It was pointed out to me today that when Nixon resigned the Office of the Presidency, he didn’t go to Camp David, hang out for a couple of weeks, and then move back into a different wing of the White House.
It bears repeating as these concepts get more and more traction and start to sink in:
An OFFICE (MUNUS in Latin) imparts a state of being, which is why the verb used when speaking of an OFFICE is the verb “to be”:
Ratzinger is the Pope.
Nixon was the President.
When Queen Elizabeth dies, Charles will be the King.
A MINISTRY is a derivative aspect of an OFFICE. The various ministries/administrative acts proceed from the OFFICE. The MINISTRIES are contingent on the OFFICE, but the OFFICE is not contingent upon any MINISTRY. This is why a man in a coma, unable to perform any ministry or administrative act does not lose his OFFICE. When speaking of ministries/administrative acts, action verbs are used:
The Pope teaches.
The Pope judges.
The Pope legislates.
The Pope presides.
The President commands the Armed Forces.
The Sheriff enforces the law.
It is 100% false to say that the words “Office (MUNUS)” and “Ministry (MINISTERIUM)” are synonyms. Because these words address completely different categories, namely the category of BEING versus the category of DOING, there is absolutely, positively no way that they can be synonyms – and a veritable mountain of written evidence demonstrates this.
The simplest for English speakers to begin with is J. Michael Miller’s “Divine Right of the Papacy in Recent Ecumenical Theology“, and WHY, oh WHY WOULDN’T YOU READ IT? I mean, how spectacularly insecure would you have to be to not read a doctoral dissertation? To categorically REFUSE to just… read a 300 page dissertation written in ARSH 1979? Seriously? Because when you read Miller’s dissertation, you will see that Joseph Ratzinger and the rest of the Teutonic theologians of the mid-20th century were absolutely OBSESSED with and agonized over the difference between the Papal OFFICE and the Petrine MINISTRY, with an eye toward “fundamental transformation” of the OFFICE, either by “expansion” or “dissolution”.
Remember: OFFICE is about BEING something. MINISTRY is about DOING.
Pope Benedict XVI Ratzinger did not resign the OFFICE, he resigned the ACTIVE MINISTRY, which means, according to Canon Law, which is the arbiter of this question, backed by Jesus Christ Himself (and what you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven….) that his resignation was INVALID. Thus, Pope Benedict XVI is and remains the one and only living Pope, and Bergoglio is an Antipope, and a criminal. Nothing more. All evidence, visual, logical and dogmatic, clearly points to this. Because the Church is VISIBLE, and God is perfectly good and faithful, and His Providence always reflects this.
OFFICE = BEING SOMETHING
MINISTRY = DOING SOMETHING
So, happy 6th anniversary of NOTHING ACTUALLY HAPPENING.