Whereas arguments at best prove, comparisons at best illustrate. So comparisons do not prove but they can throw a lot of light from what one does know onto what one does not know. Now concerning the present crisis of the Church, half a century old, we need all the light we can get, because with each day that passes it becomes less and not more understandable. So here is a fruitful comparison sent to me recently by a recent convert to Tradition. He compares the Catholic Church and the Conciliar Church, or the Newchurch, to the legitimate and illegitimate families of one and the same man. Let us apply the comparison to his marriage, to his authority and to his children.
By a lawful marriage to his true wife a man starts a family and has legitimate children. But after a while he is unfaithful to her and divorces her to live with his mistress, by adultery with whom he also has children, who are bastards. Similarly by a Cardinal’s lawful canonical election as Pope, the Cardinal becomes the legitimate father of the Catholic Church and the spiritual father by the true Faith of a multitude of true Catholics. But after a while as a Conciliar Pope he goes whoring after the modern world, and by adultery with it he engenders a new family of Conciliar bastards. Thus as one man can be the father of both a lawful and an unlawful family, so one Pope can at the same time be head of the Catholic Church and of the Newchurch.
Secondly, as the family father has true authority over his true family but no true authority over his second family because it is not his true family, so the Conciliar Pope has true authority over all true Catholics but no true authority over the Newchurch with its Conciliar Catholics. And as the first family needs its true father, and both wife and children do all they can to bring him home, but he clings to his partner in adultery and to his illegitimate children who also do all they can to hold onto him, so each Conciliar Pope is still respected by Traditional Catholics who call upon him to do his duty by them, but he prefers Conciliar Catholics who have little real respect for him but who also hold onto him to cover their unlawful status.
And thirdly, as no true wife will accept to be put on the same footing as the adulterous partner that has supplanted her, nor will the true children (if they are mature enough) accept to be adopted by the false family and thus likened to the bastards, so Tradition is absolutely incompatible with the Newchurch, nor can true Catholics accept to be incorporated into it by any kind of sell-out or betrayal of Tradition. It is not for them to go whoring after their true father in his adulterous environment, even if he is their true father and they truly need him. It is for the father to return to his true family. Nor can the lawful children reasonably expect to bring their father home by joining him in his seductive surroundings. The much greater likelihood is that they too will be seduced.
This comparison of any Newpope to a father of two families is fruitful on many more points becaue it is in the nature of a Pope to be a father. But « Every comparison limps » (another brilliant comparison), and the bad leg of this comparison consists mainly in the fact that whereas the distinction between the two families of the one father is perfectly clear in real life, on the contrary the distinction between the Catholic Church and the Newchurch, while perfectly clear in theory, is very difficult to disentangle in practice, because they are almost hopelessly intertwined in real life.
To keep a Catholic head on one’s shoulders it is as necessary to know the clear distinction in theory as it is to recognize the desperate confusion in practice.