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No One Can Go against the Traditional
Teaching of the Catholic Church

Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira
An illustrious scholar and valued TFP supporter, Prof. Mansur Guérios, an intellectual known throughout Brazil who gives us the joy of assisting at this meeting, has asked me this question: “Do you condemn the whole of the Second Vatican Council? If so, why? "

schemas at council

The Prelates at the Council discussing a schema

To consider the question of studying the entire Vatican Council, you should remember that the Vatican Council took a long time to be prepared. I am speaking here of the schemas presented at the first Session of the Council to be discussed by the Bishops. (1) The Council was short (1962-1965), but it took a long time to prepare the schemas, with the participation of a brilliant group of theologians with whom I agree on almost nothing.

I can say categorically that I lack the time, myself, to study the entire Vatican Council. With the work I have with the TFP, I do not have the time. We have, however, persons of distinction, intelligence and culture – one person especially, much more especially – who are studying Vatican Council II, its complete circumference. However, to traverse this city, looping around the entire wall, takes time. And then, after conversing with this very dear friend – a son – I would be in conditions to form my personal opinion and to offer you an opinion that would always be one of love and submission to the Holy Catholic Church.

Not just any love, not just any submission. But a burning love, a love that goes as far as that love can go. This is what I ask from Our Lady every day: to love Her, to love the Holy Catholic Church, to adore the Holy Eucharist for as long as it remain in me for the purposes of the grace I receive. An obedience that is not only resigned, conformed, but an obedience that is enthusiastic.

dr Plinio

'Nothing can go against the traditional teaching of the Catholic Church!'

Even if the Church some day were to teach something contrary to my personal opinion, until I knew her teaching, I am already resolved – without any hesitation or doubt – not only to say yes, but to clap my hands and, on bended knees, if one could say this, to kiss the feet of the Holy Church!

When I say Holy Church, I do not just speak only of the ensemble that constitutes the Holy Church, which is the Hierarchy and the faithful. But my thinking, as a member of the Learning Church, as a layman who belongs to the part of the Church made to be governed, sanctified and taught, I say this especially of the Holy Hierarchy whom I hope and believe will guide me, teach me and sanctify me. It is, therefore, in an attitude of compliance from the depths of my soul with the Sacred Hierarchy.

But then comes the problem: Are there dissonances between aspects of Vatican II and aspects of the traditional teaching that I must sustain? It is not by personal preference but rather because I know the doctrine of the Church that I say: Nothing can go against the traditional teaching of the Catholic Church!

Thus, the question is not: If the Church is there, where will I go? No! If the Church is in a certain place, I am already there, already with her, because that is what I desire. The question is another: Where is the Church? That is the question!

In the darkness of our days, O Church, my Mother, do not turn away from me your eyes, which are the light of my soul! I see eminent men, some for their high offices in the Church, others for their theological training, who say things that go against what I have always understood to be the traditional teaching of the Church. One is that heresy has no right to exist! It can be tolerated, but being tolerated is one thing. To permit it is something else. It cannot be permitted!

ottaviani

Ottaviani: 'I changed my conviction to conform to the new principle of religious freedom'

When I read the opposite in the Council, when I read the declaration of the late famous Cardinal Alfredo Ottaviani (1890-1979) saying that he had to change his formerly acquired convictions and conform to the principle of religious freedom affirmed at the Council, I closed the book and said: “With this I do not agree! Even if such a man as he says he had to change, I say: I do not change, because tradition does not change!”

I remind you that I am speaking here in the exercise of my function as President of the National Council of the Brazilian Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property – TFP. But it is necessary to establish a distiction. TFP exists as a society that aims at the restoration of Christian Civilization and that strives for temporal society to be ordered according to the law of God. This TFP is, therefore, not called upon to pronounce on theological matters, on such elevated matters.

But, if a certain moment comes where the social doctrine – which is the doctrine that acts as the foundation for our action – when I see that this foundation vacillates in some points regarding the Council, I cannot fail to speak on this matter, because it is the very foundation of our work that is at stake. And, then, be certain that I will represent the unanimous consensus of all the TFPs by saying: "We, as Catholics and individuals, have formed our opinion” this will have repercussions in the actions of the TFP. It is natural this should happen.

vat council ii

Even if all the Bishops consent to a wrong teaching,
we cannot accept if it is against the traditional teaching

  1. In the First Session of the Council these initial 72 schemas were replaced – by a suggestion of Cardinal Leo Suenens following an order of John XXIII – by 18 other schemas, which were the ones that were actually discussed in the Conciliar Hall and generated the final 16 official documents of Vatican II. The only schema to remain the same as it was in the pre-conciliar phase was the one on the liturgy, prepared by a Liturgical Commission directed by Msgr. Annibale Bugnini. This schema, approved at the beginning of the Second Session, became the Liturgical Constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium.
Conference for Supporters, June 22, 1984
Posted on December 4, 2019