[Summary] Open letter to the bishops of the Catholic Church

[Summarizing by Koot van Wyk, DLitt et Phil; ThD, Visiting Professor, Kyungpook National University, Sangju Campus, South Korea, Conjoint lecturer at Avondale College, Australia]

Easter Week, 2019


Your Eminence, Your Beatitude, Your Excellency,


We are addressing this letter to you for two reasons: first, to accuse Pope Francis of the canonical delict of heresy, and second, to request that you take the steps necessary to deal with the grave situation of a heretical pope.

We take this measure as a last resort to respond to the accumulating harm caused by Pope Francis's words and actions over several years, which have given rise to one of the worst crises in the history of the Catholic Church.

We are accusing Pope Francis of the canonical delict of heresy. …We do not accuse him of having committed the delict of heresy on every occasion upon which he has seemed to publicly contradict a truth of the faith. We limit ourselves to accusing him of heresy on occasions where he has publicly denied truths of the faith, and then consistently acted in a way that demonstrates that he disbelieves these truths that he has publicly denied.

We accuse Pope Francis of having, through his words and actions, publicly and pertinaciously demonstrated his belief in the following propositions that contradict divinely revealed truth….


I. A justified person has not the strength with God’s grace to carry out the objective demands of the

divine law, as though any of the commandments of God are impossible for the justified; or as meaning

that God’s grace, when it produces justification in an individual, does not invariably and of its nature

produce conversion from all serious sin, or is not sufficient for conversion from all serious sin.


II. A Christian believer can have full knowledge of a divine law and voluntarily choose to break it in a

serious matter, but not be in a state of mortal sin as a result of this action.


III. A person is able, while he obeys a divine prohibition, to sin against God by that very act of



IV. Conscience can truly and rightly judge that sexual acts between persons who have contracted a civil marriage with each other, although one or both of them is sacramentally married to another person, can sometimes be morally right, or requested or even commanded by God.


The claim that a Christian believer can have full knowledge of a divine law and voluntarily choose to break it in a serious matter, and not be in a state of mortal sin as a result of this action, depends on Pope Francis's endorsement of Luther’s claim that justification does not deman observance of the divine law. Taken together, all these positions amount to a comprehensive rejection of Catholic teaching on marriage and sexual activity, Catholic teaching on the nature of the moral law, and Catholic teaching on grace and justification.


Evidence for Pope Francis's being guilty of the delict of heresy

Evidence heresy as statements in a document Amoris Laetitia

Amoris laetitia 295: “Saint John Paul II proposed the so-called “law of gradualness” in the knowledge that the human being “knows, loves and accomplishes moral good by different stages of growth”. This is not a “gradualness of law” but rather a gradualness in the prudential exercise of free acts on the part of subjects who are not in a position to understand, appreciate, or fully carry out the objective demands of the law.’”


Amoris laetitia 298: “The divorced who have entered a new union, for example, can find themselves

in a variety of situations, which should not be pigeonholed or fit into overly rigid classifications leaving no room for a suitable personal and pastoral discernment. One thing is a second union consolidated over time, with new children, proven fidelity, generous self-giving, Christian commitment, a consciousness of its irregularity and of the great difficulty of going back without feeling in conscience that one would fall into new sins. The Church acknowledges situations “where, for serious reasons, such as the children’s upbringing, a man and woman cannot satisfy the obligation to separate ….”


Amoris Laetitia 329: In such situations, many people, knowing and accepting the possibility of living “as brothers and sisters” which the Church offers them, point out that if certain expressions of intimacy are lacking, “it often happens that faithfulness is endangered and the good of the children suffers”.] There are also the cases of those who made every effort to save their first marriage and were unjustly abandoned, or of those who have entered into a second union for the sake of the children’s upbringing, and are sometimes subjectively certain in conscience that their previous and irreparably broken marriage had never been valid”. Another thing is a new union arising from a recent divorce, with all the suffering and confusion which this entails for children and entire families, or the case of someone who has consistently failed in his obligations to the family. It must remain clear that this is not the ideal which the Gospel proposes for marriage and the family. The Synod Fathers stated that the discernment of pastors must always take place “by adequately distinguishing”, with an approach which “carefully discerns situations”. We know that no “easy recipes” exist.’


Amoris laetitia 299: ‘I am in agreement with the many Synod Fathers who observed that “the baptized who are divorced and civilly remarried need to be more fully integrated into Christian communities in the variety of ways possible, while avoiding any occasion of scandal. The logic of integration is the key to their pastoral care, a care which would allow them not only to realize that they belong to the Church as the body of Christ, but also to know that they can have a joyful and fruitful experience in it. They are baptized; they are brothers and sisters; the Holy Spirit pours into their hearts gifts and talents for the good of all. … Such persons need to feel not as excommunicated members of the Church, but instead as living members, able to live and grow in the Church and experience her as a mother who welcomes them always, who takes care of them with affection and encourages them along the path of life and the Gospel.”’


Amoris laetitia 301: ‘It is [sic] can no longer simply be said that all those in any “irregular” situation are living in a state of mortal sin and are deprived of sanctifying grace. More is involved here than mere ignorance of the rule. A subject may know full well the rule, yet have great difficulty in understanding “its inherent values, or be in a concrete situation which does not allow him or her to act differently and decide otherwise without further sin.”’


Amoris laetitia 303: ‘Conscience can do more than recognize that a given situation does not correspond objectively to the overall demands of the Gospel. It can also recognize with sincerity and honesty what for now is the most generous response which can be given to God, and come to see with a certain moral security that it is what God himself is asking amid the concrete complexity of one’s

limits, while yet not fully the objective ideal.’ (II, IV, V)


Amoris laetitia 304: ‘I earnestly ask that we always recall a teaching of Saint Thomas Aquinas and

learn to incorporate it in our pastoral discernment: “Although there is necessity in the general principles, the more we descend to matters of detail, the more frequently we encounter defects… In matters of action, truth or practical rectitude is not the same for all, as to matters of detail, but only as to the general principles; and where there is the same rectitude in matters of detail, it is not equally known to all… The principle will be found to fail, according as we descend further into detail”. It is true that general rules set forth a good which can never be disregarded or neglected, but in their formulation they cannot provide absolutely for all particular situations.’ (VI)


Evidence of heresy as actions or statements in public

 “…co-habiting’ couples have the grace of matrimony” (Pope Francis on June 16th, 2016, at a Pastoral Congress for the diocese of Rome).


  “I think that the intentions of Martin Luther were not mistaken. He was a reformer. Perhaps some methods were not correct. … And today Lutherans and Catholics, Protestants, all of us agree on the doctrine of justification. On this point, which is very important, he did not err.” (Pope Francis in a press conference on June 26th, 2016).


“The spiritual experience of Martin Luther challenges us to remember that apart from God we can do nothing. ‘How can I get a propitious God?’ This is the question that haunted Luther. In effect, the question of a just relationship with God is the decisive question for our lives. As we know, Luther encountered that propitious God in the Good News of Jesus, incarnate, dead and risen.

With the concept ‘by grace alone’, he reminds us that God always takes the initiative, prior to

any human response, even as he seeks to awaken that response. The doctrine of justification thus expresses the essence of human existence before God.” (Pope Francis in a homily in the Lutheran Cathedral in Lund, Sweden, on Oct 31st, 2016).



“We are profoundly thankful for the spiritual and theological gifts received through the Reformation.” (Pope Francis signed a Joint Statement with the Lutherans in commemoration of the Reformation on 31st of October 2016)


“The pluralism and the diversity of religions, colour, sex, race and language are willed by God in His wisdom, through which He created human beings.” (Pope Francis to Ahmad Al-Tayyeb, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Mosque, on February 4th, 2019, see Document on Human Fraternity)



Further Actions of heresies

Pope Francis’s actions manifest his belief in the heresies listed above in several ways.

Pope praised clerics and laity for advancing heresies

By praising clerics and laity who advance these heresies, or by naming them to influential posts, or by protecting clerics of this kind from punishment or demotion when they have committed gravely immoral and criminal acts, he assists them to spread their heretical beliefs.


Pope elected heretical clerics to important posts

By choosing heretical prelates for the most important posts in the Roman Curia, he manifests an intention to impose these heresies upon the whole Church.


Pope Protected clerics guilty

By protecting clerics who are guilty of immoral and criminal sexual acts even when this protection causes grave scandal to the Church and threatens to lead to calamitous action by the civil authorities, he manifests disbelief in Catholic teaching on sexual morality, and shows that support of heretical and criminal clerics is more important to him than the well-being of the Church.


Pope praised those who opposed the Catholic Church

By publicly praising individuals who have dedicated their careers to opposing the teaching of the Church and the Catholic faith, and to promoting and committing crimes condemned by divine revelation and natural law, he communicates the message that the beliefs and actions of these individuals are legitimate and praiseworthy.


Black list of gender and sex related permissive issues

The following is a list of actions that indicate belief in the heresies above.

Cardinal Domenico Calcagno 2017


Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio 2014


Cardinal Blase Cupich 2016


Cardinal Godfried Danneels 1997-2015


Cardinal John Dew 2005-2015


Cardinal Kevin Farrell


Cardinal Oswald Gracias 2019


Cardinal Jozef de Kesel 2004-2015


Cardinal Rodriguez Maradiaga 2013


Former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick ….2013-2018


Cardinal Donald Wuerl


Archbishop Mario Enrico Delpini 2014-2017


Bishop Juan Barros Madrid 2011-2018



Bishop Juan Carlos Maccarone 2005


Bishop José Tolentino Mendonça 2013-2018


Bishop Gustavo Óscar Zanchetta 2013-2017


Mgr. Battista Mario Salvatore Ricca


Fr. Julio Grassi 2009


Fr. Mauro Inzoli 2012-2014


Fr. James Martin S.J. 2017


Father Timothy Radcliffe O.P. 2013-2015


Pope received pro-abortion and pro-euthanasia Emma Bonino in 2015

Emma Bonino

Emma Bonino is the foremost political activist on behalf of abortion and euthanasia in Italy, and

has boasted of personally performing many abortions. In 2015 Pope Francis received her at the

Vatican, and in 2016 he praised her as one of Italy's ‘forgotten greats.’ (II, IV, V, VI)


Pope dismissed pro-life members in 2016

In 2016 Pope Francis dismissed all 132 members of the Pontifical Academy for Life. He

removed the requirement that members of the Academy swear to uphold Catholic teachings on human

life and not perform destructive research on the embryo or fetus, elective abortion, or euthanasia.


Promoting reception of the Eucharist by divorced and remarried persons

Pope Francis has persistently promoted the reception of the Eucharist under certain circumstances by persons who have civilly divorced their spouse and are living in a sexual relationship with someone else.


Pope received pro-homosexual group at Vatican June 2014

On June 9, 2014, Pope Francis received the leaders of the militantly pro-homosexual Tupac

Amaru organisation from Argentina at the Vatican, and blessed their coca leaves for use in their pagan

religious rituals, which involve recognition of the coca plant as sacred. (II, IV, V, VII)


Pope carried a satanic ritual staff in the form of a stang

At the opening mass of the Synod on Youth in 2018, Pope Francis carried a staff in the form of

a ‘stang’, an object used in satanic rituals. (VI, VII)


Pope Francis wore rainbow colored cross of the homosexual movement

During the Synod on Youth in 2018, Pope Francis wore a distorted rainbow-coloured cross, the

rainbow being a popularly promoted symbol of the homosexual movement. (II, IV, V)


Pope refused to say that he teaches heresies in Amoris Laetitia

Pope Francis has refused to deny that Amoris laetitia teaches heresies (IV), (V) and (VI) listed

above, when requested to do so in the dubia submitted to him by Cardinals Brandmüller, Burke,

Caffarra, and Meisner in September 2016. These dubia specifically mentioned grave disorientation and great confusion of many faithful concerning matters of faith and morals resulting from Amoris laetitia.


Pope is fully informed of what he is asserting

(C) Pope Francis's pertinacity in adhering to heretical propositions


Asked Bishops to react

The request we make to you as bishops

Promotes heresies

It is beyond a doubt that he promotes and spreads heretical views on these points. Promoting and

spreading heresy provides sufficient grounds in itself for an accusation of the delict of heresy.


Accusers list

Georges Buscemi, President of Campagne Québec-Vie, member of the John-Paul II Academy for

Human Life and Family

Robert Cassidy STL

Fr Thomas Crean OP

Matteo d’Amico, Professor of History and Philosophy, Senior High School of Ancona

Deacon Nick Donnelly MA

Maria Guarini STB, Pontificia Università Seraphicum, Rome; editor of the website Chiesa e


Prof. Robert Hickson PhD, Retired Professor of Literature and of Strategic-Cultural Studies

Fr John Hunwicke, former Senior Research Fellow, Pusey House, Oxford

Peter Kwasniewski PhD

John Lamont DPhil (Oxon.)

Brian M. McCall, Orpha and Maurice Merrill Professor in Law; Editor-in-Chief of Catholic Family


Fr Cor Mennen JCL, diocese of ‘s-Hertogenbosch (Netherlands), canon of the cathedral Chapter.

lecturer at de diocesan Seminary of ‘s-Hertogenbosch

Stéphane Mercier, STB, PhD, Former Lecturer at the Catholic University of Louvain

Fr Aidan Nichols OP


Paolo Pasqualucci, Professor of Philosophy (retired), University of Perugia

Dr Claudio Pierantoni, Professor of Medieval Philosophy, University of Chile; former Professor of

Church History and Patrology at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile

Professor John Rist

Dr Anna Silvas, Adjunct Senior Research Fellow, Faculty of Humanities, Arts, Social Sciences and

Education, University of New England

Prof. dr. W.J. Witteman, physicist, emeritus professor, University of Twente


Cannot remove pope according to Canon Law

It is agreed that no pope can uphold heresy when teaching in a way that satisfies the conditions

for an infallible magisterial statement.


It is agreed that the Church does not have jurisdiction over the pope, and hence that the Church

cannot remove a pope from office by an exercise of superior authority, even for the crime of heresy.


It is agreed that the evil of a heretical pope is so great that it should not be tolerated for the sake

of some allegedly greater good.


St Robert Bellarmine states: 'Wretched would be the Church’s condition if she were forced to take as her pastor one who manifestly conducts himself as a wolf' (Controversies, 3rd controversy, Bk. 2, cap. 30).


It is agreed that ecclesiastical authorities have a responsibility to act to remedy the evil of a

heretical pope.


It is agreed that a pope who is guilty of heresy and remains obstinate in his heretical views cannot continue as pope.


Must be admonished first before being treated as heretic

The early canonical tradition generally requires that in the specific case of papal heresy, the

pope must be admonished several times before being treated as a heretic.


How to deal with Francis?

The school of Cajetan and John of St. Thomas asserts that in order for the papal office to be lost, the Church, after ascertaining and pronouncing that the pope is a heretic, must also command the faithful to avoid him for his heresy.

The school of St. Robert Bellarmine does not reject the step of commanding the faithful to avoid the pope.

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