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Declaration of Pope Michael

March 25 2009
I, 1 Pope Michael, baptized David Allen Bawden on October 17, 1959, declare
before Almighty God, Who will judge me:
1. That all reasonable effort was made to contact all potentially qualified
Catholics for the papal election, including the hierarchy under
persecution by the Communists. This includes, but is not limited to
sending Will the Catholic Church Survive the Twentieth Century? to all
sede vacantists listed in Radko K. Jansky’s Traditionalist Catholic
Directory. Further approximately fifty summons were sent world-wide.

2. Twenty years ago today on March 25, 1989, I bound myself by solemn
vow to pursue a Papal Election. Said vow is reproduced slightly
rewritten in the above named book. 2
3. That on July 15, 1990, seven people assembled in Belvue, Kansas,
declared themselves to represent the Catholic Church and made the
Profession of Faith publicly and affixed their signatures thereto. These
seven people are Miss Andriessen, Clara Bawden, Kennett Bawden,
Teresa Benns, Robert Hunt, Diane Hunt, and myself. Also present
were Aimee Benns and Josiah Benns, both of whom were minors at the
time, according to ecclesiastical law.
4. These same seven people declared that we represented the Catholic
5. These same seven Catholic then declared the papal see vacant for
notorious and persistent heresy as evidenced by the attempted
replacement of the holy Sacraments with new rites substantially
different from the Rites of the Catholic Church. It had been previously
demonstrated that these four claimants, namely Angelo Roncalli, John
the Baptist Montini, Albino Luciani and Charles (Karol) Wojtyla were
heretics prior to their usurpation of the Papacy as required under the
Bull of Pope Paul IV, Cum Ex Apostlatus Officio.
6. These same seven Catholics declared that we were obliged to proceed
to a Papal Election.
7. Prior to the election, no one raised a substantial objection before the
assembled electors. The electors were assembled by noon of July 14,
8. On the afternoon of July 15, 1990 Kenneth Mock and Patrick Henry
(former CMRI) arrived and addressed two electors, namely Teresa
Benns and myself. However, they did not present any proof of
Catholicity nor did they make the Profession of Faith. After two long
discussions, where Mock and myself did most of the talking, a single
objection was finally ferreted out. I declare that Mock proceeded in a
Modernist fashion to advocate a delay without giving any substantial
reason for said delay. The objection was found to have been previously
refuted in writing in the above named book, and I restated the refutation
before the parties to the discussion, challenging Mock to produce
someone with the necessary faculties to absolve us from censures. He
stated that he knew of no such qualified person in the world. I then
declared based upon Canon 15 that we were not obliged to await
someone that could not be located. Canon 15 states: All laws including
invalidating and inhabilitating laws lose their binding force in a doubt
of law. 3 I then proceeded to prove that to wait for an action whose
ability was at best doubtful would lead to a heretical rejection of the
infallible decree of the only Vatican Council that Peter would have
successors until the end of time.
9. Miss Andriessen decided not to participate, but did not address the
electors as a group with any objection, as required by Law.

10. On the morning of July 16, 1990, eight of the Catholics named above in
number 3, that is all save Miss Andriessen, assembled at Belvue,
Kansas in order to fulfill the solemn duty declared in writing on the
previous day.
11. The six qualified under Law, including Vacantis Sedis Apostolicae of
Pope Pius XII, proceeded to a Papal Election while vowing prior to
voting: Testor Christum Dominum, qui in me indicaturus est, me
eligere, quem secundum Deum judico eligi debere. 4 Further I declare
that a discussion was held on the proper pronunciation of this in Latin,
during which time the English translation was given, as also published
in the above named book.
12. The result of this was the election of David Allen Bawden, myself, who
took the name of Michael and assumed the full authority and
jurisdiction of the Papacy with all of its rights and obligations as
outlined in Divine and Canon Law and the infallible teachings of the
Divine and Catholic Faith. 5
13. I stand firm behind the validity of said election and fully declare, decree
and proclaim, that I am the Vicar of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
and will use the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven granted to me,
unworthy though I am, for the good of the Catholic Church, asking the
help of Almighty God and the Immaculate Virgin Mary in this
14. I consecrate my papacy to the Most Immaculate Virgin Mary under the
title of Co-Redemptrix, asking her assistance as Mother of the Papacy.
15. I pray that Almighty God may soon send the two witnesses 6 of
Apocalypse as He promised to Malachias before the great and dreadful
day of the Lord.
16. Into Thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.
Given this 25th day of March, 2009
Michael, by the grace of God, Pope

Useful Additions
Several useful documents have been added that complete the picture of the
solemn divine action performed by Catholics on July 16, 1990. The first is the vow made
on March 25, 1990. This is followed by Rights of the Universal Church to Vote, which
summarizes the Papal Election. This is followed by a defense of this after the election,
Why Did Women Help Elect Pope Michael I. In almost two decades no one has come up
with a legitimate objection to the Papal Election. All objections have been proven to be
without foundation.

Vow Made March 25, 1989
Almighty God, having professed our faith and renewed our baptismal promises,
we wish to consecrate ourselves to the glorification of thy Holy Church. The Holy
Vatican Council, through the Vicar of Christ, Pius IX, defined that Peter would have
perpetual successors in the papacy. It is only by means of the faith which Thou hast given
us, with which to enlighten our intellects, that we have been able thus far to determine
that the Holy See has, indeed, been vacant since 1958. By applying the truths of this same
faith to our current situation, we must conclude that the only solution to the present crises
in the Church is to gather the Church universal and elect a Vicar pleasing in Thy sight.
Therefore, we bind ourselves by this vow to place all our efforts toward the
accomplishment of a papal election to end the current Sede Vacante. We shall not
encumber ourselves with worldly pursuits, but will pursue Thy Kingdom instead, until
the completion of this task. If this be opposed to Thy will, then remove us from this earth
and take us to our home in Heaven, so that we may not add to the confusion so prevalent
today when, if possible, even the elect will be deceived. If this truly be Thy Holy Will,
provide us with all that we require to carry out this labor of love.

From Will the Catholic Church Survive the Twentieth Century? Page 455 by
David Bawden (Holy Saturday, 1989) and rewritten by T. Stanfill Benns for the book.


We have covered all of the basics in connection with the qualification of electors,
either by class or individually in this special 'Update'. Now we come to some of the
unanswered questions.
By devolution the election of a Pope has fallen to the Universal Church. Who,
then, is the Universal Church and which members of her can vote?

Basic Law
According to Canon 162 three months from the date the vacancy becomes known
to the voters they must proceed to an election. On January 25th the possibility of an
election became obtainable. According to Canon 9, law which is published becomes
effective three months from the date of publication. In our case that date is April 25th, so
the election must be completed by July 25th. On July 26th our class of voters would
become disqualified. However, our disqualification as the last possible voters would be
impossible, so the election will take place on or before July 25th, 1990, as Canon 162 is
bound also in heaven.
The immediate question, which comes to mind, concerns the disqualification of
all preceding classes of voters. The Cardinals are certainly disqualified, (as are the
Canons of St. John Lateran and the Bishops), because they are presumed to know the true

facts and yet failed to act. The clergy are also disqualified as a class, because the laity
waited for them to act as they normally would. The structure of the Church is such that
the laity expect the ecclesiastical goods, especially the necessary means of salvation to be
supplied by the clergy. This expectation of the laity places an obligation on the clergy,
which constitutes a dominative power of the laity over the clergy. The clergy who
remained in the Church not only knew of the vacancy, but were morally certain of it and
should have' know of the necessity of a Papal Election. Some of these clerics knew of the
possibility of a Papal Election over a decade ago, before the sedevacante theory was
known among the laity at all. The clergy had the ability to know these things and were
obliged to find the truth for themselves and for the laity. Although barred from
ecclesiastical function, the clergy still has a duty in charity to the laity to provide us with
the truth, as they have far easier access to it than we do and are trained to use these tools.
Until January 25th of this year (1990) there was not available an adequate dissertation on
the problems in the Church, including the sedevacante and a road map to a absolution. As
such, then, it was not possible for the majority of the laity to know of the alarming
proportions of the problem and the fact that there is a solution much less a detailed
prescription of how to proceed. Therefore the laity did not know of the necessity of the
election until this year and could not be disqualified, as the Canonists hold that ignorance
of the vacancy and the necessity of election excuse.
CONCLUSION 1: Only the laity remain qualified as a class to elect a Pope under
the principle of devolution and presumption of law. THEREFORE anyone who qualifies
as an elector must qualify as a layman.


Having narrowed the voters to the laymen, we now know that we, the laity, are
obliged to proceed with a Papal Election. Those members of the laity present on July 16th
and qualified to vote will be the electors of the next Pope. In addition to the qualifications
enumerated above, we must consider several other qualifications. To do this we must
review the various proofs of our rights as laymen.

Is Election A Jurisdictional Act?

CENTURY?' we presented proofs of the laity's right to vote based on the assumption that
election is an act of jurisdiction. These proofs hold true whether election is an exercise of
dominative power or an exercise of ecclesiastical jurisdiction. However, certain members
of the laity may not be allowed to exercise jurisdiction, although they certainly possess
their dominative power unimpaired. We shall examine this question syllogistically
1. Election is the filling of a vacant office by those INFERIOR to the office
2. But jurisdiction cannot be exercised over a superior.
THEREFORE, election is not a jurisdictional act.
Offices are filled by the superior through appointment, and by inferiors through
election. Normally elections consist of several people, although if only one elector

remains, he still elects his superior. In both cases the jurisdiction connected with the
office does NOT come from the electors but from God through the office holder's
superiors. Papal jurisdiction comes from God to the one the Church designates. Although
we may elect the Pope we cannot exercise any power over him, or bind him in anyway as
the Pope has no superior on earth.
CONCLUSION 2: Election is an act of dominative power. Our dominative power
gives us an unlimited right to Divine truth which comes from the Pope. THEREFORE,
we not only can but must elect a Pope, who can give us the words of salvation.

Is Election a Privilege
We have already proven that it is our privilege in these dire circumstances, a
privilege extended by Nicolas II to us to elect a Pope. Although this privilege extends to
the clergy and people, the clergy have resigned their privilege to the laity by their actions,
leaving the laity, as the only possessors of this privilege. (Nicholas II’s law made
obsolete the clergy/people method of election, which Pope Leo the Great had
promulgated. So in changing this law, Nicholas II, in deference to his predecessors
wrote: “However it would certainly be correct and even lawful, if the order of selection
carefully weighed in the opinions of Pope Leo the Great, was resumed.” From Will the
Catholic Church Survive the Twentieth Century? pages 301-2) This privilege overrides
the ecclesiastical laws barring laymen from electing and barring women from any voice
in ecclesiastical affairs. This privilege is possessed by ALL who are qualified by Natural
and Divine law to vote. This includes all Catholics over the age of 14 with the exception
of formal heretics and apostates. Those doubtfully baptized are not qualified, nor are
those incapable of a human act or insane.

Can Clerics Qualify as Laymen?

Those who are clerics are held to a higher standard as proven above. This higher
standard provides that AS A CLASS clerics are disqualified. However. they are yet
members of the Universal Church. Provided they can prove their ignorance in accordance
with their state of life they are permitted to join with the laity and vote, although they are
deprived of their rights as clerics, because of the crimes of the clergy in general. This
should include their right to wear ecclesiastical garb, which right has been abandoned by
the majority of Traditionalist clergy. (The 'clerical shirt' is not clerical garb in accordance
with law and custom in the United States and other English speaking countries.) The
clergy should wear the clerical shirt WITHOUT COLLAR, suit coat and black pants. If
they have abandoned clerical garb completely, they should not take it up now but wait
until the Pope can decide what shall be done.


Since our right, as laymen, to elect has been proven to be a privilege, this
necessarily changes our election procedure. The procedure outlined in 'WILL THE

presumption that the .electors would elect as replacements of the Cardinals and not based
on their privilege to act as electors IN THEIR OWN RIGHT in this extreme case.
Therefore the presumption must yield to truth. We shall now outline the changes in
election procedure based on the privilege of the laity to elect, when all other classes have

Amendment of Election Procedure

To begin with, the electors shall wear lay dress, since they are acting as laymen
exercising a privilege granted them by Nicolas II. (Nicholas II’s law made obsolete the
clergy/people method of election, which Pope Leo the Great had promulgated. So in
changing this law, Nicholas II, in deference to his predecessors wrote: “However it
would certainly be correct and even lawful, if the order of selection carefully weighed in
the opinions of Pope Leo the Great, was resumed.” From Will the Catholic Church
Survive the Twentieth Century? pages 301-2) Even the clergy, who may per chance
qualify, can only qualify as laymen, since they have already disqualified themselves as a
class. Although Canon Law directs them, ordinarily to wear the proper ecclesiastical
dress, the clergy has abandoned this dress and their abandonment shall be carried on into
the election, if they are qualified to vote. It is most likely that no cleric can qualify; and
even if he could he is disqualified because his class of electors is barred from electing by
their disqualification for failure to elect.
Secondly, the election procedure must be amended to have all electors sit outside
the Communion rail as they would have done in people and clergy elections before
Nicolas II. Therefore, the sanctuary will be small to provide for an altar to lend the
appearance of a church, although we cannot licitly erect a church per se. The tellers shall
sit at a table directly outside the communion rail and the electors shall sit in pews or stand
as the laity are want to do in churches throughout the world.
Thirdly, officers of the election shall be selected solely by date of Baptism, (or
date of Profession of Faith for validly baptized non-Catholics later received into the
Church). The sacristan shall recite the Veni Creator and prayer according to the rubrics
standing before the attar outside the communion rail. Only men shall serve in official
capacity as officers of the election according to the tradition of the Church and the spirit
of Canon Law.
Fourthly, women shall be qualified to vote, as the privilege is extended to the
PEOPLE, that is, men and women without distinction. Canon 68 dealing with the
interpretation of privileges states, privileges which grant an exemption from the law in
favor of private individuals must be strictly interpreted: in no case should the
interpretation be so rigorous that the privilege confers no benefit for some benefit must
accrue from the privilege. A STRICT interpretation would mandate the INCLUSION of
woman voters. Women shall have the right of vote along with men, subject to the same
qualifications as men. Of course women cannot validly receive a vote or be elected, as
Divine law prohibits this. The women shall have their heads covered and remain silent in
the election with the exception of the recitation of the prayer immediately preceding their
vote and the joining in the prayer before each ballot according to the rubrics. Women

possess dominative power-and privilege in this election, and any denigration of this noble
state of women shall not be tolerated.
Fifthly, our privilege was granted prior to the establishment of the conclave and
the circumstances of permitting women to vote require that the conclave method be
abandoned in favor of an open election. The law establishing the conclave as the ONLY
method to be used for papal election did not exist until the thirteenth century. The
privilege again, must be interpreted STRICTLY; and Pope Leo the Great's law legislated
for an OPEN election, so the privilege allowing us to vote calls also for a return to this
method. It is obvious that the ecclesiastical law of conclave binds only clerics and
possibly only Cardinals, and our privilege being an exception in an extraordinary case
requires us to abide by the implicit presumption of open election existing when the
privilege was granted.
Catholics including children, (although not qualified to vote), are nevertheless
permitted to be present at the election as they were in previous elections where people
voted. Of course, non-Catholics, heretics, apostates and notorious excommunicates are
barred from the place of election altogether.


The Staff

Why Did Women Help Elect Pope Michael I?

Because I addressed the women as voters in Will the Catholic Church Survive…?,
I feel it is necessary to explain why women participated in the papal election despite my
statements in the book indicating that they COULD NOT vote. On page ____ of the
book, readers were told that further research and reader questions would be addressed in
a supplement to the book entitled Election Update. Because very few readers ordered
Update, if did not become general knowledge that some research finds had been made
concerning this subject, which OBLIGATED women to vote under pain of mortal sin. In
our Special Issue Update mailed May 31 st, we addressed this matters and thoroughly
examined the particulars involved. (This issue of Update can still be obtained for $2
from Christ the King Library.) To summarize our proofs in this issue, we would first like
to refer the reader to pages 300-301 of the book, where we report the Nicholas II in his
decree limiting the electors of the Pope to Cardinals, provided that the former method of
lay/clerico election could be returned to in the future, and would still be considered
lawful. Because the supreme lawgiver, the Pope, had authorized such a departure, we
cited this fact as proof that laymen could vote in a papal election. Yet we did not
automatically extend this privilege to women, because for 900 years the privilege had
been invested only in the cardinals. This despite the fact that others suggested women
should vote, and we knew that the people of Rome, men and women had taken part in
this type of election in the past. Because we always true to follow what seems to be the
safer course, we do not automatically jump to conclusions unless strong evidence first
provides justification for such a move. In this case we were loathe to cause scandal, since

many Catholics unfamiliar with our doctrinal stand might assume that if we allowed
women to vote, they would be allowed at the altar and in other positions usually occupied
by males in the Church. This, of course, is out of the question. What was not the
practice of the Church prior to 1958 shall not be put into practice now. Of course women
as priests is a matter of Divine law, and as such could never be considered as a future
possibility, since Christ designated men only as eligible candidates for the priesthood. It
may seem foolish to spell this out, but someone will surely use it against the Church and
Michael I if we do not.
Yet the strong precedents set by Pope Leo the Great and Nicholas II cause us to
re-examine the matter, and as a result we discovered that 1) the many centuries of
lay/clerico elections established a custom in the Church; 2) This custom then acquired the
status of a privilege with Nicholas II’s decree on cardinals; 3) But such a privilege could
NOT be exercised because the Church, legislated otherwise in appointing cardinals as the
ORDINARY electors. The only way the faithful could elect, then, was in a situation
where cardinals no longer existed and it was impossible for bishops to call a general
council. For the good of the Church the Canon governing privileges command voters to
use their privilege or incur grave sin for failures to do so. Not even the Canons excusing
Catholics from certain offenses on the grounds of fear are of any help here, for if fear has
caused any Catholic to commit a crime which causes contempt of the faith or public
injury to souls, the fear will not excuse him from incurring the ipso facto penalty attached
to the said crime. When the Church has undergone innumerable torments and prostituted
as She has been by the Roman usurpers, how can it be said that this is not contempt of the
faith and public injury to countless souls? This also relates back to Canon 1325 and our
duty to defend the Faith or be guilty of heresy. If the privilege had been accorded to
women by anyone other than the Roman Pontiffs, or if sufficient numbers of men had
come forward to elect the Pope, perhaps the issue of women as voters would not have
been re-examined. Yet considering Canon 68, this would still have been an unfair
restriction of women’s right to vote. Who are we to question the wisdom of popes who
allowed women to vote in former ages? And who reduced this custom to a privilege
which makes no mention of excluding them? Silence implies consent, as the rule of law
declares. Canon 68 reads that “… in no case should the interpretation (of a privilege) be
so rigorous that the privilege confers no benefit, for some benefit must accrue from the
privilege.” Not only can this canon be seen to apply to women (as well as Canon 69,
which requires the holders of a privilege to use it where Divine law is concerned), but it
can also be applied to relatives of the pope who were allowed to vote. Could the other
voters have forbidden them to vote and deprived them of their rights when Canon 68
clearly states that this is to be done in NO case? Could the unrelated voters have
overridden the decrees of two popes granting these privileges? Not if they wished to
remain obedience to the Canons. How could the relatives of certain men been excluded
from the earlier lay/clerico elections held in Rome, merely because their son or brother or
grandson etc., might be elected pope? Common sense tells us this would have been
ridiculous. The Canons governing canonical elections make no mention of excluding
relations; only those who are not true members of the voting body because they have
either lost the faith, or resigned their rights. If anyone were to question the validity of the
election (and they CANNOT do so from a canonical standpoint), they would need to
prove that Pope Michael would not have received the majority vote without the votes of

his parents. This they cannot do. All of us who voted in this election knew that we were
bound by the laws of the Church to vote only for the most worthy male candidate. The
laws, then, made our choice an easy one. Only Pope Michael among the three male
candidates possessed the knowledge and dedication to the cause of Holy Mother Church
necessary to be considered a worthy candidate. We knew what the reproaches of our
enemies would be, but this could not have changed our choice.
Any truly interested in resolving the prolonged Sede Vacante and professing their
faith would have studied the book, ordered and studied Update, submitted timely
Professions of Faith and participated in the election. Those who cast aspersions
concerning female voters have demonstrated their bad faith by not observing the above.
Their objections are dishonest and reveal them as enemies of the Church.
It is important for faithful Catholics to understand that while the research for the
book spanned a ten year period, the actual writing process took only seven months and
was completed by three people. Michael I and I wrote the book, averaging 1,000 words a
day. We did all our own proofreading; checked all our own doctrinal and canonical cites.
I separated the book into sections, did the editing, set the artwork in place and arranged
for the cover art, compiled the index and worked closely with out third (paid) contributor,
the typesetter. Because I live in Denver and the Pope resides in Kansas, all our
communication was done through the mails and over the phone, save for a two week
period of brainstorming to help determine what subjects would be included in the book.
The future pope and his parents arranged for the financing with the printers, promoted the
book and distributed it through Christ the King Library. (Because of their substantial
contributions to the faith in this regard, when no other Catholics stepped forward to help,
to deprive them of a vote at the election would have been especially reprehensible)
Owing to limited funds and this backbreaking schedule, we could only present so much
information in the book and cover the subjects in a general way. We explain this in
promoting ‘Update” in the back of the book. Humanly speaking, I do not know how
much more we could have done during this time period without suffering from mental
and physical exhaustion. Many wish to find fault and condemn – no one offered to assist
us or double check our research. Since the election, nothing has changed. The Pope and
I still work unassisted. No workers have eagerly come to labor in the vast vineyard
whose “harvest” of biter grapes has rotted on the vine. Yet we know that God is with us
and that His promises can never fail. Recent world events lead us to believe that way,
ever the punishment sent by for sin, looms ominously on the horizon. In my opinion only
the certain devastation of such a way will finally bring Traditionalists to repentance (and
others as well), for there are no atheists in foxholes, as the old saying goes. When the
smoke clear and the numerous bodies are buried, the true restoration of the Church will
begin. By then the democracy foisted on the world by anti-Christ’s system will have
shown its true colors, and the world will be weary of war. Yet the Church will stand
amidst the destruction, as God has promised us. It does not really matter, then, who
elected the pope (as long as it was canonical and valid, which we have proved), or how
he was elected. It matters only that he who withholdeth, holds once again.

1990 by Teresa Benns

transcribed from the handwritten original of Teresa Benns by Pope Michael

I shall use the first person singular rather than the Papal we. This is no way states that I an any way doubt
my claim to the Papacy, but is done for clarity, simplicity and because this is a solemn personal declaration,
binding me under pain of serious sin.
Will the Catholic Church Survive the Twentieth Century? page 454
The original says dubium juris, which means doubt of law.
I call to witness the Lord Christ, Who will be my judge, that I am electing the one whom according to
God I think ought to be elected.
Namely Canons 218, 219, 220, 221 and 1556
Apocalypse 11:3ff