Democracy, Monarchy and the Fourth Commandment
by Solange Strong Hertz
In the earliest days of the Church St. Jude the Apostle found himself "under a necessity to write to you: to beseech you to contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints." His letter, brief and to the point, was read publicly to the Catholic congregations of that day and eventually became one of the canonical books of the New Testament, so there is no reason to believe that the plural “you" is not directed to us as well. Perhaps it is directed to us primarily, destined as we are to live in the latter times when the faith would be tried most severely. St. Jude warns that into the Church "there have crept in some men (who were written of long ago unto this judgment), impious, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only sovereign Ruler and our Lord Jesus Christ."
In other words the Apostle pinpoints here the first stirrings of the revolt against Christ the Universal King which rages today, begun by men who “defile the flesh and despise dominion and blaspheme majesty." He characterizes them as blaspheming “whatsoever things they know not: and what things soever they naturally know like dumb beasts, in these they are corrupted. . . . raging waves of the sea, foaming out their confusion, wandering stars: to whom the storm of darkness is reserved forever. . . . These are murmurers full of complaints, walking according to their own desires, and their mouth speaks proud things, admiring persons for gain's sake."
St. Jude says that these rebels against God's rule “have gone in the way of Cain," the murderer at the dawn of human history who, as related in Genesis, “went out from the face of the Lord and dwelt as a fugitive on the earth at the east side of Eden. And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and brought forth Henoch: and he built a city and called the name thereof by the name of his son Henoch" (Gen. 4:16-17). This Henoch is not to be confused with the later one who “walked with God" and for his great faith “was translated that he should not to see death (Heb. 11:5) . . . into paradise," in order that he might return at the end of time to preach “repentance to the nations" (Ecclus. 44:16). The name Henoch means “dedication" or “initiation" and it is clear that the two men exemplified the beginnings of two very different ways of life.
Cain and his progeny could have accepted God's mercy like Adam and Eve and returned to serving God as best they could in humanity's new fallen state until the advent of the promised Redeemer, but such was not their choice. By building an independent city and naming it after his son instead of after his father, who transmitted to him life and authority received from God, Cain broke radically with his antecedents. Repudiating the natural framework erected for him beforehand by God in the past, he set his hopes on an inchoate future which disavowed all debt to his father, originating with his son, fruit of his own loins. Cain, in other words, was not a traditionalist, but a modernist, a purveyor of what is now known as a “living tradition" which creates itself in accordance with changing times and circumstances. Breaking radically with the past, he ignored the hereditary principle by which God transmits authority from himself downward from father to son.
Turning his eyes exclusively to the future, he sought to reverse the natural law by transferring to children reared in his own image, the duty he owed his parents. He would dedicate himself, not to serving God, but to “leaving the world a better place" for his progeny. Cain was the prototype of those parents who idolize their own offspring as projections of themselves, mercilessly saddling them with their own ambitions. By founding a city for himself which he named after his son, Cain formally rejected the divine law laid down for society in its beginnings. He would fulfill the divine injunction to “increase and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and rule over. . . all living creatures that move upon the earth" (Gen. 1:28), not for the purpose of serving and glorifying God, but for that of serving and glorifying himself by ordering society according to his own way of thinking.
Dedicated to a utopian future of his own making, divorced from the past and originating with himself, he could look forward to assuming responsibility for “saving the environment," controlling the weather, regulating population growth, equalizing the sexes, safeguarding children's rights, eliminating poverty and doing all the things designed to transform the fallen world into a neo-paradise. As his own arbiter of morality he would, when expedient, declare evil good by legitimizing vices. In other words, Cain was the father and exemplar of modern democracy, which takes its authority only from man and holds its elected representatives answerable to men rather than to God.
The secular world government now in the making can trace its line of descent directly to Cain, who, even before murdering his brother Abel, had already declared his independence by opting to worship God in his own way, making an offering of “fruits of the earth" to which God “had no respect." Becoming “exceeding angry" at the divine displeasure and envious of Abel, whose offering God had accepted, Cain was reminded by God of the inviolable freedom of his will: “Why art thou angry and why is thy countenance fallen? If thou do well, shalt thou not receive? But if ill, shall not sin forthwith be present at the door? But the lust thereof shall be under thee, and thou shalt have dominion over it."
Refusing this merciful overture, Cain proceeded to the slaughter of his brother and incurred God's curse, which greatly increased the woes of his already fallen nature. The “culture of death" had begun. Hereafter not only would he find the earth unfruitful, but “a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be upon the earth," with no fixed abode and bereft of saving grace. Going “out from the face of the Lord" (Gen. 4:3-16), he broke off all communication with heaven to begin constructing his utopia, the city of Henoch which would turn out to be the prototype of all the democratic secular states of the latter times, founded as they are on the renouncement of hereditary authority derived from God.
Cain's aberration is, alas, inevitable once man turns away from his Creator, for by virtue of being created in the divine image, he craves to be like God by the very force of his nature. Programmed to act in union with his divine exemplar, he wants to know, to love, to enjoy, to judge, to rule, to create. In other words, he wants to do everything God does. Man's incorporation into the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, made possible by the Incarnation in the fullness of time, would only intensify these cravings, which can be wholly satisfied only in the Beatific Vision. To reach this eternal goal, however, God's image and likeness in us demands unqualified obedience to the divine Original, to be “therefore perfect as also your heavenly Father is perfect" (Matt. 5:48). That is why loving God with our whole mind, soul and strength is the first and greatest of the Commandments. Any willful desire to act like God apart from Him is therefore the fundamental disobedience, the very essence of sin.
Nevertheless, always resembling God, even in our waywardness we cannot do anything which does not somehow reflect the divine image and likeness in which we were created. We still want to generate and terminate life, to govern, to legislate, to reward and punish, to organize and to measure out and distribute favors and goods as God does, but to do so independently, not as His other Christs within the divine plan, but as we see fit, according to our own earth-bound vision of power and glory. Ultimately we turn to building our own artificial world and manufacturing our own virtual reality. Enclosing ourselves in a one-dimensional, horizontal universe from which that other dimension, the hereditary vertical line to God, is ignored on principle, we destroy all possibility of getting a proper perspective on our real position in creation. Hereditary government, on the other hand, is designed to preserve society in both its vertical and horizontal dimensions, uniting the generations of men to one another by uniting them all to God. It provides the political cement without which society inevitably disintegrates into its myriad natural components.
Cain's uni-dimensional dream began coming to full flower in the twentieth century under the name of Democracy. It is the only political system the world has ever known which makes every man his own sovereign by declaring him free and equal to all others, and thus able to exercise tyranny over everyone else. Tage Lindbom, in The Myth of Democracy, puts it thus: “There is nothing a priori, nothing anterior to democratic power; no ideas of truth, no notions of good or bad, can bind the Popular Will. This ‘will' is free in the sense that it stands above all notions of value. It is egalitarian because it is reared on arithmetic equality. In the traditional order there was a qualitative duality, because there was a divine Source of power, a higher Will that always allowed room for forgiveness, consolation, charity. The Popular Will knows none of this; its sentences are implacable. It is not open to any appeal, it listens to no demand for grace, no plea for compassion. Like the Sphinx, the Popular Will is immovable in its enigmatic silence. The democratic myth is now complete in its sham ‘trinitarian' unity. Mankind is free, equal and almighty."
How to escape the toils of Democracy? Lindbom writes, “The retreat into private life is one of the main avenues of escapism; it is the passive expression of the experience of powerlessness. But another way of escapism expresses a more active and compensatory attitude: this is when people experience great democratic leadership, the charismatic aspect of the democratic myth. Powerlessness is never better concealed than when people place themselves in the shadow of a great leader, those momentous personas with whom the people can identify. There are almost no limits to the generosity and the hopes -- but also to the deceptions -- that the democratic masses invest in their leaders, their father figures." 
Thus the natural law inevitably reasserts itself because of every man's innate need of paternal authority, a fact which may serve to explain why democratic governments dissolve so easily into dictatorships. An outstanding example of this is Napoleon Bonaparte. Rising to power by proclaiming “La Revolution c'est moi!" he embodied all the principles of the democratic rebellion, but ended by placing an imperial crown on his own head and establishing a hereditary dynasty for his self-constructed new empire. This natural craving for monarchy is what will eventually drive the world's most exuberant godless democracies to acclaim the Antichrist as their supreme father figure.
Today the universal acceptance of government separated from religion has spread Cain's independent city over the whole earth. As we have seen, not only civil organizations, but the Holy Catholic Church herself has slipped within its political orbit now that two conciliar Popes, following the lead of the Second Vatican Council, have endorsed on three separate occasions the godless United Nations as an international authority. In none of these momentous declarations was the Universal Kingship of Christ the King, “appointed heir of all things" (Heb. 1:2), mentioned even in passing as a political factor, let alone acknowledged as the sole true hope of the world.
To remind mankind of the proper order of human society, God laid down the Fourth Commandment, telling Moses, “Honor thy father and thy mother, that thou mayst be long-lived upon the land which the Lord thy God will give thee" (Ex. 20: 12). There was no need to specify the duties of parents towards their children, for they share with animals the natural instinct to care for their young, and fallen nature, as evident in the case of Cain, inclines readily enough to project its selfish concerns onto those who take their source from us and to whom we are in no way indebted for our own being. Only to the Fourth Commandment does God attach a specific reward. To the “long life" promised to filial piety both in this world and the next, the second promulgation of the law in Deuteronomy adds as an extra incentive, “that it may be well with thee," inferring political security and tranquility as well.
Yet how many Catholics today exhibit Cain's strange forward-thinking by maintaining that any debt they owe their parents is discharged by the care they bestow on their offspring, on the grounds that “the future belongs to the children" – as if times still existing only in their imaginations automatically take precedence over the past and the present, which have already taken definite shape or are about to. St. Thomas, on the other hand, points out that our first duty is actually to our parents, even before that to husband or wife. There is no comparison between these obligations, for what we owe our spouses or our children is limited, but to our parents we are indebted under God for life itself, a gift which is eternal and can never be entirely repaid either here or hereafter. We come into this world forever indebted for our very existence, not to our descendants, but to all our ancestors as we are to God.
The Fourth Commandment occupies a pivotal position in the Decalogue. Standing after the strictures dealing directly with God which were inscribed on the first tablet of the Law, it introduces those dealing with our neighbor which were inscribed on the second. Because, as the Catechism of the Council of Trent teaches, natural fathers “are, so to say, images of the immortal God," the Fourth Commandment stands at the head of the second tablet in the name of all those who represent Him in this life. "He that feareth the Lord honoreth his parents, and will serve them as his masters that brought him into the world" (Ecclus. 3:8). Inasmuch as “Those who govern the state, to whom are entrusted power, magistracy or command are also called fathers," as well as “those to whose care, fidelity, probity and wisdom others are committed, such as teachers, instructors, masters and guardians," or “aged men advanced in years," the Fourth Commandment reduces all society to one extended family under God, where the highest political virtue is obedience.
The Fourth Commandment was man's first written Constitution, and it has never been superceded. Of divine institution, it requires no amending to perfect it or bring it up to date, for it is rooted in the natural law laid down by the Creator, building not on the individual as the basic political cell of society, but on the family. Because the family is a pyramidal organization patterned on the Blessed Trinity, governed by a father at the head of a mother and their offspring, there can be no question of “equality" between its members. It follows that the ideal form of human government is therefore monarchical, with a King at the head of a Queen and their subjects, reproducing at its summit the same hierarchical organization as that of its basic cells.
Writing to the King of Cyprus on kingship, St. Thomas Aquinas forthrightly declared monarchy to be “the best of governments, " a pronouncement ratified by Pope Pius VI in modern times in the allocution he delivered on the occasion of the execution of Louis XVI of France. St. Thomas says that inasmuch as “the welfare and safety of a multitude formed into a society lies in the preservation of its unity, which is called peace" and “it is manifest that what is itself one can more efficaciously bring about unity than several . . . therefore the rule of one man is more useful than the rule of many. Furthermore it is evident that several persons could by no means preserve the stability of the community if they totally disagreed. . . . So one man rules better than several who come near to being one.
“Again, whatever is in accord with nature is best, for in all things nature does what is best. Now, every natural governance is governance by one. In the multitude of bodily members there is one which is the principal mover, namely, the heart; and among the powers of the soul one power presides as chief, namely, the reason. Among bees there is one king [queen] bee and in the whole universe there is one God, Maker and Ruler of all things. And there is a reason for this. Every multitude is derived from unity. Wherefore, if artificial things are an imitation of natural things and a work of art is better according as it attains a closer likeness to what is in nature, it follows that it is best for a human multitude to be ruled by one person." This is why God “promises to His people as a great reward that He will give them one head and that ‘one Prince will be in the midst of them' (Ezech. 34:24; Jer. 30:21)."
St. Thomas only strengthens his case by pointing out that if, according to Aristotle, “it is the contrary of the best that is worst, it follows that tyranny is the worst kind of government. . . . For the same reason that in a just government the government is better in proportion as the ruling power is one -- thus monarchy is better than aristocracy and aristocracy better than polity -- so the contrary will be true of an unjust government, namely, that the ruling power will be more harmful in proportion as it is more unitary. . . . Danger thus lurks on every side. Either men are held by the fear of a tyrant and they miss the opportunity of having that very best government which is kingship; or they want a king and the kingly power turns into tyrannical wickedness." To be delivered from tyrants, “the people must desist from sin, for it is by divine permission that wicked men receive power to rule as a punishment for sin." 
In the final analysis good government rests on the practice of filial piety in all ranks of society. The Catechism of Trent says that “if God promises rewards and blessings to grateful children, He also reserves the heaviest chastisements to punish those who are wanting in filial piety," and cites the old Law in support. Both Exodus and Leviticus lay down, “He that curses his father or mother shall die the death" (Ex. 21:17; Lev. 20:9). The Book of Proverbs says, “He that afflicts his father and chases away his mother is infamous and unhappy. . . . He that curses his father and mother, his lamp shall be put out in the midst of darkness," and “The eye that mocks at his father and that despises the labor of his mother in bearing him, let the ravens of the brooks pick it out and the young eagles eat it!" (19:26; 20:20; 30:17).
Proverbs also makes note of a “generation that curses their father and does not bless their mother, a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet are not washed from their filthiness, a generation whose eyes are lofty, and their eyelids lifted up on high, a generation that for teeth has swords and grinds with their jaw-teeth to devour the needy from off the earth and the poor from among men" (30:11:14). What better description of the modern state divorced from the Church founded by God the Father to regulate it? There is no reason to believe that the same punishments which fall on individuals for infringements of the Fourth Commandment do not fall on the state as well, where the sin of disobedience is all the more deadly for being collective and committed in the name of freedom and civic virtue.
Mankind cannot plead ignorance of filial piety, because God became incarnate in order to teach us himself how to practice it. When on finding Him in the Temple after an unexplained absence of three days, His blessed Mother asks her twelve year old divine Son the reason for His untoward behavior, He replies by asking, “How is it that you sought me? Did you not know that I must be about the things that are my Father's?" (Luke 2:49). This is the very first utterance of the Word made Flesh recorded in Scripture, and it reveals filial obedience as the mainspring of the mission of the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity as man on earth. This virtue not only underlies our Lord's whole life from His Incarnation to His Ascension into heaven, but by it was made possible our Redemption and ultimate glorification. His very birth in Bethlehem, the city of His ancestor David, occurred there as a result of His parents' obedience to Caesar's authority.
At the time He was found in the Temple, when He seems to have been ready to embark on His public ministry, He stated clearly what He would repeat constantly throughout His preaching in Galilee and Judea, namely that His entire life on earth was lived in obedience to His heavenly Father. Furthermore, that first public statement of His mission as emissary of His Father, delivered in God's Temple while yet a child, He illustrated on the spot by giving a concrete example of obedience which could only have been meant for our instruction. After telling us that His parents “understood not the word that he spoke unto them," Scripture makes a point of the fact that “he went down with them and came to Nazareth: and was subject to them."
Apparently there must have been some alternative to His going home. Perhaps the brilliance of “his wisdom and his answers" to the theologians among whom His parents found Him had opened up an opportunity to remain In Jerusalem for study in the schools there. By the age of twelve our Lord had furthermore attained his majority under Jewish law, making it not inconceivable that as far as His human will was concerned, He was not only disposed to begin His ministry at this juncture, but was actually preparing to pursue it by listening to the doctors “and asking them questions" (Luke 2:43 ff.). He does not do so, however, but returns with his parents to Nazareth, recognizing in their wishes the expression of the will of His heavenly Father. If this were not so, why would Scripture lay so much emphasis on His returning home and being subject to them, which under the circumstances was only to be expected ?
In obedience to His Father's will our Lord lived the next eighteen years in obscurity, presumably plying the carpenter's trade He learned from St. Joseph. When He finally emerges into public view on the banks of the Jordan, where He has come to be baptized by His cousin St. John the Baptist, “Behold the heavens were opened to him: and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and coming upon him, and behold a voice from heaven saying: This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased" (Matt. 3:16-17). From that point on, throughout the three years of His public ministry until His death on the Cross, our Lord never ceases emphasizing that everything He does and says is in obedience to His Father:
To the Jews persecuting Him for healing on the Sabbath He says, “My Father worketh until now, and I work. . . . Amen. amen, I say unto you: the Son cannot do anything of himself, but what he seeth the Father doing: for what things soever he doth, these the Son also doth in like manner. . . . I can do nothing of myself. As I hear, so I judge: and my judgment is just: because I seek not my own will, but the will of him that sent me, (John 5:17, 19, 30). At the last Feast of Tabernacles our Lord tells the Jews again, “My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me," and before entering on His Passion He reminds His disciples, “The word which you have heard is not mine: but the Father's who sent me. . . . As the Father hath given me commandment, so I do. . . For I have not spoken of myself, but the Father who sent me, he gave me commandment what I should say and what I should speak. . . The things therefore that I speak, even as the father said unto me, so do I speak" (John 7:16; 14:24,31; 12:49-50).
Inasmuch as our Lord is not only the promised Redeemer, but also the supreme model of the behavior God expects of man, created in the divine image and therefore commanded to be nothing less than “perfect as his heavenly father is perfect," we may deduce that any declaration of independence on man's part spells automatic separation from God. As the only begotten Son of God the Father, Jesus Christ is the divine epitome of hereditary monarchy, of the derivation of authority from above by filiation. He is the universal ruler because He is by nature God's Son, who receives “all power . . . in heaven and in earth" (Matt. 28:18) from His Father. Even we as ordinary Christians can participate in the divine life only by way of filiation, becoming God's children by adoption. “And if sons, heirs also: heirs indeed of God and joint heirs with Christ . . . the firstborn amongst many brethren" (Rom. 8:17, 29).
St. Paul points out that even as Man our Lord derives His authority as the scion of a hereditary human monarchy, “of the seed of David, according to the flesh," (Rom. 1:3). The Sacred Humanity itself was descended from a divinely established royal line of kings destined to endure forever, for God had sworn to its progenitor David, “Thy seed will I settle for ever, and I will build up thy throne unto generation and generation" (Ps. 88:4). Even after this monarchy lost its temporal rule over Israel, an angel is sent from heaven to announce His birth to Mary, a princess of the Davidic line espoused to Joseph, one of its princes. The angel tells her that her Child “shall be great and shall be called the Son of the most High, and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of David, his father: and he shall reign in the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there shall be no end" (Luke 1:32-33).
Thirty-three years later, about to be crucified, this royal Son of God testifies to the truth of the angel's words by telling the Roman Procurator who sentenced Him, “I am a king. For this was I born, and for this came I into the world, that I should give testimony to the truth" (John 18:37). Before the civil authority He declares himself to be the universal king beheld by the prophet Daniel “in the vision of the night," to whom God gave “power and glory and a kingdom: and all peoples, tribes and tongues shall serve him: his power is an everlasting power that shall not be taken away: and his kingdom that shall not be destroyed. . . . And that the kingdom and power and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven may be given to the people of the saints of the most High: whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all kings shall obey him" (Dan. 7:14,27).
Before this can take place, however, Daniel foresaw the rise of a contender for the title of universal kingship, one who “shall speak words against the most High One and shall crush the saints of the most High: and he shall think himself able to change times and laws, and they shall be delivered into his hand until a time, and times, and half a time" (Dan. 7:25). This enemy's rule our Lord clearly predicted to the unbelieving Jews when after telling them, “I am come in the name of my Father and you receive me not," He added, “If another shall come in his own name him you shall receive," (John 5:43). In other words, our Lord pinpoints autonomous, self-appointed rule as the hallmark of the anti-Christ king to come. Acting “in his own name," the Antichrist will be recognized by the fact that he will rule independently, outside the great royal dynasty which God established for himself under David, which produced the Sacred Humanity of the Messiah and which there is no reason to believe has not survived until now. Psalm 88 expressly records the solemn promise, confirmed many times in Scripture, which God made to David:
“I have found David, my servant: with my holy oil I have anointed him. . . And I will make him my first-born, high above the kings of the earth. I will keep my mercy for him forever: and my covenant faithful to him. And I will make his seed to endure for evermore: and his throne as the days of heaven: and if his children forsake my law and walk not in my judgments: if they profane my justices and keep not my commandments: I will visit their iniquities with a rod and their sin with stripes. But my mercy I will not take away from him nor will I suffer my truth to fail. Neither will I profane my covenant: and the words that proceed from my mouth I will not make void. Once have I sworn by my holiness: I will not lie unto David: HIS SEED SHALL ENDURE FOREVER. (vs. 21-36).
In Ascendances Davidiques des Rois de France, the Marquis de la Franquerie says, “Thus God swore an irrevocable oath to David that his descendants would reign till the end of time, and the terms of this renewed oath are such that they apply not only in the double mystical and real sense to the person of Christ, the Son of God, God himself, who in fact will reign eternally, but to the racial line itself. What happened to them? What throne do the descendants of David and those kings who ruled over the chosen people of the Old Testament occupy?" This throne would be that of France, a nation which, according to Pope Gregory IX was prefigured by the ancient tribe of Judah.
Over the centuries a strong tradition has persisted that Clovis, the first of the French kings, whose reign marked the beginning of the Holy Roman Empire, was indeed a descendant of David. Researching the bases of the tradition, the Marquis unearthed evidence that the line of David survived the Babylonian conquest in the four daughters of Sedecias, the last ruling king of Judah. One of these, Tea-Tephi, married Heremon, a collateral descendant of David's line, and this royal couple were the progenitors of the early kings of Ireland and Scotland and eventually of all the Christian kings of Europe from Clovis on down. That the French monarchy, beginning with the Merovingians and passing collaterally to the Carolingians and Capetians, is the only royal family in world history to have ruled in an unbroken salic succession of males for over 1300 years, argues for extraordinary divine predilection, to say the least. Not to mention the fact that on one occasion God himself intervened in the person of St. Joan of Arc to preserve the integrity of the line when it was threatened by absorption into that of the English.
St. Remi, the Apostle of the Franks, had been appointed papal legate to the French nation newly constituted under Clovis by Pope St. Hormisdas, who wrote him, “We confer on you all our powers for the entire kingdom of our dear spiritual son Clovis, whom by the grace of God you have converted along with his whole nation by an apostolate and miracles worthy of the days of the Apostles." At the Baptism of his convert Clovis, St. Remi had declared prophetically, “Know that the kingdom of France is predestined by God for the defense of the Roman Church, which is the only true Church of Christ. . . . This kingdom shall one day be great among all others. It will include the limits of the Roman Empire and will submit all peoples to its scepter. . . . It will endure until the end of time. It will be victorious and prosper as long as it is faithful to the Roman faith, but it will be severely chastised whenever it is unfaithful to its vocation." He ended with these words: “May from this race arise kings and emperors who, confirmed in truth and justice now and in the future according to the Lord's will for the extension of Holy Church, will reign and increase daily in power, thus deserving to sit on the throne of David in the heavenly Jerusalem, where they will reign with the Lord throughout eternity. Amen."
Beginning with Clovis' royal consecration as “Christ's lieutenant" with a holy oil miraculously produced on the occasion and administered by St. Remi in Reims Cathedral in 476, the kings of France are the only monarchs to have been thus chrismated. The Marquis de la Franquerie writes, “Only for the kings of France did the Church institute the ceremony of consecration which rendered them God's representatives in the temporal order and heads of all other sovereigns. She declared them -- which is true historically -- the elder sons of the Church. The special liturgy she instituted is quite remarkable, as well as the prescribed prayers." For instance: “May the king be honored over the kings of other nations. . . . May he be the most powerful of kings. . . . May successors to his throne be born from him throughout the ages to come."
Speaking of the king of France in his commentary on the First Book of Kings, Pope St. Gregory the Great wrote, “The king receives the sacrament of anointing, because anointing is indeed a sacrament." According to the Abbé Bayot in a study written on the bicentennial of the death of Louis XV, “The royal consecration attaches the royal power to the sovereignty of Jesus Christ and thus makes of it the pedestal of the divine Monarchy, which is unique and universal. It is the sanctification of that organ and that function." And the scholarly Benedictine Dom Besse declared, “The consecration made the Prince a man of the Church, his sovereignty appearing to be a holy function."
Constituted a quasi-bishop in the temporal order, the French king was therefore appropriately clad for his coronation in a deacon's dalmatic and was for centuries recognized by the other rulers of Christendom as their suzerain. A decree of the Republic of Venice in 1558 gives as the commonly accepted reason for his preeminence the fact that he was anointed by an oil come down from heaven. It is worth noting that the constitutional monarchs who were for a time installed on the French throne after the execution of Louis XVI may have been ceremonially crowned (as was even Napoleon), but they were never anointed or consecrated by any prelate of the Holy Catholic Church.
The only exception was Charles X, the Duke of Artois, younger brother of Louis XVI, who was properly consecrated at Reims by the Archbishop in 1825. The last of the true French kings, he was soon forced to abdicate by the revolution of 1830, but heaven bore witness to his legitimacy by curing through his royal touch the first eleven victims of scrofula who according to ancient tradition presented themselves to him on the occasion. The power to cure this disease, known as “the king's evil," was a charism bestowed on the royal line beginning with its founder Clovis. Exercised for centuries, it always proved miraculously effective, provided only that the monarch was in the state of grace.
Popes from Clovis' contemporary Athanasius II on down formally acknowledged the preeminence of France as the eldest daughter of the Church. St. Gregory the Great said, “The kings of France are as much above other sovereigns as are sovereigns above ordinary individuals." Long after the French Revolution, at a Consistory on November 29, 1911 during which four French prelates were elevated to the Cardinalate, St. Pius X prophesied that “the people who made an alliance with God at the baptismal font of Reims will repent and return to her original vocation. . . Her faults will not go unpunished, but she shall never perish. . . ." To this day an abundance of prophecies circulates concerning a Great Monarch of the divinely instituted royal line who, in conjunction with a Great Pope, will restore Christian order in the world after the demise of the Antichrist. The fact remains that the death of Louis XVI's little son the Dauphin not only has yet to be proved, but there is considerable evidence that he survived to adulthood and left numerous progeny whose descendants are very much alive today.
It is only to be expected that like God His Father, God the Son would never delegate His power as Christ the King by way of popular election, but only by filiation, as His own power was received. Because it is based on the family, the divinely instituted natural basis of society, true royalty rests securely on both divine and natural law. It follows that human institutions which are based on the family and promote it are consonant with God's will and can expect to receive His blessing; whereas those which are not based on it, in many cases even presuming to war against it, are doomed to disappear simply because they are contrary to natural law and the will of God. Existing outside ordained reality, the principle of death is in them. Christ the Universal King clearly manifested His will when He set up His temporal world government on a divinely instituted monarchy perpetuated through one family chosen from on high to produce the world's rulers, be they kings or emperors. This was the Holy Roman Empire of Christendom, now fallen for a time to its satanic counterpart, Universal Democracy, which takes as its sole authority “We, the People," whom it has declared free, equal and independent of God.
In 1978 the Marquis de la Franquerie was made privy to a collection of letters written in 1972 by one of Bl. Padre Pio's confidants and secretaries. Therein the saint was quoted as saying, “Without the royal power of David, the Church is falling into decadence under the power of the serpent's spirit, which is raising its proud head over that of the head of the Church. . . . The royal power is a divine power which brings down serpents. Republics on the other hand raise up the serpent spirits which sacrifice the people of God, preventing them from raising themselves to the God of heaven. . . . This is Europe's sickness today under the republics."
According to the writer of the letters, “Padre Pio knew that France holds concealed a power which will reveal itself at the appointed hour. Only the royal power, the one God gave David, is capable of regulating the government of the peoples. Without the royal power of David, duly recognized and set in its proper place, Padre used to tell me, the Christian religion lacks the indispensable support on which to rest the truth of God's Word. Men's madness attempted to kill royalty. The world is still paying for it today, because without the true king promised by God from among David's descendants, God's power no longer abides in the hearts of ministers and heads of state. But Satan draws advantage from replacing the royal power of the living David. How great will be the world's misfortune before men realize this truth! The truth today is to be found with a few chosen, hidden men, but in these men reside all the powers of the living God, who wishes and is able to destroy all usurpers of true power."
 Tage Lindbom, The Myth of Democracy, Eerdsmann Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, Mich., 1996, pp. 85, 88-89.
 St. Thomas Aquinas, On Kingship to the King of Cyprus, Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies, Toronto, Canada, 1949, Chs. II ff. passim.
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