Rorate Caeli

Message from the FSSPX - District of France

On the occasion of the Supreme Pontiff’s visit to our country, we pledge our unwavering commitment to the Apostolic See. We are pleased that Pope Benedict XVI comes before the Grotto on the one hundred-fiftieth anniversary of the apparitions of Lourdes - so dear to the heart of the French and indeed to all Catholics. With Chaplet and Rosary let us pray to the Blessed Virgin Mary that the successor of Peter, in this era when the government of the Church is incredibly difficult to ensure, can find in Lourdes enlightenment and strength to recognize, denounce, and eradicate conciliar errors which are in essence the cause of the crisis of the Church.

Pray that the Catholic Faith, outside which no one can be saved, be given to souls and that Christ the King reign once again over countries and societies.


Abbot Régis de Cacqueray-Valménier
Superior of the District of France

58 comments:

LeonG said...

".....to recognize, denounce, and eradicate conciliar errors which are in essence the cause of the crisis of the Church."

Amen!

A pastoral council whose paradigm shift away from Sacred Tradition and the unique authority of The Church over Sacred Scriptures has disorientated Christendom and dethroned The Saviour King from His rightful place in society.

Pray our holy father finds renewed courage & wisdom to face the enemies of the same Church within.

A Rosary for Pope Benedict XVI.

Patrick said...

That sounds like a pretty much on-side statement to me. Thank God!

Woody Jones said...

"Pray that the Catholic Faith, outside which no one can be saved, be given to souls and that Christ the King reign once again over countries and societies."

My prayer precisely.

Jordanes said...

Amen to what Woody said!

Anonymous said...

".....to recognize, denounce, and eradicate conciliar errors which are in essence the cause of the crisis of the Church."

I was under the impression that general councils were protected by infallibility under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Am I incorrect in thinking this?

Anonymous said...

".....to recognize, denounce, and eradicate conciliar errors which are in essence the cause of the crisis of the Church."

Our Lady of Fatima will have to triumph over His Holiness' heart for him to understand, and admit, the above statement.

I add my prayers for our Holy Father. May this visit to Lourdes be an occasion of extraordinary grace for him.

M.A.

schoolman said...

"...that the successor of Peter, in this era when the government of the Church is incredibly difficult to ensure, can find in Lourdes enlightenment and strength to recognize, denounce, and eradicate conciliar errors which are in essence the cause of the crisis of the Church."
++++++++++++++++++++++

The "government of the Church is incredibly difficult to ensure"? Hmmm, not sure what that is supposed to mean. There is a complete lack of humility when we assume that WE have all the answers. Notice that it is the Holy Father (not WE) who needs "enlightenment" and "strenght". It is WE who judge the council as having erred in faith and morals being the cause of the crisis, etc. I am sorry, but such an attitude in prayer reminds me of the pharisee...

Jordanes said...

I was under the impression that general councils were protected by infallibility under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Am I incorrect in thinking this?

Yes, you are incorrect. General Councils are protected and guided by the Holy Spirit, but not in such a way that all they do and teach is infallible or irreformable.

schoolman said...

Jordanes, you are assuming that non-irreformable magisterial teaching can defect from faith or morals, per se. That is not the case insofar as the reformable elements relate to the contingent order.

Jordanes said...

Schoolman said: Jordanes, you are assuming that non-irreformable magisterial teaching can defect from faith or morals, per se. That is not the case insofar as the reformable elements relate to the contingent order.

The General Council of Florence mistaught on the subject of the form and matter of diaconal ordination. That touches on faith, wouldn’t you say?

But apart from times when a General Council’s noninfallible teaching has had to be corrected, it is unquestionable that not all that a General Council teaches and does is infallible and irreformable. Conciliar documents are of varying degrees of weight, though all are authoritative and call for assent.

Anonymous said...

The Holy Ghost will protect Councils from teaching heresy,
not from pastoral errors

schoolman said...

I think you need to substantiate your claim that a general Council (Council of Florence) taught error regarding that which is irreformable in itself. Good luck with that. Incidentally, this from Michael Davies touches on your claim:

http://www.catholictradition.org/Eucharist/melchisedech-appx1.htm

schoolman said...

"The Holy Ghost will protect Councils from teaching heresy,
not from pastoral errors."
+++++++++++++++++

Dan, this is much more accurate way to put it. The magisterium can't teach heresy or defect from faith or morals, per se. On the other hand, divine assistance does not extend to each and every prudential decision. The Church can make prudential MISTAKES -- but we should never confuse this with heresy, as such.

Fr. Steve said...

Looks like now would be a good time to review the inffalable and dogmatic council of Vactican I.

Jordanes said...

Schoolman said: I think you need to substantiate your claim that a general Council (Council of Florence) taught error regarding that which is irreformable in itself. Good luck with that.

Actually you just substantiated it for me by referring to Davies. He points out that the Council of Florence, teaching non-infallibly, said something about the form and matter of ordination that was incorrect, and that was corrected by Pius XII in Sacramentum Ordinis. That proves that not all that a General Council teaches is infallible (otherwise how could Florence have been teaching non-infallibly?)

schoolman said...

Jordanes, certainly it was not irreformable because it touches on the contingent order or that which is reformable in itself. Davies states:

"With regard to the form of a Sacrament, some Catholics have mistakenly identified the form itself with a particular formula employed by the Church to express it, and have concluded that this formula cannot be changed without invalidating the Sacrament. Hence they have fallen into the error of believing that the Church has no power to make changes in the matter and form of any Sacrament, having mistakenly identified the matter and form in current usage with the substance of the Sacraments themselves, which Trent taught could not be changed.

The view that the Church can make no change in the matter and form of any Sacrament is historically indefensible."

Jordanes said...

Schoolman said: Jordanes, certainly it was not irreformable because it touches on the contingent order or that which is reformable in itself.

The point, however, is that the Council of Florence taught as if what it said about the form and matter of ordination was not a reformable matter that touches on the contingent order. But the Council was not teaching infallibly, which accounts for the Council's misteaching.

schoolman said...

Jordanes, sorry but there is absolutely nothing here to remotely support the notion that Florence defected from Faith or Morals, per se. In order to suggest otherwise you must fall back to your own interpretations -- and that is only a private opinion at the end of the day.

Jordanes said...

Jordanes, sorry but there is absolutely nothing here to remotely support the notion that Florence defected from Faith or Morals, per se. In order to suggest otherwise you must fall back to your own interpretations -- and that is only a private opinion at the end of the day.

What are you saying, then, Schoolman? That a General Council is infallible and irreformable in all that it says? For to deny what Davies affirms, that Florence was mistaken on what the necessary and irreformable form and matter of ordination are, amounts to claim that what Florence said on this question was correct and therefore infallible. If Davies is correct, then Florence, teaching non-infallibly, mistaught. Looking at what Florence had to say, I can't see how to reach any other conclusion than that Florence's non-infallible teaching on this matter is in error.

If my stance is only a private opinion, then what else but a private opinion is the stance that Florence's teaching on sacramental matter and form is not in error?

schoolman said...

Jordanes, you are confusing reformability with error. A reformable teaching does not equate to error in faith or morals, per se. It simply means that there are contingent aspects. That is why the nature of "definitions" are irreformable in themselves insofar as they abstract from all contingencies.

schoolman said...

Fr. Steve makes a good suggestion. While there are conditions to an "irreformable" teaching -- the Church, and the Apostolic See in particular, still enjoys unconditional divine assistance from falling into error in matters of faith or morals, per se. This from Vatican I:

“…in the Apostolic See the Catholic religion has always been kept undefiled, and her well-known doctrine has always been kept holy…this See of Peter remains ever free from all blemish of error, according to the divine promise of the Lord Our Savior…”

Jordanes said...

Sorry, Schoolman, I know the difference between "reformability" and "error." A teaching that is infallibly true cannot be reformed, changed from what it is to something that contradicts it. Florence, teaching non-infallibly, made incorrect statements about sacramental form and matter. That means Florence made a mistake in teaching, one that had to be, and was, reformed. But not all reformable things are erroneous per se, and the fact that the Church has changed something doesn't mean that what was before was necessarily contrary to faith and morals. The non-infallible teaching of Florence in this area, however, was contrary to the faith, and therefore was reformed.

Really, I agree with Michael Davies on this matter, but if you don't agree with him, then why did you refer to him?

Here is what Florence said about the sacrament of Holy Orders:

All these sacraments are made up of three elements: namely, things as the matter, words as the form, and the person of the minister who confers the sacrament with the intention of doing what the church does. If any of these is lacking, the sacrament is not effected.

No problem there.

The sixth is the sacrament of orders. Its matter is the object by whose handing over the order is conferred. So the priesthood is bestowed by the handing over of a chalice with wine and a paten with bread; the diaconate by the giving of the book of the gospels; the subdiaconate by the handing over of an empty chalice with an empty paten on it; and similarly for the other orders by allotting things connected with their ministry. The form for a priest is: Receive the power of offering sacrifice in the church for the living and the dead, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Well, if we accept the statement about what is needed for the valid effecting of the sacrament of ordination, then the subsequent statement would throw the apostolic succession of all the Churches into doubt. Florence says certain things must be present for validity that are not, in fact, absolutely necessary for validity, and identifies the "matter" as something that the Church says is not the "matter" of the sacrament. There is no question that what Florence says about the form and matter of Holy Orders is not accurate: it wasn't accurate at the time of the decree, but was a misexplanation of the sacrament.

Now, the statement was not infallible, nor does it touch on the question of whether or not the Church can make certain changes in a sacrament's form and matter, so it does not affect the infallibility and indefectibility of the Church that this statement was inaccurate. It does show, however, that not all that a Council teaches is infallible, nor even always correct or accurate.

Anonymous said...

OK, so let me ask. If the Church can't error in matters of faith or morals in a general council, even Vatican II, but can make pastoral mistakes, the question becomes for me of the SSPX this:

Is an error in pastoral direction grave enough to warrant the emergency ordinations of bishops against the desires of the Holy Father, in order to preserve the legitimacy of the Faith?

Jordanes said...

That question is way above my pay grade.

Confiteor said...

The SSPX claim is that the errors of Vatican II are not mere "mis-explanations" but outright defections from the Faith. It is one thing to provide an insufficient or even erroneous explanation of the matter and form of a sacrament. It is quite another to teach something that is contrary to the deposit of Faith. The latter is what the SSPX claims was done at Vatican II.

Jordanes said...

To be clear, I've never said I agree with the SSPX's stance on Vatican II (quite the contrary). I've only addressed the question of fallible conciliar teaching in the abstract.

Joe B said...

Once again, the words "striking departure", coming from the leading theologian of the church at the time, support the eligibility of VC II pastoral pronouncements for reformation, the pope having refused to grant the statement of infallibility which would have ended the debate.

schoolman said...

Jordanes, I fail to see how Florence "would throw the apostolic succession of all the Churches into doubt." I don't see how you can draw such a conclusion. Furthermore, I think your view is contradicted by what Davies has to say on the matter insofar as Florence involved certain disciplinary aspects of a particular order.

Clayton, yours is an interesting question, indeed.

Brian Day said...

You can debate the merits and/or the errors of V2 all you want, but does this FSSPX communique advance relations between the FSSPX and the Holy See? I don't think so.

Don't poke someone in the eye and then expect them to respond positively.

cdntrad said...

If I am not mistaken, Archbishop Lefebvre did not endorse the Fennyite tendency "outside the Church no one can be saved" that the District message implies.

Lefebvre said that all grace and the economy of salvation comes through the Church, regardless of your religion, and it is through the grace that the Church shares with humanity that we may be saved, whther Catholic or non-Catholic.

Maybe this is splitting hairs but is a point that many SSPX supporters need to realize.

Confiteor said...

In its (mis-)explanation of the sacrament of Ordination, did the Council of Florence INTEND to throw apostolic succession into doubt? Surely not, for then we would have to admit that the Council of Florence DEFECTED FROM THE FAITH.

In its (mis-)explanation of religious liberty, did the Second Vatican Council INTEND to throw into doubt the sovereign rights of Christ the King? Yes, quite possibly, according to the SSPX. It is a grave charge, and the accused is no less than the Vicar of Christ himself. If ever there was a case that should be proven beyond the shadow of a doubt, it is this one. To the credit of the SSPX, they've been trying hard these many years to prove their case, and often quite persuasively. At a certain point, though, one has to decide: does the case really have merit? Should the case have even been brought forward in the first place?

One could argue that the SSPX took a serious crisis and made it worse by having the audacity to put the Pope in the dock.

Jordanes said...

Schoolman said: Jordanes, I fail to see how Florence "would throw the apostolic succession of all the Churches into doubt."

Perhaps you fail to see it, but Davies saw it:

“The obvious problem was that, if the ‘tradition’ of the instruments was necessary for validity, what of all the ordinations which had taken place in the centuries prior to its introduction and of those in the Eastern rites where there was no ‘tradition’?”

Cdntrad said: If I am not mistaken, Archbishop Lefebvre did not endorse the Feeneyite tendency "outside the Church no one can be saved" that the District message implies.

The message does not imply Feeneyism. “Outside the Church no one can be saved” is infallible dogma, and Archbishop Lefebvre certainly agreed with it.

Anonymous said...

To say there is no salvation outside of the Roman Catholic Church is and always was true. It does not mean that only members of it are saved.

Pope John XXIII pronounced some
thing to the effect that "Nothing
emanating from this Council shall be binding on the conscience of men" when he convened Vatican II.
He also declared it to be only a pastoral council. It seems to have been a vehicle for much more that that. Isn't that the rub with the FSSPX? If the Pope who called the Council did't mandate the agenda that ensued, what right did
subsequent Popes have to knuckle the FSSPX into accepting It?

A.M LaPietra

Anonymous said...

Heh, heh, heh!

Yes, there can be conciliar errors. A Council is only infallible when it proposes to be infallible by an established means. The Second Vatican Council did not invoke infallibility, and, in fact, both Popes of the Council pointed out this fact in public allocutions.

There are also errors whcih are not doctrinal errors. For example, the Church has a strict duty to avoid expressive errors which might mislead souls. It is possible that certain conciliar passages are ambiguous, open both to orthdox and non-orthodox meanings. Ambiguity is an error but not a doctrinal one per se.

Still, of course, this makes clear the Society's position in a very short and effective statement: We recognise that you are the Pope, Benedict XVI, we love you, we pray for you, and we urge you to repudiate parts of the Council which we know damn well you won't repudiate.

P.K.T.P.

schoolman said...

Jordanes, can you point to any magisterial text that "corrected" Florence? Otherwise, this is simply another case of "apparent contradiction" where none exists. In other words, a clarification of what Florence DID teach and what it did NOT teach.

Jordanes said...

Pope John XXIII pronounced some
thing to the effect that "Nothing
emanating from this Council shall be binding on the conscience of men" when he convened Vatican II.


I'm not sure if it's John XXIII you're thinking of, or Paul VI. Even non-infallible teachings of the Church are to be given assent. Nevertheless, Paul VI said of Vatican II, "The magisterium of the Church did not wish to pronounce itself under the form of extraordinary dogmatic pronouncements," and, "There are those who ask what authority, what theological qualification, the Council intended to give to its teachings, knowing that it avoided issuing solemn dogmatic definitions backed by the Church's infallible teaching authority. The answer is known by those who remember the conciliar declaration of March 6, 1964, repeated on November 16, 1964. In view of the pastoral nature of the Council, it avoided proclaiming in an extraordinary manner any dogmata carrying the mark of infallibility."

Of course it is not just the extraordinary magisterium that is graced with infallibility . . .

Jordanes said...

Jordanes, can you point to any magisterial text that "corrected" Florence?

Yes. Pius XII’s Sacramentum Ordinis, as Davies mentioned.

Otherwise, this is simply another case of "apparent contradiction" where none exists. In other words, a clarification of what Florence DID teach and what it did NOT teach.

Yes, a “clarification” that corrects the erroneous wording of Florence.

Pius XII wrote, “It follows that, even according to the mind of the Council of Florence itself, the traditio instrumentorum is not required for the substance and validity of this Sacrament by the will of Our Lord Jesus Christ Himself. If it was at one time necessary even for validity by the will and command of the Church, every one knows that the Church has the power to change and abrogate what she herself has established."

The Council of Florence, of course, gave not the slightest hint whether they were talking about “necessary for validity by the will and command of the Church” or rather “required for the substance and validity of this Sacrament by the will of Our Lord Jesus Christ Himself.” All Florence says is that the form and matter of Holy Orders is “thus,” and if “thus” is not there, there is no valid sacrament: and Florence said it to a Church that did not have “thus” as part of its ordination rite. Florence’s statement was inaccurate, was faulty, which is why Pius XII corrected it, clarifying what the Council’s mind really was, which it had expressed inaccurately and inadequately.

You still have failed to establish that everything a General Council says is infallible or irreformable, Schoolman. This started out when you took issue with this correct statement of mine: “General Councils are protected and guided by the Holy Spirit, but not in such a way that all they do and teach is infallible or irreformable.” I can’t imagine why you would have a problem with the undeniable fact that not everything General Councils say and do is infallible and irreformable. I mean, do you think Jews should still wear yellow stars? You know you can't prove that every teaching and every canon and every juridical decree of a General Council is fixed forever, or is an infallible statement, so why are you playing these games?

Br. Anthony, T.O.S.F. said...

Yes, Abbot Régis de Cacqueray-Valménier is correct. Vatican II contained doctrinal errors. In addition, it contained ambiguities that for the most part have been interpreted in a manner that deviates from the traditional teaching of the Church. But what can you expect when the same theologians who supported these ambiguities were then in charge of the Council's implementation after the fact.

One who continues to try to save Vatican II as being in continuity with Tradition, after 40 years of disaster, is like a surgeon trying to save a man who has been dead for 40 years!

Br. Anthony, T.O.S.F. said...

Jordanes, you are correct. Not all statements from a general council are infallible. A statement is infallible when it declares itself to be so, for example, a statement after which comes an "anathema". However, a statement that precedes an infallible statement or that follows an infallible statement is not necessarily infallible.

Confiteor said...

Florence’s statement was inaccurate, was faulty, which is why Pius XII corrected it, clarifying what the Council’s mind really was, which it had expressed inaccurately and inadequately.

CLARIFYING WHAT THE COUNCIL'S MIND REALLY WAS. There is the key phrase.

When will the SSPX be willing to acknowledge that the Second Vatican Council's mind was something other than MODERNISM, that, in fact, the real mind of the Council was ... Traditional Catholicism?

Why can we not say about Vatican II what Jordanes has expressed so well about the Council of Florence?

LeonG said...

Gentlemen!

We can perceive with our own Roman Catholic eyes that the pastoral councils of the 1960s were certainly not infallible and were never intended to be so. Were they protected by The Holy Ghost? Once again by studying the chief indicators & their sharp exponential decline in every department of the modern church one can safely assume that Our Blessed Lord has been implementing superabundant pruning and lopping in his vineyard. Certainly the enemies that scatter in His Kingdom have been astutely exposed and we can see them for what they are.

That The Latin Mass of All Times has neither been abrogated, obrogated nor abolished and that it is returning with increased vigour to supplant the modernist liturgy of the liberals which is in total disarray, is signal of the continuity of the life of The Church established by Our Blessed Saviour. There is no liturgical defection and there is none doctrinally - the Roman Catholic inheritance is secured as Pope St Pius V and the Tridentine Councils infallibly guaranteed to us in perpetuity.

SSPX are right to resist the liberal revisionists of The Faith at The Councils. Many of them were led by their overriding masonic principles; some by their closet communist empathies and others by their sheer myopic utopian socialism. The liberalising modernists did the rest for these.

I pray daily for a reversal of the disastrous paradigm shift of those Councils towards evolutionist pseudo-dogma and minimalising protestantism. Fr Paul Marx OSB is absolutely correct when he states, "the [catholic] church is in total chaos". The Councils provided the open door for this and the NO liturgy the conduit for the anarchy that prevails. Look, therefore, to The Latin Mass of All Times and the consistent teachings of The Roman Catholic Church because they are still alive and guide us to the truth. Thanks be to God!

Anonymous said...

Confetior;

"Why can we not say about Vatican II what Jordanes has expressed so well about the Council of Florence?"

The facts don't bode well for V2.The tree and its fruit are rotten. Cut it down and burn it.

The mind of Florence was keeping with the faith of our Fathers. V2 was a substantial and deliberate break (as said by the drafters).

Please re-read the first post by leong in this thread and consider the historical facts.

-Jerry

John McFarland said...

P.K.T.P. was good enough to offer the following epitome of the SSPX view:

"We recognise that you are the Pope, Benedict XVI, we love you, we pray for you, and we urge you to repudiate parts of the Council which we know damn well you won't repudiate."

Now P.K.T.P. is not of the faithful of the SSPX. So: is the problem with what the SSPX is asking the Pope to repudiate, or with the judgment that the Pope will never repudiate it?

If the former, then P.K.T.P. believes the conciliar line: the SSPX has a faulty interpretation of the documents of the Council, and/or a faulty understanding of the meaning of tradition in the Church.

If the latter, then what can the SSPX do but keep doing but what it is doing, as long as it believes that the doctrines in question -- religious freedom, collegiality, ecumenism, above all -- require repudiation? If the Pope surprises the SSPX, then they will gladly return to "full communion." But why should they --indeed, how can they in good conscience -- put themselves in the hands of a Pope who in their judgment is teaching a gospel other than that handed down to us?

My own guess, based on remarks here and in his own blog, is that P.K.T.P. thinks that the Pope's attitude toward the 1962 missal either reflects a tendency toward tradition that is not otherwise evident in his magisterium or conduct, or can somehow be used to generate a sort of religious momentum that will sweep the Church back to doctrinal traditon.

But I suppose that the best bet is to ask P.K.T.P. to explain himself for himself.

P.S. "It is POSSIBLE that some conciliar passages are ambiguous." [capitalization mine]

Come now, sir.

Anonymous said...

Confetior,

Furthermore read Fr. Harrison article in the Remnant about the underhanded ways traditional voices were silenced during the conclave.

Also, check out the new article in Zenit where Pope Benedict praises Paul VI on the occasion of 30 anniversary of his death.

Compare and discern. The agenda is apparent.

Anonymous said...

On Jordane's closing satement: it is not just the extraordinary Magisterium which is graced with infallibility.

A Council which does not invoke infallibility is only infallible where is repeats teaching which is already infallible, which, the words of St. Vincent of Lérins, has been held by all everywhere at all times.

This obviously cannot apply to scandalous teachings such as those set forth in Dignitatis Humanæ.

It is true that there is an ordinary duty to accept non-infallible teachings but this 'submission of the mind and will' is less than an interior assent.

P.K.T.P.

Anonymous said...

Wow, strong statement. Yet calm. That's more of what we need to hear!

Jordanes said...

It is true that there is an ordinary duty to accept non-infallible teachings but this 'submission of the mind and will' is less than an interior assent.

Yes, you're right. I was confusing and conflating submission with assent. Sorry about that.

Dignitatis Humanae is authoritative, but the Church has never said it is infallible (except where it repeats prior teaching already infallible, as you said).

Jordanes said...

Jerry said: The facts don't bode well for V2.The tree and its fruit are rotten. Cut it down and burn it.

Don't hold your breath waiting for that to happen. The Church doesn't repudiate General Councils that were lawfully convened and whose proceedings and decrees were duly and properly ratified by the Vicar of Christ.

Dan Hunter said...

"Don't hold your breath waiting for that to happen... "Don't hold your breath waiting for that to happen. The Church doesn't repudiate General Councils that were convened and whose proceedings and decrees were ratified by the Vicar of Christ"

Wasn't the second Council of Constantinople [or was it Chalcedon] repudiated for its condemnation of the three chapters?

Jordanes said...

Wasn't the second Council of Constantinople [or was it Chalcedon] repudiated for its condemnation of the three chapters?

Dan, I had to edit my comment to make clearer what I was getting at --- see the my revision above. No, neither Chalcedon nor Constantinople II were ever repudiated --- absolutely not Chalcedon, which approved the Tome of Leo and gave us the infallible definition of the Two Natures. There were irregularities associated with Constantinople II, however, not to mention a great deal of misunderstanding of what the Three Chapters controversy was really about, such that not everything said and done by that council was of an infallible or binding character. The council itself, however, has never been repudiated (which is a good thing, as otherwise the Origenist error of apocatastasis, a form of universal salvation anathematised at Constantinople II, would not be definitively condemned by the Church).

Paul Haley said...

Were there "conciliar errors" or was the Second Vatican Council misinterpreted? Was it an error to silence Cardinal Ottaviani by turning off his microphone as he attempted to defend Tradition in his opening remarks? Was it an error to invite protestant "observers" to the most delicate and deliberative sessions of the council? Was that invitation an error that gave the wrong impression to Catholics and also protestants throughout the world? Was it an error that the documents were ambiguous on purpose so that they could be viewed one way by the modernist factions and another way by the traditionalists? Was it an error that the council did not specifically declare what was being infallibly proclaimed, if, indeed there was that intent in any of the documents?

Paul VI said the council avoided making infallible proclamations and he ought to have known. The council was eminently pastoral in nature - that much we know but was it the work of the holy spirit or a group of men that thought they were being directed by the holy spirit? Can reasonable men disagree on this matter?

There's an old saying that the proof of the pudding is in the eating and my analytical mind says the evidence in terms of statistics of the Faith since 1965 shows a steady erosion of Catholic Faith and practice. The big question to me, therefore, is how to correct these trends and I submit that we need the FSSPX fully in partnership with the holy father to accomplish same.

The time has long since come to vacate the suspension and excommunications levied against the Society, providing the juridical structure for them to work within the church. It's also long since time for serious doctrinal discussions between them and the Holy See. And, not only discussion, but real measures need to be developed to stop the erosion of the catholic faith throughout the world.

cdntrad said...

All salvation comes through the Church, but does not mean salvation is reserved for explicit members of the Church alone.

Confiteor said...

But why should they --indeed, how can they in good conscience -- put themselves in the hands of a Pope who in their judgment is teaching a gospel other than that handed down to us?

Do you really believe that the Holy Spirit would give us a Pope into whose hands we should fear to put ourselves?

Or perhaps you believe that the Holy Spirit did not give us this Pope.

Joe B said...

Lest we forget, there is a theological category called "degrees of certitude" which come into play on all statements which do not fall into the rare air of infallibility. I believe all of the contents of VC II would fall into that category, save those things previously declared to be infallible.

Anonymous said...

Confiteor,

Quoting: "Do you really believe that the Holy Spirit would give us a Pope into whose hands we should fear to put ourselves?

Or perhaps you believe that the Holy Spirit did not give us this Pope."

Check into some history. We have had heretical popes in the past, validly elected popes no less. The history of the V2 counsel reveals some disheartening events leading up to, during and most certainly after the deformation.

God has given us weak popes of late. Why is that? Me thinks we are being punished. Revelation and Catholic prophecy tells us what season we are in.

Or perhaps you believe that the Holy Spirit asks us for blind obedience?

It is good we are debating the levels of infallibility, certitude and even culpability. I am learning much. I hope and pray the current pontificate would do the same as requested by so many.

- Jerry

Confiteor said...

Jerry,

I believe that the good Lord asks us to put our trust in the man whom He has chosen to feed His sheep. Does that mean that we are to agree with everything that the Pope says? Does it mean that we should obey the Pope even if it means acting against our conscience? No. It does mean, however, that we should recognize that Christ is with Peter, even if Peter is weak, even if Peter says things that make us roll our eyes in dismay. It means that when Peter extends his paternal hand and says "Come", we should not recoil as if he is some sort of moral leper. We should go to him, with profound humility.

St. Catherine Siena, who knew better than we how weak a Pope can be, said that even the most wicked Pope is still "sweet Christ on earth". Is Christ with Peter or not? Do we trust Christ enough to take Peter by the hand and let him lead us?

Anonymous said...

Confiteor,

Quoting: "It means that when Peter extends his paternal hand and says "Come", we should not recoil as if he is some sort of moral leper. We should go to him, with profound humility."

And so we go to him and are greeted with ambiguity. I remain confused.

On the one hand I don't want to risk going to hell by not obeying the pope. On the other hand I don't want to go to hell by obeying the pope.

I have no resolve on "Proper obedience", though the SSPX argument looks more reassuring all the time.

E.g. St. Thomas Aquinas, says to stick to the deposit of faith as handed down. If a pope teaches contrary, don't follow him.

I don't know enough about St. Catherine and can not comment. Perhaps she did not have to be concerned about the sacraments per se.

Your admonition applies happily to the situation with the FSSP (where I currently attend). No ruffled feathers, traditional sacraments and NO all in one. The price we pay is silence and acceptance of the innovations.

Consider also , I am a member of a third order where things are 'progressive'. I was told there is no place in the order for me as a Traditional Catholic. This is after the SP.

I am in limbo. My FSSP priest confessor said leave the order if they are lax. Are they lax? They are faithful to the NO and revisionist agenda c/with the popes blessing. I don't fit it but gave a life long profession.

Funny, before becoming traditional I was always searching for spiritual nourishment. I did not find it in the order and even looked outside the Church (God forgive me).

I take comfort in the Rosary, traditional office, prayers, penances and sacraments. I don't like sharing the altar with the NO table.

A season of discernment.

- Jerry

Anonymous said...

On Mr. McFarland's comments:

I suggest that Mr. McFarland is engaging in overinterpretation. I was merely explaining that the Society statement here very economically and directly explains the Society position.

The S.S.P.X commends the Pope for some things and recognises his authority. However, the S.S.P.X is asking the Pope to repudiate conciliar teachings which it knows damn well he won't repudiate.

Why won't the Pope repudiate them? It is because this would amount to an admission that the Council was seriously flawed. The Pope cannot easily or directly make such an admission without undermining his own authority, since he was among the leading periti. If it is to be done, it must be done gradually and indirectly.

The bishops of the world won't tolerate such an admission owing, in most cases, to their pride. The ageing leaders among them, in particular, implemented these errors and are therefore forever associated with them. The Pope does not want a rebellion from his bishops because this would divide the church, and such division might lead souls astray; it might even lose sould (and the salvation of souls is the highest law). He wishes to make the correction slowly, therefore, and most of it will be made by his successors.

The hardliners in the S.S.P.X know all of this, and they don't want a reconciliation until Conciliar Rome has surrendered to them publicly and openly. They want the 5,000 bishops of Conciliar Rome to surrender and apologise to the four bishops of Eternal Rome. By insisting on this course, which they know damn well won't be conceded, they ensure their own continuing indedpendence. It protects them.

The problem, however, is that S.P. does not protect them; it threatens them. Had S.P. led to a landslide or a deluge in favour of traditon, the S.S.P.X would have won now, in our time. Instead, S.P. is assuring a slow and gradual restoration. But this restoration, however slow, is fast enough to put Society chapels out of business. According to my research, that is starting to happen. I am not predicting a sudden collapse of the Society. By no means. Rather, I see a gradual decline which will quicken after a certain critical point. Most traditionalists (however honestly mistaken they might be) would rather have tradition blessed by the Pope than tradition not blessed by him.

I sympathise very much with the Society position but contend that now is the time for a juridical rapprochement, during which time doctrinal discussions may ensue. The doctrinal problems will take time to resolve, mainly for political and personal reasons. The Society has the correct doctrinal positions but Rome feels that she cannot afford to admit this, and that doing so quickly would violate the principle of proportionality: if the salvation of souls is the highest law, actions which might confuse and mislead the faithful need to be implemented gradually.

Some hardliners in the Society are just honest men who will not compromise on principle; others, I suspect, are more concerned about protecting their turf. But both of these groups need to consider the longer-term effects of "Summorum Pontificum". The Church needs the S.S.P.X. At this point in time, a reconciled Society would be far more effective than a disobedient one. Moreover, there is no longer a case for a state of necessity. The Society is morally bound at least to discuss juridical possibiities. If Rome really is offering it an exempt international apostolic administration or other particular church, this would protect it. Once again, rightful disobedience is a reaction to necessity, not convenience.

P.K.T.P.