In Vatican Insider of La Stampa comes this. My emphases and comments.
Before a key meeting in Rome, the leader of the traditionalists stressed that he was not prepared to make any compromises and also revealed some interesting behind the scenes happenings…
“If their aim is still to force us to accept the second Vatican Council, the discussions have been clear enough in showing that we have no intention of doing any such thing.”
These were the decisive but prudent [HUH? “É un Bernard Fellay deciso a non cedere a nessun compromesso con il Vaticano ma allo stesso tempo prudente,…” A better word is “cautious”.] words of Bernard Fellay, who was adamant he would not agree to any compromise with the Vatican. On the 15 August, Fellay spoke openly about the talks between the Lefebvrians and the Holy See during the “summer University” of the Society of St. Pius X, fonde [surely founded rather than melted, no?] by Monsignor Lefebvre.
The transcription of the public interview with the Lefebvrian superior, held by the Society’s press agent, the abbot Alain Lorans, was published a few days ago, on the eve of the meeting in Rome between Fellay and Cardinal William Levada, Prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which should encapsulate two years of “doctrinal talks” between Rome and the traditionalists.
The Lefebvrian superior’s judgement on the discussions was anything but friendly: “They are not beneficial right now because there is a clash of mentalities… In any case, we are certainly not in agreement. If there is one thing we agree on, that is that we do not agree on anything.” [Sure a lot of mixed message in the last few months.]
Monsignor Fellay, one of the Society’s four bishops, ordained against Rome’s will by Monsignor Lefebvre and whose excommunication was removed by Benedict XVI in 2009, called for “extreme prudence” [“caution”] in terms of their relationship with the Vatican, especially in view of next week’s meeting, of which he said he did not know what to expert. [or even what to expect!]
“If the Society of St. Pius X i sto be recognised, the Vatican Secretary of State said in December 2009, they absolutely must recognise the Council and the teachings of John XXIII, Paul VI, John Paul I, John Paul II and Benedict XVI himself.” [Two things. That was in 2009, not 2011. That was Card. Bertone, not Pope Benedict XVI.]
“People must not believe everything they hear,” the traditionalist superior told his followers. For example the rumours going round about Cardinal Levada making a “pro position” [or perhaps a “proposition”?] to the Brotherhood [Who did this… google translator? “Fraternity” is, I think the preferred term.] to allow it to entre [“Apres vous mon cher Alphonse!”] into communion with the Holy See once again: “On what conditions?” Fellay asked himself, “the way I see it, there must be certain conditions.” [Indeed, there must be conditions. Let’s start with submission to the authority of the Vicar of Christ.]
He went on to say that “there are those who say that up until now, they (the Vatican, editor’s note) have always tried to shove the Council down our throats. I don’t know. All I am saying is: We are moving on. We have our principles, above all faith… Without faith God can never like you, so our decisioni s made. Faith comes first, no matter what, it even comes before recognition by the Church. We need to be strong.” [I think I understand what he is driving that, and I want to read it as favorably as possible, but does this sound like something a Donatist might say?]
Fellay also explained how the arrival of Pope Ratzinger on the papal throne “set something off” in the Vatican, changing the winds in favour of the traditionalists and opening the way for their potential reintegration: “However, thinking about it and as far asthe person himself is concerned, the mood has certainly changed. Even in the Vatican, his arrival gave courage to those who, calling themselves conservatives, were forced to hide.”
Still, with the revocation of excommunications and the Williamson case in 2009, relations “became more tense”: in June that year, Fellay claims he tried desperately to meet with the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, but in vain. [That’s interesting.] The traditionalist superior was “diverted” to the Prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine for the Faith, cardinal Levada. [Why not have Fellay speak with both CDF and also receive him as Secretary of State? What would the downside be? To meet with him? Sit in a room and meet with him? After all, in 2009 they met with the most pro-abortion President in American history, Pres. Obama. Right? Remember all the talk back them about “common ground”? (BTW… where’s the memo?) There is far more common ground with SSPXers than with Pres. Obama. In 2011 they permitted Robert Mugabe to come to the beatification of John Paul II and receive Communion. Right? Why not meet with SSPX Bp. Fellay?]
Lefebvre’s successor, underlined more than once the divisions that esiste [Are you getting a sense that this wasn’t originally in English?] inside the Vatican Curia and warned that any news arriving from Rome should be taken with a pinch of salt. Fellay used the example of an Augustinian monk who was excommunicated and espelle from Rome having “converted” to “Monsignor Lefebvre’s society.”
The traditionalist superior claimed he went to Rome with the monk’s excommunication letter, signed by the Vatican Congregation for the clergy and that he showed it to Monsignor Guido Pozzo, current Secretary of Ecclesia Dei and head of the Vatican “negotiating” team engaged in talks with the Brotherhood.
“This is how the letter should be treated,” Pozzo allegedly said to Fellay before tearing it to pieces before him. The secretary of Ecclesia Dei is supposed to have added: “You should tell your priests and your flock, that not everything that comes from Rome comes directly from the Pope.”
Referring to another example, fellay spoke of a case of “ecumenical informing,” [“delazione ecumenica”] in which he was the central figure: after some Lefebvrian bishops, who were still excommunicated, were forbidden to celebrate the eucharist in the Lourdes sanctuary, the traditionalist superior contacted cardinal Castrillon, still president of Ecclesia Dei, to “condemn” the fact that some Anglican bishops had been allowed to celebrate mass.
“I am not calling them bishops because they are all laymen, they are not real priests, let alone bishops,” Fellay added with disdain.
And yet ironically more Anglican bishops have come into unity with Rome than SSPX bishops. And the Anglicans have been ordained as priests, and they have faculties to do what the SSPX bishops cannot.
In any event, I suggest that readers here pray to God the Holy Spirit to warm hearts and bend wills. Pray to the guardian angels of all involved that the meeting on 14 September will go well.