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Tony and Claire wrote:

Hello from Australia,

I am not a student but my question centers on the Thuc consecrations. It is an espoused theory by some that his mandate is continual.

  • Can you tell me whether the mandate he received needed to be renewed by successive Popes?

I am presenting an argument to someone who believes that he has Apostolic Succession.




  { Do the Thuc consecrations require a mandate that needs to be renewed by successive Popes? }

Eric replied:

Background information: Thuc was a Vietnamese bishop who apparently had some mental problems and consecrated a bunch of bishops without a mandate (by which I mean permission from the Pope.)

Hi, Tony —

I am not up on the Thuc consecrations and am not sure by mandate whether you are:

  • referring to the authority he has to consecrate bishops (which is how I think it would ordinarily be thought of), or
  • referring to the power he has to consecrate bishops.

Since Thuc was long ago excommunicated, the question of his authority is settled; he cannot licitly (that is, within the law) consecrate bishops however he still has the power to consecrate bishops. That is, anyone whom he consecrates will truly be a bishop, just not in communion with the Pope. That is to say, Thuc perpetually retains the power to confer Apostolic Succession.

So if this person was consecrated by Thuc, or by someone consecrated by Thuc, he truly has Apostolic Succession, but is schismatic.

Eric Ewanco

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