Joaquin Saenz Arriaga

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Fr. Joaquin Saenz y Arriaga, S.J. was a Mexican Jesuit and theologian.

He was brought up in the spirit of the Cristeroi movement, in the spirit of St. Miguel Pro and other Catholic martyrs against the Freemasonic and anti-Catholic revolution of 1910; martyrs who faced up to firing squads with the cry "Long live Christ the King!" (Viva Criste Roi!)

Like Fr. Denis Fahey, Fr. Saenz y Arriaga too put a great emphasis on the Catholic doctrine of the Kingship of Christ, which militates against secularism, or the Separation of Church and State.

When the Vatican II reforms began to be implemented in Mexico and North America, it was Fr. Saenz y Arriaga who led the reaction against the Modernists.

This logically led to a rejection of the "New Church" (a term that the Modernists themselves applied to their church) and he became the first to propound the doctrine of Sedevacantism, the idea that the Vatican II reforms demonstrated that the Catholic Church was hijacked by Modernist infiltrators, had become apostate and ceased to be the Catholic Church, and that there has been a Sede vacante since the death of the last orthodox Catholic Pope Pius XII in October 1958.

Fr. Saenz y Arriaga later incorporated these ideas in his books The New Montinian Church (1971) and Sede Vacante (1973).

Fr. Saenz y Arriaga was a catalyzing influence on lay and clerical Catholic dissidents who opposed the Vatican II reforms in Mexico and North America, persuading them to reject and separate from the Vatican II church and go independent, setting up independent chapels and churches and soliciting and procuring consecrations to create alternative lineages of bishops.

In reaction to his activities, the Mexican Cardinal Miranda officially declared that Fr. Saenz y Arriaga had incurred excommunication (from the "mainstream" church from which he had already voluntarily separated himself). In response, Fr. Carmona, his associate and disciple wrote:

"They excommunicated you for your fidelity to Christ, His teachings and His Church. Blessed excommunication! As long as it be for this reason, may all (such) excommunications come upon me!"

Fr. Saenz y Arriaga founded, together with Frs. Zamora and Carmona, the Union Catolica Trento in the 1970s, during which time, he also advised American Catholic recusants to form their own organization, which resulted in Fr. Francis E. Fenton's founding of the Orthodox Roman Catholic Movement.

Fr. Saenz y Arriaga's short but intensively active carreer as a Sedevacantist was cut short on April 28, 1976 by an automobile accident while travelling back to Mexico, an incident that many Sedevacantists and Traditionalist Catholics allege was a murder by his enemies in the "official" church, but have no evidence to prove these allegations.

In his last testament, Fr. Saenz y Arriaga wrote:

"My life and all that is most precious to me I have sacrificed for Christ, for the Church, and for the Papacy..." and later added, "May the last cry of my soul be that of our Mexican martyrs — Long live Christ the King! Long live the Virgin of Guadalupe."

Fr. Saenz y Arriaga's work was picked up by Frs. Adolfo Zamora and Moises Carmona in Mexico and by Fr. Francis E. Fenton and his associates in the Orthodox Roman Catholic Movement and Fr. Burton Fraser,S.J. in the U.S.

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