Fr. Kramer's Newest Position There seems to be some confusion as to what is Fr. Kramer’s newest position. Some say that he has not changed; some say that he is a sedevacantist; some say that he is a sedealtersit (believing that a different pope exists). As in all things, go to the source. Starting with Benedict XVI. When Benedict XVI resigned at age 85, or some would say, renounced or stepped down from the Papacy on Feb. 28, 2013, there was a shock in the world; rightly so. Some say that the terms he did so reflected more of a “presidency” over an institution than a reigning monarch instituted by Christ. There are a lot of theories out there to suggest, some with plausibility, that Pope Benedict had “resigned” inappropriately and illegally from Protocol and Canon Law, some other theories being that he was doing so out of fear and force. Then there are hosts of others, well, that are pretty far out as the world makes up new beliefs every day. Regardless of any theories however, they will just remain theories; because of two facts: First, if a pope’s disposition finds himself through mental or physical illness, including advanced age and deteriorating health, that he is incapable to govern the Church entrusted to him to guide the world’s flock, there is a provision in Canon Law to do so. Stating, that if it happens that the Roman Pontiff resigns from his office, it is required for validity that his resignation be freely made and properly manifested, but it isn’t necessary that it be accepted by anyone. Which Pope Paul II had prepared when he was ill. In manifestation of this, if there is any anomaly of improper paperwork or protocol to carry this out, there is the second. Second, the manifestation of intention and act meeting together. Benedict XVI went through the process, though they debate that it was not "legal" according to norms; yet, Benedict XVI had made many formal statements and act in abnegation of the reign of the seat of Peter. Benedict XVI had returned his official Fisherman's Ring, which is destroyed by Vatican officials to prevent documents being counterfeited. Benedict XVI had also submitted to the legal and canonical process of the election of the new pope. Benedict XVI had also bent his knee in act to honor and submit in obedience to the new pope [Francis] as the present reigning pope of the [Catholic] Church. The Catholic world had received and accepted the new pope (one of the conditions of legitimacy for a new pope). The Catholic world prays for the new pope [Francis] in the canon of the mass. Further, to this day, Benedict had submitted to all of the governing authority of the new pope and all of the legislative judgements. So it is clear that Benedict’s disposition and intention was to resign. What is tainted however in many peoples mind is still the process and Benedict calling himself “Pope Emeritus” and still wearing the white cassock. I place the latter to the novelties of Vatican II more than the improperness of ancient tradition. As mentioned above, though paternity cannot be resigned, there is yet real infirmity in the human condition to where the code of Canon law in 1917 provided for the resignation of a pope as do the regulations established by Paul VI in 1975 and John Paul II in 1996. However, a resignation induced through fear or fraud would be invalid. Even canonists argue that a person resigning from an office must be of sound mind (Canon 187). Historical evidence for papal resignations is limited, especially if one eliminates resignations that may have been forced. Clement I (92?-101): Epiphanius asserted that Clement gave up the pontificate to Linus for the sake of peace and became pope again after the death of Cletus. Pontian (230-235): Allegedly resigned after being exiled to the mines of Sardinia during persecution of Maximinus Thrax. Cyriacus: A fictional character created in the Middle Ages who supposedly received a heavenly command to resign. Marcellinus (296-304): Abdicated or was deposed after complying with Diocletian's order to offer sacrifice to pagan gods. Martin I (649-655): Exiled by Emperor Constans II to Crimea. Before he died, clergy of Rome elected a successor whom he appears to have approved. Benedict V (964): After one month in office, he accepted deposition by Emperor Otto I. Benedict IX (1032-45): Benedict resigned after selling the papacy to his godfather Gregory VI. Gregory VI (1045-46): Deposed for simony by Henry III. Celestine V (1294): A hermit, elected at age of 80 and overwhelmed by the office, resigned. He was imprisoned by his successor. Gregory XII (1406-15): Resigned at request of Council of Constance to help end the Great Western Schism. [Source: Patrick Granfield, "Papal Resignation" (The Jurist, winter and spring 1978) and J. N. D. Kelly, The Oxford Dictionary of Popes (1986).] In Light of the World, Pope Benedict responded unambiguously to a question about whether a pope could resign: "Yes. If a Pope clearly realizes that he is no longer physically, psychologically, and spiritually capable of handling the duties of his office, then he has a right and, under some circumstances, also an obligation to resign." So here denotes a disposition and an intention of Benedict XVI for which he claims he followed through with. Remember the other side saying that it was out of fear and force, thus invalidating his resignation, this is where Fr. Kramer comes in. From the get go, Fr. Kramer said he had suspicion if invalidation and believed with a possibility that pope Benedict XVI is still the pope –though only a suspicion. And without any proof, one cannot judge the internal forum of another as one cannot prove a subjective sin of another -in this case- and at a minimum, we have to take Benedict XVI’s word for his reasoning. Nonetheless, when Pope Francis was elected on March 13, 2013, Fr. Kramer, along with the rest of the Catholic world had accepted him as the new successor of Peter. So now let Fr. Kramer tell us in his own words what Fr. Kramer’s new position is today. There are 2-simutanious positions Fr. Kramer holds: 1.) A stated sedevacantism relating to Pope Francis out of heresy, and separately, 2.) An actual belief that Benedict XVI is still the pope. 1). A stated sedevacantism relating to Pope Francis out of heresy: On Nov. 28, 2013, Fr. Kramer openly stated and announced on his Facebook page that he rejects Pope Francis' claim to the papacy due to manifest heresy found in his published "Apostolic Exhortation" Evangelii Gaudium. On the same day, when asked by someone on his facebook page what he means by this, Fr. Kramer responded to affirm his announcement: "The conclusion is inescapable. Sedevacante." With a random search on the internet for this, here are some links that picked up this story: http://www.novusordowatch.org/wire/paul-kramer-rejects-francis.htm 2). Separately, an actual belief that Benedict XVI is still the pope: The next day, Nov.29, 2013, Fr. Kramer then announced on his same facebook page his belief from the suspicion and possibility of Benedict XVI being the Pope to now believe that he is still the actual Pope. http://www.novusordowatch.org/wire/kramer-resignationists.htm And a sede site that is followed it more closely, http://sedevacantist.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1550 So you can see that Fr. Kramer has a time lapse of events and an evolving of belief. A). By heresy, in Fr. Kramer's belief, Pope Francis is no longer the Pope = sedevacantism. And separately, B). By evolving, in Fr. Kramer's mind from a theory to an actuality = Benedict XVI still is the Pope. In both cases, Fr. Kramer is wrong. Fr. Chazal had even termed a coinage that Fr. Kramer is a sedealterist. What is it? First, the word "sedealterist" is Latin meaning, the "seat is another" or "the other". Yet, there is absolutely no difference however between sedevacantism and sedealterism regarding the present accepted pope. They both believe that the present pope is NOT the pope nor has any authority. The only difference is sedealterism believes that there is another pope existing elsewhere. In Fr. Kramer's case, he believes that Benedict XVI is still the pope. Which he isn't as explained above.