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An Infallible Pope
Infallibly Decreed
Anglican Orders are Invalid

Encyclical Apostolicae Curae
Tuesday, September 15, 1896
m


An Infallible Encyclical
of
The Infallible Roman Catholic Pope Leo XIII
Gioacchino Pecci
[Wednesday, February 20, 1878
to Monday, July 20, 1903]


Encyclical Apostolicae Curae
Tuesday, September 15, 1896
Declaration of the Invalidity of Anglican Orders

 
1. Leo, Bishop,

2. Servant of the Servants of God in perpetual memory.

3. We have dedicated to the welfare of the noble English nation no small portion of the Apostolic care and charity by which, helped by His grace, We endeavour to fulfill the office and follow in the footsteps of "the Great Pastor of the sheep" (Hebrews 13:20), Our Lord Jesus Christ. The Letter which last year We sent to "the English seeking the Kingdom of Christ in the unity of the faith" is a special witness of Our good will towards England. In it We recalled the memory of the ancient union of the people with Mother Church, and We strove to hasten the day of a happy reconciliation by stirring up men's hearts to offer diligent prayer to God. And, again, more recently, when it seemed good to Us to treat more fully the Unity of the Church in a General Letter, England had not the last place in Our mind, in the hope that Our teaching might both strengthen Catholics and bring the saving light to those divided from Us.

4. It is pleasing to acknowledge the generous way in which Our zeal and plainness of speech, inspired by no mere human motives, have been received by the English people; and this testifies not less to their courtesy than to the solicitude of many for their eternal salvation.

Reasons For Reopening the Question

5. With the same mind and intention, We have now determined to turn Our consideration to a matter of no less importance, which is closely connected with the same subject and with Our desires. For already the general belief, confirmed more than once by the action and constant practice of the Church, maintained that when in England, shortly after it was rent from the center of Christian Unity, a new rite for conferring Holy Orders was publicly introduced under Edward VI, the true Sacrament of Orders, as instituted by Christ lapsed, and with it the hierarchical succession. For some time, however, and in these last years especially, a controversy has sprung up as to whether the Sacred Orders conferred according to the Edwardine Ordinal possessed the nature and effect of a Sacrament; those in favour of the absolute validity, or of a doubtful validity, being not only certain Anglican writers, but some few Catholics, chiefly non-English. The consideration of the excellency of the Christian priesthood moved Anglican writers in this matter, desirous as they were that their own people should not lack the twofold power over the Body of Christ. Catholic writers were impelled by a wish to smooth the way for the return of Anglicans to holy unity. Both, indeed, thought that in view of studies brought up to the level of recent research, and of new documents rescued from oblivion, it was not inopportune for the question to be re-examined by Our authority. And We, not disregarding such desires and opinions, and, above all, obeying the dictates of Apostolic charity, have considered that nothing should be left untried that might in any way tend to preserve souls from injury or procure their advantage.

Prescribed Method of Examination

6. It has, therefore, pleased Us graciously to permit the cause to be re-examined, so that, through the extreme care taken in the new examination, all doubt, or even shadow of doubt, should be removed for the future. To this end We commissioned a certain number of men noted for their learning and ability, whose opinions in this matter were known to be divergent, to state the grounds of their judgement in writing. We then, having summoned them to Our person, directed them to interchange writings and further to investigate and to discuss all that was necessary for a full knowledge of the matter. We were careful, also, that they should be able to re-examine all of the documents bearing on this question which were known to exist in the Vatican archives, to search for new ones, and even to have at their disposal all of the acts relating to this subject which are preserved by the Holy Office, or, as it is called, the Supreme Council, and to consider whatever had up to this time been adduced by learned men on both sides. We ordered them, when prepared in this manner, to meet together in special sessions. These to the number of twelve were held under the presidency of one of the Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church, appointed by Ourself, and all were invited to free discussion. Finally, We directed that the acts of these meetings, together with all other documents, should be submitted to Our Venerable Brethren, the Cardinals of the same Council, so that when all had studied the whole subject, and discussed it in Our presence, each one might give his own opinion.

Previous Decisions: Julius III and Paul IV

7. This order for discussing the matter having been determined upon, it was only right that, in order to form a true estimate of the real state of the question, careful inquiry should first be made, as to how the matter stood according to the prescription and settled custom of the Apostolic See, the origin and force of which custom it was undoubtedly of great importance to determine. For this reason, in the first place, the principal documents, in which Our Predecessors, at the request of Queen Mary, exercised their special care for the reconciliation of the English Church, were considered. Thus Julius III sent Cardinal Reginald Pole, an Englishman, and illustrious in many ways, to be his Legate a latere for the purpose, "as his angel of peace and love", and gave him extraordinary and unusual mandates or faculties and directions for his guidance (given in August 1553 in SI ULLO UMQUAM TEMPORE, POST NUNTIUM NOBIS, and other documents). These (documents) Paul IV confirmed and explained.

8. And, here, to interpret rightly the force of these documents, it is necessary to lay it down as a fundamental principle that they were certainly not intended to deal with an abstract state of things, but with a specific and concrete issue. For since the faculties given by these Pontiffs to the Apostolic Legate had reference to England only, and to the state of religion therein, and since the rules of action were laid down by them at the request of the said Legate, they could not have been mere directions for determining the necessary conditions for the validity of Ordinations in general, but they must have dealt directly with the subject of Holy Orders in the said kingdom, in view of the condition of the circumstances and times as set forth. This, besides being clear from the nature and form of the said documents, is also obvious from the fact that it would have been altogether irrelevant to instruct the Legate-one whose learning had been conspicuous in the Council of Trent-as to the conditions necessary for the bestowal of the Sacrament of Orders.

9. To all rightly considering these matters it will not be difficult to understand why, in the Letters of Julius III issued to the Apostolic Legate on March 8, 1554, there is a distinct mention, first of those who, "rightly and lawfully promoted", were to be retained in their Orders; and then of others who, "not promoted to Sacred Orders", might "be promoted if they were found to be worthy and fitting subjects". For it is clearly and definitely noted, as indeed was the case, that there were two classes of men: the first those who had really received Sacred Orders, either before the secession of Henry VIII, or, if after it and by ministers infected by error and schism, still according to the accustomed Catholic rite; the second, those who were initiated according to the Edwardine Ordinal, who on that account could not be "promoted", since they had received an ordination which was null and void. And that the mind of the Pope was this, and nothing else, is clearly confirmed by the Letter of the said Legate (January 29, 1555), sub-delegating his faculties to the Bishop of Norwich. Moreover, what the Letters of Julius III themselves say about freely using the Pontifical faculties, even on behalf of those who had received their consecration "minus rite and not according to the accustomed form of the Church", is to be especially noted. By this expression those only could be meant who had been consecrated according to the Edwardine rite, since besides it and the Catholic form there was then no other rite in England.

10. This becomes even more clear when we consider the Legation which, on the advice of Cardinal Pole, the Sovereign Princes, Philip and Mary, sent to the Pope in Rome in the month of February, 1555 the royal ambassadors: three men "most illustrious and endowed with every virtue", of whom one was Thomas Thirlby, Bishop of Ely. They were charged to inform the Pope more fully regarding the religious condition of the country and especially to beg that he would ratify and confirm what the Legate had been at pains to effect, and had succeeded in effecting, towards the reconciliation of the Kingdom with the Church. For this purpose all of the necessary written evidence and the pertinent parts of the new Ordinal were submitted to the Pope. The Legation having been splendidly received, and their evidence having been "diligently discussed" by several of the Cardinals, "after mature deliberation" Paul IV issued his Bulla Praeclara Carissimi on June 20 of that same year. In this, while giving full force and approbation to that which Cardinal Pole had done, it is ordered in the matter of the Ordination (rite) as follows:

    "Those who have been promoted to Ecclesiastical Orders . . . by any one but by a Bishop validly and lawfully ordained are bound to receive those Orders again."
11. But who those Bishops not "validly and lawfully ordained" were had been made sufficiently clear by the foregoing documents and the faculties used in the said matter by the Legate; those, namely, who have been promoted to the Episcopate, as others to other Orders, "not according to the accustomed (traditional) form of the Church", or, as the Legate himself wrote to the Bishop of Norwich, "the Form and Intention of the Church" not having been observed. These were certainly those promoted according to the new form of rite, to the examination of which the Cardinals specially deputed had given their careful attention. Neither should the passage much to the point in the same Pontifical Letter be overlooked where, together with others needing dispensation, are enumerated those "who had obtained as well Orders as benefices nulliter et de facto." For to obtain orders nulliter means the same as by an act both null and void, that is, invalid, as the very meaning of the word and as common usage require. This is especially clear when the word is used in the same way about Orders as about "ecclesiastical benefices", which, by the undoubted teaching of the sacred canons, were clearly null if given with any vitiating defect.

12. Moreover, when some doubted as to who, according to the mind of the Pontiff, could be called and considered bishops "validly and lawfully ordained", the said Pope shortly after that, on October 30 (1555), issued a further Letter in the form of a Brief and said:

    "We, wishing to remove the doubt and to provide opportunely for the peace of conscience of those who during the schism were promoted to Orders, by expressing more clearly the mind and the intention which We had in the aforesaid Letter, declare that only those Bishops and Archbishops who were not ordained and consecrated in the form of the Church cannot be said to have been validly and lawfully ordained".
13. Unless this declaration had applied to the actual case in England, that is to say, to the Edwardine Ordinal, the Pope would certainly have done nothing by this last Letter for the removal of doubt and the restoration of peace of conscience. Further, it was in this sense that the Legate understood the documents and commands of the Apostolic See, and duly and conscientiously obeyed them; and the same was done by Queen Mary and by the others who helped her to restore religion and Catholic institutions to their former state.

Invariable Practice of the Holy See

14. The authority of Julius III and of Paul IV, which we have quoted, clearly shows the origin of that practice which has been observed without interruption for more than three centuries, that Ordinations conferred according to the Edwardine rite should be considered null and void. This practice is fully proved by the numerous cases of absolute re-ordination according to the Catholic rite even in Rome. In the observance of this practice we have a proof directly affecting the matter in hand. For, if by any chance, doubt should remain as to the true sense in which these Pontifical documents are to be understood, the principle holds good that "Custom is the best interpreter of law." Since in the Church it has ever been a constant and established rule that it is sacrilegious to repeat the Sacrament of Order, it never could have come to pass that the Apostolic See should have silently acquiesced, and tolerated such a custom. But not only did the Apostolic See tolerate this practice, but approved and sanctioned it as often as any particular case arose which called for its judgement in the matter.

15. We adduce two facts of this kind out of many which have from time to time been submitted to the Supreme Council of the Holy Office. The first was (in 1684) of a certain French Calvinist, and the other (in 1704) of John Clement Gordon; both of whom had received their Orders according to the Edwardine ritual. In the first case, after a searching investigation, the Consultors, not a few in number, gave in writing their answers or as they call it, their vota. The rest unanimously agreed with their conclusion, "for the invalidity of the Ordination," and only on account of reasons of opportuneness did the Cardinals deem it well to answer with a dilata (viz., not to formulate the conclusion at the moment). The same documents were called into use and considered again in the examination of the second case. Additional written statements of opinion were also obtained from Consultors, and the most eminent doctors of the Sorbonne and of Douai were likewise asked for their opinion. No safeguard which wisdom and prudence could suggest to ensure the thorough sifting of the question was neglected.

Decree of Clement XI and Its Importance

16. Here it is important to observe that, although Gordon himself, whose case it was, and some of the Consultors, had adduced, among the reasons which went to prove the invalidity, the Ordination of Parker, according to the account then current, in the delivery of the decision this reason was altogether set aside, as documents of incontestable authenticity prove. Nor, in pronouncing the decision, was weight given to any other reason than the "defect of form and intention". In order that the judgment concerning this form might be more certain and complete, precaution was taken that a copy of the Anglican Ordinal should be submitted to examination, and that with it should be collated the Ordination forms gathered together from the various Eastern and Western rites.

17. Then Clement XI himself, with the unanimous vote of the Cardinals concerned, on the Feria V, [Thursday] April 17, 1704, decreed:

    "John Clement Gordon shall be ordained from the beginning and unconditionally to all the Orders, even Sacred Orders, and chiefly of Priesthood, and in case he has not been confirmed, he shall first receive the Sacrament of Confirmation."
18. It is important to bear in mind that this judgement was not based merely on the omission of the tradition of instruments, for in such a case, according to the established custom, the direction would have been to repeat the Ordination conditionally. Still more important is it to note that the judgement of the Pontiff applies universally to all Anglican ordinations, because, although it refers to a particular case, it is not based upon any reason special to that case, but upon the defect of form, which defect equally affects all these ordinations-so much so, that when similar cases subsequently came up for decision, the same decree of Clement XI was quoted as the norma [norm].

The Question Already Definitely Settled

19. Hence it must be clear to everyone that the controversy lately revived had been already definitely settled by the Apostolic See, and that it is to the insufficient knowledge of these documents that we must, perhaps, attribute the fact that any Catholic writer should have considered it still an open question. But, as We stated at the beginning, there is nothing We so deeply and ardently desire as to be of help to men of good will by showing them the greatest consideration and charity. Wherefore, We ordered that the Anglican Ordinal, which is the essential point of the whole matter, should be once more most carefully examined.

The Anglican Ordinal

20. In the examination of any rite for the effecting and administering of a Sacrament, distinction is rightly made between the part which is ceremonial and that which is essential, usually called the "Matter and Form". All know that the Sacraments of the New Law, as sensible and efficient signs of invisible grace, ought both to signify the grace which they effect, and effect the grace which they signify. Although the signification ought to be found in the whole essential rite-that is to say, in the "Matter and Form"-it still pertains chiefly to the "Form"; since the "Matter" is the part which is not determined by itself, but which is determined by the "Form". And this appears still more clearly in the Sacrament of Orders, the "Matter" of which, in so far as We have to consider it in this case, is the imposition of hands, which, indeed, by itself signifies nothing definite, and is equally used for several Orders and for Confirmation. But the words which until recently were commonly held by Anglicans to constitute the proper form of priestly Ordination namely: "Receive the Holy Ghost," certainly do not in the least definitely express the Sacred Order of Priesthood (sacerdotium), or its grace and power, which is chiefly the power "of consecrating and of offering the true Body and Blood of the Lord" (Council of Trent, Session 23, On the Sacrament of Orders, Canon 1) in that sacrifice which is no "bare commemoration of the Sacrifice offered on the Cross" (Ibid., Session 22, On the Sacrifice of the Mass, Canon 3).

21. This form had, indeed, afterwards added to it the words "for the office and work of a priest". But, this rather shows that the Anglicans themselves perceived that the first form was defective and inadequate. But even if this addition could give to the form its due signification, it was introduced too late, as a century had already elapsed since the adoption of the Edwardine Ordinal; for, as the Hierarchy had become extinct, there remained no power of ordaining. In vain has help been recently sought for the plea of the validity of [Anglican] Orders from the other prayers of the same Ordinal. For, to put aside other reasons which show them to be insufficient for the purpose in the Anglican rite, let this argument suffice for all: From them has been deliberately removed whatever sets forth the dignity and office of the Priesthood in the Catholic Rite. That "form" consequently cannot be considered apt or sufficient for the Sacrament which omits what it ought essentially to signify.

22. The same holds good regarding Episcopal Consecration. For to the formula, "Receive the Holy Ghost", not only were the words "for the office and work of a Bishop", added at a later period, but even these, as We shall presently state, cannot be regarded in the same way as if they were in a Catholic Rite. Nor is anything gained by quoting the prayer of the preface, "Almighty God", since it also, in like manner, has been stripped of the words which denote the summum sacerdotium. It is not here relevant to examine whether the Episcopate be a completion of the Priesthood, or an Order distinct from it, or whether, when bestowed, as they say per saltum, on one who is not a Priest, it has or has not its effect. But the Episcopate undoubtedly, by the institution of Christ, most truly belongs to the Sacrament of Orders and constitutes the Priesthood in the highest degree, namely, that which by the teaching of the Holy Fathers and our liturgical customs is called the summum sacerdotium, sacri ministerii summa. So it comes to pass that, as the Sacrament of Orders and the true sacerdotium of Christ were utterly eliminated from the Anglican rite, and hence the sacerdotium is in no wise conferred truly and validly in the Episcopal consecration of the same rite, the Episcopate can in no way be truly and validly conferred by it; and this the more so because among the first duties of the Episcopate is that of ordaining ministers for the Holy Eucharistic Sacrifice.

The Mind and Aim of Those Whom Composed the Anglican [Edwardine] Ordinal

23. For the full and accurate understanding of the Anglican Ordinal, besides what We have noted as to some of its parts, there is nothing more pertinent than to consider carefully the circumstances under which it was composed and publicly authorized. It would be tedious to enter into details, nor is it necessary to do so, as the history of that time is sufficiently known as to the spirit of the authors of the Ordinal against the Catholic Church, as to the abettors whom they associated with themselves from the heterodox sects, and as to the end they had in view. Being fully aware of the necessary connection between faith and worship, between lex orandi, lex credendi [the law of praying is the law of believing], they corrupted the Liturgical Order in many ways to suit the errors of the reformers, under the pretext of restoring it to its primitive form. Thus, in the whole Ordinal, not only is there no clear mention of the sacrifice, of consecration, of the priesthood, and of the power of consecrating and offering sacrifice, but, as We have just stated, every trace of these things, which had been in such prayers of the Catholic Rite, as they had not entirely rejected, was deliberately removed and struck out.

24. In this way, the native character-or spirit, as it is called-of the Ordinal clearly manifests itself. Now, if vitiated in its origin, it was wholly insufficient to confer Orders, it was impossible that in the course of time it could become sufficient, seeing that it remained essentially the same. Vainly did those who, from the time of Charles I onwards, endeavor to hold some kind of sacrifice or of priesthood, make some additions to the Ordinal; vainly also have a small section of the Anglican body, formed in recent times, contended that the said Ordinal can be understood and interpreted in a sound and orthodox sense. Such efforts, We affirm, have been, and are, made in vain. And, for this further reason-that any words in the Anglican Ordinal, as it now is, which lend themselves to ambiguity, cannot have the same sense they possess in the Catholic Rite. For once a new rite has been initiated in which, as we have seen, the Sacrament of Orders is adulterated or denied, and from which all idea of consecration and sacrifice has been rejected, the formula, "Receive the Holy Ghost", no longer holds good, because the Spirit is infused into the soul with the grace of the Sacrament. The words "for the office and work of a Priest or Bishop", and the like no longer hold good, but remain as words without the reality which Christ instituted.

25. Several of the more shrewd Anglican interpreters of the Ordinal have perceived the force of this argument, and they openly urge it against those who take the Ordinal in a new sense, and vainly attach to the Orders conferred thereby a value and efficacy which they do not possess. Moreover, by this same argument is refuted the contention of those who think that the prayer "Almighty God, giver of all good things", which is found at the beginning of the ritual action, might suffice as a legitimate "form" of Orders, although possibly it might be regarded as sufficient in a Catholic Rite approved by the Church.

Catholic Doctrine of Intention

26. With this inherent "defect of form" is joined the "defect of intention" which is equally essential to the Sacrament. The Church does not judge about the mind and intention in so far as it is something by its nature internal; but in so far as it is manifested externally she is bound to judge concerning it. When anyone has rightly and seriously made use of the due Form and the Matter requisite for effecting or conferring the sacrament, he is considered by the very fact to do [intendisse] what the Church does. On this principle rests the doctrine that a Sacrament is truly conferred by the ministry of one who is a heretic or unbaptized, provided the Catholic Rite be employed. On the other hand, if the rite be changed, with the manifest intention of introducing another rite not approved by the Church and of rejecting what the Church does, and what, by the institution of Christ, belongs to the nature of the Sacrament, then it is clear that not only is the necessary Intention wanting to the Sacrament, but that the intention is adverse to and destructive of the Sacrament.

Decision of the Holy Office and the Final Decree of Pope Leo XIII

27. All these matters have been long and carefully considered by Us and by Our Venerable Brethren, the Judges of the Supreme Council, of whom it has pleased Us to call a special meeting upon the Feria V, the 16th day of July last, upon the solemnity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. They with one accord agreed that the question laid before them had been already adjudicated with full knowledge of the Apostolic See, and that this renewed discussion and examination of the issues had only served to bring out more clearly the wisdom and accuracy with which that decision had been made. Nevertheless, We deemed it well to postpone a decision in order to afford time, both to consider whether it would be fitting or expedient that We should make a fresh authoritative declaration upon the matter, and humbly to pray for a fuller measure of Divine guidance. Then, considering that this matter of discipline, although already decided, had been by certain persons, for whatever reason, recalled into discussion, and that thence it might follow that a pernicious error would be fostered in the minds of many who might suppose that they possessed the Sacrament and effects of Orders, where these are nowise to be found, it seemed good to Us in the Lord to pronounce Our judgment.

28. Wherefore, strictly adhering, in this matter to the decrees of the Pontiffs, Our Predecessors, and confirming them most fully, and, as it were, renewing them by Our authority, of Our own initiative and certain knowledge, We pronounce and declare that ordinations carried out according to the Anglican rite have been, and are, absolutely null and utterly void.

29. It remains for Us to say that even as We have entered upon the elucidation of this grave question in the name and in the love of the Great Shepherd, in the same We appeal to those who desire and seek with a sincere heart the possession of a hierarchy and of [Holy] Orders. Perhaps until now, aiming at the greater perfection of Christian virtue, and searching more devoutly the Divine Scriptures, and redoubling the fervor of their prayers, they have, nevertheless, hesitated in doubt and anxiety to follow the voice of Christ, which so long has interiorly admonished them. Now they see clearly whither He in His goodness invites them and wills them to come. In returning to His one only fold, they will obtain the blessings which they seek, and the consequent helps to salvation, of which He has made the Church the dispenser, and, as it were, the constant guardian and promoter of His Redemption among the nations. Then, indeed, "they shall draw waters in joy from the fountains of the Saviour" (Isaias 12:3), His wondrous Sacraments, whereby His faithful souls have their sins truly remitted, and are restored to the friendship of God, are nourished and strengthened by the Heavenly Bread, and abound with the most powerful aids for their eternal salvation. May the God of of Peace, the God of all consolation, in His infinite tenderness, enrich and fill with all these blessings those who truly yearn for them.

30. We wish to direct our exhortation and our desires in a special way to those who are ministers of religion in their respective communities. They are men who from their very office take precedence in learning and authority, and who have at heart the glory of God and the salvation of souls. Let them be the first in joyfully submitting to the Divine call, and obey it and furnish a glorious example to others. Assuredly, with an exceeding great joy, their Mother, the Church, will welcome them, and will cherish with all her love and care those whom the strength of their generous souls has, amidst many trials and difficulties, led back to her bosom. Nor could words express the recognition which this devoted courage will win for them from the assemblies of the brethren throughout the Catholic world, or what hope or confidence it will merit for them before Christ as their Judge, or what reward it will obtain from Him in the heavenly kingdom. And We, Ourselves, in every lawful way, shall continue to promote their reconciliation with the Church in which individuals and groups, as We ardently desire, may find so much for their imitation. In the meantime, by the tender mercy of the Lord Our God, We ask and beseech all to strive faithfully to follow in the open path of Divine Grace and Truth.

31. We decree that these Letters and all things contained therein shall not be liable at any time to be impugned or objected to by reason of fault or any other defect whatsoever of subreption or obreption of Our intention, but are and shall be always valid and in full force, and shall be inviolably observed both juridically and otherwise, by all of whatsoever degree and pre-eminence whatsoever; declaring null and void anything which in these matters may happen to be contrariwise attempted, whether wittingly or unwittingly, by any person whatsoever, by whatsoever authority or pretext, all things to the contrary notwithstanding.

32. We will that there shall be given to copies of these Letters, even printed, provided that they be signed by a notary and sealed by a person constituted in ecclesiastical dignity, the same credence that would be given to the expression of Our will by the showing of these presents.

33. Given at Rome, at St. Peter's, in the year of the Incarnation of Our Lord, one thousand eight hundred and ninety-six, on the Ides of September, in the nineteenth year of Our Pontificate.

C. Card. de Ruggiero

A. Card. Bianchi,

Pro-Datarius

VISA

Official of Dispatch de Curia;

J. Dell' Aquila Visconti

In Place of + the Seal.

Registered in the Secretariate of Briefs,

I. Cugnoni


Brief Editorial Commentary by Patriarch Jacobus Maria DeJesus, D.D.

In the above document, Pope Leo XIII reafirms the teaching of the Catholic Church that the Proper Matter, Form, and Intention are all required for a Sacrament to be valid and are, therefore, part of the required essence.

These basic principles prove that, because of the invalid and illegal changes made by Synod Vatican 2, etc., the Vatican invalidated all of the Seven Sacraments in one way or in another, whether the defect be in the matter, and/or in the form, and/or in the intention.

But what most people do not know is that the Vatican has actually admitted that the essence (part of what makes a Sacrament valid) of all of the Seven Sacrament were changed!

Jesus Christ, the Eternal High Priest, perfectly instituted the Seven Sacraments.  This included the Ontological Essence for each of the Seven Sacraments, which, in general, require the Proper Matter, Proper Form and Proper Intention for validity.

The text of the above Encyclical, Apostolicae Curae, of Tuesday, September 15, 1896 of Pope Leo XII declares that Anglican Orders are invalid.  This simply means that all of the Bishops and Priests who were consecrated and ordained with the use of the Anglican Ordinal are not Bishops and not Priests!  They are simply members of the Laity dressed up like Bishops and Priests because they have no Sacramental Powers of offer Mass, to administer the Sacraments, to Bless, to perform Exorcisms, etc. because the Bishop(s) who ordained/consecrated them used the Anglican [Edwardine] Ordinal which contains invalid liturgical Rites for the Seven Sacraments, including the Sacrament of Holy Orders!

Besides all of the invalidating and illegal changes which were made to the Roman Missal used for offering the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass by Pope Paul 6, the Roman Ritual and the Pontificale Romanum were also changed so that the situation after Synod Vatican 2 was similar to the situation in 16th Century Western Europe after the Protestants began to change not only the liturgical Rites for the Mass, but also for the Sacraments, and, in the process of doing this, the Protestants recklessly invalidated everything, not just the Catholic Rite of Mass, which they replaced with a Protestant Memorial Supper Meal, but also the Protestants invalidated the liturgical Rites for the Sacraments as well, with most Protestants keeping only two of the Seven Sacraments!

Consider that this is not mere speculation.  On the contrary, the official publication of the Pope himself, and the Vatican in general, had this to say about the changes to the liturgical Rites of the Seven Sacraments:

"THE REFORM OF THE LITURGY, carried out in accordance with the Constitution of the Second Vatican Council, has also INTRODUCED CERTAIN MODIFICATIONS IN THE VERY ESSENCE OF THE SACRAMENTAL RITES." (L'OSSERVATORE ROMANO, Thursday, November 7, 1974; emphasis added).
Here is an actual ADMISSION by the Vatican that they did, in fact, change "the very ESSENCE (The Ontological Essence is that which makes a thing to be what it is-in the case of the Sacraments, it is part of what makes the Sacraments VALID!) of the Sacramental Rites"!

One must wonder if anyone would need any more proof thant this public admission in 1974 because the above quote is THE PUBLIC ADMISSION BY THE VATICAN THAT THEY ACTUALLY CHANGED that which makes a Sacrament a Sacrament and without which a Sacrament is no longer a Sacrament!!!!


But, there are always those who require more proof, or at least something more specific.  So, let's go through this, Sacrament by Sacrament:

1)  Sacrament of Baptism:

For Infants:  Invalidated by the Vatican 2 church on Wednesday, March 19, 1969 A.D. by the Rite of Christian Initiation of Infants (RCII).

For Adults:   Invalidated by the Vatican 2 church on Thursday, January 6, 1972 A.D. by the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA).

2)  Sacrament of Penance:

Invalidated by the Vatican 2 church on Sunday, December 2, 1973 A.D. by the Rite of Reconciliation.

3)  Sacrament of Holy Eucharist:

Invalidated by the Vatican 2 church on Thursday, April 3, 1969 A.D.  by the Novus Ordo Missae which also invalidated the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass turning it into a Protestant Memorial Supper-Meal, albeit an updated version of some of the 16th Century Protestant Memorial Supper Meals.

4)  Sacrament of Confirmation:

Invalidated by the Vatican 2 church on Sunday, August 15, 1971 A.D. by the Rite of Christian Initiation.

5) Sacrament of Matrimony:

Invalidated by the Vatican 2 church on Thursday, April 3, 1969 A.D. by the Novus Ordo Missae which has the Propers for the Supper Meal for the Matrimonial Covenant, while the Priest's New Ritual apparently has the new rite, as do two seperate books, Marriage in Christ, and Rite of Marriage.  But We understand the actual Rite itself can be, and frequently is, made up by the couple themselves.

6)  Sacrament of Holy Orders:

Invalidated by the Vatican 2 church on Tuesday, June 18, 1968 A.D. by the new ordination rites for deacons, priests and bishops which are found in the updated edition of the Pontificale Romanum, the Ritual used by Bishops.

7)  Sacrament of Extreme Unction:

Invalidated by the Vatican 2 church on Thursday, November 30, 1972 A.D. by the Annointing of the Sick which is also in the Pastoral Care of the Sick.

Therefore, the Vatican admission that "The reform of the Liturgy, carried out in accordance with the Constitution of the Second Vatican Council, has also introduced certain modifications in the very essence of the Sacrament Rites", which admission was printed in the Pope's Official Newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano, on Thursday, November 7, 1974, is, sad to say, very true.  In other words, here is their admission of guilt!  Here is the proverbial smoking gun!


The basic principles set forth in the above Encyclical Apostolicae Curae, by Pope Leo XIII, while they were specifically applied to the Edwardine Ordinal of the Protestant Anglican Church, can likewise be applied to the updated Edwardine Ordinal of the Vatican 2 church, with the very same conclusions - namely, this updated Protestant liturgical book in universal use by the Vatican 2 church contains invalid and illegal liturgical Rites for the administration of the Seven Sacraments!

What are these basic principles required for validity of each Sacrament?  The Ontological Essence for each of the Seven Sacraments are the Proper Matter, Proper Form and Proper Intention for that specific Sacrament for validity.

Having already read this document, everyone now should have a better understanding and perspective of how these timeless principles can be applied to the situation regarding the liturgical books containing the Rites for each of the Seven Sacraments as found in the Pontificale Romanum (used by Bishops) and the Rituale Romanum (used by Priests).

The above Encyclical, Apostolicae Curae, merely proves what can, and has in fact happened, when one makes reckless changes to the liturgical rites for the Seven Sacraments, which result is invalid Sacraments.

The history of what the Protestants did in the 16th Century has been repeated by Synod Vatican 2 and its aftermath - nothing but invalid Sacraments in the Vatican 2 church which can no longer call itself Catholic!

No wonder the Laity who attend such places have Souls in the state of Spiritual Starvation because the NEW Sacraments do not give Grace as do the valid and unchangeable Sacraments of the Catholic Church!

The Blessing
V. Sit + Nomen Domini benedictum.
R. Ex hoc nunc, et usque in saeculum.
V. Adjutorium nostrum in
Nomine Domini.
R. Qui fecit cúlum et terram.
V. Benedicat vos, Omnipotens Deus:
V. Pa + ter, et Fi + lius, et Spiritus + Sanctus, descendat super vos, et maneat semper.
R. Amen.
V. Blessed + be the Name of the Lord.
R. Now and for ever more.x
V. Our help is in the Name of the Lord.
mm
R. Who made Heaven and earth.
V. May Almighty God Bless thee:x
V. The Fa + ther, the + Son, and the Holy + Ghost, descend upon thee, and always remain with thee.
R. Amen.

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Knowledge
 
It is of the greatest importance that in order to gain assured knowledge of things, to rely on exact acquaintance with facts, rather than on the uncertain testimony of public rumor; and then what we have proved for certain we may proclaim without hesitation. (Saint Bernard of Clairvaux  [b. Castle Fontaines, near Dijon, France in 1090 A.D. - d. at Clairvaux, France on Friday, August 21, 1153 A.D.], Abbot of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church, Letters).
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