Priest says schismatic Spanish nuns are in state of ‘paranoia’ according to own thesis — By: Catholic News Agency

Calle de Bailén Almudena Cathedral is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Madrid. / Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Madrid, Spain, Jun 15, 2024 / 08:00 am (CNA).

Father Jesús Silva of the Archdiocese of Madrid explained in a video posted on his YouTube channel the reason why the schismatic Poor Clares of the Belorado Monastery are experiencing “paranoia” according to their own thesis by which the religious vows they took would not even be valid.

The Spanish nuns announced May 13 that their community “is leaving the conciliar Church to which it belonged to become part of the Catholic Church.” They complained that in recent years “contradictions, double and confusing language, ambiguity, and loopholes in clear doctrine have been coming from the chair of Peter.” These Poor Clares also claimed that “H.H. Pius XII was the last valid supreme pontiff,” thus leaving the papal office vacant since then.

According to an analysis Silva made of the Catholic Manifesto the nuns made public a month ago, the sisters, who risk looming excommunication for schism, are in a situation that, according to their own reasoning, “everything they themselves have done is invalid, because since they have been nuns under Vatican II, they are not real nuns.”

Ten of the 16 nuns who comprise the Poor Clares community of Belorado and Orduña in Spain have adhered to the referenced manifesto. Of the other six, one of them left the community “in order to not belong to this sect” and five elderly nuns have not spoken.

Silva pointed out that the nuns would have to repeat all the sacraments they received after Vatican II using the formulas and rituals of the pre-Vatican II Roman rite conferred by a priest ordained under that rite and they even “have to repeat their vows, because according to them their own vows are invalid.” 

According to the Madrid priest, “they have fallen into this paranoia in which at this point they have placed themselves outside the Catholic Church and, finally, according to them, they have found the truth” under the protection of the excommunicated bishop Pablo de Rojas.

Rebuttal of three points

Silva analyzed three of the postulates of the sedevacantist and schismatic manifesto: that the Catholic Church is the only true church, the sacrificial dimension of the Eucharist, and changes made to the rite of ordination for priests and bishops.

Regarding the first question, Silva explained that unity “is already achieved in the true Catholic Church,” which doesn’t mean there’s no work to be done “so that this unity becomes broader” so that “the rest of the Christian communities that are not Catholic would join the Catholic Church. That’s called ecumenism.”

The priest refuted the nuns’ allegation that the Second Vatican Council denied the sacrificial character of the Eucharist.

“It’s true that the Church has changed, because it has that power to adapt the formulas, the forms, the language of the liturgical books to the more current mentality of the present. But she has not changed the essence. The Church has the power to change [those things], because the Church has been established by Christ to safeguard the faith and the sacraments. And of course the sacrificial dimension of the Eucharist is maintained, as can be perfectly seen in the Eucharistic prayers that speak of the Eucharist as a victim of propitiation for the sins of the entire world,” the priest pointed out.

Silva added that “the Church has the power to reform the liturgical books and to change the rites for the ordination of priests, deacons, and bishops. And therefore, this reform made by John XXIII, Paul VI, the Second Vatican Council, is perfectly valid. Since they were not heretics, they did not incur in excommunication.”

Confusion in doctrinal matters

The priest of the Archdiocese of Madrid explained that a possible remote origin of the schismatic positions of the Poor Clares of Belorado can be found in that “there have been many doctrinal issues lately, quite confusing, that have made many people say: ‘Listen, you have to be a little more critical sometimes of the things that are said or how they are said, because they are not expressed well and maybe you have to qualify things.’”

However, Silva emphasized, “going from there, to deny the unity of the Church and to leave it, is a very major step.”

The priest of the Archdiocese of Madrid took the opportunity in his video to remind his viewers that “we must pray a lot for them so that they reconsider” that “the true Catholic Church is that of Christ, which is in communion with the Holy Father in the Vatican, who is currently Pope Francis, and that what has changed in its structure and in its documents is perfectly licit and perfectly valid.”

This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.

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