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In the first part, we outlined the evidence of a far-reaching conspiracy against the Church organized by leftwing financier George Soros and a senior member of Hillary Clinton's presidential election team, John Podesta.
The Church has a long history of fighting conspiracies against Her, and warning against the dangers posed by those who plot against the authority and the truths of the Church. In fact, from the very beginning the Church has had to contend with Her own members conspiring with enemies to destroy Her.
The first conspiracy was that of Judas, one of Our Lord's 12 Apostles, plotting with Caiphas, the Pharisees and the Sadducees, to arrest and kill Jesus. The Gospels are clear that the devil is behind the original conspiracy against Our Lord:
Now the feast of Unleavened Bread drew near, which is called the Passover. And the chief priests and the scribes were seeking how to put him to death; for they feared the people. Then Satan entered into Judas called Iscariot, who was of the number of the twelve; he went away and conferred with the chief priests and officers how he might betray him to them. And they were glad, and engaged to give him money. (Luke 22:1–5)
It has been observed that the torrent of hatred unleashed against Jesus during His Passion cannot be explained by corrupt human will alone. The ultimate originator of the conspiracy against Jesus is Satan. Just as Satan orchestrates all the conspiracies throughout history against the Church, which explains the torrent of hatred and ridicule the Church and faithful Catholics are enduring at this time.
Understandably, throughout history, the Church has expressed horror and outrage when conspiracies against Her have been exposed. In response to such conspiracies, the Church has consistently forbidden Catholics to belong to "secret societies" such as the Freemasons, gnostic groups, and the Communists.
Pope Clement XII's 1738 encyclical "In eminenti apostolatus specula" condemned membership of Freemasonry very soon after the foundation of the Grand Lodge of England, the beginning of the modern Masonic movement. Pope Clement quickly perceived the danger to the Church, society and to souls posed by a group conspiring in secret. As the Holy Father put it, "If they were not involved in evildoing, they would never be so very averse to the light of publicity."
Pope Clement XII, and successive popes, identify the combination of secrecy, conspiracy and hostility to the Church as evidence of Freemasonry's evil purpose. Pope Leo XIII's 1884 encyclical "Humanum genus" is a summary of the Church's opposition to Freemasonry, which can also be applied to the Soros/Podesta conspiracy:
[T]hat which is their ultimate purpose forces itself into view — namely, the utter overthrow of that whole religious and political order of the world which the Christian teaching has produced, and the substitution of a new state of things in accordance with their ideas. ... Let no man think that he may for any reason whatsoever join the Masonic sect if he values his Catholic name and his eternal salvation as he ought to value them.
The Soros/Podesta emails likewise reveal a plot to infiltrate and manipulate the teachings of the Church and foment rebellion amongst the laity against the legitimate authority of the Magisterium, seeking to overthrow what they maliciously call "a middle ages dictatorship."
The Soros/Podesta conspiracy can also be seen as the latest manifestation of the Modernist conspiracy that Pope St. Pius X exposed and valiantly fought in the 19th century. The Modernist conspiracy, like the Soros/Podesta conspiracy, sought to overthrow the authority of the Magisterium, advocating the primacy of individual conscience. It also sought to infiltrate the ideas and values of the world into the Church in an attempt to supplant divine revelation.
Modernism and the Soros/Podesta conspiracy also share in common the strategy of secrecy and subversion. Pope St. Pius X described the conspiratorial nature of modernism in his encyclical "Pascendi Dominici Gregis":
That we make no delay in this matter is rendered necessary especially by the fact that the partisans of error are to be sought not only among the Church's open enemies; they lie hid, a thing to be deeply deplored and feared, in her very bosom and heart, and are the more mischievous, the less conspicuous they appear.
The Soros/Podesta conspiracy is also something we are right to deplore and fear, because they are seeking to infiltrate and corrupt the Church in Her heart, by using money and political power to influence the custodians of the Faith, the successors to the Apostles, our bishops and priests.
The Church has enforced legislative actions to empower Her total opposition to conspiracies, crystallized by the historic enemy of the Faith, Freemasonry. The 1917 Code of Canon Law was promulgated two weeks after Our Lady's first apparition at Fatima. Canon 2335 stipulates excommunication for those Catholics who plot against the Church: "Persons joining associations of the Masonic sect or any others of the same kind which plot against the Church and legitimate civil authorities contract [ipso facto] excommunication simply reserved to the Apostolic See" (Can. 2335).
The 1983 revision of the Code of Canon Law makes it clear that membership of any group plotting against the Church is entirely incompatible with being a Catholic: "A person who joins an association which plots against the Church is to be punished with a just penalty — one who promotes or takes office in such an association is to be punished with an interdict" (Can. 1374).
The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith considered this canon so important that the day before the new Code of Canon Law came into effect, it re-iterated the Church's condemnation of Freemasonry, stating that those who enrol in such movements are in "serious sin and prohibited from receiving Holy Communion."
It is reasonable to assume that the Soros/Podesta conspiracy comes under the remit of canon law and that any Catholics knowingly participating in it may face penalties under canon 1374. However, as we have learnt over the past 50 years, what the Church states as law is one thing; what is actually done about it can be quite another matter.
In view of this, what should ordinary clergy and faithful do about this conspiracy against the Church by the rich and powerful? We have a duty to expose such conspiracies plotted in secret. As St. Paul puts it, "Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them" (Eph. 5:11). Apart from daily praying the Most Holy Rosary and praying for the protection of St. Joseph over the Church, be vigilant about the influence of so-called Catholic groups. The attack against the Church's authority and doctrine is not direct and out in the open, but is rather subtle and camouflaged. Pray for the gift of discernment and measure the words and actions of clergy and laity who give you a sense of unease with the perennial doctrines and Tradition of the Church. Remain steadfast in love and attuned to the truth so that, while not looking for conspiracy, we do not let the Church fall victim to it.
An earlier version of this article was published by Catholic Voice Ireland.