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Love for the Papacy & Filial Resistance to the Pope

Love for the Papacy & Filial Resistance to the Pope

By Roberto de Mattei

Forward by Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke

232 pp

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About the Book

In this book, Roberto de Mattei steers us perceptively through centuries of Church history concerning both the wise, and the disastrous, decisions of popes and councils: from the role of Pope Liberius in the Arian crisis to the troubled Vatican compromises with the French Third Republic; from the Ostpolitik and liturgical rupture of Paul VI to the erosion of dogmatic truths and moral absolutes under Pope Francis. In these and in many more examples de Mattei’s judgment rings true: popes have been mistaken in their political, pastoral, and even magisterial acts, and the resistance of the faithful to such acts is a duty and a cause of benefit. 

Along the way we are offered an illuminating catechism in ecclesiology, the nature of the Magisterium, and the limits of papal authority. Especially helpful are de Mattei’s discussion of the hypothesis of a heretical pope, his clear explanation of the difference between filial resistance and disobedience to the Successors of the Apostles when they make heterodox pronouncements, and his ample treatment of the significance and profound implications of recent public remonstrations with the current pontificate on behalf of orthodoxy. The author’s rich historical narratives, deftly intertwined with dogmatic, moral, and canonical principles, make this work a potent resource for grappling with the current crises of the Church.


“This unified collection of essays and lectures by Roberto de Mattei provides an invaluable service not only to the Catholic faithful but to the world. In a time of extraordinary confusion in the Church of Christ, de Mattei offers nothing less than a guide for the perplexed. His new book is a masterly combination of scholarship and popular theological exposition in limpid prose. I cannot recommend enough this indispensable work.”


author of Ocean of Being: An Odyssey to the Isle of St. Anselm(forthcoming) 

“As the publisher of a Catholic newspaper, I can say without hesitation or exaggeration that I would front-page each and every chapter of this book. Professor de Mattei’s deep and abiding concern for Holy Mother Church is palpable on every page. He encourages his readers not to despair but rather to consult history itself in order to learn how to face an increasingly uncertain future. This book is a lifeline for those struggling to navigate the whitewater rapids of the pontificate of Pope Francis.”


Editor, The Remnant

“Historian Roberto de Mattei has put together a wide-ranging, focused, and eminently useful book for Catholics trying to remain oriented in a time of confusion. His discussion covers the philosophical and historical background of current secularizing trends as well as more specific topics such as papal authority, past instances of papal error, what clergy, theologians, and ordinary believers have done to limit the resulting damage, and the present outlook. It is the most helpful book I have read on the current situation.”


author of Against Inclusiveness and The Tyranny of Liberalism

About the Author

ROBERTO DE MATTEI is President of the Lepanto Foundation and the founder and director of the Lepanto Cultural Center in Rome. He is the editor of the magazine Radici Cristiane as well as the news agency “Corrispondenza Romana.” He served as Vice President of the Italian National Research Council from 2003 to 2011. He is the author of numerous books, including The Second Vatican Council: An Unwritten Story.

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