Cardinal Müller Reacts to Francis’ Appointment of Victor Fernández

Michael Haynes: Your Eminence, you have gone on record previously calling some of Archbishop Fernández’s statements “heretical.” What danger does he pose now as head of the CDF, especially given his writing and promotion of Amoris Laetitia as opening Communion to the divorced and ‘re-married’?

Cardinal Gerhard Müller: The decision as to who will become prefect of the principal congregation (or dicastery) that directly assists the Roman Pontiff in his universal magisterium belongs to the Holy Father alone. He must also answer for it in his conscience before Christ, the Lord and Head of His Church. This does not exclude the concern of many bishops, priests, and faithful throughout the world. They have the right to freely express their concerns (Lumen gentium 37).

The opinion, which I criticized at that time, that any diocese could become the seat of Peter’s successor, is already directly qualified by the Fathers of Vatican I as a heretical contradiction to the revealed faith in 2nd canon of the Constitution “Pastor aeternus” (Denzinger- Hünermann 3058). The concept that the “the Roman Pontiff has full, supreme and universal power over the Church” (Lumen gentium 22), i.e. the plenitudo potestatis, has nothing at all to do with the unlimited command of secular potentates who refer to a higher power.

The Church of the Triune God also does not need a new foundation or modernization, as if she had become a dilapidated house and as if weak men could surpass the divine master builder. She is already historically established in Christ once for all and perfectly conceived in its doctrine, constitution and liturgy in God’s plan of salvation.

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