Swiss Bishop forbids the use of churches and chapels to the SSPX

I am saddened by the following story, which I found on Vatican Insider in Italian from Andrea Tornielli:

“Lefevbrites are suspended a divinis, they cannot celebrate in Catholic churches”

His is a striking and suggestive position: the Bishop of Diocese of Lausanne, Geneva and Fribourg, Charles Morerod, Dominican theologian, onetime Rector of the Angelicum and Secretary of the International Theological Commission and member of the delegation from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in dialogues with the Society of St. Pius X – has published a decree forbidding Lefebvrite priests from celebrating Mass in churches and chapels of his diocese. He reaffirmed that priests of the Society are suspended “a divinis”.

The document, signed 20 January, deals with “the admission of other religions, confessions or religious groups, such as indeed the Society of St. Pius X, and of independent theologians in Roman Catholic churches and chapels”.

[...]

He cites the 1993 Decree on Ecumenism.

I am sure the whole thing will be translated soon, but that is the core of it.

I have said often in these electronic pages that, one of these days, the SSPXers are going to wake up and find that they are not considered Catholic by the Catholic Church.  I hope and pray that it will not come to that.  This is an open and suppurating wound in the unity of the Church.  We need what the SSPX can offer.  But they must bend to proper authority.

Benedict XVI is the Pope of Christian Unity.

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52 Responses to Swiss Bishop forbids the use of churches and chapels to the SSPX

  1. tecumseh says:

    Wise words Father . .they must bend to proper authority . . .

    But . .But . .proper authority has to act . . .and to be seen acting in any number of things . .

    Instance when is proper authority going to bin the Novus Ordo . .??? It is just embarassing [It is not going to "bin" the Novus Ordo. People have to do that on their own. If people stop going to it and begin to demand the Usus Antiquior, .... ]

  2. Fabula Rasa says:

    SSPX has been allowed to use Catholic facilities and churches? I am more shocked at that than at the suspension of such privileges.

  3. Shamrock says:

    “Demand the Usus Antiquior”? Father, by that Latin phrase may I loosely translate it as the ” old
    order”? Sorry it has been over 60 years since I studied Latin..and over 40 years since I have
    heard any Latin. Since Vatican II I have lived with the confusion of the Church while the battle between new mass ( Novus Ordo) and older form rages. I have had to settle for the ancient and ubiquitous adage, “Offer it up”….and I do whether at Novus Ordo or on the rare occasion the Usus Antiquior.
    Sign of the times!

  4. tecumseh says:

    Yes I know that proper authority will never, ever admit to the disaster.

    Why should the likes of me keep asking “embarassing” questions . .??? Like, can we have a catholic mass . . Instead of some made up on the hoof nonsense

    For what it’s worth the recent translation with all the dewfall and with your spiriting is even worse than the original Novus Ordo . . .other wise the bone heads would never have taken to it . . .would they . .??

    Anyway we are definitely in the end times now . . .the church is failing . .how long before the first gay marriage . . Or has that day already dawned . . I would not be surprised.

    [breathe, friend... slow breaths... in... out... in... out... if you want to post comments...]

  5. StWinefride says:

    This is also the case in parts of Germany, France, Belgium, Luxembourg… There are SSPX masses in hotels, rooms above shops. If the SSPX do have the use of a Chapel it’s usually one on someone’s private estate. I pray the SSPX problem is resolved soon.

  6. chcrix says:

    Like Fabula Rasa, I am surprised that the SSPX is using catholic churches. I don’t think they are in my area.

    Because of that, I took the archbishop’s pronouncement as sort of a gratuitous slap at the SSPX – in other words not helpful to the Pope’s project.. Of course if he has been allowing the SSPX to use the catholic churches, then one must wonder why he has been doing it up to now.

  7. jhayes says:

    It ‘s interesting that the Bishop confirms that Catholic Churches and chapels may be used by non-Catholic groups in case of “pastoral necessity”

    “«Se questa necessità pastorale si presenta, le chiese e le cappelle possono essere messe a disposizione solo per comunità di fede cattolico-cristiana, evangelico-riformata, ortodossa e anglicana».”

    The article refers to the 1993 “DIRECTORY FOR THE APPLICATION OF PRINCIPLES AND NORMS ON ECUMENISM”, which says:

    137. Catholic churches are consecrated or blessed buildings which have an important theological and liturgical significance for the Catholic community. They are therefore generally reserved for Catholic worship. However, if priests, ministers or communities not in full communion with the Catholic Church do not have a place or the liturgical objects necessary for celebrating worthily their religious ceremonies, the diocesan Bishop may allow them the use of a church or a Catholic building and also lend them what may be necessary for their services. Under similar circumstances, permission may be given to them for interment or for the celebration of services at Catholic cemeteries.

    I wonder if the point of the Bishop’s statement was to point out that the SSPX doesn’t qualify under the 1993 document. Perhaps we’ll see the full text later.

  8. mschu528 says:

    @Shamrock,

    Usus antiquior is usually translated as “the more ancient use.” It is one of the many titles for the TLM (and the Breviary, Ritual, Pontifical, etc that were in effect in 1962) that have been used in the recent documents issued by the Holy Father and the Roman Curia.

    What bothers me more about this is not that His Excellency has forbidden use of his churches by the SSPX, but that in the same document, he has allowed the churches to be used by “Evangelical-Reformed, Lutheran, Orthodox, and Anglican communities.” Odd.

  9. mamajen says:

    Sad, but makes perfect sense. Unlike other Christian denominations that might wind up using Catholic churches, the SSPX purports to provide Catholic sacraments without the proper faculties. As we saw in a recent Quaeritur, it could actually be sinful for Catholics to participate in some cases. The SSPX are leading souls astray, and under no circumstances should they be allowed to use Catholic churches to do so.

  10. VexillaRegis says:

    A rather logical decision, I think. Here the Catholic church borrows Lutheran churches to celebrate Mass in places where there are very few catholics. Never the other way around, though :-) In return we let the Russian and Greek Orthodox borrow our church for the Divine Liturgy every now and then.

  11. Christopher says:

    Mamajen:

    What do you propose? As mschu528 points out, he has allowed the churches to be used by Schismatics and outright Heretics. While the SSPX is what seems to be schismatic, it is more closer to Catholic teaching than that of the aforementioned, so then, to what purpose should they be refused?

    Chcrix seems to be quite on the mark, it seems more of a diplomatic effect than anything else, especially when His Grace is a member of the dialogue with the SSPX. Fabula Rasa is also correct with surprise that the SSPX have been allowed up until now. Something is not right with this story, there’s more to this story than that which meets the eye.

    God Bless.

  12. Maria says:

    I agree Fr Z.

  13. jhayes says:

    Here is the complete text of the decree by Bishop Morerod (French only, sorry)

    http://www.diocese-lgf.ch/fileadmin/documents/Documents/Decrets/Decret_admission_eglises_diocese_130120.pdf

    It is presented as being more generally about who can be allowed to use Catholic Churches and Chapels rather than specifically about the SSPX.

    The introduction says “the bishops and terriorial abbots of Switzerland enact by this decree particular norms applicable to their dioceses or territorial abbeys…

    Which sounds as if it may be a joint action which each Swiss Bishop and Abbot is publishing separately to make it applicable throughout the whole of Switzerland, not just in Bishop Morerod’s diocese.

  14. mamajen says:

    Christopher:

    They should be refused because they lack faculties. It doesn’t matter how close they are to Church teaching. In fact I would almost venture to say it is more dangerous in some ways because they tempt away some of our best Catholics, while liberals get the people who are already weak. As Father Z has said before, you can go off the road on either side.

    As far as what I propose…well, SSPX need to repair their relationship with Rome, and heretical Catholic priests who do have faculties should have them revoked and be similarly banned from using Catholic churches to further their agendas.

  15. Christopher says:

    Mamajen:

    Is it acceptable for Schismatics and Heretics to use a Catholic Church for their services? You say it is more dangerous, so then what if your average Catholic of this day and age stumbles upon one of these services and participates in such? What about ‘Old Catholics’? Frankly, the danger is outright equal, not more or less, so to say one is more dangerous. The Church wants both the Best Catholic and the Weak Catholic in Heaven.

    So then, why not just ban them all? Logically, they’re all a threat to the Church’s flock.

    God Bless.

  16. NBW says:

    That is sad news for the SSPX. It is ironic; the SSPX is pretty close to Church teaching and they are not welcome, yet German Cardinal Joachim Meisner who has accepted the morning after pill is still “Catholic”. Also why are there pagan type rituals in a Catholic church like this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5JRadjAeZs&feature=player_embedded

  17. Athelstan says:

    “I am more shocked at that than at the suspension of such privileges.”

    I am more shocked that Protestants are allowed to use our churches at all.

  18. mamajen says:

    Christopher:

    If by schismatics and heretics you are referring to other long-separated denominations, such as the Anglicans, Lutherans, etc., then yes, I think there is less of a risk offering them use of a Catholic church than SSPX. I’m not saying it’s ideal. Most Catholics are aware that these other denominations are not Catholic, and they cannot satisfy their obligations by attending non-Catholic services or participating in their “sacraments”. It would be easy to explain the situation in the bulletin to prevent Catholics from mistakenly participating in those services. SSPX, on the other hand, advertise themselves as Catholic and do not believe or disclose that they lack proper faculties. The potential for confusion is much greater.

  19. Dismas says:

    @mamjen, makes perfect sense to me as well. I find a huge difference between those, through no fault of their own, are formed outside our Church and experience doctrinal issues from those who proclaim a vocation, formation, vow obedience and accept ordination to the Roman Catholic Priesthood, but manifest doctrinal problems and disagreement from within.

  20. Christopher says:

    Mamajen:
    Long-separated denominations, which yes are Schismatics and Heretics. Although the Anglican and Lutheran Church are more problematic given that their still is some Catholic elements within.

    You still have to justify how it is less of a risk, because frankly, the risk is outright equal. Your badly catechised average Catholic who cannot differentiate from the Novus Ordo and a Protestant ceremony may not see much of a difference, especially when the Lutherans and Anglicans equally wear the Collar, and said Anglicans and Lutherans may find themselves thinking they are actually celebrating Transubstantiation. Likewise, the Traditionalist may not notice with the SSPX.

    Both are equally vulnerable to invalid sacraments, since both accounts cannot satisfiy their obligations. Which means that the counter to this issue is simply to research before hand before one attends, or to ban all. As such, people would be warned about the Schismatics and Heretics who use the Church so they would not fall into the trap of attending them. Or you ban them all, a much safer approach.

    Both have been demonstrated, including utilising your own argument, as being a equal risk, and to say that one is of lesser or more risk than the other cannot be justified, because both present an equal risk. So either include the SSPX, or ban them all.

    God Bless.

  21. Christopher says:

    Mamajen:

    ‘SSPX, on the other hand, advertise themselves as Catholic and do not believe or disclose that they lack proper faculties. The potential for confusion is much greater.’

    So do Old Catholics, so do many Schismatic and Heretical groups. But you do not seem to have any such problem for these to enter, which is rather baffeling. Simply place in a bulletin explaining that a Catholic cannot attend the SSPX just like he cannot attend a Protestant celebration. Or simply close them all off. Why is there an exception for the SSPX, when the SSPX itself even though in schism and illict, have a Tradition that is more beneficial to the Church (given that the SSPX itself is still technically Catholic).

    God Bless.

  22. mamajen says:

    Christopher:

    Are the Old Catholics mentioned in this document? I don’t know since I can’t read Italian or French. I don’t think any group portraying themselves as Catholic who lack faculties should be allowed the use of Catholic churches for their services. We will have to agree to disagree on the rest, I guess. In my mind there’s a clear difference, but I am either not explaining myself well or we just have fundamentally different views.

  23. Oleg-Michael says:

    Who are the “independent theologians” (“théologiens indépendants”) also mentioned in the decree? Some kind of a local sect?

  24. Sixupman says:

    I am aware that, in Italy, SSPX have been afforded the use of diocesan churches. Question: in the Diocese at issue, how often have SSPX utilised or sought to utilise churches therein? I shall attempt to check and if, as I suspect to be the case, the answer is zero, then the good bishop is flying-a-kite and intent upon causing trouble. I further suspect that he, his CDF cohort and the Germanic bishops’ Conferences are behind the ploy.

    The English & Welsh Bishops’ Conference issued a document which stated that one could fulfil one’s Sunday/Holyday Duty by attendance at the local Anglican, Methodist Church, or even Free Church Chapel if a Catholic Church was not close-by. At the same time it was being suggested that attendance at an SSPX Mass did not comply with such Obligation.

    I am concerned that the Swiss edict was readily published but not that of the English & Welsh situation. There appears to be a marked lack of ‘level-playingfield’, does there not?

    [Copy E&W re-sent to Fr. Zuhlsdorf.]

  25. Southern Catholic says:

    have a Tradition that is more beneficial to the Church (given that the SSPX itself is still technically Catholic)

    In your opinion, if you would ask any liberal nun or priest if their views are beneficial to the Church, they would say yes.

    Back on topic, I agree with Fabula, the SSPX should not have been using the churches in the first place.

  26. Christopher says:

    Mamajen:

    Old Catholics are just a mere example. What you are saying, that Catholics who have no authority to offer the sacraments should not be present in the Church is correct, just as it is equal to say that Heretics and Schismatics have no authority to be inside a Catholic Church in the first place. Again, given the SSPX’s canonical state, and the mere fact that the others are merely Schismatic and Heretical, both parties are logically found threatening due to illict sarcaments on one end, and out right heresy and schism on the other.

    Southern Catholic: ‘In your opinion, if you would ask any liberal nun or priest if their views are beneficial to the Church, they would say yes.’

    Firstly, one never said that their views are beneficial to the Church, the Tradition that the SSPX holds is beneficial to the Church, because it is Catholic. Secondly, one is not asking them if they are beneficial or not, like Father Z, one recognises the significance of what they can contribute towards the Church.

    The SSPX acknowledge the Sacraments, acknowledge the Pope as the Head, in fact, the SSPX agree with 95% of Vatican II from what one has read of the discussions. Liberals? Hold them up to nearly every single Doctrine, Dogma and they will go against it. The SSPX is more Catholic than liberals, and as such, like Father Z, one recognises the contributions they can bring to the Church.

    God Bless.

  27. joan ellen says:

    Fr. Z says:
    [It is not going to "bin" the Novus Ordo. People have to do that on their own. If people stop going to it and begin to demand the Usus Antiquior, .... ]

    Thank you, Fr. Z those words. They are very encouraging.

    I ‘binned’ the Novus Ordo in October in favor of the Usus Antiquior on Sunday and Monday a.m. And I note on my Sunday offering check “Tridentine”.

  28. joan ellen says:

    Previous comment should have said: Thank you, Fr. Z, for those words.

  29. Folks when you talk about “binning the Novus Ordo” you’re talking about putting the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in a bin! [No. That is NOT what is being said. They desire that the Novus Ordo not be used and that the Usus Antiquior be used instead.] It’s hardly the language or sentiment one would expect of Catholics. It’s called the Ordinary Form for a reason. It’s the main form in ordinary use and the sooner you accept that it isn’t going away the better for you. As for calling protestants heretics and schismatics, it’s time to grow up! [And it is time to curb your hysteria and revive your critical thinking skills.]

  30. Sixupman says:

    Further to my immediately previous entry:

    As far as can be ascertained, SSPX have never utilised or sought to utilise Diocesan Churches in the Geneva, Lausanne, Fribourg Diocese.

    Question: what is the point of that Bishop’s edict if the situation does not or is most unlikely to exist in the future?

  31. Imrahil says:

    Dear @Christopher, you are mistaken in 1. that the SSPX (who?) is in schism [their bishops' excommunications were lifted, which gives an a-fortiori against all the rest of them being in schism], 2. that a Catholic may not attend their Holy Masses (see the state of tolerated suspended and its treatment in classical moral theology, St. Alphonsus to wit).

    Dear @NBW, Cardinal Meisner, who around here is appraised or decried as a champion of orthodoxy (as, yes, outside SSPX-affiliate circles also Archbishop Müller), accepted the morning after pill 1. on the assumption (given by his counselors) that it only prevents conception and does not abort conceived life, 2. and then for cases of rape. It seems to have been taught by the Church previously that contraception (not abortion) against rape is licit.
    Whether his statement was a) right and b) prudent and whether such non-abortive morning after pills exist at all may be another story, but it is quite wrong to imply him saying “the morning after pill is okay”.

  32. anilwang says:

    That’s one thing the SSPX fails to grasp.

    Disobedience and assuming that Vatican II was meant to change everything is precisely the reason the Church is in this mess.

    Disobedience and assuming that Vatican II was meant to change everything will not get us out of this mess.

  33. marytoo says:

    Christopher McCamley – Maybe I’m mistaken but I think the original poster made a typo and meant to write “ban” the Novus Ordo…

  34. A Priest says:

    If you look at the document itself (in French, link at end of Tornielli’s article), the conclusion is the opposite of what the commentary supposes. Bishop Morerod treats the SSPX as members of the Roman Catholic Church (which is why they face the disciplinary measures imposed by a Roman Catholic bishop), NOT as another ecclesial community.

    This is obvious in the French text. Bishop Morerod divides those impacted by the decree into three groups: “the Fraternity of St. Pius X,” “other Christian churches or ecclesial communities,” and “non-Christian ecclesial communities.” He cites the decree on Ecumenism only in the subsection dealing with other Christian churches. The clear implication: the clergy of the SSPX is NOT considered as another church or ecclesial communion, but as members of the Roman Catholic Church.

    He then quotes Pope Benedict XVI’s decree lifting the excommunication, which states that SSPX priests “do not exercise legitimate ministries in the Church.” His decree makes no further statement about their status — it only offers a quote from the Holy Father. Then he imposes a disciplinary norm: because of this irregularity, SSPX priests may not use Catholic chapels or churches “for the dispensation of the sacraments.”

    No surprise there.

  35. Denis says:

    To me this means that, in the Diocese of Lausanne, Geneva and Fribourg, the most spiritually beneficial Catholic Mass isn’t necessarily going to be found in a church building of the Diocese.

  36. joan ellen says:

    Fr. Z says: “We need what the SSPX can offer. But they must bend to proper authority.”

    Shamrock says: 2 February 2013 at 9:42 am
    “Since Vatican II I have lived with the confusion of the Church while the battle between new mass ( Novus Ordo) and older form rages.”

    jhayes says: 2 February 2013 at 10:29 am
    “It ‘s interesting that the Bishop confirms that Catholic Churches and chapels may be used by non-Catholic groups in case of “pastoral necessity””
    “The article refers to the 1993 “DIRECTORY FOR THE APPLICATION OF PRINCIPLES AND NORMS ON ECUMENISM”, which says:

    137. Catholic churches are consecrated or blessed buildings which have an important theological and liturgical significance for the Catholic community.”
    And, yet: “However,… and also lend them…”

    Southern Catholic says: 2 February 2013 at 2:49 pm
    “Back on topic, I agree with Fabula, the SSPX should not have been using the churches in the first place.”

    Christopher says: 2 February 2013 at 1:17 pm
    Mamajen:
    “So either include the SSPX, or ban them all.”

    1. Bend, not only out of obedience, but also to preserve clear doctrine, dogma, practices.
    2. The word confusion is useful in reading the above Directory: On the one hand: “buildings which have an important theological and liturgical significance” and on the other: “However,… and also lend them…”

    3. Fr. Z: “We need what the SSPX can offer. Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke: “They have the faith.” The doctrine, dogma, practices. Practices: Latin, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, Sacraments and the resultant right thinking, but not faculties nor canonical status.
    VS. those who have but some of the faith, but not faculties nor canonical status.

    4. Because of the confusion between “buildings which have an important theological and liturgical significance” and “However,… and also lend them…” it makes sense to preserve the buildings from who or that which will lessen and diminish the “important theological and liturgical significance”.

    5. Some of us have exerienced “The most beautiful thing this side of Heaven.” in the TLM. Not only because of the Rubrics, but because of the Latin. Latin raises the mind and so raises the Heart…Sursum Corda. Those who have studied Latin to no small degree can lead the Rosary in the vernacular and it CAN raise the souls of those following the leader. That is how important Latin is in these “buildings which have an important theological and liturgical significance”. Not only the Sacrificial Action on the Altar and the Sacrament Most Holy, but also the Sacred Language of Latin helps preserve the “buildings which have an important theological and liturgical significance”. All the more reason for us to learn to read, write, and speak Latin and help others to do the same.

    “…the SSPX should not have been using the churches in the first place.” And neither should anyone else without canonical status and faculties.

    Ends the confusion in this matter.

  37. mamajen says:

    A Priest:

    Thank you for the clarification. That is indeed a clear distinction and along the lines of what I was thinking but couldn’t articulate.

  38. robtbrown says:

    A Priest says,

    . . . and “non-Christian ecclesial communities.”

    What is a non-Christian ecclesial community?

  39. moon1234 says:

    Essentially any group that the Church “talks” to. I suppose that could even extend to wiccans. It surely would apply to Muslims, Jews and all others who seek to destroy the Catholic Church as one of the tennents of their faith.

    The persecution of the SSPX is just sad. Persecution from within and from outside the Church. I guess the suffering endured can be offered up to God for his use.

  40. muckemdanno says:

    “A Priest” – what you say does not make any sense. It seems that your logic is “SSPX are Catholic, but they have no faculties and therefore they can’t use the Catholic Churches.”

    But, if they are Catholic (meaning they are not heretics and not schismatics-and therefore there is nothing for them to abjure) then the question arises…why have they not been granted faculties?!? It is unilaterally up to the pope to do this.

    On the other hand, if there is something for them to abjure, then they are schismatics or heretics (like the Protestants or Orthodox) and it would have to be granted that (ALL) the SSPX sacraments are valid, just as the Orthodox’ sacraments are valid.

    I’m sure that nobody here will be able to resolve this apparent paradox, but if anyone would like to, please do!

    [Perhaps something of an analogy will be found in the case of a father of a kid in her late teens who wants to use the car. She regularly mouths off to dad, trashes the members of the family, and flatly, openly, refuses to drive safely. Does Dad give her the keys to the car?]

  41. A Priest says:

    Translator’s lapse – I should have written “non-Christian religious communities.”

    One more note: Consider the context. The FSSP was founded in Fribourg, has its general HQ there, and is very present in the diocese. Bishop Morerod supports them — for example, he just entrusted to them the most historic church in the city, across the street from the Cathedral, which was just completely restored at a cost of $23.4 million (!) dollars. (See Fr. Z’s commentary here.) He has received not a little criticism from some quarters for that, by the way, since it’s such a prime location.

    The FSSP in Fribourg also recently announced that he will be coming in May to that same Basilica to do confirmations in the EF.

    In other words, he’s hardly hostile to the EF. He’s encouraging the faithful to attend the EF — but in communion with and obedience to the Holy Father.

  42. Christopher says:

    Imrahil:

    So the SSPX is only canocially illict and not schismatic? Thank you for the correction.

    Joan Ellen:

    ’1. Bend, not only out of obedience, but also to preserve clear doctrine, dogma, practices.’

    Exactly, the demonstration used is merely to show rather outright hypocrisy that Schismatics and Heretics get to use Church buildings yet Faithfully but canonically illict cannot.

    A tip of the hat to Rorate-Caeli:

    ‘If the aforementioned pastoral need presents itself, Catholic churches and chapels can only be placed at the disposal of Catholic-Christian’.

    [http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2013/02/how-to-welcome-calvinists-lutherans.html]

    So would then Old Catholics and Sedevacantism be-able to qualify?

    Again, this is nothing more than a diplomatic slap in the face, they’d rather allow Schismatics and Heretics than a good and healthy pool of Catholicism.

    God Bless.

  43. Christopher says:

    A Priest:

    Thank you for the clarification, that makes a bit more sense.

    God Bless.

  44. joan ellen says:

    Christopher says: 3 February 2013 at 5:41 am
    “Exactly, the demonstration used is merely to show rather outright hypocrisy that Schismatics and Heretics get to use Church buildings yet Faithfully but canonically illict cannot.”

    You are being quite clear. Thank you so much.

    A Priest says: 3 February 2013 at 3:53 am RE: “Bishop Morerod supports them…”
    “In other words, he’s hardly hostile to the EF. He’s encouraging the faithful to attend the EF — but in communion with and obedience to the Holy Father.”

    Thank you, Fr.

  45. catholicmidwest says:

    It is a very dangerous, very bad idea to allow our churches to be “borrowed” by anyone. They should be reserved for Catholic uses only, and diocesan/religious order permission must be sought and documented for all uses. I cannot emphasize how important this is. If other denominations/religions/sects wish to “borrow” a venue, let them borrow or rent something else.

  46. robtbrown says:

    moon1234 says:

    Essentially any group that the Church “talks” to. I suppose that could even extend to wiccans. It surely would apply to Muslims, Jews and all others who seek to destroy the Catholic Church as one of the tennents of their faith

    Are you saying that if the Church “talks” to a bank, then it is an ecclesial community.

    The point is within the Church ecclesial is predicated of Christian communities, i.e., communities united in worship by charity (thus disqualifying Buddhists, Sufis, et al).

  47. jhayes says:

    Christopher asked: “So would then Old Catholics and Sedevacantism be-able to qualify?”

    The Catholic-Christian Church of Switzerland was orgnized by Catholic laymen after Vatican I. However, they are separate from the Old Catholics in other countries.

    http://www.oikoumene.org/fr/eglises-membres/regions/europe/suisse/eglise-catholique-chretienne-de-suisse.html

  48. abdiesus says:

    I’m somewhat surprised that you didn’t include in your excerpt from the document the fact that the bishop in question does allow other Christian denominations such as Lutheran, Anglican, or Reformed-evangelical, (even, apparently, “Old Catholic”) but does not allow non-Christian groups. (see the following for reference:
    http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2013/02/how-to-welcome-calvinists-lutherans.html)

    Including this information would have strengthened your concluding point, which would, however, therefore need to be rephrased. Instead of saying “one of these days, the SSPXers are going to wake up and find that they are not considered Catholic by the Catholic Church.” you would instead need to say “this should be a wake up call that the SSPXers are not even considered Christian by the Catholic Church.” *That* is the core point the bishop is trying to make with this document, and it is really hard to miss that point – at least from my perspective.

  49. mamajen says:

    abdiesus:

    That’s simply wrong. The bishop is not by any means saying that SSPX are non-Christian. On the contrary, he is saying that they are Catholic (albeit not in full communion with Rome), and therefore cannot be considered a separate denomination that might fit the criteria to be allowed use of a Catholic church. That others (non-Christians) are banned from using Catholic churches does not mean that anyone is implying the SSPX are in the same category with them. You’ve made a rather awful leap, I think.

  50. aws says:

    Those so quick to jerk their knees for the sake of the SSPX really make a pretty sad admission: i.e., that the question of whether the SSPX and/or Protestant groups are equivalent questions.

    A better framing would be two distinct questions: 1) may non-facultied Catholic clerics exercise, with at least tacit episcopal approval, an illegitimate ministry within a diocesan church building, 2) may Protestants, in cases of necessity, use Catholic churches.

    Again, that the two questions are conflated really says a lot about the situation of the SSPX and their supporters.

  51. jhayes says:

    Quote from Bishop Morerod (unverified – i don’t have a Facebook account so i can’t check it there)

    “The norms which I published are only an update decided by the Swiss Episcopal Conference in September 2011 (before I became part of it). I actually waited one more year than the other bishops of the French-Speaking part of Switzerland (Sion, Basel, Abbey of St Maurice) because I hoped the dialogue would work. After Bishop Fellay’s preach [sic] 11 Nov. 2012 saying that the “new Mass” is dangerous and that the dialogue is back to 1974-1975, and his speech in New Hamburg 28 Dec. 2012 describing the Jews “enemies of the Church”, I decided to stop waiting… The difference between the use of churches by Protestant or Orthodox and the FSSPX is that the priests of the FSSPX are considered Catholics but without legitimate ministry: the effect of this situation is that they divide the Church from within, and say things I would rather not have said in Catholic Churches.”

    Quoted from here: http://www.cathinfo.com/catholic.php?a=topic&t=22830

    Bp. morerod Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/charles.morerod

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