Review of Judaism and the Vatican: An Attempt at Spiritual Subversion
Vicomte Léon de Poncins, trans. Timothy Tindal-Robertson
Palmdale, CA.: Christian Book Club of America, reprinted 1999. Originally printed 1967.
Editor’s note: TOO has posted several articles over the years on Jewish influence on the Catholic Church: George F. Held’s translations of Léon de Poncins: The Problem with the Jews at the Council in four parts, Jimmy Moglia’s “Quo Vadis Vatican? Jewish involvement in the radical changes of the Second Vatican Council,” my “The role of Jewish converts to Catholicism in changing traditional Catholic teachings on Jews.” Andrew Joyce’s “Jews, White Guilt, and the Death of the Church of England” shows how some of these same figures (e.g., Jules Isaac) have influenced the Church of England.
After a little over a half century, it has become quite clear that the Second Vatican Council (1962–65) and the changes which took place in its wake—especially the promulgation of the New Mass by Pope Paul VI/Montini (1963–78)—has created a new religion that while it may still be called “Catholic” is in reality something quite different than what had existed for some two thousand years beforehand. The Council had been called by Pope John XXIII/Roncalli (1958–1963) to be “pastoral” and not to define doctrine or settle theological disputes; however, it was quickly taken over by Modernist forces who, despite being a minority (albeit a very determined minority), were able to force through a progressive agenda.
The Modernist takeover at Vatican II was not by happenstance, but, as with a great many important historical events, was well planned in advance. John XXIII’s predecessor, Pope Pius XII/Pacelli (1939–1958), had contemplated calling a council, but had been warned against it. Although Pius XII prevailed in not convoking a general assembly and is thought by many as the last “traditional” pope, an objective look at his appointments and actions during his pontificate paint a different picture. Many of the Vatican II revolutionaries operated freely during Pius XII’s reign and some had gained influential positions inside the Roman Curia. One of the most prominent Modernist was the future Pope, Paul VI.
It has been argued that had the Council never been convoked and had the Church retained its traditional stance on morals and doctrine, the cultural revolution which took place in the 1960s and beyond may have never taken place or would have been mitigated. The Vatican II documents, in many instances, were not explicitly heretical, but they were worded in such a way that they could (and were) interpreted in a liberal fashion. Modernists boasted that the Council inaugurated a “New Springtime” in the Church which would add converts and invigorate the faithful to greater devotion. Just the opposite occurred, as millions left and joined other denominations or simply lost interest .
Vatican II would have profound societal effects, especially in regard to marriage, child rearing, and the role of women. Very soon after the Council had ended, “Catholic divorce” in the form of Church annulments became popular. Where marriage in the time before Vatican II was held as indissoluble, married couples by the thousands were afterwards granted annulments by Church authorities and could and did remarry. Traditionally, Catholic women were seen and acted as homemakers and child-bearers or, if called, sought a religious vocation; after Vatican II women were encouraged to pursue careers and were granted positions in the Church and even allowed liturgical roles. Under the papacy of John Paul II/Wojtyla (1978–2005) for the first time, younger women and girls were permitted to become altar servers.
The New Springtime proved to be an unmitigated disaster on all fronts, as not only vocations, Church attendance, and membership plummeted to historic lows, but also widespread divorce and the new role of women led to a catastrophic drop in birthrates especially among the Catholic populations of Western Europe.
One of the most significant changes which took place at the Council was on the relationship between the Church and the Jews. The Modernists had hoped, with considerable Jewish backing, to push through language which would absolve the Jews from their crime of Deicide, condemn “anti-Semitism,” and play down Christian efforts to convert the Jews. Evangelization was to be replaced with the idea that Jews were “elder brothers” of Christians, as opposed to the traditional doctrine of “supercession”—that the covenant between God and the Church superceded the covenant between God and the Jews. This new construct appeared with the notion of Western civilization’s “Judeo-Christian” heritage which became a popular phrase in conservative and neoconservative literature.
There were few Churchmen or those among the laity who opposed Vatican II and almost none who objected to the new policy toward the Jews or did any investigation on how such a radical change came about. Among the few who did was Vicomte Léon de Poncins, a distinguished French author who had written numerous books and articles dealing with Freemasonry, the Jews, and subversive political movements. Poncins was the founder of the famous review, Contre-Révolution, which was published in Switzerland. He came from a distinguished French family. His great-grand-fathers were defenders of the Ancien Régime, one losing his life fighting the revolutionaries in 1789, while the other was imprisoned by Napoleon for his support of the monarchy.
Poncins wrote two books shortly after the close of the Council: Judaism and the Vatican (1967) and Freemasonry and the Vatican (1968). The former chronicled the events, personalities, and literature which led to the changes which took place in the decades prior to Vatican II in regards to the Jews. It also gave a first-hand commentary on the machinations which went on behind the scenes at the Council, including the actions of Paul VI and progressive bishops which many Catholic conservatives at the time, and even now, did not hold accountable or looked the other way, especially about the Pope’s involvement.
While there have been studies of Vatican II in the turbulent years which followed and while most have included analysis of the changes in Church policy toward the Jews, the later literature (mostly from traditional Catholic sources) has steered clear of the notion that the Jews had malicious intentions in their efforts. More traditional authors argued that they were doing so for self-preservation and in reaction to Christian persecution. Poncins was not of this mode of thought, believing in more sinister aspects of Jewish behavior which was why he was smeared and called an “anti-Semite.”
The Jewish onslaught on the Church began in earnest after the conclusion of World War II. The justification that Jewish intellectuals used was that the persecution of the Jews under National Socialism was the culmination of Gentile oppression and hatred which stemmed back to the time of Constantine’s emancipation of the Church and his patronage of it. Once given power, both Church and state persecuted the Jews over the next two millennia.
The reason for the Church’s animus toward the Jews was Christianity itself which at its root was “anti-Semitic.” In the minds of Christians, the Jews were directly responsible for Christ’s death. Therefore, the Gospel accounts which placed the blame on the Jews during Christ’s “trial” and Crucifixion, along with the early Church Fathers’ commentary on these events, had to be discredited. Later, the great Church doctors also had to be undermined for their upholding of Jewish responsibility in the death of Christ.
The pronouncements on non-Christian religions and the declaration Nostra aetate passed in the Fourth Session of the Council (1965) accomplished almost all that the Modernists had hoped for. In effect, these pronouncements repudiated nearly two thousand years of Catholic teaching on the Jews. Ever since, the Church has continually bowed to Jewish pressure in regard to its liturgy, the naming of saints, and in the political realm—its most infamous decision in the latter being the recognition of the state of Israel in 1994.
Poncins, who closely covered the Vatican II proceedings, wrote of the declaration:
. . . a number of Jewish organizations and personalities are behind the reforms which were proposed at the Council with a view to modifying the Church’s attitude and time-honored teaching about Judaism: Jules Isaac, Label Katz, President of the B’nai B’rith, Nahum Goldman, President of the World Jewish Congress, etc. . . . These reforms are very important because they suggest that for two thousand years the Church had been mistaken and that she must make amends and completely reconsider her attitude to the Jews. 
The leading figure in the years prior to the Council was the virulent anti-Catholic writer Jules Isaac, and he played an active role during the Counsel. “Isaac,” Poncins describes, “turned the Council to advantage, having found there considerable support among progressive bishops. In fact he became the principal theorist and promoter of the campaign being waged against the traditional teaching of the Church.” 
Isaac had long before begun his hostile campaign to overturn Catholic teaching on the Jews with his two most important books on the subject: Jésus et Israel (1946) and Genése de l’Antisémitisme (1948). Poncins accurately summarizes the main thrust of these works:
In these books Jules Isaac fiercely censures Christian teaching, which he says has been the source of modern anti-Semitism, and preaches, though it would be more correct to say he demands, the ‘purification’ and ‘amendment’ of doctrines two thousand years old. 
The two fonts of Revelation are: Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture. To be successful, Isaac had to challenge the veracity of the Gospels, a seemingly monumental undertaking, but Jewish hubris apparently knows no bounds. The passages which Poncins quotes from show a number of inconsistencies, errors, and omissions which makes one wonder how books so flawed and biased could attain such notoriety. Poncins points out the shabby scholarship and vitriol that Isaac has for his subject:
In short, in their account of the Passion, now revised and corrected by Jules Isaac, the writers of the Gospels appear as arrant liars of whom Matthew is unquestionably the most venomous. 
While the Romans cannot be completely exonerated for Christ’s death, Isaac focuses solely on the actions of Pilate during the Passion. He ignores the number of occasions during His three-year ministry where the Jews sought to kill Him. The most important omission was when Caiphas, shortly after the raising of Lazarus, condemned Christ to die: “Neither do you consider that it is expedient for you that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.” [S. John ch. xi, vs. 50] There is no evidence, even at that late date, that any of the high Roman officials, including Pilate, knew of Christ until his Crucifixion.
In addition to his written works, Isaac organized “both national and international gatherings attended by sympathetic Catholics who were favorably disposed towards his arguments.”  Instead of falling on deaf ears inside the Vatican, in the post-war Catholic world, Isaac attracted a significant following. In fact, he was able to obtain a private audience with Pius XII where “he pleaded on behalf of Judaism.”  In 1960, after discussions with high ranking officials of the Roman Curia, Isaac met with John XXIII and asked the pope to “condemn the ‘teaching of contempt’ [in the Gospel narratives], suggesting that a sub-commission should be set up specifically to study the problem.” [12–13] Isaac’s activities proved to be quite fruitful, as Poncins reports:
Some time afterwards Jules Isaac ‘learned with joy that his suggestions had been considered by the Pope and handed on to Cardinal Bea for examination.’ The latter set up a special working [party to study relations between the Church and Israel, which finally resulted in the Council vote on the 20th of November 1964. 
That a vicious critic of Sacred Scripture, the Church Fathers, and saints was received by the Catholic hierarchy says a lot about the power and influence that the Jews had attained. And that their ideas were eventually accepted by Rome, shows how it had become increasingly Judaized. Judaization would only accelerate especially after the promulgation of the New Mass as popes would visit and pray with Jews at synagogues.
While Judaism and the Vatican appeared over a half century ago, it is still relevant for it was one of the first works which showed that the modern Catholic Church is a different institution than had previously existed for some two thousand years. Furthermore, Poncins addresses the touchy subject of the Jewish infiltration of the Church which even many traditional Catholic authors have typically avoided.
Poncins’ tome is important, for the changes in the Church’s attitude toward the Jews played a large part in its downfall as the Western world’s preeminent moral authority which used to defend the family, taught what the proper role of women in society should be, while it condemned societal-wrecking evils as sodomy, divorce, abortion, contraception, and concubinage. Without the Church’s guidance, Western societies were easy prey for the cultural Marxists’ (often Jewish) assault on traditional values and morals.
A revitalization of Western civilization can only come about if the nightmarish demographic trends of the Occidental peoples are reversed. It is doubtful that such a turnaround can come about unless the Catholic Church repudiates the Second Vatican Council, especially in its policy toward the Jews, and becomes once again a defender of traditional Christian morality. To begin such an arduous task, there is no better place to start than a thorough reading of Vicomte Léon de Poncins’ Judaism and the Vatican.