No Thanks to a Millstone Necklace

In a Loud Color Anyway

To avoid scandal, let me make a few corrections.

Pope Benedict XV, in Ad Beatissimi Apostolorum, wrote:

“…let each one subject his own opinion to the authority of him who is his superior, and obey him as a matter of conscience. Again, let no private individual, whether in books or in the press, or in public speeches, take upon himself the position of an authoritative teacher in the Church.” 

When one puts forth an opinion contrary to the magisterium of the Church, to the unanimity of theological opinion of actual theologians, to councils and popes and doctors of the Church, then one is no longer “subjecting his own opinion to the authority” but rather positioning himself as an “authoritative teacher in the Church” in opposition to that teaching authority.

I am not a teacher in the Church. I am a humble blogger whose only aspiration is to entertain you while informing you of the Apocalypse and its consequences. Mr. Eric Hoyle, my guest for Catholic Conversations–which I hope you watch in full–is not a teacher with authority in the Church either. To the extent that Mr. Hoyle demonstrates his claims based upon sound logical principles, canonical law, and adhering to the magisterium in his conclusions, he may be a trustworthy source for information and understanding during these very difficult times. But to the extent and degree that he overstep his own premises in his conclusions, that is to say, if he say something contrary to reason or to the magisterium, such conclusions are not to be trusted, but must be shunned and proven erroneous.

During the hour-long conversation with Mr. Hoyle, I was pleased to follow along as he explained the basics of supplied jurisdiction and its canonical requirements. However, he did overstep his premises and spoke in error when he gave an opinion contrary to the magisterium of the Church. He spoke of how Anthony Cekada was able to translate sacred canons of the Council of Trent, and to arrive at his own opinion of them, in light of the current state of affairs in the Church. (I hope I have represented his comments correctly!) But this is an error. No private interpretation or translation of sacred canons of an ecumenical council is permitted under pain of anathema–which I mention in the video.


Furthermore, in order to avoid the perversion and confusion which might arise, if each one were allowed, as he might think fit, to publish his own commentaries and interpretations on the decrees of the Council ; We, by apostolic authority, forbid all men, as well ecclesiastics, of whatsoever order, condition, and rank they may be, as also laymen, with whatsoever honor and power invested ; prelates, to wit, under pain of being interdicted from entering the church, and all others whomsoever they be, under pain of excommunication incurred by the fact, to presume, without our authority to publish, in any form, any commentaries, glosses, annotations, scholia, or any kind of interpretation whatsoever of the decrees of the said Council ; or to settle anything in regard thereof, under any plea whatsoever, even under pretext of greater corroboration of the decrees, or the more perfect execution thereof, or under any other colour whatsoever. But if anything therein shall seem to any one to have been expressed and ordained in an obscure manner, and it shall appear to stand in need on that account of an interpretation or decision, let him Go up to the place which the Lord hath chosen; to wit, to the Apostolic See, the mistress of all the faithful, whose authority the holy Synod also has so reverently acknowledged.

Pius IV goes on to say that His Holiness’s Bull ought to be promulgated far and wide, read by all, including the laity, and indeed to be proclaimed in the churches “with a loud voice” even for the illiterate, that no one may plead ignorance. Anthony Cekada violated this Bull when he re-translated and made comment on the meaning of the sacred canon concerning ministers of the word and sacraments. And this Bull is not subject to time and place, as Mr. Hoyle erroneously asserts. What is true yesterday is true tomorrow. It was true then that sacred canons ought only to be translated and interpreted by a teaching authority. Cekada is no authority in the Church (I don’t even think he was in the Church, but that’s for another article), and so ought not to translate or interpret anything. It is a universally valid law, promulgated to the whole Church, and has never been abrogated.

What Cekada should have done was consult approved translations and commentaries of the canon, and then made his case. He didn’t. He polluted the well water of Church teaching by his own hand with his perverse and confused opinions–all to justify himself and his cronies usurping the prerogatives of the Primacy of Peter to establish mass centers without jurisdiction. That cannot stand. And I shall call out such conduct as un-Catholic and condemnable until Doomsday, even at the expense of a gentleman’s acquaintance and friendship.

The Safer Course

At the very end of the video, Mr. Hoyle made another regrettable slip in orthodox praxis concerning the reception of the sacraments of Penance and the Holy Eucharist. He said that, if one believe that he is receiving a valid sacramental confession, and provided he have the proper contrition, he would not be committing sacrilege upon receiving Holy Communion. What Mr. Hoyle fails to mention is that, without jurisdiction, the absolution would be null and void anyway, and, further, that the reception of the sacraments from non-Catholics is a sacrilegious act in itself! According to the canonist Rev. Charles Augustine, Communicatio in sacris, is committed whenever one joins:

“A sect [or] religious society established in opposition to the Catholic Church, whether it consists of infidels, pagans, Jews, Moslems, non-Catholics or schismatics.”

It simply defies understanding as to why Mr. Hoyle would give an endorsement to receive Sede sacraments after he just spent an hour showing how they are not valid or lawful, because they lack jurisdiction. It is the unanimous opinion of theologians that, as it pertains to the validity of the Sacraments, the safer course must always be followed. Since Mr. Hoyle did such a deft job of showing how, in the very least, Sede sacraments are doubtfully valid, and absolutely certainly illicit, the safest course is to avoid them like the Hell-plague they are, and pray at home, performing spiritual acts of penance and communion.

A final word. I was not going to stop the interview and start arguing with my guest. Certain rules of common decency and hospitality must be observed. But I was compelled by conscience and a dear friend’s gentle remonstration for publishing Mr. Hoyle’s remarks without comment to write this article as a public correction of the errors I allowed to air on Catholic Conversations. I hope that this article may serve to undo any harm done. I hope I have avoided scandal, or undone the scandal I may have caused. After all, it were better for me, that a millstone were hanged about my neck, and I cast into the sea, than that I should scandalize one of these little ones.

5 thoughts on “No Thanks to a Millstone Necklace

  1. Pingback: Catholic Conversations | Catholic Eclipsed

  2. Hello Robert—agree with you 100%. Glad you made this very clear to your readers. During these days of apostasy we seek only Truth. Your “Millstone Necklace” article amended the errors  which Mr Doyle stated and your wording is quite precise and verified by the Church teachings you posted. I pray your goal to alert others to the major errors and deception of the various sects in schism that continue to defy Church teachings and the words of previous true Popes, opens the eyes of readers.              ” Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us” ……..Joseph Mecca…JMJ


    • Thank you, Mr. Mecca. I am just sorry I had to issue a correction at all, for Mr. Hoyle’s sake and for my readers.


  3. Thank you Robert for the interview. I am sorry to have said things you believe are unacceptable. You set a good example by clarifying what you believe.

    I think to condemn Fr. Cekada for translating and explaining the Council of Trent would be to strain out a gnat while we are all swallowing camels nowadays. We read, retain, interpret, and discuss the statements of the magisterium and of Catholic writers, as well as those of the Novus Ordo modernists and of others who reject and oppose Catholic doctrine. The internet has blurred the line between “publishing” and having a discussion in public. When everyone and his cat can “publish” online, it takes away the special character that published books had before the information age.

    My opinion is that Catholics are still bound by the moral law, not to expose their faith to danger by reading anti-Catholic books; however, to consider ourselves forbidden to “publish” online or to read anything modernist or heretical when the world is overflowing with it, would be unreasonable. I think this is a case where epikeia does apply. When it’s impossible to consult the lawgiver, sometimes we have to use our own wits as best we can.

    On the second point of contention, about confession and Communion with trad priests, my meaning was not to encourage attendance at trad chapels but rather to reassure people who attended them in good faith in the past. In most cases, I believe that their confessions were invalid but the Holy Eucharist was valid, so they would have recovered the state of grace upon receiving Communion with the proper subjective dispositions. I believe that the attendees of trad chapels are mostly in good faith, as following the lead of the vast majority of clergy and laity who refused to accept the Vatican II revolution. It is reasonable and prudent for most people to follow that group rather than to trust their own scholarship leading to a different course of action. Thankfully we don’t have to be right about everything to be saved; to have the supernatural virtues of faith, hope, and charity is compatible with quite a bit of error, especially in times of unprecedented confusion such as ours.


    • I appreciate you taking the time to explain why you said what you did, and I do see the sense in it. For me, though, I think it is best not to translate a text which the Church has forbidden me to translate, especially when there is no need since there are approved translations.

      I believe that there are a lot of good-faith material heretics out there, too. I guess the difference is, I don’t want them to remain heretics, but to liberate them from their errors. The only way that can happen is to speak the truth as clearly as possible, and to recommend the safest course of action. Telling people that, provided they have the proper disposition (invincible ignorance required), they can receive grace from a valid albeit illicit Eucharist is just counterproductive if not dangerous. I’d rather they have perfect contrition and perform spiritual communions all day long, and avoid doubtful sacraments altogether.

      True, we don’t have to be right about everything in order to be saved. But we do have to belong to the Catholic Church. Let’s try to get more people in the Ark of Salvation before the coming Flood of Fire.


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