Archbishop Viganò / Interview by Michael J. Matt for the Catholic Identity Conference
Interview by Michael J. Matt for the Catholic Identity Conference
Pittsburgh, October 2, 2022
- Many Catholics today believe that Holy Mother Church is suffering the worst crisis in history, surpassing even that of the Arian Heresy. Do you believe this to be the case?
I cannot say whether this crisis is the worst that the Church will have to face between now and the end of time. Certainly, it is the worst to date, both for the devastating proportion of the apostasy and for the narcotization of the lower clergy and the faithful towards the Hierarchy. On other occasions, the persecution was more ferocious, but it found resistance in the Bishops and opposition in the Catholics, who could look to the See of Peter as a beacon of Truth and an obstacle to the establishment of the kingdom of the Antichrist. Today the katèchon has passed away, at least temporarily, and the Apostolic See is occupied by a declared enemy of the Church of Christ.
Never in History have we witnessed a systematic betrayal of the Faith, Morals, Liturgy and ecclesiastical discipline, favored and even promoted by the supreme Authority of the Church itself, in the complicit silence of the Hierarchy and in the uncritical acceptance of many of the clerics and faithful. The gravity of this situation is increased by the fact that the work of dissolution of the deep church advances in sync with the subversive action of the deep state in the nations, causing the Catholic faithful to be the object of a double attack, as faithful and as citizens.
These two now indisputable realities have in common Satan’s unquenchable hatred of Christ, of His Church, of His Holy Law, of Christian Civilization. This deception is so obvious that it can no longer be labeled a “conspiracy theory.”
If we think about it, it is disturbing that the protagonists of this criminal plan – both in governments and in the Church – come from that radical chic environment in which conciliar “Catholic” progressivism, pacifism, ecologism, homosexuality and the whole repertoire of the woke Left was born and grew since the sixties. As I have already said, the individual bishops and the entire Hierarchy of recent decades will have to answer before God and History for their complicity in this crisis, indeed for having been in some ways inspirers and supporters of it, abdicating the role of the Church of Domina gentium.
- What was it that convinced you to join the traditional Catholic counterrevolution?
What son would watch impassively the humiliation of his mother, letting his servants expose her to infamy and vituperation, strip her of the triple crown and royal garments, steal her jewels and sell her goods, force her to live with thieves and prostitutes, even take away her royal title and abandon her to degradation? And what citizen of a glorious nation would let it be destroyed by traitorous rulers and corrupt officials, without taking up arms to rise up and returning to it the honor that has been taken from it?
If this is valid in the order of nature, it is even more true and pressing when it comes to the Holy Church, assailed by enemies who strike at her not only in temporal things by putting up for auction churches, furnishings and sacred items – as they have always done throughout History – but even in her supernatural goods, in the treasures with which the divine King has endowed her for the sanctification of souls, in the incorruptible riches of its doctrine and liturgy. Corrupt ministers exposed her to scandal, adulterated her teaching, dispersed her army and demolished the walls that defended her from enemy incursions. The souls who, thanks to the Church, were protected and accompanied on the earthly journey to eternity, have been turned away and lost: souls for whom Our Lord shed His Blood and whom His unfaithful ministers have abandoned and driven out of the sacred enclosure.
To stand by and watch the outrage of our Holy Mother Church is no less serious than having been among the crowd that witnessed the Passion and Crucifixion of Our Lord, among the cries and spits of the slayers; because we are children of God as we are children of the Church, which by the merits of Jesus Christ restores us in Grace and makes us heirs of the Kingdom of Heaven.
At the beginning, sixty years ago, it seemed that it was the Church herself – after the tragic events of the Second World War and the horrors of dictatorships – that almost wanted to strip herself of her past in order to somehow attenuate the chasm between what had become the world and what remained of it. This dispossession appeared to be a gesture of indulgence for a society upset by revolutions and the end of the Catholic monarchies, on the wave of that democracy that we believed could be Christian, despite knowing well that its “values” were substantially opposed to the transcendent vision of the power proper to Catholic belief. Few of us, in those years, understood that the conciliar revolution would subvert the divine order, overthrow the kosmos by throwing the Church into chaos, give space to heresy and demolish orthodoxy, and accept the replacement of virtue and honesty with the corruption of customs.
This subversive process – evertere in Latin means precisely to overthrow – brought to the top of the Hierarchy those who should never have been admitted to it, and emblematically drove out or marginalized those who until then were esteemed and respected. It was the destiny of so many Bishops, priests, clerics, men and women religious, on whom the revolution was imposed, presenting it as an “update” that should have given rise to that “conciliar spring” harbinger of a new rebirth of the Faith in the peoples worn out by a century of bloody conflicts.
Many believed in good faith that what Cardinal Suenens had enthusiastically presented as “the 1789 of the Church” was only a transitional phase of adjustment, from which the ecclesial body would be reborn stronger and more aware. That was not the case, as we know and as we have seen. The conciliar revolution was no different from those that brought down the temporal realms and demolished Christian society: on the contrary, it represents the necessary fulfillment of a subversive plan conceived by a diabolical mind that first strikes the mortal body but then must necessarily strike at the immortal soul, and that to achieve this goal first devastates civil society and then continues relentlessly against religious society.
Since March 13, 2013 the conciliar cancer has mutated into disastrous metastasis. As Bishop, as Successor of the Apostles, in the face of this immense degradation and humiliation of the Church, I had to raise my voice and take a clear position. I urge my confreres to awaken in turn from the torpor that has made them silent spectators of this passio Ecclesiæ, and accomplices of the Enemy. Get up from your chairs and shout the truth from the rooftops! And may the so-called “conservative” Bishops stop defending at all costs the Second Vatican Council which is the main cause of this massacre of souls that cries out for revenge to Heaven. Take a stand, before being overwhelmed by the shared ruin.
- Do you still offer the New Mass on occasion?
No, I have not celebrated the Novus Ordo for a few years now, and I do not see how I could retrace my steps by agreeing to celebrate it even occasionally.
I owe my “conversion” to the Apostolic Mass and to my particular love for the venerable Ambrosian Rite, because I found in it all that for decades had been taken away from my Priesthood, depriving it of its source of doctrine, but even more of spirituality and asceticism that is found only in the Holy Sacrifice. In the Catholic Mass the celebrant is alter Christus not only in offering in the person of Christ the High Priest the Immaculate Victim to the Majesty of the Father, but also in being mystically himself the image of Christ the Victim. In this intimate union with Our Lord resides the very soul of the Priesthood, the vital principle of the apostolate, the regula fidei of preaching, the power of Grace for the sanctification of souls. And since without priesthood and without Mass the Church cannot subsist, we can understand the fierce opposition to the Mass and the traditional priesthood by the enemies of Christ, recognizing the importance of our choice and the need to remain faithful to this priceless treasure.
Returning to the Montinian rite, after having received the Grace to follow the Lord on the way to Calvary thanks to the traditional Mass, would represent for me a betrayal, which – unlike those who do not know this venerable rite – would be even more serious.
And here I would like to recall that the question of the Old Mass does not end in a formal and so to speak rational evaluation. It represents the most perfect way in which the Mystical Body worships the Most Holy Trinity, but also the voice with which the Bride addresses the divine Bridegroom. If in the natural order a bride cannot conceive of anything that diminishes her love for the bridegroom, and indeed considers it an offense to diminish him or put him on the same level as other men, with what courage should a priestly soul in love with God tolerate the perfections of the Bridegroom being silenced or denied so as not to offend His enemies? Charity is not tolerant, because it knows no bounds, it does not conceive of compromises. Just a few days ago, on the occasion of the umpteenth ecumenical pantheon in Kazakhstan, Bergoglio denounced fundamentalism as harmful to the dialogue between religions and universal brotherhood: nothing is more alien to the True Faith, and nothing is more clearly consistent with the Masonic thought that promotes the Religion of Humanity.
While I understand the difficult position of so many of my confreres – Bishops and priests – I cannot but exhort them to show greater coherence in this, embracing unreservedly and with a true supernatural spirit the ancient Mass, which alone constitutes the most powerful weapon against the crisis that the Church is going through: two masters cannot be served.
- Is it accurate to say that Obedience – as a natural (rather than a theological) virtue – must first and foremost be in the service of the Faith and that, as such, obeying our Modernists in positions of authority could be sinful?
Obedience is a natural virtue, opposed by disobedience (a failure of obedience) and servility (an excessive obedience). But obedience is not due to just anyone, but only to those who are constituted in authority, and within the limits that legitimize the exercise of the same. In the Church, obedience is ordered to its ultimate end, that is, the salvation of souls in the unity of the Catholic Faith. The authority established to guard the Faith cannot legislate against it, precisely because it draws its power from the same source, that is, the supreme God and Lawgiver, who cannot be in contradiction with Himself. Obeying an illegitimate order to please those who exercise authority corrupts obedience, which is no longer obedience but servility.
I would also like to point out that those who today demand blind, prompt and absolute obedience from the faithful are the same who, when authority is exercised by the good, turn against it. Those who cancel the entire Magisterium in the name of the Second Vatican Council and the synodal path are the same ones who tear their garments before those who refuse to accept the permanent revolution of Amoris Lætitia and Traditionis Custodes. The problem, as we see, lies in the crisis of authority, which does not accept submission to the supreme authority of God, which it must do first in order to be legitimate.
- How do you respond, however, to those who note that Christ was obedient even unto death, and that is what we are all called to do?
Our Lord did not obey the Sanhedrin, nor the High Priests and the elders of the people, who warned Him not to profess himself Son of God and who for this reason condemned him to death. Our Lord obeyed the Father, in drinking to the dregs the bitter cup of the Passion: non sicut ego volo, sed sicut tu. This is the true virtue of Obedience, because it follows the orders of earthly authority, only if this acts for the purposes that legitimize it. Just as it was not legitimate for the Sanhedrin to question the divinity of Christ, but rather knowing the Scriptures they should have recognized in Him the promised Messiah. So, it is not legitimate for the Hierarchy to demand obedience in matters that are opposed to Faith or Morals. We too, following the example of Christ and strengthened by the warning of Saint Peter, repeat: We must obey God rather than men (Acts 5:29).
- Francis has proclaimed that Traditionalists “reject Vatican II.” Given that on February 14, 2013, Pope Benedict XVI said the Council had been hijacked by the media – thus doing incalculable damage to the Church and “banalizing the liturgy” – shouldn’t all Catholics “reject the Council” as it was presented to the world, according to Benedict, by the media?
First of all, it must be clarified that the media contribution to the conciliar narrative is only partial and marginal compared to the clearly subversive content of Vatican II which was intended by its authors. There is no phantom “Good Council” that was supposedly “betrayed” by the modernists. It was conceived in form in such a way as to prevent it from being Catholic in substance, disguising the pitfalls it contained (and that it would soon reveal) behind verbiage and equivocal concepts. If the media had hijacked the Council against the intention of the Fathers and Popes who wanted it, why in the face of the repeated deviations conveyed by the press did none of them reiterate Catholic doctrine? If the trivialization of the Liturgy in the post-conciliar period were only the fault of the media, why did no Bishop ever propose the celebration of the Novus Ordo in continuity with the Vetus, but rather leveraged the innovations of the Montinian rite to promote it? If the old liturgy did not pose a threat to the new one, why this ruthless persecution of those who wanted to continue to celebrate in the ancient form?
In this Bergoglio is perfectly right: Catholics who want to remain faithful to Tradition reject Vatican II precisely because it is alien and opposed to Tradition, which is the norm of Faith. And this confirms not only the catholicity of the traditional Liturgy, but also the extraneousness of the reformed liturgy to the harmonious development that worship has known over the centuries: hence its substantial non-catholicity.
Catholics therefore have not only the right, but also the duty to demand that the Church worship the Most Holy Trinity in the most perfect way, and not with a spurious rite, born of doctrinally and morally deviant minds, designed to please heretics and to diminish the Faith. It is not a question of “inventing” a Liturgy that is more Catholic than that of the Novus Ordo, but of repairing the very serious vulnus caused to the Church with the suppression of a two-thousand-year-old rite to replace it with its deplorable counterfeit. Restoring the Catholic Liturgy and prohibiting the reformed Liturgy will be a necessary step in the restoration of the Church.
- It seems at least possible that Pope Bergoglio was installed in the Chair of Peter in order to undermine the theology of the Papacy. When we criticize Francis, are we not contributing to that same agenda where the papacy is concerned?
Those who managed to get Bergoglio elected to the Conclave of 2013 knew very well that he intended to obtain the discrediting of the Papacy and the humiliation of the Catholic Church as the main result of his installation on the Throne of Peter, as well as the spread of heresies, moral errors and very serious scandals. Indeed, it is precisely in the constant action of this man, in the ruthless steady stream of the last ten years, that the Papacy has known the most serious and powerful assault, carried out by the one who owes his authority over the ecclesial body to the Papacy. An action attacking the Church from the outside would not have had the same results. It should also be said that the Renunciation of Benedict XVI and the canonical monstrum he gave birth to of the “Papacy Emeritus” has dealt a deadly blow to the Church, making it possible to carry out the plot against her that included electing a pope who would support the agenda of the world’s elite.
Criticizing Bergoglio for what he is doing to the Church does not play into the hands of his instigators, the St. Gallen Mafia or the globalist Masonic elite who have intentionally placed him there. The unworthiness of the Argentine on the throne of Peter is, on the other hand, a clear sign of the premeditated and malicious action of those who know well that the most effective way to demolish an institution consists in the work of discrediting it carried out by those who hold the highest authority in it. It is no different from what is happening today in the civil sphere, in which the entire political and ruling class is corrupt and subservient to the criminal interests of the same anti-Christian elite, which on the one hand corrupts souls with LGBTQ+ propaganda and gender theory, and on the other makes use of corrupt Bishops – as is happening in Belgium with the “blessings” of gay unions – to bring Bergoglio’s words to their extreme consequences, starting with “Who am I to judge.”
I would like to make clear an extremely grave (and inevitable) implication of this progressive legitimization of LGBTQ+ doctrine and gender ideology in the life of the Church. We know that the Magisterium of the Church condemns homosexual acts as “intrinsically perverse”: they are an evil; those who do them sin gravely, and if they do not repent their souls are destined for eternal damnation. This is taught unequivocally by Sacred Scripture in both the Old and the New Testament. Conversely, Bergoglio’s words and the acts of his accomplices are intended to remove any moral condemnation of sodomy and the practice of “sex changes.” But what will happen, within a few years, when there will be “faithful” transsexuals who ask to be admitted to Holy Orders? I will not say anything further: I leave it to you to comprehend the abyss that has opened up before us.
To those who still persist in distinguishing between which parts of the Bergoglian “magisterium” is binding and which part is not, I think it is not necessary to reiterate that this formal approach can perhaps save the doctrine of papal infallibility, but certainly not the image of the Church, and at the same time it demonstrates the fact that Bergoglio is totally extraneous to the papacy. This fact is instinctively perceived even by simple members of the faithful, just as a transplanted organ is rejected by an organism that recognizes that it does not belong to it. The sensus fidei makes them understand the same thing that the analysis of his heretical declarations confirms to theologians and canonists. His famous “buona sera” uttered from the balcony of the Loggia of Saint Peter’s on March 13, 2013 contains in a nutshell the essence of the irremediable fact that he is entirely alien to the papacy.
- You have achieved international recognition for speaking out against the Great Reset. What do you say to your critics who argue that you’re dabbling in conspiracy theories, and you should just say your prayers and keep silent?
I say my prayers anyway, and I do not see why I should fail in my duty as Bishop and Successor of the Apostles, keeping silent on issues that are closely connected and complementary. As long as my criticisms were directed against the cover-up of the scandals of former Cardinal McCarrick or the doctrinal deviations of Vatican II, the label of “Lefebvrist” was enough to demonize me before the faithful; but since I pointed out the coherence between the global coup carried out by the deep state with the pandemic emergency first, and now with the energy emergency, and the no less subversive act of the election of Bergoglio organized by the deep church, it was no surprised that the label of conspiracy theorist also had to be added in order to discredit me with people who listen to my words. The risk, according to them, is the same: there is someone who has begun to reason independently, and who understands that we have been the victim of a colossal fraud: to the detriment of our material life through the Davos Agenda, and to the detriment of our spiritual life with Vatican II and the Bergoglio Agenda.
I would also like to understand why the subversive plans of supranational private organizations – real mafias organized and rooted in the nerve centers of power – which are announced by their own proponents well in advance and which represent the fulfillment of the dystopian delusions of the Masonic sect should be dismissed as “conspiracy theories.” If the mafia publicly declares that it wants to exterminate part of the population, and I see it organizing itself to do so, and I witness the implementation of this extermination project exactly as announced, it is not I who invent conspiracy theories, but the mafia that feels so sure of its success that it does not even have to hide it, indeed assuming that we will convince ourselves – since it considers us inferior – that our extermination is desirable and good. In fact, the same is happening with the green ideology of the neo-Malthusian matrix, which considers the human being as a parasite of the Planet: the decisions taken by the UN, the European Union and individual governments are based on the false pretext of global warming to legitimize decarbonization and the forced introduction of so-called sustainable energies. But this is precisely a lie, an excuse to force the masses to submit to total control and to guarantee the elite disproportionate power and gains. And if we think about it, even the proponents of the Council stated that they were “updating the Church” as a false pretext, when the unmentionable purpose was instead its destruction.
Deep state and deep church are two sides of the same false coin, because they both respond to the same infernal mind that hates God both in Creation and in Redemption, and that is unleashed both against the life of the body and against that of the soul. The system, despite its satanic delirium, has proven to work as long as people remain isolated and abandoned to their own devices. Conversely, the awareness of not being alone and of sharing the same vision of the world and the same Faith opens the eyes of many and gives them courage and strength to resist, publicly revealing the deception and uniting the resistance. This is true in the civil sphere as well as in the ecclesial sphere: it is no coincidence that the pandemic farce has brought together deep state and deep church in a surreal and criminal narrative that has scandalized citizens and the faithful.
So: if there is plainly a conspiracy, why should I be silent? And if there is no conspiracy, why do they care so much about the words of an elderly Archbishop?
- Can you say something about the role of our Queen and the Holy Rosary during this time of upheaval, when many may lose access even to the Mass itself?
This interview ends with a reference to Mary Most Holy, She who is the Mother of God and also our Mother, She who has been made almighty by grace. In this epochal struggle between the Woman and the ancient Serpent, the Holy Rosary is the most powerful weapon with which we must make our contribution as milites Christi, by virtue of the Sacrament of Confirmation that we have received.
Many of you are hungry for Truth and thirst for holiness, eternal goods that are made available to us by the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass that you have been able to savor thanks to the resistance of a few prelates and clerics and to the providential decision of Benedict XVI with Summorum Pontificum. Others do not know what they are missing because this spiritual treasure has been hidden and stolen from them for too long, but if they found out they could not do without it anymore. It is therefore our duty, as Catholics and living members of the Mystical Body, to demand the restitutio in integrum of the Apostolic Mass, and it is the duty of the Authority of the Church not only to grant it as a privilege, but to recognize it as the full and exclusive right of citizenship in the Church.
But for this to happen it is necessary that all of us make ourselves worthy of this grace with a life of holiness and with a courageous witness to the Faith in which we have been baptized. It will be the practice of the virtues and the constant prayer of the Holy Rosary that will strengthen us on this path and move Our Lady, Advocata nostra, with compassion, so that in the restoration of the public worship of Christ’s Church we can see an anticipation of the eternal glory that has been prepared for us.