The traditional Catholic paper The Remnant has a piece by a frequent comment writer here, Brian Mershon, about a possible reconciliation of the SSPX with Rome perhaps by Candlemas, 2 February.
I will not parse Mershon’s whole piece, for it is pretty long-winded and you should in justice visit the Remnant also. But here are some salient bits:
(Exclusive to The Remnant)
In fact, Vatican sources have indicated that the full regularization may occur as early as February 2, 2009, the Feast of the Purification of Our Lady and Candlemas, which, if true, would be quite a Christmas present to the Church and especially traditionalist Catholics worldwide!
Vatican Working on Stable Juridical Structure
Monsignor Ignacio Barreiro, chief of Human Life International’s Rome bureau, could not confirm the February 2 date, ["…not confirm…"] but said his Curial source told him that they are currently busy working out the practical arrangements for a fully regularized Society of St. Pius X.
The final solution “cannot depend upon individual diocesan bishops,” [no kidding!] Monsignor Barreiro said, noting the longsuffering many traditionalist Catholics experienced for nearly 20 years under the Ecclesia Dei Adflicta arrangement.
“They would certainly need to have guarantees that where they currently are located, they cannot be touched by the local bishop,” Barreiro said, noting the Society’s chapels being located across the globe, which he described as “de facto parishes.” Barreiro rightly noted that the Society bishops most likely would not accept any solution that involved jurisdiction by the local territorial Ordinary. [Well… okay. But the local bishop can’t really be ignored can he? Even if this winds up being a personal prelature, the local bishop has to have some say. This will need some creative thinking. But the Commission has access to some very good canonists. Very good.]
France’s Seminaries to be Over One-Third Traditionalist
In fact, specific resistance is most prevalent in the dying churches of France with their bishops and priests. [One French priest I know said Mass attendance in regular churches was about 2%. In years, he had heard a handful of confessions. God have mercy.] Upon final regularization, Monsignor Barreiro said, “More than one-third of all seminarians in France will be in traditionalist seminaries.” This would include the SSPX, the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (FSSP), the Institute of Good Shepherd and the Institute of Christ the King (ICR) as well as some other lesser known traditionalist priestly groups.
“I expect that some structure like a universal Apostolic Administration may be the only solution,” Monsignor Barreiro said, while cautioning that he did not have direct access to the specific details.
Vatican II and All the Councils
“They won’t be asked to accept the Council,” Monsignor Barreiro said. “There is nothing dogmatic regarding faith and morals in the Council documents,” he emphasized. “Many have elevated the Council as if it were a superdogma, when in truth, it was not dogmatic at all.” ["superdogma" …. sounds familiar these days…]
Vatican Will Not Demand SSPX Swallow the Council
In other words, there will be no demand for the SSPX leadership to accept the “Decree on Social Communication” as an infallible, dogmatic document. [ACK! NO!?! Okay… deal’s off…]
And despite the ruminations of certain bishops, cardinals, priests, Cardinal Kasper and even George Weigel, neither will they be asked to accept the Decree on Ecumenism, the Declaration of Religious Liberty, Nostra Aetate or even Lumen Gentium and Dei Verbum as dogmatic declarations that can stand alone without reading them in light of Tradition. [Which would be an unreasonable claim, wouldn’t it. All the Council’s documents must be interpreted in the light of our Tradition.]
I know Msgr. Barriero and know him to be a solid and thoughful source. He has a good canonical view as well.
Folks… let us repeat this even as we pray over the hopeful developments:
People of good will ought to be free to disagree over things which are not crystal clear, over the difficult questions raised in the Council’s documents.
Humility is needed on both sides, on the part of those who represent the Holy See and Pope Benedict and those of the SSPX who will offer their concerns and perspectives.
At all costs the Council, or it’s "spirit" must not be elevated to a "super-dogma", which can never be questioned or challenged.
Neither should the SSPX see themselves as the sole-saviors of the Church, who have all the answers and need not submit to Peter or give assent to the Church’s teachings.