, the danger is present almost in the very veins and heart of the Church, whose injury is the more certain from the very fact that their knowledge of Her is more intimate."(6) "They seize upon professorships in the seminaries and universities, and gradually make of them chairs of pestilence."(7) "It is time to tear away the mask from these people and to show them to the Church such as they are."(8)
Q: How can we tell who are the good guys and who are the bad guys?
Now, someone might say "well now, you talked about one-third of the clergy being bad; why can we not say that perhaps you, Father Gruner, and priests like you are part of that one-third of the clergy and that the liberals, the progressivists and the neo-Catholics - whatever titles you want to give them - theyre the ones that are good?" Well, the answer again is in what has been infallibly defined. Thats what tells you who are the good clergy and laity, and who are not.
The good guys are those who uphold the Faith, who hold fast to the doctrine of Jesus. That is in Sacred Scripture. It is Our Lord who says, "By their fruits you shall know them." [Mt. 7:16] So you can tell who to trust by seeing if they are upholding the Catholic Faith as defined by the solemn definitions. If they are doing this, then they are upholding the proper doctrine. Another sign to look for is to see if they are living their Catholic Faith as well. Furthermore, it is not what people say about the priests, but what the individual priest actually does himself and what he actually says. For example, despite what is said about Father Gruner, he is an obedient priest - the reasons are explained in the article "The Question of Obedience" by Father Paul Kramer, which was published in Issue 67 of The Fatima Crusader.
So when you find clergy - priests, bishops, Cardinals - who are upholding the solemn, infallible definitions of the Catholic Faith, those are the clergy that you should follow. The priests, bishops or Cardinals who are not upholding the solemn, infallible definitions, either by directly contradicting them or by calling them into question or by telling us that there are better ways to formulate them which contradict or deviate from the definitions (and there are some Cardinals today who are calling for the revision of definitions - that the definitions were wrong, that they were badly done, and so forth), those are the clergy that you should not follow. Period. End of discussion. And that is one way you can know who are the good guys and who are the bad guys.
The definitions of the Catholic Church are infallible. Priests, bishops, Cardinals or even a Pope (should there be one) who tell you not to follow the infallible definitions, theyre the ones to avoid because its the definitions that are infallible. We must realize that the Catholic Church is infallible and that as long as any Catholic teaches and believes what the Catholic Church has always infallibly taught and believed, then that faithful Catholic is also infallibly correct.
We must also realize that all of us are human and can make mistakes so that by ourselves, we - without the help of God - are in practice not infallible about many things.
Father Gruner and every priest, bishop and Cardinal are not infallible in their personal opinions or even in some of their theological views. We must recall that even the Pope is not always infallible. This is clearly defined in the First Vatican Council. The Pope is not infallible when he is not exercising his infallible Magisterium. The Pope is infallible when he, by himself or together with his bishops, solemnly defines something to be revealed by God and therefore to be believed with Catholic Faith.
The Pope is also infallible when he, together with all the Catholic bishops of the world, exercises the Universal and Ordinary Magisterium of the Catholic Church. Not everything that the Pope does and says is part of this Universal and Ordinary Magisterium.
And when the Pope is not speaking or teaching according to the norms set down by God for the Pope to engage in his infallible Magisterium, then the Pope can err and in fact Popes have erred in the past. We see this in the lives of Pope Liberius, Pope Honorius, Pope Paschal II, Pope John XXII (in 1333) and the first Pope, St. Peter. (These examples were discussed in Part I of this article, in Issue 67 of The Fatima Crusader.)
But the distinction as to whether a member of the clergy (or the laity) is good or bad is not determined solely by whether he verbally upholds or doesnt uphold the Faith. Besides comparing the teaching (i.e. the words) of a priest, a bishop, a Cardinal or the Pope to the infallible teaching of Jesus Christ and His Catholic Church, there is one more important way to tell the good guys from the bad guys.
You need to see if the person is also upholding the orthodox practices of the Catholic Church by his words (written and spoken), by his actions and by the Christian conduct of his life.
You need to see if the person (priest, bishop, Cardinal or Pope) is also following fervently the orthodox Catholic practices and is not following hetero practices. The solemn definitions define what is of the Faith and what is not of the Faith - i.e. what is heresy. But there is more than one way to attack the Catholic Faith.
Attacking the words of doctrine is not the only means of attacking the Faith, it can also be attacked by our actions that go against the Faith - done in either an obvious or a subtle manner. Our actions must support our words. We uphold the Faith by upholding the doctrines in our thoughts, words, and writings and also by upholding the pious practices within the Church which uphold the Faith.
By introducing practices into the local parish (or the local diocese or the local ecclesiastical province, or even into the Universal Church as Catholic Doctors have written it is possible to happen) which give the impression that the defined Faith is not to be believed, you scandalize the little ones and even some learned souls by hetero-praxis.
Hetero-praxis is any practice that a person or a group does or could do which implies that one or more Catholic doctrines are not true. For example, we know by the solemn definitions of the Council of Trent that God guarantees to us that the consecrated Host is indeed His Real Presence - that is, the Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, together with His Soul and Divinity. Now, the Protestant revolters wanted to deny this article of the Faith and they wanted to influence others to do the same. So they reintroduced the practice of Communion in the hand (it had been originally introduced as a widespread practice by the Arian heretics of the Fourth Century to deny that Jesus is God). So that by this symbolic action, their denial would be clear to all.
This hetero-praxis has been effectively used in our day by the enemies of the Church to scandalize many poor Catholics into losing their Faith in the Real Presence. That is why this practice of Communion in the hand was forbidden by the universal law of the Church for many centuries and it is still forbidden by the law of the Church to this day. (The recent indult [i.e. permission] to go against the letter of the law is only allowed if this practice does not lead to the lessening of the Faith in the Real Presence and does not lead to less respect for the Real Presence. Most people do not know this in our day. In fact, most people do not know that Communion in the hand is never allowed even with the indult if its 2 principles and 7 rules are not followed. But if anyone doubts what I say, they can read it in the appendix to Memoriale Domini [May 1969] found in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis of 1969, on pages 546-547. See also Appendix V in the first and second editions of Fatima Priest.)
The practices which uphold orthodox doctrine are referred to as ortho-praxis (i.e. orthodox Catholic practices). These include such practices as: genuflecting in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, distributing/receiving Communion on the tongue, maintaining the tabernacle with the Blessed Sacrament as the primary focus of attention (and worship) in the center of the sanctuary, and the solemn behavior of the clergy within the sanctuary showing due reverence to the Presence of God in the Blessed Sacrament. These examples of ortho-praxis (orthodox actions upholding the Faith) testify to the truth of the dogma that the Blessed Sacrament is the Real Presence of God - the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord Jesus Christ under the appearance of bread - as well as the proper respect of man to God.
On the other hand, practices which promote or uphold heresy or give the impression that one or more given heresies are true are referred to as hetero-praxis (i.e. heterodox practices which give the impression that heresy is true). Another example of hetero-praxis - I already mentioned Communion in the hand as one example - is the permanent removal of the tabernacle with the Blessed Sacrament from the sanctuary to a side room or broom closet so that the primary focus of attention (and worship) in the sanctuary becomes the chair of the Celebrant - the "President of the Assembly". The message is subtly given and received that the person who sits in that chair is more important than the Blessed Sacrament. And since the "President of the Assembly" represents the people, then subtly the message is given that God is unimportant and that man is more important. To put it briefly, in the minds and hearts of the people at these religious gatherings, God has been de facto replaced by man. This example of hetero-praxis conveys the erroneous message to the lay people that the Blessed Sacrament is just not that important, that It is just bread, and promotes the heresy that It is not the Real Presence of God - the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord Jesus Christ under the appearance of the host.
These examples remind us of the words of Pope Pius XII:
"Suppose, dear friend, that Communism (Russia and Russias errors, in Fatima terms) was only the most visible of the instruments of subversion to be used against the Church and the traditions of Divine Revelation ... I am worried by the Blessed Virgins messages to Lucy of Fatima. This persistence of Mary about the dangers which menace the Church is a divine warning against the suicide of altering the Faith, in Her liturgy ... A day will come when the civilized world will deny its God, when the Church will doubt as Peter doubted. She will be tempted to believe that man has become God ... In our churches, Christians will search in vain for the red lamp where God awaits them, like Mary Magdalene weeping before the empty tomb, they will ask, where have they taken Him?"(9)
From Pope Pius XIIs words, it seems then that these above-mentioned hetero practices against the Blessed Sacrament have been explicitly mentioned in the Third Secret of Fatima because we find them nowhere else mentioned in the Fatima message. Yet Pius XII clearly says it is Our Lady of Fatima who warns us against "the suicide of altering the Faith in Her liturgy."
Heresy is brought about in two different ways: by words or by practices which promote the impression that the heresy is "officially" promoted to be believed. Therefore, the good guys are those who uphold the Faith by upholding the solemn, infallible definitions of the Catholic Faith in thoughts, words, and writings and by ortho-praxis and good morals; while the bad guys attack the Faith with their words, do not adhere to the solemn, infallible definitions of the Catholic Faith, or promote hetero-praxis and heresy.
Much more can be said about ortho-praxis and hetero-praxis (both words are a part of common Catholic teaching for the centuries), but Ill save it for a later issue of The Fatima Crusader. It is sufficient to note here that by observing if a priest is edifying in his personal words and actions as well as in his public words and actions, then it is a way to guide you into knowing who are the good shepherds. And if a priest gives a bad example by his words or actions or hetero-praxis, then you are to avoid him as a wolf in sheeps clothing. As Jesus said, "By their fruits you shall know them." [Mt. 7:16]
Q: What does this mean (knowing the good guys vs. the bad guys) to the average layman?
Now what we need to know is, first of all, what does this mean for us - is this important? Yes, its very important - because to save your soul, you have to hold on to the Catholic Faith whole and inviolate. How do you hold on to the Catholic Faith whole and inviolate? By doing two things. First, you arm yourself spiritually by praying the Rosary daily. Our Lady promises that if you pray the Rosary every day, you will not fall into heresy. Praying the daily Rosary will also overcome vice and decrease sin. The second thing is to be informed of the Catholic Faith. If you received your Catholic education anytime since 1965, then you should buy a good Catholic catechism, such as the old Baltimore Catechism of 1885 or the Catechism of the Council of Trent or the Catechism of St. Pius X. Study those catechisms, and anything you previously learned which contradicts the doctrines of either of these three catechisms, reject it and hold on to what the Catholic Church has taught in these three catechisms.
The Catechism of the Council of Trent was written by a saint (St. Charles Borromeo), was promulgated by a second saint (St. Pius V), and was authorized by the Council of Trent, which was dogmatic - which gives you dogma, which gives you solemn definitions. Thats why I recommend that catechism the highest. Secondly, even the Baltimore Catechism volumes I, II and III have over 100 years of authority behind them. In addition, these volumes were promulgated by the whole episcopal conference of the United States; before they could become promulgated they had to be approved by the Holy Office, at a time when the Church was not infiltrated by one-third of the clergy working for the dragon; and you cant find anything in the old Baltimore Catechism which contradicts definitions of any council or any teaching of the Catholic Faith. Whereas, some more recent catechisms after the Second Vatican Council - some were even called Baltimore Catechisms - have some things in them which may be questionable. Thats why I suggest that you go back to the old edition, which TAN publishes.
After you get that foundation from the Baltimore Catechism or the Catechism of the Council of Trent or the Catechism of St. Pius X (which was, obviously, also written by a Saint), then by all means read the definitions yourself in the Council of Trent, in the First Vatican Council, in the Council of Florence and so forth. There youre on solid ground. You cannot fail by following those definitions. By following the teachings of the saints and especially the Doctors of the Church, youre on solid ground in the Faith. And so those are the things that will prepare your mind and your heart and soul. Secondly, you should try to help all those who are on your path - that God puts in your path - by teaching them to pray the Rosary, encouraging them to pray the Rosary daily, and giving them solid Catholic doctrine to read. And when you come against something which contradicts or appears to contradict the perennial teaching of the Church for all time or the teaching of the saints of all ages, then stay with what the Church has always taught. Until the next Church council meets to settle the question, hold suspect those things which appear to contradict the definitions. To save your faith and your soul, you also need to follow good shepherds - good priests - and avoid the teaching and example of bad priests.
Q: How can we be so certain in matters of Faith?
First of all, we can be certain of the Faith because the definitions are infallible. Why are we certain about anything in the Faith? We are certain about what God reveals. God - Who is All Holy - cannot deceive anyone simply because He cannot lie. Since He is Holiness Itself, and since to lie is a sin, a defect against holiness, God cannot lie. Therefore, God would not deliberately deceive us. Secondly, God - Who is All-Knowing - cannot be mistaken. So, when God - Who cannot lie and cannot be mistaken - tells us something is true, then we know that it is true. So we know for certain, even with greater certitude than mathematical certitude. We do know that two plus two equals four. How do we know that? Because, we can count and we can see two plus two and we count all together and thats four. We can have mathematical certitude. But with the certitude of the Faith, we have the greatest certitude.
Well, how do we know what it is that God revealed? We know that what is in the Bible is Gods word. We know that what is in Sacred Tradition is revealed by God. But there are passages in Sacred Scripture and sometimes different aspects of Sacred Tradition that, to the uninstructed, seem to be self-contradictory or unclear. Therefore, God has appointed an authority to define what He means in Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition - that is, Papal and Conciliar definitions which are the solemn and infallible Magisterium of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church founded by God Himself. God also teaches infallibly through the Universal and Ordinary Magisterium.
But for a teaching to belong to the infallible Universal and Ordinary Magisterium of the Catholic Church, it cannot be, in any way, in contradiction to what the Catholic Church has always taught. This is because the Magisterium is not given by God to give new doctrines but only to explain what is in the Deposit of the Faith - that is, what is in Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition.
Therefore, it is clear that not everything that a Catholic priest, a Catholic bishop, a Catholic Cardinal or even a Catholic Pope teaches belongs to the infallible Magisterium. As mentioned above, we have given examples from Church history in which even Popes have taught things contrary to Catholic dogma and dogmatic definitions. So to repeat myself once more, it is the Catholic Faith as taught and defined by the infallible Magisterium that we must adhere to in order to save our souls and not the dubious or false non-infallible pronouncements of any priest, bishop, Cardinal or Pope.
How do we know then what we must believe? We know what is of the Faith by the infallible definitions. So we have a definition which tells us that there are three Persons in one God. We can be more certain of that than of anything we can know by our unaided senses or intellect alone. We can be more certain of that than we can that two plus two equals four. So if somebody comes by - whether it be a Pope, a Cardinal, a bishop, a priest or a lay person - and tells us that theres not three Persons in one God, then we are certain that he is wrong. Its as simple as that. And so we can be certain that we dont have to question whether he is wrong - we know that he is wrong. Its not because we are right - it is because God is right and all were doing is believing what God reveals, and that is an act of the supernatural virtue of Faith. By doing so, we are only obeying the First Vatican Council, which explicitly teaches:
"Moreover, by divine and Catholic faith everything must be believed that is contained in the written word of God or in tradition, and that is proposed by the Church as a divinely revealed object of belief either in a solemn decree or in her ordinary, universal teaching." [Denzinger 1792]
We also know that the Churchs infallible teachings cannot fail because God guarantees it. God has indicated His guarantee by the great miracles which Christ Himself worked as well as what His saints have worked in His Name and as testimony to the truth of the Roman Catholic Churchs teachings. These miracles, which continue to this present day, are sufficient motive to believe all that the Roman Catholic Church teaches, including the solemn definition of the First Vatican Council that all solemn definitions are infallible - that is, they cannot fail, they can never be changed and that God guarantees the truth of all these infallible definitions.
The First Vatican Council solemnly teaches that two external motives for believing in the Catholic Faith are the realizations of God-given miracles and prophecies in the Catholic Church. As the First Vatican Council solemnly taught:
"Nevertheless, in order that the submission of our faith might be consonant with reason (see Rom. 12:1), God has willed that external proofs of his revelation, namely divine acts and especially miracles and prophecies, should be added to the internal aids given by the Holy Spirit. Since these proofs so excellently display Gods omnipotence and limitless knowledge, they constitute the surest signs of divine revelation, signs that are suitable to everyones understanding. Therefore, not only Moses and the prophets but also and pre-eminently Christ our Lord performed many evident miracles and made clear-cut prophecies. Moreover, we read of the apostles: "But they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the preaching by the signs that followed" (Mark 16:20). [Denzinger 1790]
The First Vatican Council solemnly condemned those who reject God-given miracles and prophecies in the Catholic Church:
"If anyone says that it is impossible for external signs to render divine revelation credible and that, therefore, men ought to be impelled towards faith only by each ones internal experience or private inspiration: let him be anathema." [Denzinger 1812]
"If anyone says that all miracles are impossible and, hence, that all accounts of them, even though contained in Sacred Scripture, should be classed with fables and myths; or that miracles can never be recognized with certainty and that the divine origin of the Christian religion cannot be successfully proved by them: let him be anathema." [Denzinger 1813]
Q: Can the hierarchy - the Cardinals, the bishops, the priests or even the Pope - be confused?
Yes. We do not have guarantees that the Cardinals, the bishops, the priests or even a Pope will never make an error against the Faith. As St. Thomas Aquinas (Doctor of the Church) teaches us, "against a fact there is no argument". The fact is Church history tells us that St. Peter made an error against the Faith (we dealt with this earlier, in Part I). Pope John XXII in the year 1333 taught a heresy in public; he was wrong. Pope Pascal II in the year 1111 gave an order which was contrary to the common good of the Church. Pope Liberius in 357 excommunicated - in reality, only giving the appearance of excommunicating - St. Athanasius. Pope Liberius is the first Pope not to be proclaimed a saint; whereas, St. Athanasius was, and is, a great saint precisely because he was upholding the Catholic Faith. Pope Honorius, for not properly defending the Catholic Faith, was condemned by a later Pope, and Pope Honorius body was exhumed and given a dishonorable burial by a Church Council some years after Honorius died.
Thus, we do know that the Popes can make errors. Not many of them have made errors against the Faith, but some of them have done so. So, it is not just because he is a Pope, that whatever he says is true; but we have to go to the rock-solid bottom of certitude, and that is infallible definitions. That is the crucial point we must remember. It is the teaching of the Doctors of the Church - St. Robert Bellarmine, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Augustine, St. Jerome, St. Alphonsus Liguori and other Doctors - that the Popes can make errors against the Faith. And therefore, in case of doubt, or of contradiction of defined Catholic dogma, we have to go with the solid definitions and even avoid the teaching of priests, bishops, Cardinals and even a Pope in these circumstances.
Q: Who is undermining the Catholic Faith and how are they doing it?
We now have the evidence of how the Catholic Faith is being undermined and by whom - its about infiltration of the enemy within the Church. In the 1920s, Lenin (the founder of Russian Communism) said that he would infiltrate the Catholic Church; he said that he would destroy the Church by infiltration. In the 1930s and the 1940s we have the testimony of Bella Dodd, who was the Attorney General Designate of the Communist Party USA. She ultimately converted back to the Catholic Faith and then gave public speeches. I have talked to a person who heard her say that she personally sent into the Catholic seminaries in the 1930s and the 1940s over 1,000 young men in order to subvert the Catholic Church in the United States from within. And before she died, she reported that some of them had already become bishops. And of course, bishops beget bishops. Then, of course, there is the book AA-1025, which tells the story of one such Communist agent who entered the seminary with the intent to destroy the Church by subversion in accordance with the Communist plan. The testimony of this book has the ring of truth about it.
We not only have Bella Dodd, we not only have Lenin, we also have the secret document of the Chinese Communists, which was published in Cuba (and we published in The Fatima Crusader Issue 19, on page 6), pointing out the plot to destroy the Church from within by infiltrating the clergy. I myself have met a Catholic priest who was working for the Communists. I spent 6 hours "downloading" him, so-to-speak, in the early 1970s. I met him face-to-face in Rome, where he was living in the Casa Generalizia, the headquarters of a religious order and of its Superior General; and when he opened himself up and let me know what he was doing and thinking, I allowed him to believe that I agreed with him - although I told him no lies. So I have seen one myself, with my own eyes - I know they exist. It is not a question of somebody elses testimony; its my own testimony - my own eyes and ears.
But its not just resting on my testimony and the testimony of Lenin and also of Bella Dodd - its only logical that these people, like Lenin who said "the lie is sacred", should use infiltration. And Sacred Scripture (Jude 1:4 and Acts 20:29-30) tells us that the enemy would use infiltration to try to destroy the Church. They understand that the Catholic Church is the primary enemy of the Communists, Communism and the whole militant atheist agenda. Therefore, it is only logical that they would do such a thing in order to destroy the Church from within. But theres also a lot of other evidence on this subject as well.
The various Catholic religious orders have been targeted for infiltration, and the whole Catholic Priest Worker movement in the 1950s was overcome or, at the least, was badly infiltrated by the Communists, when Pope Pius XII called an end to it in the 1950s. So this is nothing new. In fact, when I was in the seminary in the early 1970s, we had to close ranks against four Communist seminarians who were infiltrating our seminary. They came with the intent of destroying this orthodox seminary we had founded outside Rome, and the infiltrators almost had their way - to the extent that these infiltrators had the superiors doing what they wanted. A number of the seminarians who helped me at that time to expel these Communist infiltrators - who are now priests today - know what I am talking about and can attest to the truth of what I report here.
Our Lady said in Her Secret that the Faith would be undermined. Well, more precisely, the Pope tells us that Our Lady of Fatima cannot remain silent when She sees the Faith undermined. But where does Our Lady say this? There is nowhere that I know of, except in the Third Secret. This is what the Pope was alluding to in his May 13, 1982 speech.
Q: Why is this important to us now?
Our Lady came to Fatima to warn us about serious error being spread among us in our time. The infiltrators have schemed for over 200 years to destroy the Catholic Church through secret societies; their plans are written down. You can read about these plans, independent of what I say. Pope Leo XIII exposed some of these plots in his two encyclicals on Freemasonry, and John Vennari has written a little booklet on the subject (The Permanent Instruction of the Alta Vendita: A Masonic Blueprint for the Subversion of the Catholic Church, which is available from The Fatima Center). We have seen the results of these schemes over the past 40 years within the Church. Also, many saints over the centuries have predicted these things for our times. And the Third Secret predicts for our time the great apostasy of clergy and laity alike, the result of the undermining of the Faith by one-third of the Catholic clergy. Our Lord said: "You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt lose its savor, wherewith shall it be salted? It is good for nothing anymore but to be cast out, and to be trodden on by men." [Mt. 5:13]
As a result of the loss of Faith by both the clergy and the laity, as a result of the salt losing its flavor, the temporal welfare of the people becomes threatened. As I mentioned in Part I, the November 11, 1984 issue of Jesus magazine carried the interview conducted by Vittorio Messori with Cardinal Ratzinger, which the Cardinal approved himself before it was published, where Cardinal Ratzinger said that the Third Secret concerns "the dangers threatening the Faith and life of the Christian, and therefore the life of the world".(10) The dangers to the life of the world could only mean temporal chastisement.
We read in the monumental three-volume work The Whole Truth About Fatima by Frère Michel that Sister Lucy clearly stated:
"Many times, the Most Holy Virgin told my cousins Francisco and Jacinta, as well as myself, that many nations will disappear from the face of the earth. She said that Russia will be the instrument of chastisement chosen by Heaven to punish the whole world if we do not beforehand obtain the conversion of that poor nation."(11)
The military takeover and subsequent dictatorship of Russia over the whole world will result because of our failures in the spiritual realm. Our Lady said, "If My requests are not granted ... Russia will spread her errors throughout the world." The first priority of Russias diabolical plan - to infiltrate the Catholic Church - has been accomplished in many places, thus allowing Russias errors to be spread within the Church by Communist clergy, by masonic clergy, and by heretical clergy into the minds and hearts of the faithful.
Here, then, are essential elements of the Third Secret. The dangers to the Faith that we were warned about in the Third Secret are being carried out, in part at least, in the name of the Second Vatican Council.
Q: So, can you please summarize for us what we know about the Third Secret?
To recap, we know that the Third Secret involves the undermining of the Catholic Faith by one-third of the clergy in our time. We know this because:
·Our Lady of Fatima, in 1917, said in Her Secret that the Faith would be undermined.
·Pope John Paul II, in 1982, said that the Faith will be undermined and indirectly told us that the Third Secret is about this undermining of the Faith.
·Cardinal Ratzinger, in 1984, told us that the Third Secret speaks of "dangers to the Faith and to the life of the Christian and, therefore, to the life of the world."
·John Paul II, in May 2000, referred to the biblical prophecy of the Apocalypse Chapter 12 verses 3 and 4, wherein it says that "one-third of the stars of heaven" are dragged down to the earth by the dragon. The Pope indicated that this prophecy is for our time, thereby implying (when taken together with other facts that we know about the Third Secret) that the prophecy of the Third Secret refers to the Faith being undermined by one-third of the Catholic clergy today.
·One-third of the Catholic clergy are undermining the Catholic Faith today by gradually sweeping aside dogmas. Although this is unnoticed by many in the short-term, we can see now that it has been done through the promotion of anti-Catholic practices (i.e. hetero-praxis). Today the Faith is also being undermined openly (as some of the Cardinals now are doing), saying that some dogmas - some solemn definitions - of the Catholic Faith "need to be revised".
By the Popes remark that it is "one-third of the stars of heaven" being dragged down by the dragon, he is telling us that its one-third of the Catholic clergy in our day - today! And we know, of course, from the work of Frère Michel and Father Alonso that we are living in the time of the Third Secret. So, the Third Secret talks about our time - the year 2001. We know the time period of the Third Secret, the prophecy which was given in 1917. It started in 1960 and it is still continuing to this day. We know when the period of the Third Secret ends - it continues until the Pope does the Consecration of Russia. That has not been done. (We have explained this elsewhere many times.)
We also know that the Third Secret concerns the dogma of the Faith because we have the third part of the Secret starting with the words Our Lady said, "In Portugal the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved, etc."
In summary, were living in the period of the Third Secret; the Third Secret tells us that the dogma of the Faith will not be preserved in certain parts of the world which, in 1960, were still Catholic; we know how to preserve the dogma of the Faith, by holding on to the infallible definitions; we know that the Faith is being undermined from within the Church; we know that the Faith is being undermined by, among others, one-third of the Catholic clergy; and we know which clergy to watch out for - they are the ones who do not uphold the Catholic Faiths solemn definitions and those who promote hetero-praxis. Both Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II have indicated to us that the appearance of Our Lady of Fatima is the fulfillment of the biblical prophecy of chapter 12 verse 1 of the Apocalypse. We read that in Signum magnum, Pope Paul VIs encyclical of 1967. We also have that in Pope John Paul IIs homily that he gave at the Beatification of the two children on May 13, 2000.
We do know that the Third Secret concerns the dangers to the Faith - Cardinal Ratzinger said that in 1984: it concerns the dangers to the Faith and to the life of the Christian; it concerns the importance of the last things (i novissimi); and it is found in Sacred Scripture.(12) In 1982, Pope John Paul II said, as I have quoted previously, "Can the Mother with all the force of the love that She fosters in the Holy Spirit and desires everyones salvation, can She remain silent when She sees the very basis of Her childrens salvation undermined?" This is obviously a reference to the Faith being endangered. And then, on May 13, 2000, Pope John Paul II said that the Third Secret is in Chapter 12, verses 1, 3 and 4 of the Apocalypse (verses 3 and 4 talk about the apocalyptic battle between the dragon and the Woman, and that the dragon succeeds in dragging down one-third of the clergy from heaven to follow him).
We also know that the Third Secret concerns the dangers to the Faith (from within the Church structures) because Cardinal Ottaviani privately endorsed the release of the Third Secret version that was published in Neues Europa in 1963, in which report we are told that "Cardinal will oppose Cardinal and bishop will oppose bishop". We have the speech of Bishop Amaral - the third bishop of Fatima - in Vienna on September 10, 1984, telling us it concerns the apostasy of nations. Apostasy takes place with, of course, the loss of faith - not just the loss of one dogma or article of the Faith, but with the loss of all or much of Catholic dogmas and morals. We can easily see the evident presence of apostasy throughout the world today.
Thus, the Third Secret concerns the infallible definitions of the Faith. Definitions, by their very nature, have to say what the truth is and, therefore, by strict logical implication, what the error is and that the error is condemned. If a person stubbornly holds on to a condemned error after he has been informed of the infallible truth then he cannot be saved (unless he repents before he dies), so its only charitable to warn him. And it is our duty to witness to the truths of our Faith and to protect the little ones from errors against the Faith by defending the Faith in public. Thats why the Church anathematizes those errors and those clergy and laity who stubbornly hold on to them. St. Paul says in all charity that "But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach a gospel to you besides that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema." [Gal. 1:8]
FOOTNOTES TO PART TWO:
(5) Pope St. Pius X, Pascendi Dominici Gregis, para. no. 2. (6) Ibid., no. 3. (7) Ibid., no. 61. (8) Ibid., no. 3. (9) Pope Pius XII, quoted in the book Pius XII Devant LHistoire, pp. 52-53. (10) Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité, The Whole Truth About Fatima, Volume III - The Third Secret, Immaculate Heart Publications, Buffalo, New York, 1990, reprinted 2001, pp. 822-823. See also Jesus magazine, November 11, 1984, p. 79. See also The Fatima Crusader, Issue 37, Summer 1991, p. 7. (11) Frère Michel, The Third Secret, p. 505. (12) See Footnote 10.
Q: How can we be morally certain that what you say here is the Third Secret?
We know what the Third Secret is because Pope John Paul II has revealed to us what it is, and the proper Catholic interpretation of his statements coincide with what we have learned from other reliable sources as well, including the following:
1. We know it from the Pope.
As previously mentioned, Pope John Paul II warned us in May 2000 about the dangers to the Faith in our day by citing in his sermon Apoc. 12:3-4, which predicts that one-third of the stars of heaven would be taken down to earth by the tail of the dragon, and the Pope indicates to us that the danger is now. Catholic commentaries have traditionally interpreted this passage as referring to one-third of the clergy - i.e. Cardinals, bishops, priests - as undermining both the Catholic Faith and the salvation of souls by working for the devil.
2. We know it from Cardinal Ratzinger.
In his 1984 interview with Italian journalist Vittorio Messori, Cardinal Ratzinger stated that the Third Secret refers to "the dangers threatening the faith and life of the Christian, and therefore the life of the world." This is similar to what the Pope has told us on May 13, 1982 and on May 13, 2000.
3. We know it from Our Lady of Fatima.
At Fatima, Our Lady spoke of the "dogma of the Faith" being preserved in Portugal. The dogma of the Faith is the entirety of the defined doctrines of the Catholic Faith. These one must believe - the defined doctrines are infallible, they cannot fail. If a Pope, Cardinal, bishop or priest or even an Ecumenical Council says something contrary to dogma, he is - objectively speaking - guilty of heresy and may lead the faithful to perdition. And we see much contradiction of defined Catholic dogma today and the faithful are not warned against the dangers to their faith.
4. We know it from Father Malachi Martin, who read the Third Secret when he worked in the Vatican.
Father Malachi Martin has told us that he has read the Third Secret - he announced that on the Art Bell radio program, which we have on audio tape. In addition, in answer to a number of questions, Father Malachi Martin stated that Our Lady came to Garabandal, Spain, because the Third Secret was not released in 1960 as She had requested. As a result, Our Lady appeared in 1961 - one year after the Vatican failed to release the Third Secret - and She basically released the Secret to the four children at Garabandal, or at least within the message of Garabandal. And the most striking thing of all in that message is "many Cardinals, bishops and priests are going to hell and dragging many souls with them" and that a great chastisement awaits mankind because of the sins of this time.
5. We know it from the message of Our Lady at Garabandal.
One of the most essential - as well as very striking - parts of what Our Lady is reported to have said in Her message of Garabandal is "to the Eucharist is being given less and less importance." She also said "many Cardinals, bishops and priests are on the road to hell and that they are dragging many souls with them". That, of course, ties in with Pope John Paul II in effect telling us on May 13, 2000 that one-third of the Catholic clergy are working for the devil, and that ties in with the Pope telling us on May 13, 1982 that the dogma of the Faith is being undermined from within the Catholic Church. Father Malachi Martin has said that the message of Garabandal is what the Third Secret is about. Although the reported apparitions of Our Lady at Garabandal have not been approved by the Church, the Bishop of Garabandal - that is, the Bishop of Santander, Spain - officially published in July 1965 that the message of Garabandal is not contrary to the Faith. And, of course, it ties in with the Church-approved message of La Salette which predicted that Rome would lose the Faith and become the seat of the Antichrist.
6. We know it from "Neues Europa"
We also have the endorsement of Cardinal Ottaviani of the article in the German publication Neues Europa in 1963, which reported parts of the Third Secret. Part of that article stated that "Cardinal will oppose Cardinal and bishop will oppose bishop" (confirming what was reported in the message of Garabandal). This opposition occurs between clergy who work to promote the Faith and those clergy who work to undermine the Faith. This opposition occurs because you cannot be for the Faith without opposing those who undermine and attack the Faith, and the heretics cannot be heretics without opposing those who uphold the orthodox Catholic doctrines.
Q: To sum up, when Our Lady said "In Portugal, the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved, etc.," what does this mean, if anything, for the rest of the world?
It means that the dogma of the Faith will not be preserved in various (or many) other parts of the world because the clergy and faithful are not adhering to the solemn definitions. This does not mean that everyone in Portugal adheres to the solemn definitions; but Our Lady promises, nevertheless, that the country as a whole will do so, whereas the dogma of Faith will not be retained in other parts of Europe and of the world. It is interesting that (in August 1931 at Rianjo, Spain) Jesus asked us to pray for the conversion of Portugal, Spain, Russia, Europe and the whole world. It seems that these may be the principal nations and the most important continent upon which the fate of the salvation of much of the world depends. The Third Secret concerns the undermining of the Catholic Faith throughout Europe and possibly throughout much of the world.
Q: What can the faithful do about it?
If the people adhered to the infallible definitions, they would retain the Faith. To safeguard your Catholic Faith, you need your own efforts to live a good Catholic life and to read solid Catholic material, to avoid bad books, magazines, TV programs, and to avoid also people who undermine your Catholic Faith, but you also need grace. To obtain this grace, you must pray - especially the daily Rosary. To avoid being confused, do not follow the false shepherds and the heretics who claim to speak to a deeper understanding of the Gospel. If they followed the infallible definitions of the dogmas of the Faith, the faithful would judge everything - including anybody from a Pope or an Ecumenical Council down to a simple layman - according to what is right and what is wrong, in the light of the Gospel and of the infallible definitions which explain the Gospel. They would know if something were of the Faith or not, and they would know when the other person speaking was in error - no matter what their position and stature in the Church was. And they would be able to determine what is wrong, what is against the Faith, because the definitions are infallible. That is, they cannot fail. A Pope can fail at times. At times, an Ecumenical Council can fail - a Cardinal, a bishop, a priest or a layperson can fail, but the solemn definitions of the Pope alone or the Pope together with an Ecumenical Council can never fail.
This is what Our Lady of Fatima came to warn us about and to tell us what to do - to preserve our own souls and to preserve as many souls of the people around us as we can. And this is what the Third Secret is about in a few words. And we’re on solid ground.
Q: What can we do about it to save our souls?
As I said before, pray the Rosary daily and learn the dogmas of the Catholic Faith, especially the infallible definitions. If a person is not ready for these, then he or she should first read and study the Catholic catechisms approved by the Church before Vatican II - especially the Baltimore Catechism (which has withstood the test of time and was approved by the Church before the current state of confusion within the Church), the Catechism of the Council of Trent and the Catechism of St. Pius X.
Q: Do we have evidence of a cover-up of the Third Secret?
We have presented much evidence of this in Issue 64 of The Fatima Crusader; in Father Hesse’s article, "Cardinal Ratzinger’s Third Secret" in Issue 66; and elsewhere. We also have Frère Michel’s masterful study, The Whole Truth About Fatima - Vol. III, The Third Secret, as well as Father Alonso’s published research on the Third Secret, all of which have provided us with much of the evidence that the Third Secret was not released, in its entirety, on June 26, 2000.
We then have Cardinal Ratzinger telling us in 1984 that the Third Secret concerns: "the dangers threatening the Faith and life of the Christian, and therefore the life of the world. And also the importance of the last things. If it is not published - at least for the moment - it is to avoid confusing religious prophecy with sensationalism. But the things contained in this third secret correspond to what is announced in Scripture and are confirmed by many other Marian apparitions ..."(13) However, in the Vatican document released on June 26, 2000, Cardinal Ratzinger contradicts his 1984 statement by stating that (concerning the Third Secret), "No great mystery is revealed; nor is the future unveiled."(14)
And we can also refer to a letter written by Sister Lucy on May 12, 1982, allegedly "to the Holy Father". The Vatican document of June 26, 2000 presents a photographic reproduction of a portion of this handwritten letter and claims that it was addressed to Pope John Paul II. However, a close comparison of the handwritten Portuguese text (a portion is shown below) with the versions provided by the Vatican (English, Italian, and Portuguese) reveals that a crucial phrase, which proves that this letter could not have been written to the Pope - or to any Pope - has been omitted from all 3 versions.
The corresponding text in the English version provided by the Vatican is shown below.
In the following statement taken from Sister Lucy’s letter, just referred to, the bolded text has been deliberately omitted from the Vatican’s printed versions: "A terceira parte do segredo, que tanto ansiais por conhecer, e uma revelacao simbolica ..." which translates to "The third part of the secret, which all of you (plural) want ardently to know, is a symbolic revelation ..." where the verb tense of "you want" is plural and informal. Therefore, more than one person is being addressed in this letter. In addition, Sister Lucy, a cloistered nun who is instinctively deferential to ecclesiastical authority, would certainly know better than to address the Supreme Pontiff of the Holy Catholic Church with the familiar and informal "you".
In addition, this omitted phrase also states that the recipients want "ardently to know [the Secret]" even though Pope John Paul II had already read the Secret - either in 1978, within days of becoming Pope (according to Joaquin Navarro-Valls) or on July 18, 1981 (according to Msgr. Bertone). Since the Pope had already read the Third Secret by 1981, why would he "want ardently to know" what it contained in 1982? Furthermore, how could Sister Lucy possibly state that the Pope wanted ardently to know the Secret, when he could have obtained the text from the Vatican archives (or the safe in the papal apartment) any time he wished?
The same letter states: "And if we have not yet seen the complete fulfilment of the final part of this prophecy, we are going towards it little by little with great strides." Why would Sister Lucy tell Pope John Paul II in 1982 that the prophecy of the Third Secret was not yet fulfilled if the prophecy had already been fulfilled with the failed attempt on the Pope’s life on May 13, 1981 (as Cardinal Ratzinger and Msgr. Bertone later claimed on June 26, 2000)?
As further evidence of a cover-up of the Third Secret, Pope Pius XII told us that the message of Our Lady of Fatima to Sister Lucy concerned the suicide of the Catholic Church in altering Her liturgy. Nowhere do we see any references to the ramifications of the Church changing the liturgy in the parts of the Message of Fatima that have already been revealed to the world. Therefore, it must be mentioned in the Third Secret, which was NOT fully revealed on June 26, 2000.
Pius XII, who died on October 9, 1958, gave us this warning - quoted on pages 52-53 in the book Pius XII Devant L’Histoire (the title in English is Pope Pius XII Before the Bar of History) - at a time when altering the liturgy was considered unthinkable, un-Catholic:
"Suppose, dear friend, that Communism (Russia and Russia’s errors, in Fatima terms) was only the most visible of the instruments of subversion to be used against the Church and the traditions of Divine Revelation ... I am worried by the Blessed Virgin’s messages to Lucy of Fatima. This persistence of Mary about the dangers which menace the Church is a divine warning against the suicide of altering the Faith, in Her liturgy ... A day will come when the civilized world will deny its God, when the Church will doubt as Peter doubted. She will be tempted to believe that man has become God ... In our churches, Christians will search in vain for the red lamp where God awaits them, like Mary Magdalene weeping before the empty tomb, they will ask, ‘Where have they taken Him?’"
We also have the statement that the Pope read the Third Secret not in 1981 after he was shot - as Msgr. Bertone claimed - but in 1978, according to the testimony of the Pope’s personal press spokesman, Joaquin Navarro-Valls. And so, obviously, there are two different stories coming out of the Vatican: one saying that he only read it after May 13, 1981 - more precisely, in July 1981 - the other one saying that he read it, actually, in 1978. In fact, Pope John XXIII read it in August 1959, less than a year after his election; Pope Paul VI read it within weeks after he was elected in 1963. It doesn’t make sense that Pope John Paul II would not read it until three years later; when, in fact, we have the testimony of his portavoce, his press agent, saying that he read it a few weeks after he was elected. Why would Msgr. Bertone go to great lengths to say the Pope had not read it until July 1981. The only answer that reconciles both statements is that there are two documents, as Mr. Andrew Cesanek has shown in his article ("Are There Two Original Manuscripts on the Third Secret?") in Issue 64 of The Fatima Crusader.
Our arguments are based on facts. It is an axiom that against a fact there is no argument ("contra factum non est argumentum", St. Thomas Aquinas). You cannot argue against a fact. If there is a tablecloth sitting on my table, which has red color on it, which I see with my own eyes, you can argue all you want that it is not there, but the fact is: it is there; and against that fact there is no argument. Not even the argument from authority, "the Pope says it is not there; Cardinal Ratzinger says it is not there," can prove the opposite of the plain facts. Against any other fact there is no argument. What St. Thomas Aquinas has done is to give us an axiom that says: when you get to a fact, you can’t use reason to prove that the fact isn’t there. The fact is: the fact is there, and that’s that. And so we have facts, and there’s no argument against these facts. And just like the axiom "the shortest distance between two points is a straight line", so "against a fact there is no argument" is also axiomatic.
Q: What are they hiding?
They are hiding the most important part of the Third Secret, about the dangers to your faith by the bad people infiltrated among us. It is that part which was not revealed by Cardinal Ratzinger and Msgr. Bertone at their press conference of June 26, 2000. This is why The Fatima Crusader is needed. This apostolate and this magazine are one of the few means by which the public in the English-speaking world can learn the whole truth about Fatima. This is the only large-scale English language Fatima apostolate (that we know of) that is publishing the whole Message of Fatima, and this apostolate is devoting a full-time effort to make this truth known.
FOOTNOTES TO PART THREE:
Footnotes 1-12 refer to Parts I and II.
(13) Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité, The Whole Truth About Fatima, Volume III - The Third Secret, Immaculate Heart Publications, Buffalo, New York, 1990, reprinted 2001, pp. 822-823. See also Jesus magazine, November 11, 1984, p. 79. See also The Fatima Crusader, Issue 37, Summer 1991, p. 7.
(14) Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, "Theological Commentary", The Message of Fatima, June 26, 2000, p. 32.