The Sad Misadventures of Theresa Benns & David Bawden...
Prakash J. Mascarenhas.
This article was written in response to the claim of Mr. David Bawden, of Delia, Kansas, USA, to have been elected the pope, taking the name of Pope Michael the First. Mr. Bawden sent me his book, Will The Catholic Church Survive The Twentieth Century?, written together with a Theresa Benns, as being proof and vindication of his claim.
Part I: Alice In Blunderland
One of the first things I had learnt at the time of my conversion, was St Augustine’s advice to not judge by appearances. He told of how good food can be served in bad dishes while bad preparations can be served in exquisite dishes: the bad vessel did not spoil the good preparation, nor did the good vessel palliate the bad preparation. Therefore, I have not given attention to appearances, choosing to judge by contents.
Nevertheless, there is a proper place for appearances; it cannot be neglected. It is ironical, that the authors (Benns & Bawden) make such a song and dance of studying and then proceed to dish out such a shoddy work. And shoddy it is, full of errors.
Nevertheless, their book is full of valuable information, that throw light on the procedure to be followed to put to an end to the present situation of Sede Vacante - if it has not already been ended.
This however does not detract from the fact that they have erred and erred badly in their work. Allow me to set out the main errors out here:
They set on a project to supply the want of a pope. Have they gone about it rightly? No, they have even violated the very rules they themselves set out.
On pages 99 & 432, they pretend to be promulgating law, a law that by its very nature must, if it were true, bind all.
The Canon they are quoting says 9: "The laws thus promulgated, do not begin to bind in conscience until three months have elapsed after the date of issue of the periodical containing the law."
IN DOING THIS, THEY ATTEMPT TO USURP THE RIGHT AND PRIVILEGES OF THE ROMAN CHURCH.
No layman, whatsoever, has any right to either legislate or bind in conscience the entire Church; that belongs to the legitimate authorities – the Pope and the Holy Roman Church, the first Church from among the churches of the general or OEcumenical Church.
The Authors themselves tell us whether we have any right to do so, on page 432, "...strictly speaking, we cannot decide in Church affairs whatsoever..." And yet they so blithely go forward to ‘PROMULGATE’ a law for the whole Church!
And what is the consequence of this their act?
They themselves tell us, on page 430, Canon 2345: "Persons who usurp or retain, personally or through others, goods and rights pertaining to the Roman Church automatically incur excommunication reserved in a special manner to the Apostolic See."
Because of this, the very project, carried out in haste, without giving an opportunity for fraternal correction (as if the authors were moreover infallible!) is fatally flawed and did not, could not, result in the election of a valid pope.
Then they go further to implicitly declare (Pages 258 – 260) those ‘pre-Vatican 2’ Canonists as EXCOMMUNICATES who according to THE AUTHORS’ interpretation, contradict Divine Law. This is once again an usurpation of the rights of the Church, by mere laymen, and without any authority of their own!
The authors make such a song and dance of the alleged violation of the Law by the priests of the Resistance, but then they themselves are guilty of the same! For on page 445, they say that ‘any priest who possesses jurisdiction for confessions somewhere in the world can absolve us from our sins (according to Canon 883), provided he travels by boat or plane to the place of election.’ How can that be? Canon 883, as they show it on page 222, says, "On an ocean voyage (extended to plane travel by Pope Pius 12), all priests may hear confessions during the time of the voyage and absolve the faithful who travel with them (even though the boat may pass through districts subject to various ordinaries or stop for awhile in some port), PROVIDED THEY HAVE BEEN PROPERLY APPROVED FOR CONFESSIONS, EITHER BY THE BISHOP OF THEIR OWN DIOCESE, OR BY THE BISHOP OF THE PORTS WHERE THEY TAKE THE BOAT, OR BY THE ORDINARY OF ANY OF THE PORTS AT WHICH THE BOAT CALLS. Whenever the boat stops at a port during the voyage, such a priest may hear confessions and absolve not only people who for any reason enter the boat, but also if the priest goes ashore for awhile, persons who request him to hear their confessions, and he may absolve them even from sins reserved to the local ordinary."
So, without the faculties from a legitimate bishop for such a mission, how can such a priest do as the authors desire? And by making such a request, despite knowing all the facts, they attempt to make priests sin, a grave crime.
In my first letter to David Bawden after my first reading of this book, I pointed out some dangerous errors in it, to which errors I am hyper-sensitive due to my personal history.
On page 472, they state, ‘... the New Jerusalem reigns elsewhere... No longer will Rome be the seat of the papacy... We believe that first Rome’s spiritual dominion over true Catholics will be destroyed...’
These are unacceptable statements.
It is Catholic Doctrine, that the papacy is fixed at Rome for all time till the return of Christ, that the Roman Church possesses Indefectibility, and that the Roman Church cannot be ever entirely destroyed...
Years ago, I had taken the initiative to get in touch with the putative pope Gregory 17 of Palmar de Troya, in the hope to find the true pope, if he existed, but rejected this claimant (of Palmar de Troya) because he was not elected but claimed to be appointed in an ‘apparition’... and, additonally, because he had heretically declared that the seat of the papacy was now permanently shifted to Palmar, so that the true pope would no longer be the ROMAN Pontiff, but the Palmarian Pontiff.
Benns & Bawden fall into the same error. (See Annexure I, below)
Does ‘Pope Michael’ claim to be the Roman Pontiff or the Delian Pontiff? The latter, going by the quotation above.
I can give proofs galore to support my belief, but I will restrict myself to the bull UNAM SANCTAM, (see page 265 in the authors’ book) which says, "... we declare, say, define, and proclaim to every human creature, that they, by necessity for salvation, are entirely subject to the ROMAN Pontiff." (Dz. 469)
Amen, the ROMAN Pontiff, not the Palmarian or Delian or Whatsoeverian Pontiff.
This again, was the gist of my dispute with a priest in the U.S.A.
There is a further error to be found in this book. The authors state, on page 472, ‘... the battle fought in heaven between the dragon, Roncalli, and St. Michael...’ So, Roncalli was in heaven? And when was that? Before his conception, when, according to Catholic theology, God created his soul, or sometime after that? This is the utterest nonsense that the authors utter anywhere in this book.
The authors claim that the appeal to ‘Ecclesia Supplet’ by the traditionalists does not work because there is no Pope, and according to them, the Pope is who supplies.
Then later, they invoke this same principle to support their election of a pope by lay election. I ask, how?
If Ecclesia Supplet is not invokeable for one man, because there is no pope, it even more holds true for those attempting the lay election of a pope – no Pope, no can supply; but if have Pope, will not supply (for an additional ‘pope’). Cruel Irony.
Part II - An Open Appeal
To Mr. David Bawden – the Non-Pope.
Dear Sir, - It is with deep grief that I must turn away from yet another claimant to the papacy as not being it. I have here given the reasons why YOU are not IT. Believe me, I take no pleasure in this. I hope and pray that you will be able to agree with the reasons that I have set out.
We are required to seek the truth with absolute fidelity and honesty, making no compromise with the essentials of the faith. It is in this spirit that I reject your claim.
I hereby call on you, as presumably, one Christian brother to another, presuming that you have not gone so far as to irrevocably separate yourself from the truth by your errors, to return to the true faith by admitting your mistakes and that you have not attained to the papacy. This is necessary to ensure the salvation of your soul, which I presume is what you desire. Even a pope must save his soul. It is only false pride and shame that will keep you from returning to Christ, and in that, there is no profit.
If you return, it is possible that you may someday be truly and properly be elected pope, given that the vacancy has not already been otherwise filled.
Yours, hopefully, in Christ Jesus,
Prakash J. Mascarenhas, Bombay, India.
Part III - Papal Indefectibility vs. Roman Indefectibility
The website of ‘pope Michael’ posts an article that claims that the Vatican Council (1869-1870) defined Papal Indefectibility, putting to an end the debate about whether a pope could err into heresy and thus becoming a heretic, either automatically lose office, or need to be deposed from office.
I wish to merely ask this: If this is so, then how did the debate continue after 1870? It is one thing to posit that the Modernist heresy, exposed and condemned by Pope St. Pius the Xth, went underground, becoming occult, and another to say that heresy flourished openly and was not denounced and acted upon by the Magisterium from 1870 to 1958...
The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1911-1913 says that if a Pope became a heretic, then, according to the opinion of most theologians, he would automatically lose office.
Again, in Michael Dimond’s article, there are others quoted on this controversy after 1870.
Therefore, we are forced to conclude, that if this article of the Bawdenites is right, then the Church has erred with its Ordinary Magisterial Infallibility having failed signally to detect these errors being published with its imprimaturs...
A.: "The Primacy will always be attached to the episcopal See of Rome. The diocese of Rome, therefore, will never be destroyed nor suppressed. Despite any possible political changes, there will always be some faithful Christians in the diocese of Rome, and the Pope will be their bishop. The true "Eternal Rome," to use a popular expression, is not political Rome, but the Rome of Saint Peter and of his successors; in other words, perpetuity belongs to ecclesiastical Rome, whatever political changes the centuries may bring."
On the contrary, as shown in the Annexure II, I believe that the Vatican Council taught not Papal Indefectibility but the Indefectibility of the Roman Church.
Praising The Good Things Found In This Book
But it would not be according to Christian charity to talk of only the bad and wrong things in this book, for there are many good things to be found.
The authors set out to show 'How Sincere Catholics Can Chain Antichrist and Regain Control of their Church,' and although they err, and err badly, they nevertheless do provide the most valuable information to this end, that I have not yet seen made available by others in the Resistance.
On page 328 & 361: ‘... the safety of the Church becomes the supreme law, and the first duty of the abandoned flock is to find a new shepherd...’ (J. Wilhelms, Councils, Catholic Encyclopedia)
On page 329, ‘ ... when the provisions of canon law cannot be fulfilled, the right to elect will belong to certain members of the Church of Rome. In DEFAULT of the ROMAN clergy, the right will belong to the Church universal, of which the Pope is to be the bishop...’ (Cardinal Cajetan, no reference cited)
On page 329, ‘... the power to elect the Pope, resides in his predecessors eminently, regularly, and principally... The Church, in her widowhood, (is) unable to determine a new mode of election, save ‘IN CASU’, unless forced by sheer necessity... During a vacancy of the Apostolic See, neither the Church nor the Council can contravene the provisions already laid down to determine the valid mode of election. However ... if the Pope has provided nothing against it, or in case of ambiguity (for example, if it is unknown who the true cardinals are, or who the true Pope is ...), the power of ‘applying the papacy to such and such a person’ devolves on the Universal Church, the Church of God." (Cajetan, ‘De Comparata’, Chap. 13, no. 202- 204, & ‘Apologia’, Chap. 13, no. 736.)
On page 329, ‘ In whom does the power to elect the Pope reside? The Pope can settle who the electors shall be, and change and limit in this way the mode of election. In a case where the settled conditions of validity have become inapplicable, the task of determining new ones falls to the Church by devolution, this last word being taken, not in the strict sense, but in the wide sense, signifying all transmission, even to an inferior.’ (Charles Journet, from Cardinal Cajetan, in his ‘Apologia’, Chap. 13, no. 745 fl.)
On page 328, ‘For the Church without doubt has the authority of providing itself with a head, although it is not able without the head to decide about many things... as Cajetan rightly teaches... and the presbyters of the Roman Church (taught) in the Epistle to Cyprian.’ (St. Robert Cardinal Bellarmine, ‘De Concilis’, Chap. 14, in the section entitled, ‘Certain Doubts Are Explained.’)
On page 315, ‘...if a baptized male should invalidly be elected pope, the Church could supply jurisdiction so that all his jurisdictional acts that do not presuppose the powers of orders would be valid since Divine law requires no more than that the subject of ecclesiastical jurisdiction be a baptized male.’ (Sanchez or Miaskiewicz?)
On page 315, ‘If the whole Church once acknowledged anyone as its lawful head, thought the election may have been for some cause invalid, he thereby receives the sanction of the Church, which is equivalent to a second and valid election, whereupon, he succeeds to all that power vested in the head of the Church... Every defect in the election is removed by the ratification of the Church.’ (W. Wilmers, ‘A Handbook of the Christian Religion,’ page 65, Benziger Bros., New York, New York. 1891)
On page 312, ‘The Pope states: "... if a layman were elected pope ... the power to teach and govern, as well as the chrism of infallibility would be granted to him from the very moment of his acceptance, even before his ordination."’ (Pope Pius 12, Address, ‘Lay Apostolate’ given October 1957 to the World Congress for the Lay Apostolate. Reference not cited.)
Conclusions from the Above 7 Quotations:
The Ordinary Electors of the Pope are the Cardinals or failing them, the Roman Clergy.
Who else succeeds?
An Acephalous Council, in the precedent of Constance, or a lay election, is based on the Universal Church and the laity being EXTRA-ORDINARY ELECTORS.
The Extra-Ordinary Electors are the College of Bishops, and failing them, the ‘College’ of the ordinary faithful, the laity – ‘GOD’S PROLECTARIAT.’
Now, for one thing, there cannot be a miraculously or mystically appointed pope. Such a notion is to be excluded. But at the same time, since the Church is to have Popes in perpetuity (until the Return of our Lord Jesus Christ), therefore, the Church has always the ABILITY to supply itself with a Pope.
The right of the laity to elect their bishops and popes cannot be safely taught. The right, properly speaking belongs to the clergy, who may, and have permitted the laity to co-participate. But such co-participation did not and does not create the right for the laity, even more so, for a purely lay election.
However, in emergencies, the normal law does not apply. In the circumstances, since the ordinary College of Electors have lapsed or failed to act, for whatever reason, and the CHURCH PLACES A BURDEN ON ALL ITS CHILDREN TO SUPPLY URGENTLY HER WITH HER HEAD, any body of faithful, and not only an Acephalous OEcumenical Council of Bishops, in the precedent of Constance, can so act.
Now, it is proper order that the inferiors yield to the superiors, and therefore, such an Acephalous Council has the first right to meet this need. But, again in the event they fail, or are unable to fulfill this need, for whatever reason, then, the inferiors – the laity – are no longer obliged to wait, given the urgency of the need to supply the want of the pope. And can proceed to elect and such and election, conducted properly, binds on all the faithful, participants and non-participants, superiors and inferiors, in sum all who would own the name of Christian.
Nevertheless, even given the urgency, such an endeavor must, out of prudence, ‘make haste slowly.’ Our task is to provide ourselves with a Pope, not to exacerbate the divisions within the Resistance. Therefore we must strive to satisfy the just and lawful doubts of all factions, without, however, making any compromise with the fundamental bases of the faith.
Therefore, all factions and schools must be invited to participate in this endeavor, even the Palmarians (but without Palmarianism) and so on.
Further, as already stated, any perfect Society has the INNATE though EXTRA-ORDINARY (in the sense that not usually provided for in the written law) means of ensuring its own PERPETUATION. Therefore, the Extraordinary Electors do not and cannot, ever, lose this ability to supply the Church this its own want.
Therefore, the Church is capaple of supplying to itself, its own want.
APPENDIX I: CORRESPONDENCE WITH David Bawden aka Pope Michael *
-----Original Message----- From: Prakash MMascarenhas [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: 04 November 2000 7:15 PM To: email@example.com Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Will the Catholic Church Survive...
Dear Sir, - I am in the Receipt of the book, ‘Will the Catholic Church Survive the 20th Century?’ which you sent to me some days back. I have just finished reading it; it is a difficult book, and I shall have to go over it once again, this time making careful notes as I go along…
Your book posits many things that I can neither affirm nor reject since I am wholly ignorant of the reference texts – principally the Codex of 1917 & the Summa of St Thomas of Aquinas… However I have taken some notes; and these are my preliminary reactions:
While I ask the question of Authority for the ‘Conclave;’ you stress the question of Jurisdiction, which was peripheral to my thought… Again, on page 98 fl. you posit that a Misacting Conclave loses the right to elect again… On page 226 you posit that there is prohibition against publishing without one’s ordinary’s leave… (Canon 1384.1)
Regarding the controversy about women speaking, preaching, teaching etc, I wish to draw your attention that this is taught in the Bible. However, there is a crucial point; this prohibition is against women doing so IN CHURCH, and not outside, no more than is a woman required to veil outside Church. See Acts 21: 9 where we are told of the four daughters of St Phillip the Evangelist, all prophetesses. Evidently then, there was no problem either to God or to St Paul to see prophetesses…
In defense of a lay election you have invoked the principle of Ecclesia Supplet… I then remembered that there were popes who were elected by the Emperors. (See http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11456a.htm; "It must be admitted that the Holy Roman emperors sometimes made use of their overwhelming power unscrupulously, and more than once candidates were elected to the papacy by direct imperial nomination. Otto III is credited with the nomination of Gregory V and Sylvester II, and Henry III with the effectual naming of Clement II, Damasus II, Leo IX, and Victor II") It is of such popes, perhaps, that this remark was made. I can now see that if it was supplied to these, when these were abuses, how much more can we claim this right to be SUPPLIED by the Church when we take on ourselves the default right to elect a pope…
However, there seems to be an apparent contradiction in your attitude. You rightly claim the principle of Ecclesia Supplet for such a lay-elected pope, but at the same time deny it to the priests and bishops who claim the same on the ground that they cannot invoke it in the absence of a pope (see pages 260-1) If that is so, how can you claim that same right, which you claim can be supplied only by the Church when it has its head? As for what you write on pages 268 I reject that Antichrist has or will have judicial permission to reign. I believe that he will be an illegitimate & unlawful ruler – a usurper.
I do not understand the charge made against Lefebvre on page 188 ‘Trinitarian Heresy’; I cannot see that the statement he made and the definition of this ‘heresy’ are in agreement. Perhaps it is beyond my comprehension?
Regarding your remarks on page 272 about the Kings of England & Scotland – I believe that the Jacobite (Stuart) and not the reigning Rupertine (Hanover) pretenders are the legitimate kings. I grieve that the Catholic Stewarts, who suffered so much for the faith, are dismissed so cavalierly and the Protestant Rupertine pretenders and usurpers accepted so thoughtlessly. Regarding the statement made on page 301 that the default of Electoral College goes from the College of Cardinals to St John Lateran, etc; the reference is not clear. What is ST JOHN LATERAN? And who are the others to whom the right devolves in default? There must be such a list…
The quotation on page 312 of Pope Pius 12 that a lay electee becomes pope fully upon acceptance, attributed to a document styled "LAY APOSTOLATE" … what is that? We must be shown this text and its genuineness.
Perhaps the greatest difficulties I have are on the issue of Papal Indefectibility and on the status of the Roman Church in the Universal Church You quote St Francis of Sales in favor of Papal Indefectibility (on page 293) but far more theologians, doctors, etc believed otherwise. I give you particularly Cajetan & Bellarmine. Both believed it possible (as does the Catholic Encyclopedia; and that is part of the Ordinary Infallible Magisterium of the Church) that a pope could become a heretic. Cajetan held that he would need to be deposed, while Bellarmine believed that he was automatically deposed (The papa deponendus vs. papa depositus controversy in the Catholic Resistance reflects that) I too basing myself on Dr Rama Coomaraswamy that a man even after his election retains his FREE WILL and so can certainly adopt heresy… I believe that the posited doctrine of Papal Indefectibility is a heresy; that it contradicts the certain Doctrine of the Free Will of all souls… Further, it is my understanding that the Catholic Church has always taught that the Roman Church will never fail, even if many or most of its members fall away, and that the succession of St Peter’s primacy will always be vested in the Pontiff of Rome, and that the seat of the Successor of St Peter in his primacy will always be Rome, even if the pope be in exile. I further understand that the Council of the Vatican (1870) in the Document PASTOR AETERNAS treats of Roman Indefectibility, not of Papal Indefectibility. If you believe otherwise, show me how you can justify your belief from the sempiternal Catholic Church. (see page 472, loss of papacy from Rome…)
Further, I would not dismiss the prophecies of a Holy Emperor to come as anti-Christian Myths. Certainly, in opposition to our Christian prophecies, there are mirror image antiprophecies of what would be the antithesis of our expected Emperor. But then in the same manner, there are antitheses of the Messiah himself! As for the Whore of Babylon… SHE is not Rome; could be Anti-Rome… In the Bible, we have the constant contrast made between the faithful Israel and the unfaithful Anti-Israel, the later at one point of time being called Lo-Ammi – Not My People (Osee 1: 9 & 10) (See also St Stephen’s denunciation of the reprobate Jews – Acts 7: 42-43, itself a repeat of Amos 5: 25) In like manner, every other people or nation in its wild, un-Christian state, is an anti-people, while those who being obedient to the call of our Master, Yahweh Elohim, are the true people. The anti-people were driven into the underground by the Christian Ascendancies, but always sought and plotted to recoup… Thus Anti-France triumphed in the Revolution, as Anti-Greece in the Photianist Schisms and Anti-England in the Tudor Schisms. Likewise there was and is also an Anti-Rome, presently reigning triumphantly in the usurped Vatican.
I must warn you against the tendency to give out statements as the certain interpretations of prophecies and or fables, especially fables, as being rash and leading unto ruin. Regarding your positioning of your homeland – the USA as the site of the New Jerusalem, or the new seat of the Papacy, I must warn you to desist, to not allow yourself to be carried over by nationalistic myth-romances. I will tell you that I consider that the USA & UKGB are the New SODOM & GOMORRAH. The USA is deliberately patterned on the Roman Empire, without HOWEVER the benefit of the True Faith; and was established by known freemasons, not excluding George Washington; that England and USA took advantages of the disturbance caused by Napoleon to breakout Latin America first from the hands of Spain & Portugal and finally from the hand of the Church. Do you remember that the then president (McKinley?) stated that he decided to war against Spain in order to take over the Phillipines so as to protestantise it… Today you can see the result; as the Americans are hedonistic and materialistic, so are the Phillipinians their clones in the same evil. Certainly, the severance of so many people from the Church and their adherence to the many loathsome sects (Philippine Independent Church, Iglesia ng Christo, etc) must be squarely laid at America’s doorsteps.
The USA is the protector and patron of all the evils of our day – libertinism, religious liberty or the separation of Church & State, abortions, homosexuality, lesbianism, you name it. As such it is truly the Ark of Hell.
Finally, I will remind you that the Eagles of USA & Mexico are anti-Catholic symbols.
The national emblem of Mexico was our Lady of Guadalupe, but this was substituted by the Freemasons for a pre-Christian symbol of pagan Mexico.
As for the American Eagle, it is the same Roman Imperial Eagle – again pre-Christian, the emblem, perhaps, of Anti-Rome. It is as such that many nations all over Europe have adopted it in many forms.
Except for these things the book is good, but I will need to study it more carefully before I can make a decision (which will also depend on your clarification of my objections re Papal Indefectibility and the unassailable place of the city and church of Rome, Italy, in the Holy Faith.)
Finally, the book is incomplete in that it does not provide information of the events leading to and of the actual ‘election’ itself. I will get back to you later, after doing a better and systematic study of the book.
Prakash John Mascarenhas, Bombay, India.
From: David Bawden
Subject: Please pardon the delay
>Date: Tue, 07 Nov 2000 08:05:33 -0600
Dear Sir, - I got your email full of good questions.
The question of jurisdiction is key to many of today's problems. As you point out we state that one must have one's Ordinaries permission to write a book and have it printed. (Why we didn't is where the imprimatur would normally be posted.) The necessity of jurisdiction also answers your question about 'ecclesia supplet'. This principle is to be used sparingly. The reason it applies for electing a Pope and not for the operation of Bishops and priests is that the Bishops and priests should have elected a Pope, who would have then supplied them with Ordinary Jurisdiction. You see, by ignoring the true needs of the Church, they are operating outside of the Church's intention in this regard.
I am familiar with what was written in the book. Teresa Benns wrote that particular part, because so many Traditionalists had complained about her writing in the past. I was for women participating on the same grounds you site, but could argue both sides of the question at that point. When she brought the question up, I said she could put it in, but I refused to write it.
Antichrist is an illegitimate and unlawful ruler with absolutely no authority. His 'judicial permission', is that God allows him to reign unopposed as a chastisement for the sins of the faithful prior to his reign. In tracing the opinions on who succeeds to the duty to vote for the Pope, when the Cardinals fail, it tooks some doing. By 'Saint John Lateran' are the canons of that basilica. There is no real list, only opinions of various canonists, as the case has not presented itself, until now. I need to look up the matter on the Lay Apostolate, but if I remember right it was a speech of Pope Pius XII.
As for the argument on the indefectibility of the Pope, I wish to revisit this research and give a more complete and thorough answer and will forward this to you, when completed. When it has been a while, since I have been into the books on something, I wish to look it up again, in case I may have new references available that strengthen the case.
As for the Emperors interfering with elections, this has often happened, but Pope Saint Pius X removed any chance for their interference after he was elected by changing the law of veto.
As for your contention of 'anti-Rome', this makes perfect sense. Obviously the Whore of Babylon is directly opposed to the Catholic Church. In fact, later on I discovered that the Pope has direct jurisdiction as Pope over
only six of the seven hills of Rome. However, Anti-Pope John XXIII as 'anti Bishop of Rome' changed the law taking ordinary jurisdiction over the suburbicarian sees, thus taking 'authority' over the seventh hill.
There is something about this 'Great Monarch' prophesies that is strange and linked to various anti-Catholic groups. I will refer your question on to someone who can answer it better.
You are right about the evils coming from America. In fact in meditating on Babylon in Apocalypse 18, I think America may be that Babylon. However, there is a difference between America and the European nations. Europe rejected the Faith, whereas America never had it. Our first Bishop is suspected of being a Mason, and it doesn't get any better after that, although there were a couple of good Bishops in this country. So in referencing America as the place where the solution comes from, this is God bringing good out of an evil place, a place that makes pagan Rome look good in its own pursuit of paganism. However, America is pagan and not apostate like the European countries. Of course, the same argument could be made for other parts of the world, possibly India, but I haven't done the research.
I pray these answers help you get started.
Saint Thomas Aquinas' works are on-line and I can refer you to a place to order the Code of Canon Law. I will get back to you on those quesitons not yet answered.
*Correction: The family presently ruling England, Scotland and English-Occupied Eire are not RUPERTINES. They are descended from the Elector Frederick, Pretender of Bohemia, through his daughter Sophia and not through his son, Rupert, pretender of Bohemia, as I thought. The error is mine. – Prakash J Mascarenhas.