An SSPX communique about their 7 Oct meeting

From the DICI site of the SSPX comes this:

On October 7, 2011, a meeting of all those in charge of the Society of St Pius X was held in Albano, Italy, during which the Superior General, H. E. Bishop Bernard Fellay, presented the content of the Doctrinal Preamble, handed over to him by Cardinal William Levada, Prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, at the Vatican, during last September 14 meeting.

During this day, the twenty-eight persons in charge of the Society of St Pius X present at the meeting – seminary rectors, district superiors from all over the world – manifested a profound unity in their will to maintain the Faith in its integrity and its fullness, faithful to the lesson which Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre left them, according to St Paul’s “Tradidi quod et accepi – I have handed over what I myself have received” (I Cor 15:3).

Following this work meeting, the study of the Doctrinal Preamble – of which the content still remains confidential – will be pursued and further analysed at the level of the General Counsel of the Society of St Pius X, by the Superior General and his two Assistants, Frs. Niklaus Pfluger and Alain Nely, enabling them to present an answer to the Roman proposals in a reasonable time.
Albano, October 7, 2011

You decide.

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34 Responses to An SSPX communique about their 7 Oct meeting

  1. Jack Regan says:

    As I said on another thread, I sincerely hope that the reports indicating the document may allow for a fudged compromise isn’t true. The idea of the SSPX being allowed back in with an ‘agreement in principle, but…’ regarding Vatican II, then this will be dangerous – not least because others in the Church will start to say ‘well, if they don’t have to accept when the Church says, then maybe…’

  2. DeaconPaul says:

    “Twenty-eight persons in charge..” How very post-Vatican II.
    There is a lot to be said for having a single supreme authority.

  3. Father K says:

    Have just seen a photograph of the participants at the meeting at Albano and I noted that Bishop Williamson wasn’t in the group.

  4. Ezra says:

    not least because others in the Church will start to say ‘well, if they don’t have to accept when the Church says, then maybe…’

    Pope Benedict has criticized the formulae of Vatican II, characterizing them as marked by “downright Pelagian terminology”. Pelagianism is, of course, a heresy. Given that the documents of Vatican II propose no new dogmas, and given that the Society do not deny that Vatican II was a valid ecumenical council, I struggle to see why theologians other than Joseph Ratzinger – e.g. Society theologians – shouldn’t be afforded the liberty to argue that some passages are marked by downright heretical terminology.

    As for “others in the Church”: who do you have in mind? Those bishops who say they’re not certain whether the Church will in future sanction same-sex relationships? Those priests who cast the prohibition of the ordination of women as a matter of policy rather than irreformable teaching? I think you’ll find they need little encouragement from the SSPX-Rome negotiations.

  5. MJ says:

    Argh…this doesn’t sound good.

    Praying.

  6. cpaulitz says:

    Deacon “Paul”:
    “There is a lot to be said for having a single supreme authority.”
    That’s cute. You would be wise to realize that, while H.E. Fellay is the supreme authority of the Society, he also has a responsibility to ensure he moves forward with prudence, and isn’t conned into signing something that throws away decades of work by H.E. Lefebvre and his predecessors.

    So, while he will indeed ultimately decide, he smartly is consulting with the superiors general on a matter of such great importance.

    Let us pray the Society does God’s will, whatever that may be.

  7. William says:

    There is hanging-tough and there is recalcitrance — you decide.

  8. Lamentably Sane says:

    DeaconPaul,
    You must know that those 28 people are simply the top people in the SSPX; the district superiors, the seminary superiors, the Superior General and his advisors. It doesn’t mean they have a collective leadership; far from it. Bishop Fellay is the Superior General and he calls the shots.

  9. Jack Regan says:

    As for “others in the Church”: who do you have in mind? Those bishops who say they’re not certain whether the Church will in future sanction same-sex relationships? Those priests who cast the prohibition of the ordination of women as a matter of policy rather than irreformable teaching? I think you’ll find they need little encouragement from the SSPX-Rome negotiations.

    Fair point. They’ll still use it as a stick to hit with though and I guarantee it will get up a lot of people’s noses.

  10. Geoffrey says:

    “…manifested a profound unity in their will to maintain the Faith in its integrity and its fullness, faithful to the lesson which Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre left them…”

    This doesn’t sound good. I am curious if the SSPX rejects the Holy Father’s most generous offer, would they be re-excommunicated? I have a feeling it’s going to be quite a mess, either way.

  11. Mitchell NY says:

    I pray that it will all come to good fruition. The Doctrinal Preamble is subject to clarifications and/or modification. Is is not set in stone and this is a good thing and shows Rome’s flexability in it’s offerings. It could have very well come through as take it or leave it. It didn’t. And I do believe that Bishop Fellay respects greatly this Pope and Pontificate. He may very well know that now may be the only time for such a favorable offering to come accross his desk, the likes of which he may not see again for decades into the future. I believe in reconciliation and believe with everyone’s prayers and God’s will that it may well be at hand. It is time to put it behind us all. The SSPX can bring much good to the Church and it is only fair to remove this stressful situation from the hearts, minds, and souls of their lay Faithful, who are the lay Faithful of Holy Mother Church. Bottom line is that full recognition will benefit souls. And when it is all done I hope the Holy See and Society make public all the concerns and discussions so as to help correct misinterpretation of Vat II documents. This would be a great time for the Pope to devote an entire Encyclical to the Liturgy, what went wrong and what went right and how we will all go forward from here. And condemn anything that has taken the Catholic Faithful to scandal and horror in some cases. It would set the stage for the next Pontificate and dispel once and for all the incorrect reading of those documents to the detriment of Tradition. And the Encyclical could also include some suggestion on how to recover lost of suppressed Traditions with the correct interpretation as to why they are being recovered. Pray, Pray, Pray.

  12. Bender says:

    “manifested a profound unity in their will to maintain the Faith in its integrity and its fullness, faithful to the lesson which Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre left them”
    ______________

    Maintain the Faith in its integrity and its fullness, faithful to the lesson which Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre left them. Not maintain the Faith in its integrity and its fullness, faithful to the lesson of the Holy Catholic Church that Christ Jesus left us, but the lesson of the Church of Lefebvre.

    The SSPX still holds itself above the Church, deeming IT to be the judge of what is and what is not the One True Faith, rather than the Successors of Peter and the other Apostles, to whom Jesus entrusted the Church.

    If there is “misinterpretation of Vat II documents,” then it is the SSPX which is doing the misinterpreting, not the Holy Church. It is they who are in need of correction, not the Church, as well as a good dose of humility.

  13. Speravi says:

    There is nothing surprising here. It just means that they reaffirmed that they are on the same page. They have always been committed to holding on to what was entrusted them by the Archbishop. Remember that the Archbishop actually signed an agreement in 1988 (though he later withdrew his signature out of fear that the whole thing was a trap to end the society’s work) and, in principle, always wanted to maintain union with Rome. Let us pray that this preamble will succeed in assuring the preservation of the orthodox faith and the continuation of the work of the society in opposing modernism and that the society will see, understand, and choose to keep the true faith in a normal canonical structure, in a normal relationship with the hierarchy of the true Church. This might involve some changes, but it doesn’t mean that they abandon their work to protect what Archbishop Lefebvre wanted to protect. As I recall, both the Transalpine Redemptorists and the Institute of the Good Shepherd refuse to consider themselves as traitors to Archbishop Lefebvre. There are many people in normal canonical situations who, while they don’t agree with everything the archbishop did (especially the 1988 consecrations), still admire his desire to protect the integral faith. A canonically regular position and a less acerbic and more reasoned criticism of the evils with which the Church is afflicted, may well afford the Society with greater ease in carrying out what Archbishop Lefebvre wanted (this could be true even if the Archbishop was mistaken in some matters). It may also afford them the freedom to accept some correction if things have gotten warped in any way during their time in this extraordinary situation. I am praying that they receive efficacious grace to do God’s will and find a normal situation in God’s Church.

  14. marino says:

    Bender, I believe you have omitted the follwing from the SSPX communication:

    which Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre left them, according to St Paul’s “Tradidi quod et accepi – I have handed over what I myself have received” (I Cor 15:3).

    The words of Saint Paul

    It is time to pray.

  15. Geoffrey says:

    “If there is ‘misinterpretation of Vat II documents,’ then it is the SSPX which is doing the misinterpreting, not the Holy Church. It is they who are in need of correction, not the Church, as well as a good dose of humility.”

    Amen to that!

  16. JP Borberg says:

    “If there is ‘misinterpretation of Vat II documents,’ then it is the SSPX which is doing the misinterpreting”.

    Riiiiiight. So the SSPX has alter girls, communion in the hand, tabernacles in the cupboard, woman priest supporters, folk music, empty confessionals..?

    When Pope Benedict spoke of a Hermeneutic of Rupture, he was taking about what had been forced on parishes and diocese.

  17. pattif says:

    Surely we should all just stop sniping (from whatever position) and pray hard for reconciliation? In whose interests is this continued separation?

  18. Marianna says:

    If the SSPX don’t come back into the fold soon, at some point in the future there will be a split or splits in their own ranks. Those who fail to maintain unity with the Vicar of Christ have always ended up quarelling between themselves sooner or later.

  19. capchoirgirl says:

    Gotta say, having read some of their positions, I’m fine with them being all split on their own…which I realize is not in the spirit of Christian unity, but that’s how I feel about it.

  20. cpaulitz says:

    “Gotta say, having read some of their positions, I’m fine with them being all split on their own…which I realize is not in the spirit of Christian unity, but that’s how I feel about it.”

    So you want yourself seperated from the Catholic Church and Faith, since the SSPX fully accept and believe what Holy Mother Church has always taught? Maybe you should think about that some more …

  21. Bender says:

    Marino and JP — it is a quite simple question –

    Who decides what is the Catholic Faith? Who judges?

    Is it the Magisterium, the Successor to Peter, together with the Successor to the Apostles? Or do we take the approach of “the Spirit of Vatican II” that the SSPX rails against and be the Church of Do Your Own Thing?

    If the SSPX is to presume to be the judge of the Pope and the Church, why should not Hans Kung be the judge?

    At the end of the day, there is only ONE Pope. And his name is Joseph Ratzinger, not Bernard Fellay, and was in the past Karol Wojtyla, NOT Marcel Lefebvre.

    So, yes, pray for unity. Pray that the SSPX choose unity, not its own obstinance.

  22. dspecht says:

    “He may very well know that now may be the only time for such a favorable offering to come accross his desk, the likes of which he may not see again for decades into the future”

    I alsways wonder when I have to recognice statements like this – showing that not the SSPX ist negative, pessimistic or has an uncatholic spirit but rather the person who states this is overly pessimistic. Many state that perhaps the next Pope will be not as good as Papa Ratzinger, so this is the last chance for the SSPX to join in etc. But that can not be — according to my experience the SSPX and also other Trads know and believe strictly in it: that the gates of hell with not prevail (against) the Church, therefore time is working for and not against Tradition.

    So it can not be that this disastrous, a-normal situation of the Church will go on and go on for decades and decades (with some better Popes and also worse Popes, NewMass with altar girls etc. the next hundred years or so). NO, that´s wrong pessimistic thinking.
    Time is working for Tradition. That´s sure, because otherwise the gates of hell would prevail and JESUS were a liar.
    In some decades Tradition must and will be restored (with certainty), hand-Communion, altar-girls, meal-tabels, wrong ecumensim etc. must and will be eleminated.

    It is only a question of prudence how to (re)act now and how to aid, provide and accelerate this restauration the best way. Perhaps in joining in right now — perhaps in waiting some other years.

    Oh, folks – why beeing so pessimistic?!? Don´t you believe in the Lords promise that the gates of hell with not prevail.., don´t you believe in the indefectability of the Church?
    So there is no such thing like a “last chance for decades”, “the best circumstances for Tradition only now and they will not return for decades”, now “the only time”. No, the Lord´s promise and btw. also many prophecies/private revelations (Fatima, Anna Katharina Emmerich, etc.!!) speak against that pessimistic view.

  23. Bender says:

    “the gates of hell with not prevail (against) the Church”

    And yet the SSPX would have you believe that hell has, in fact, prevailed against the Church for the last several decades.

  24. dspecht says:

    - Btw. It is really still a very interesting observation of mine that – according to my experince – Trads like SSPX do deeply believe in the indefectability of the Church and the promise of the Lord, and therefore are equanimous and unperturbed and are really optimistic for the future whilst other conservative Catholics often are much more pessimistic.

    F.e. some times ago I discussed with a conservative Catholic who really saw the problems of the New Mass and wished that the only Roman Rite would be the Old one – but then stated that it were totaly unrealistic to hope this becomming true the next decades and the best to gain was the freeing of the Old Rite as the extraordinary form living in coexistence with the new. And he was also very pesssimistic re many liturgical (legal and illegal) abuses or other deplorable things inside the Church and opined that we have to bear them for a very long time in future or perhaps till end of time if coming soon…. And he critisized the SSPX for making unrealisitc demands and hopes like eleminating the New Mass etc. – whilst SSPXers were and are really optimistic that in some decades the whole Church is restored, the abuses are swept out etc.

  25. capchoirgirl says:

    cpaultiz: I have a problem with any sect that 1) thinks it knows better than the Church founded by Christ and 2) has really goofy ideas about morality and modern science (see, their views on organ transplants).

  26. dspecht says:

    Bender:

    No, that for some decades there are errors and abuses wide-spread in the Church seems to be possible and not contradicting Her indefectability.
    But this going on and on, for decades or centuries – that would contradict Her indefectability.

    And no, I can not give you an exact number of years or quanity and quality of scandals that are the maximum that can not be exeeded without conflicting with or better: contradicting the indefectability. But there is a limit. And that gives hope.
    It is not normal and can not endure so many decades that in many countries 80 % or more of the universitiy-teachers are heretics, that many bishops and cardinals utter temerarical or even heretical opinions, that we have altar girls, hand-Communion, etc. as a norm etc. etc.

  27. flyfree432 says:

    “And yet the SSPX would have you believe that hell has, in fact, prevailed against the Church for the last several decades.”

    Which is an important distinction. The Holy Roman Catholic Church is led by Pope Benedict XVI and his college of bishops. Arguments about VII not defining dogma are so tired it sounds like I am listening to a liberal wax on about women’s ordination. It shows an illiteracy and ignorance about ecclesiology. There have been heretics, even heretic bishops who at the outset are still in union and exercise a functional legitimate authority in the church throughout history. Just because Arius denies the Christ his divinity is no reason to jump ship and declare that the gates of hell have prevailed against the Church. Instead, we allow the Church, through the power of the Holy Spirit, to do her work and expel Arius. So we pray for unity, but for the SSPX, who is in the wrong, to come back to Rome, not Rome to the SSPX.

  28. dspecht says:

    capchoirgirl:

    re organ transplants:
    That´s the same view all conservative or better: real Catholics hold. Well, we can discuss if the brain-death is the real death or not – but there is at least this problem and the moral principle: if not sure that the person is really dead, then you are not allowed to take out his organs.

  29. capchoirgirl says:

    Yeah, but (at least in the US, according to UNOS statues), they are dead. The SSPX would have you wait until corruption set in to be reeeeaaallly sure, and then the organs are of no use to anyone. That’s a distinction that’s not in line with medical science at all. There is definite criteria for being brain dead, and if someone meets it, that’s it. I cannot, for the life of me, understand why the SSPX would be against this.

  30. Jerry says:

    @cpaulitz – “since the SSPX fully accept and believe what Holy Mother Church has always taught?”

    You mean everything except obedience? Had they responded with prayer and penance instead of following their pride, perhaps all of these problems would have been resolved years ago.

  31. muckemdanno says:

    capchoirgirl,

    You are displaying the ignorance of Catholic doctrine typical of anti-SSPX’ers.

    “Death” does not occur with ‘brain death’ or with the heart stopping or whatever criteria the state uses to allow for organ transplantation. Death occurs when the soul is separated from the body, medical science and the law of the state notwithstanding.

  32. Legisperitus says:

    I hope everyone who spends time trash-talking the SSPX on the internet spends at least an equal amount of time praying for them. Otherwise I would question such a person’s good intentions.

  33. cpaulitz says:

    Jerry: “You mean everything except obedience? Had they responded with prayer and penance instead of following their pride, perhaps all of these problems would have been resolved years ago.”

    They’re obiedent to the Magisterium — just not to modernism.