Preconciliar versus Postconciliar Church
Preconciliar versus Postconciliar Church: Incommensurate and Asymmetric Realities
By Joseph Andrew Settanni
Pope Francis illustrates vividly that, today, some fifty or so years after the Second Vatican Council (1962 – 1965), there are, in effect, two truly different and diametrically opposed Churches, to wit: the Preconciliar Church and the Postconciliar Church. This oddly results in a Janus-headed reality.
Their fundamental orientations and attitudes, seen in prayer, liturgy, Mass, and otherwise, are definitely incommensurate and fully asymmetric as to foundational purposes and meaning. Two ecclesiastic positions, therefore, exist with no substantive viable means of reconciliation available because their integral natures and realities, in overt terms of reference, are so radically different, totally incompatible.
This rather notable major schism, now informal and unofficial, will certainly, over time, become (more) distinctly formal and official, if no strongly countervailing events dictate otherwise. There is no real way, under the present practical and empirical circumstances, as is so evidently indicated by the thinking and conduct of Pope Francis, of ever correctly reconciling, unifying, or, perhaps, fundamentally adjusting the Preconciliar Church with what manifestly acts as the now Postconciliar Church establishment.
A Practical Schism Unnamed as Such
Only someone with what might be called a diarrhea of the mind can still supinely insist, after 50 years of ongoing and open destruction, that the Council was all or mainly/mostly later somehow misinterpreted. No. It was, in fact, deliberately oriented, especially so in its perniciously intended, heinous aftermath, to be, in most respects, a crypto-Protestant attack upon the fundamental depositum fidei of the Church set directly as a demonic stake fixed upon the heart of the institution itself. One can note, e. g., that John Vennari, William Marra, and many others have written about this important matter concerning its greatly vicious attack upon (orthodox) Catholicism.
What had unfortunately occurred, over these past forlorn decades, was, thus, neither coincidental nor accidental as to the malicious intentions plainly involved. It was the integrally corruptive achievement of that quite subversive modernism, prefaced upon nominalism, rightly denounced by Pope St. Pius X. Furthermore, those who today still persist and seek to disagree do so willfully by credulously ignoring the obvious truth; they become, in effect, the allies of the many enemies of the Church, of the Catholic Faith.
Of course, a schism is, admittedly, not assumed to exist at all and is supposed to be something clearly unwanted and very abhorred; but, after all, the old Latin Rite is, in fact, officially now marked off as the “Extraordinary Form” of the Mass, which is to be then forever, one supposes, extremely different and distinct, necessarily, from the obviously mainstream ecclesial presentation known as the Novus Ordo (New Mass). The latter was seen, by Pope Paul VI, as a rather suitable means for helping to celebrate the modern Church’s version of the Cult of Man on earth.
Much can be readily said about the many conditions and related cognitive conceptions under which the two situations, the two versions of “church,” seem to critically confront each other, to obviously split apart one from the other, which is, in effect, the central or fundamental consideration at hand.
There are, in fact, two popes existing at the same time, though one is, yes, officially retired. However, Benedict XVI was tending, in his sympathies, back toward the thinking of the Preconciliar Church as seen obviously in his Summorum Pontificum. Pope Francis, in evident opposition, quite ardently supports the affirmed exemplification of the evolutionary attitude of the predominantly existing reality, which may be called the Conciliar Captivity, meaning the sorry aftereffects of the Second Vatican Council. It could be said to analogously parallel, in many ways, the Avignon Captivity of the Renaissance Era Papacy.
The authoritative Preconciliar Church (PrC) faithfully resembles, by its own inherent definition, the older, traditional Roman Catholic Church of immemorial generations from the honored past, present, and into the future; on the other hand, the Postconciliar Church (PoC), seen as ever evolving, is basically reminiscent, as could be rightly suspected, of a main Episcopalian establishment, widely ranging from its decidedly High Church to Low Church alignments, meaning, as could be then fairly guessed, in its so many and quite variable religious and spiritual fixations or passions that do exist. This so includes, of course, the Charismatic Movement definitely considered as being solidly within the scope of the PoC.
Contrary to all that, the PrC, for instance, can then correctly be referred to, in an integral and clearly substantive manner, as to what was, is, and will be, similar to simply reciting the prayer known as the Glory Be. The important reality of what is meant exists as being manifestly self-evident, as is the overt nature of self-evident truth contained in, e. g., the US Declaration of Independence, when it says that certain truths are to be simply accepted as known by nature.
Prior to the certainly horrid advance of philosophical nominalism in America and elsewhere in the Western world, such clear substantial matters were just held to be, thus, logically and reasonably indisputable, knowingly incontrovertible as to epistemological doubt. If a truth really needs or must be associated with a proper demonstration of it, then, by definition, it is not actually self-evident.
In sharp and revealing contrast, since the Second Vatican Council (VCII), the PoC has been in a state of (wanted) evolution or fluctuation; it is generally best, therefore, to speak of it in broad terms of what will be or may be as to the future, much like the changing or variable present during which, from time to time, there is much still left in religious and theological dispute. Again, Pope Francis, therefore, superbly and rather accurately exemplifies and underscores discernably the relative and inconstant nature and fluid reality of the PoC, of the ongoing rebellion against and, in fact, logical rejection of the PrC.
He makes decidedly clear things, through words and actions, which could seem implicit but do become rather decisively explicit, meaning as to the many troubling differences and serious points of suggestive and inevitable conflict. Whenever looked at closely and carefully, moreover, the PrC and PoC are then really opposed, divergent and, ultimately speaking, different ecclesial entities that, moreover, seek to consciously address and affirm quite different religious, spiritual, and theological issues and concerns. Similarities, if they seem so, are actually superficial, not deep in their many conflicting sensitivities and referents.
Unfortunately, one can intelligently note that the vast bulk of the people of the Roman Catholic Church today, inclusive of the predominant majority of the hierarchy, do yet thoroughly refuse to honestly or openly accept what has been here so plainly asserted, as to what ought to be the obvious truth. The supporters of the New Mass, regarding the majority of them, and all that it implies would wish for the Traditional Latin Mass Community to just disappear, though that does not seem at all likely.
What will be dramatically interesting to see is how the apologists for Francis are going to handle the predictable time, probably next year or sooner, when he finally comes out with an outlandish statement having wildly winsome theological implications and even more extreme ramifications as to, perhaps, doxology. The myriad mental gymnastics and contorted convoluted exegeses, putting this mildly as an understatement, would then be quite wondrous to behold.
This has been made mandatory, in a sense, since the arrival of the “new orthodoxy” based upon full or basic acceptance of VCII by the neo-Catholics (such as, e. g., Jeff Mirus), as they have been indicatively denominated. They have, repeatedly, sought to purposely corrupt and deform the depositum fidei of Holy Mother Church for the evil sake of their ideological preferences, though the majority may be ignorant of the evil that they do.
There is to be no worship of or idolatry directed toward any pope; and, surely, no pontiff is ever to be a dictator. Each Holy Father is, moreover, duly bound to properly pass on undistorted the teachings and traditions, generation after generation, of the much honored Fathers and Doctors of the Church. In this noted regard, it is an appropriate defense of the religiously important institution of the papacy to say, in addition, that its monarchical and hierarchical structure cannot be renounced, any more than could a traditional king foreswear his royalty, in preference for a personal declaration favoring republicanism. But, Church politics seems to never cease in strident defense of the Conciliar Captivity.
The ideologically clever fast-tracking of the (now simply axiomatic) canonization of John Paul II added to that of John XXIII is meant to forever silence critics of VCII by, in effect, “canonizing” that odd council to make it, thus, seem forever sacrosanct in the too often ignorant minds of the faithful, by attaching such newly minted saints to its supposedly now hallowed reputation. There is even a movement to do the same for Paul VI, which is, in fact, no surprise at all. What, however, is really going on?
In the harsh realm of aggressive modernity, one perceives clearly that blatant ideology (read: secularist orientation) rudely enters into every corner of human life, including that of religion. These, in context, rather questionable, mean-spirited canonizations are certainly meant as in-your-face slaps against all the orthodox traditionalists who still righteously oppose the many obvious evils of that 1960s gathering, especially the majority of the known and, usually, sacrilegious features of its heinous aftermath.
The Church’s predominantly regnant liberals and leftists love the PoC, which suggests why traditionalist Catholics have more strangely in common with, e. g., today’s Protestant religious conservatives than they do with their liberal and leftist coreligionists. Again, one needs to see that this is an allied, ongoing cognitive function of the aforementioned pervasive ideology within the ever strange realm of blatant modernity. Catholicism is now, as a direct consequence of ideological divisions, split among orthodox, conservative, liberal, and leftist variations, which certainly goes against the notion of there being the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.
It is a horrific scandal, of course, that was substantially, though not entirely, brought about under the auspices of VCII and, moreover, its always cognate radicalizing developments and ramifications, not just simple implications. Few people, it is said, really learn from history. There may be the natural suspicion, in addition, that Pope Francis is in certain ways repeating the dumb mistakes of Pius IX when he earlier had befriended, e. g., the Italian Revolution, only later to become a tormented victim of it.
The current pontiff, it is wisely suspected, seeks somehow to make curious friends with radicals, leftists, freethinkers, and liberals and, perhaps, broadly assumes that they will just sort of stay with him during the full course of his pontificate or, at least, most of it. If so, he will eventually be in for a deserved rude awakening, as with what had happened to Pius IX. Meanwhile, the current Vicar of Christ, who seems to want to deal with a healthy secularism, is enjoying his (false) springtime, as truly did that other properly chastened, aforementioned pope. He thinks that some amiable, charming atheists1 [see: Notes] can be his bosom buddies, his handy pals.
The Church can, in truth, never actually make “friends” with its certainly dedicated enemies; they have necessarily adverse and actually incompatible agendas that cannot be ever really mixed or mingled with the divine mandate given to Catholicism. Of course, the always morally corrupt ideology of the Conciliar Captivity is hostile to any oppositionist thinking, thus, Pope Francis has denounced political ideologists, especially, of course, if they may be political conservatives; if only the neo-Catholics could eschew their own ideology, which is almost hoping for a miracle; it would set a good example.
In any event, Francis, seemingly enamored of the enemies of Christ, must eventually decide if he wishes to remain a much widely celebrated media figure of this age or, embracing Christ, do the difficult and responsible pontifical business of defending Christian truth vigorously; both are, in fact, not possible at the same time, given the heavily secularist prejudices and biases of the mass media; his many erstwhile companions of the current time.
He must then, at the close of the religious business day so to speak, ultimately choose between being a tremendously glorified, contemporary, pop-culture icon or Pope Francis of the Roman Catholic Church. If he is truly a holy man of God, he will definitely take up the Holy Cross for “communication” purposes, as to teaching of the Faith, not the taking up of a telephone or iPhone. Moreover, his so amiable chattiness with prominent God deniers affirms their overt sense of self-righteous normalcy during a substantially Godless age; he, thus, gratuitously offers serene comfort, not moral rebuke.
The unctuous and vilely dispiriting example of Holy Father Francis is, therefore, of an obviously quite diminished and nastily impoverished Catholicism, not exactly a demonstrably superb version of the Church Militant surely. This affirms, as one ought to see, the rather too sordid truth regarding the Postconciliar Church and its inherent nature as such.
The Ultimate Dividing Line: Holiness of God
Of course, in marked and pertinent reiteration here, the Roman Catholic Church is always defined as One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic. To be Catholic is to be called to holiness. But, what finally divides the two positively opposed conceptions of the Church relates ever to the proper understanding and correct comprehension of holiness, of sanctity; in particular, one can here note the inscrutable and, ultimately speaking, always absolutely ineffable holiness of the Lord God Almighty.
It is fundamentally this and not, moreover, simply differences in various approaches to theology, liturgy, etc. that definitely and critically separates the PrC and PoC positions. How is this interestingly meant?
The proto-emblematic and inherently obscene disobedience of Adam and Eve2 that sadly resulted in the expulsion from the Garden of Eden caused the consequent creation of Original Sin. But, why was there such a problem or fuss made as pertaining to the fundamental nature of metaphysical order? The Deity is so extremely sacred and hallowed, exceedingly holy beyond any mere human comprehension, such that this permanently terrible act of disobedience became an offense that could not be forgiven until the Son of God Himself was crucified in requisite atonement for it.
Although the Sacrament of Baptism completely removes the vile stain of it, every mortal sentient being born into this world, except for the Blessed Virgin Mary, has consequently and logically suffered from what the First Parents wrongly and willfully did. Their direct disobedience was an act of unutterable, severe profanation set deliberately against the holiness of the Lord Almighty whose commands are not to be questioned or even doubted, for the Son of Man is the King of Kings.
Moreover, the Social Kingship of Jesus Christ means that all of man’s entire life, society, politics, and culture must be made subject to this fact, which was noted in 1925, when Pope Pius XI had courageously issued his important encyclical Quas Primas. As Western society has faded away from a Christocentric viewpoint, there have been many severe negative consequences; but, the rebellious failure to obey God had also lead to troubles in ancient times as well. One instance will suffice.
Moses, after seeing, many times, the literally many tremendous wonders, signs, and awesome powers of God, struck the rock twice, heedless of what he was told to do just once; thus, the great Prophet, subsequently, was not permitted to cross the Jordan River into the Promised Land. Moses, however, was very lucky not to have been immediately blasted off the entire face of the earth for such a major transgression. The punishment of Adam and Eve, becoming fallen creatures, was even more severe in that the wages of sin is death. Bodily death is, of course, due to the result of having had the curse of Original Sin.
Heaven, by their actions, was previously closed to all souls no matter how virtuous their lives might have been in this fallen world, according to Catholic teachings. That then must, among other major reasons, certainly show just how much the evil of Original Sin and the titanic offense it greatly represents against God needed a very suitable and most apposite means for its atonement, which could not, however, be accomplished by any mere human being(s).
It is ever exceedingly hard for human creatures, being imperfect specimens, to really know about the gigantic magnitude, universally vast enormousness, of the truly magnificent quality, the surely ethereal essence, known as the tremendously immense holiness of the Lord, the Supreme Being Himself. St. Thomas Aquinas, for instance, says that about such metaphysical matters people can actually only think in analogous terms of reference, meaning as to even the furthest human limits of such related possible cognition.
Only the angels and the Communion of Saints are said to be appropriately capable of withstanding being in the divine presence of such literally awesome holiness set forever beyond the ever meager mental grasp of poor mortals on earth. This eternally quintessential attribute of the Exalted Divinity exceeds all proposed human claims to whatever degrees of supposed perfection that might, perhaps, be assumed by all mortal creatures, past, present, and future. All and any earthly superlatives imaginable describing this forever remarkable matter cannot ever grasp the true importance and, literally, persistently cosmic magnitude of it, which absolutely extends beyond the entire universe forever.
The incredible greatness and incomparable grandeur of the hyper-superb holiness of God is, finally, beyond the mortal mind’s feeble imagination to adequately express; the furthest heights of human comprehension remain still inadequate. This inherent and definitional quality of the Unsurpassed Deity is naturally limitless and, therefore, comprehensively exhibits infinite limitlessness. In short, He only is independently, infinitely, and immutably holy without qualifications.
It is an axiomatic attribute of permanently indefectible moral perfection to the endless greatest extent. And, there are real consequences, implications, and ramifications to the integral existence of such a forever nth degree of undiluted and simply unparalleled, totally unmatched, holiness.
When, as is cited in the Old Testament in the Book of Exodus, that man Uzzah sought to prevent the Ark of the Covenant from falling, he was still struck dead; this was completely regardless of his plainly good intentions because his hands were considered to be so terribly defiled, when easily compared to the always comprehensive reality and, thus, unquestionably sacred contents of the Ark. No profanation or sacrilege, even if totally inadvertent, was to be ever permitted and, moreover, no matter whatsoever the overtly benign nature of the positive intentions involved. One of the important religious lessons to be learned is that good intentions are really not enough whenever compared to the truly incomparable sacredness of the Holy One.
It is this irresistible theological fact of such ultimately unspeakable holiness that allows for unbaptized babies to be sent to Hell, which shows vividly why abortion is a great moral and spiritual horror. (The thought here is that they are merely sent only to the far outer fringes of the Infernal Regions since no active, meaning deliberate, transgression was made by those poor souls. They do not experience any physical torment as punishment for sin, though they probably know there that they will never experience the Beatific Vision.)
As is surely expected, the modern mind, heavily influenced by secularist enlightenment3 (the Cult of Man) through many poisonous doses of pragmatism, positivism, materialism, subjectivism, rationalism, etc., is just repelled violently from this seemingly harsh thought and liberally or progressively insists, of course, that an all-loving and sweet, kindly Deity could not be so insanely and irrationally cruel, vicious, and vindictive. In addition, existentialism and phenomenology, heavily involved with the deliberations of VCII, cannot ever accept any contrary intelligent reasoning that is not fully consonant with humanist predilections and orientations in modern, enlightened thought.
It would, thus, be so extremely unliberal and unenlightened of God to ever unreasonably act in such a menacingly miscreant and mean manner. This is the solipsistic, terrene, anthropocentric point of view put on egoistic display, though, of course, often unrecognized as such; it then necessarily contradicts forever, therefore, the theocentric viewpoint always appropriate concerning any theological ultimates under intense discussion.
Again, what ought to be overpoweringly obvious, manifestly then known to be simply true, is totally lost upon all theological liberals, modernists, and progressives. Original Sin (the first mortal sin), on the part of the first humans, had grievously offended the Supreme Being who is, by definition, truly supreme for a good reason. The First Parents, in vilely rejecting all that the Lord freely gave them, wanted instead to have knowledge equivalent to God, the Holy One, and be, to some extent, Godlike; it was an insane and unjust quest for an ersatz equality with, by definition, the Infinite.
Without the requisite removal of Original Sin from the person’s soul, that soul remains permanently in absolute rebellion against the Almighty, the venerable source of all justice and right in and beyond the entire universe. If that so salient point is not correctly understood, nothing else really can be, for the Social Kingship of Jesus Christ ought not to be blasphemously reduced, as with the PoC, to a merely symbolic (read: unsubstantial) idea having absolutely no real-world consequences.
Resistance to God, especially what is known as the horror of Original Sin, necessarily forever carries fully with it the ultimate penalty of eternal damnation, without any question. Furthermore, all merely human and non-Deity related holiness, as of all the angels and saints together, still amounts to almost nothing whenever compared to the true and original foundation of it, meaning within and through the very definition of God.
Because, as really ought to be importantly known, the Lord is, by definition, eternally supremely holy without any real qualifications whatsoever; and, no opposition, no obstruction, to this theologically indisputable fact is or can be logically permitted. To admit of any exception, diminishes and, finally, eliminates the notion of the Deity toward meaninglessness. For further useful extrapolations and expostulations, one can, of course, read such pertinent volumes as Aquinas’ Summa Theologica.
Based upon the above review and analysis, it should be clear that the final dividing line that will forever separate the Preconciliar Church from the Postconciliar Church is the highly significant epistemological conception of God’s holiness and its integral nature because it has critical ontological implications of the profoundest nature and meaning for any serious Catholics.
Nuances concerning, e. g., such matters as liturgy, Mariology, Christology, or doxology could be made rightly subject to certain intensive speculation and many endless disputations or disquisitions upon an interminably wide variety of points, both subtle and plain.
However, the particular issue here regarding the major fact of truly divine holiness sincerely focuses requisite attention to something that cannot be fashionably avoided or just supinely ignored, meaning as to what can be known about the magnificent sacredness and supreme purity of the Godhead and its simply necessary nature as such. For instance, the fully unquestionable holiness of the Lord refutes thoroughly the blasphemous heresy, gaining much strength in the Postconciliar Church, of a supposed universal salvation.
This warped thinking has been made possible because the Deity, in the minds of many, has been much reduced to that of an old, doting, Santa Claus-like, grandfatherly figure who is, thus, infinitely indulgent and easily forgiving (beyond reason), not the fearsome righteous Judge of all the living and the dead. Whether intentional or not, the high holiness of God gets absurdly and unjustly diminished into being some sort of a joke. It is not surprising, for instance, that the vile heresy of universal salvation keeps spreading among too many neo-Catholics. Such would never be the case, in any way whatsoever, within the context of the Preconciliar Church.
VCII unleashed the effort of a presumed spiritual enlightenment to catch up to and match a secular enlightenment by which the two streams of thought could pursue parallel lines of discourse in terms of having an expressive “openness” toward the world. This is the ideologically praised aggiornamento (“a bringing up to date”) concept of that terribly wayward council by which the then wanted Hegelian dialectic qua idealistic paradigm could then successfully take effect. Paul VI had taken the opportunity to speak about the Church now having its own “Cult of Man,” though he, also, smelled the “smoke of Satan” enter.
The Hegelian dialectic is thus seen: The Letter of VCII (thesis), the actual documents produced, was meant to struggle with the Spirit of VCII (antithesis) to help liberally and enlightenedly arrive at a new synthesis in an assumed continual dialectical progression set into the future; a deliberate kind of “Trotskyite” permanent revolution was, therefore, to be coldly, progressively inflicted upon Holy Mother Church; and, it has, no doubt, tremendously succeeded, as is seen obviously by the ongoing grave crisis earnestly afflicting the troubled ecclesial body. What, nonetheless, needs to be better understood?
More to the immediate point, the seriously critical realization should exist that the nominalist existential and phenomenological ontology, relating to Hegelian idealism, freely accepted by the adherents of VCII is forever at odds with and, logically, opposed to the firmly Aristotelian-Thomistic ontology behind the epistemological-realist viewpoint of the Preconciliar Church. How so? This is fully shown, moreover, by the two significantly conflicting conceptions of the holiness of God that are held, which is, indeed, no small or simply trifling matter presented here for candid consideration.
Support given for the PoC is the playing out of a mere masquerade because it is the ingenious façade for cleverly disguising the base desire to hide adherence to an immanentist eschatology that reifies faith as it deifies Man. The, as a direct effect, implicitly questioned sacredness of the true salvific Deity is, thus, conveniently made to take second place to these many often barely hidden secular-humanist aspirations toward a perfectionist neo-theology that just uses religion as a rather vile ideological vehicle or weapon for worldly dominance, influence, and power.
Either the Lord God Almighty is infinitely holy or He is not; there can be no compromise or equivocation. The Preconciliar Church, as one could reasonably guess, never had any religious or theological doubts whatsoever in either its epistemology or ontology, which illustrates best the integral character and true moral soundness of the adamant argumentation that, thus, has been made and advanced in this present article defending it.
What now exists, as a result, is the anthropocentric attitude of the PoC aimed against the theocentric, specifically Christocentric, viewpoint of the PrC; these are ever, of course, two totally incommensurate, incompatible, and asymmetric realities incapable of any actual resolution within the same universe of discourse. Ultimately, this is because the superlative holiness of the Lord God Almighty, directly and indirectly, manifestly and obliquely, has been put into complete and endless dispute, due mainly to the terrible epistemological victory of nominalist philosophy. What is philosophically and religiously meant?
The rotting away of the modern mind, caused primarily by nominalism in cognition, then, in turn, necessarily destroys any proper appreciation of true theological ontology, including allied assertions concerning the (previously) undisputed holiness of God. In this significant regard, concerning the crisis in the Church and the disastrous ongoing predicament it represents, only the firm ending of the Conciliar Captivity will, therefore, bring about a major change of religious and theological direction back toward needed orthodoxy, the definition of Catholicism.
This may splendidly occur either when some saint(s) do the equivalent of what St. Teresa of Ávila did to help end the Avignon Captivity or a tremendously serious precipitating event (or scandal?) of some kind finally topples that truly ill-conceived monument to human vanity and demonic hubris known as VCII. Which suggests why prayers for Pope Francis, an admirer of Paul VI, are needed. Furthermore, it can be easily added, in a substantial statement, that any unwanted PoC ambiguity concerning Catholic religious and theological dogmas and doctrines could only be abhorred mightily by a truly Holy God.
The evil Conciliar Captivity and its ideology ought, therefore, to be righteously and logically condemned by all believing Catholics, by all of the faithful. One can, in conclusion, perceive it to be a nominalist-inspired attack directed at, and an unmitigated, unalloyed, offense of a great magnitude set deliberately against, the always unimpeachable holiness of the Lord.
Once this monumental and critical theological issue is clearly recognized as such, no loyal Catholic, therefore, ought to be sympathetic, in any way whatsoever, toward the doings and aftermath of the Second Vatican Council regarding its much needed condemnation and rejection. The ever unquestioned sacredness of God, aligned with the spirit of St. Athanasius, must be placed before and above all human ideological (read: secularist) fixations.
Athanasius contra mundum!
1. Except for those people, as an extremely tiny and insignificant minority, who are both pathetically ignorant and, also, necessarily stupid as well, almost no atheists actually disbelieve in God. Is this truth rather shocking to the rational mind? Consider: Only someone who is inherently irrational and mentally dysfunctional could ever possibly get so angry, annoyed, frustrated, agitated, or plain upset or, perhaps, object strenuously to the existence of nothing.
Atheism is, in fact, the total denial of the actual existence of metaphysical order qua reality. If it (aka God) does not exist, no one in his right mind, therefore, would care, reasonably speaking, to ever be truly disturbed, much less justly object to, something that does not at all exist. Few people are that insane, demented, or absurd. Thus, most atheists are not simple morons.
The vast majority of atheists, as can be logically deduced, know that metaphysical order exists, the Lord God is real, but obstinately yet choose to think and live otherwise, which makes them, axiomatically, all liars, hypocrites, and knaves. There are, in fact, too many militant atheists around for it to be otherwise, which serves easily, nay, abundantly, as empirical proof. Q. E. D.
Pope Francis, therefore, ought to really know better than to attempt any genuine dialogue with such inveterate liars, hypocrites, and knaves.
2. Adam and Eve, if one thinks about the matter, were the first humanists who, also, wanted the Cult of Man to exist, of course.
3. Many at the Vatican and outside of it have been so influenced by modernism and its laicist beliefs.