“Nevertheless, not Your will, but mine be done…”

Rorate Coeli has done us a service again by alerting us to the recent declaration on the part of the SSPX. Here are some interesting parts of the cover letter and declaration with a few of my comments (my trans.) and emphasis:

The cover letter:

… However, the Chapter did not limit itself to elections. It was also an opportunity to examine our situation, to consider the weak points to be strengthened and to directions so that our priests can live their lives better according to our Statutes and, subsequently, to pass on to you in a more efficacious way the grace and the gifts of heaven [Which apparently don’t have to include a spirit of obedience to the Roman Pontiff.]

Evidently, we considered the state of our relationship with Rome. Having the intention of the greatest possible transparency, and to avoid any sort of false hope or illusion, the Chapter, unanimously, decided to make a declaration which you will find attached.

In this vein the Chapter charged me to communicate to you this ambitious project.

The Fraternity has the intention to present to the Supreme Pontiff a "spiritual bouquet" of one million chaplets of the Rosary by the end of October, the month of the Holy Rosary. [I like spiritual bouquet. This is a good thing. As a matter of fact it is a great project for little kids and priests and bishops love to get these together with cute drawings. However, I as much as I would love to receive any "spiritual bouquet", I would really like to get one from children who were obedient and not telling me what to do.]

The chaplets will be recited according to the following intentions:

1. To obtain from Heaven for Pope Benedict XVI the necessary strength to completely liberalize the Mass "of all times", called that "of St. Pius V". ["O God! Please give the Pope the strength to do what I want him to do. Nevertheless, not Your will, O Lord, or his, but mine be done." Folks, believe me. I really like the intention, in one sense. I agree that the older form of Mass should be "liberalized", that is, made available widely and with every priest having the right to say it even publicly. I also know that huge and angry forces are arrayed against such an intention… but I sincerely think they should word this differently.]

2. For a return to the Social Reign of our Lord Jesus Christ. [Hmmm… John Paul II’s Social Doctrine in his encyclicals and… of course… the Second Vatican Council’s teaching on Religious Liberty. That what this is about. Bet on it.]

3. For the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. [HURRAY! Perhaps they should have stuck to this one alone. Also, I think that this aims at the issue of the Third Secret of Fatima. A lot of people, a lot of smart people don’t think that the entire text of the Third Secret was revealed and that Mary’s will in that message has been continuously thwarted. I think that is the subtext here.]

Therefore, we call you to a true and authentic crucade by means of this prayer which was urged so many times by the Most Holy Virgin Mary and present as the great means of support, protection and salvation for Christians today in this time of crisis….

Here is the declaration in their translation:


For the glory of God, for the salvation of souls and for the true service of the Church [Which apparently doesn’t have to include an exemplary obedience to the Roman Pontiff.], on the occasion of its Third General Chapter, held at Ecône in Switzerland, from July 3 to 15, 2006, the Priestly Society of Saint Pius X declares its firm resolution to continue its action, with the help of God, along the doctrinal and practical lines laid down by its venerated founder, Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre.

Following in his footsteps in the fight for the Catholic Faith, the Society fully endorses his criticisms of the Second Vatican Council and its reforms, as he expressed them in his conferences and sermons, and in particular in his Declaration of November 21, 1974: “We adhere with all our heart and all our soul to Catholic Rome, guardian of the Catholic Faith and of the traditions necessary for the maintaining of that Faith, to eternal Rome, mistress of wisdom and of truth. On the contrary, we refuse, and we have always refused, to follow the Rome of neo-modernist and neo-protestant tendencies, which showed itself clearly in the Second Vatican Council and in the reforms that issued from it.” [What did Archbishop Lefebvre say about the Council’s document on Religious Liberty, anyway?]

Contacts held with Rome over the last few years have enabled the Society to see how right and necessary were the two pre-conditions [1] that it laid down ["I’ll hold my breath until I turn blue and then you’ll be sorry!] , since they would greatly benefit the Church by re-establishing ["How dare dare you tell me what to do! I’m grown up now!"] , at least in part, her rights to her own Tradition. Not only would the treasure of graces available to the Society no longer be hidden under a bushel, but the Mystical Body would also be given the remedy it so needs to be healed. [Folks, I agree 100% that we have been cheated of our rightful patrimony. It is the attitude I don’t appreciate here.]

If, upon these pre-conditions being fulfilled, the Society looks to a possible debate on doctrine ["I’ll come out of my room only if you give me back my cellphone and the keys to the car!"], the purpose is still that of making the voice of traditional teaching sound more clearly within the Church. Likewise, the contacts made from time to time with the authorities in Rome have no other purpose than to help them embrace once again that Tradition ["I’ll tell you Mindy! I just, like, gonna stop eating until he listens to me. Like, Dad just doesn’t, you know, understand how important this is! Like, if I don’t go to the mall tomorrow with Billy, I’ll just DIE!] which the Church cannot repudiate without losing her identity. The purpose is not just to benefit the Society, nor to arrive at some merely practical impossible agreement. ["I mean, like, Billy really needs me right now. He has a big game coming up! You know?".] When Tradition comes back into its own, “reconciliation will no longer be a problem, and the Church will spring back to life”. [2]

In the long haul to victory, the Chapter encourages all members of the Society to live, as its statutes require, ever more intensely by the grace proper to it, namely, in union with the great prayer of the High Priest, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Let them be convinced, along with their faithful, that in this striving for an ever greater sanctification in the heart of the Church is to be found the only remedy for our present misfortunes, which is the Church being restored through the restoration of the priesthood. ["And another thing… you know, like, at school, like… maybe we could get all the guys to, like, you know… walk out of class at the same time. We’ve got to get those new uniforms I can’t stand that Principal Romano. How dare he say tell us what to wear!"]

In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph.

I know, I know. "But Father! But Father!" some of you will object. "This is really serious! How can you be so flippant?" It is not my intention to deny the importance of the dialogue or the issues involved. I even agree with many of their points!

What I don’t like is the attitude. Until that changes, I doubt much progress can be made. If they don’t know that, well… then they don’t have much to contribute in the long run. If they do know that, they could be acting in bad faith.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in SESSIUNCULA. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Boko Fittleworth says:

    “A lot of people, a lot of smart people don’t think that the entire text of the Third Secret was revealed.”

    Apparently Mother Angelica doesn’t think the entire text was revealed. I’ve read solid arguments that point out differences between bits and pieces that were revealed before and the entire text as eventually revealed. Also, as revealed, it’s hard to see what the big deal was and thus hard to see why it wasn’t revealed earlier, if that was all there was to it.

    But, if the entire text hasn’t been revealed, wouldn’t that make JPII and BXVI liars?

  2. Boko: That is way above my pay grade. It might also depend on how the terms were defined. Still, no one can deny that there was something odd about that whole thing.

  3. dad29 says:

    ‘The Attitude’ you identify reminds me of a New Testament phrase containing the term “stiff-necked,” uttered by DNJC.


  4. marc says:

    Perhaps it seemed odd simply because the expectations of so many were entirely other than what the contents actually were? There are some people these days who see conspiracy behind every door. In any event, perhaps you might be able to write about why “there was something odd about that whole thing”? I am a ‘good’ Catholic,pray the Rosary etc but pay only superficial attention to news about, and the politics that are played out around, the centers of Marian cult.

  5. Séamas says:

    Yes, if there are smart, reliable people who believe this, I would like to hear more. I had always viewed the whole thing as just another radtrad conspiracy doctrine, but if there is really something to it, I would certainly like to know.

    I should think we’d all like to know, as it could be very important.

    As for whether the popes were liars… well, there are some complicated issues involved. Read the Catholic Encyclopedia entry about lying, and you’ll see what I mean.


    Some say that the popes didn’t lie, but used mental reservation.

  6. JWDT says:

    Wow, interesting comments, especially like the tone used in the comments…
    reminds me of a group of middle school children. Great thoughts on obedience,
    just curious Fr. will you continue the “insightful” posts for all of the
    disobedient bishops, priests, nuns, religious, etc. in the world? Sorry, that
    would fill St. Peters Basilica, maybe we should just try to clean up the United
    States, or would that be too much as well. Point is maybe you should point &
    jab at the reason the FSSPX exists rather then the ‘schismatics’, btw do you do
    the same for our separated schismatic/herectical brethren the ‘lutherans’?
    God Bless,

  7. jpsonnen says:

    father z: i have a theological question about this sspx bishops with their “spiritual bouquet.” if these bishops are in schism…then they are not in the state of grace…then they cannot receive merit/grace from their prayers, right?

  8. Henry Edwards says:

    I read the SSPX “letter to the faithful” with a feeling of great joy. Kneeling before the Blessed Sacrament last night, I added my personal pledge of Rosaries to be offered in union with the Society’s magnificent spiritual bouquet.

    I cannot claim to know precisely what all Pope Benedict should do to rectify the unfathomable mistakes made on the preceding two papal watches. But I suspect that he knows. He needs the strength – and above all, the power and the support – necessary to get it done.

    He might not need so much additional strength and power if every diocesan chancery were at least as faithful and supportive of Pope and Faith as the SSPX (however obvious its own misdirections may be). But this is far from the present situation. In my opinion, many of the Church’s worst problems stem from the fact that there’s so much more dissent and schism within it than without it. (Given an either/or choice, I personally would prefer that the SSPX be within and some of these other folks without.)

    That’s why our Holy Father needs our prayers and God’s help. Surely the SSPX spiritual bouquet will be full of grace, for him and for them and for us. How could a million Rosaries fail to be? Why should we not all add our own prayers for those intentions?

  9. jpsonnen: I don’t believe that any prayer, sincerely offered, goes unheard by God. Perhaps the act of praying will benefit those who are offering the prayers in regard to the proper attitude owed to the Successor of Peter.

  10. Henry: There is no doubt that the project is, in its basic idea, a good one. I think you put your finger on a good point, also. Prayer for the local bishops ought to be part of the plan.

Comments are closed.