The wonderful blog Rorate Caeli has informed us about an article in the French daily Le Figaro about the possibility that Pope Benedict could lift the excommunication incurred by the bishops of the SSPX. Rorate gives a translation of part of this Le Figaro article.
The condition? That they ask the Pope to lift the excommunication.
I hope this is true.
However, we need to make a little correction to the translation Rorate provided. It is a small thing, but important. Rorate wrote (my emphasis):
The Superior of this Fraternity, founded by Marcel Lefebvre in 1970, has in effect announced to Le Figaro his intention of sending a mail letter to Benedict XVI containing this request as well as a demand (en faire la demande) for the liberalization of the Mass according to the Tridentine Rite (Mass in Latin). "This letter, which is also a letter of support for the Pope in face of current and future adversities, should be sent before the end of the month," he [Fellay] assured.
We must be a little careful of what we called "false friends" when translating, cognate words which look really similar and are related etymologically to English words. In this case "demander" looks like "demand" and, in French, I can mean that sometimes. In this case, however, it really means the much gentler "make a request".
These false friends can result in real hilarity. I remember a very funny moment when a friend of mine whose command of Italian was less than perfect, amazed some Italians with the statement that he did not like to have condoms in his food. That caused everyone to stop chewing and stare, I can tell you. In Italian, English "preservatives" are "conservanti", in Italian "condoms are "preservativi". Everyone does this from time to time with other languages.