Rorate Caeli

Bishop Fellay to Rome: "We are ready."

A guest-post by Côme de Prévigny

These words truly belong to Bishop Fellay. They were pronounced in Winona, Minnesota, on February 2, on the occasion of the conferral of the cassocks in the American seminary of the Society of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX). Do they summarize the entire thinking of the Superior General of the Society of Saint Pius X? In any event, not less than all those that were used, distorted or taken from their context, by some journalists who impatiently picked the headlines "The failure of the negotiations", or still, "We could not go further in the confusion". Moved by a growing panic as news of the regularization of the Fraternity move closer in time, Progressives and Sedevacantists now advance hand in hand, the first not even hesitating to quote the second. "From enemies that they were, they were made friends," says Holy Writ.

The truth is that Bishop Fellay has done nothing else than repeating what he said in Écône last December 8. The Society will not sign the preamble as it was presented on September 14 by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. At the same time, he recalls that the work of Archbishop Lefebvre cannot be conceived separated from the Apostolic See: "We are not an independent group. Even if we are fighting with Rome, we are still, so to say, with Rome." There is found the entire attitude of Abp. Lefebvre, who went to Rome whenever he was called. Without fleeing when faced with traps, he preferred to discern them with prudence, he moved forward, as usual, by asking for evident signs from above. What mattered to the Archbishop, on the one hand, was to proclaim the faith, as it had been professed throughout the centuries, and, on the other, to keep relations with the Roman Curia, recalling that the solution would come from Rome. He distinguished with the same care the search for a regularization, a matter of prudence, from the proclamation of the faith, a matter of principle. As long as the latter is put in grave danger by a canonical regulation, it has priority over the juridical questions. The day in which the Superior judges this proclamation possible in a legal order, then it might be dangerous to neglect those souls hesitating to come hither for fear of censure.

In the past few days, eminent Cardinals have studied, it is said, the response delivered by the Society of Saint Pius X. Germans, Frenchmen, or Swiss, these high prelates are not considered to be an Areopagus that is indulgent towards the defenders of the Traditional Mass and catechism. It was actually despite their negative opinions that Benedict XVI took the decision to free the Traditional Missal and to revoke the censures weighing on the Bishops consecrated in 1988. Why would the pope suddenly act in a different manner? Mentioning Abp. Lefebvre, the Superior General of the SSPX merely indicated his availability: "if you accept us as is, without change, without obliging us to accept these things, then we are ready." The ball is on Rome's court, where the Pope has powers that are  much more extensive than Bp. Fellay, because he can, simply with his signature, confer the widest prerogatives to the work directed by the Swiss prelate from the Valais. He can eventually acknowledge this recent thesis that defended, in Rome, that, "the authority of the magisterium of Vatican II is that of a homily in the 1960s." Had not he himself affirmed that the Council "deliberately chose to remain on a modest level, as a merely pastoral council"?


  1. [VII]...deliberately chose to remain on a modest level, as a merely pastoral council

    Indeed! And didn't the same man say:

    What happened after the Council was something else entirely: in the place of liturgy as the fruit of development came fabricated liturgy. We abandoned the organic, living process of growth and development over the centuries, and replaced it--as in a manufacturing process--with a fabrication, a banal on- the-spot product.

  2. What willing and perfect obedience!

    The canonical structure is soon.

  3. Ted Maysfield6:56 PM

    Your report and a media report I saw ( ) are at odds. In the media report Bishop Fellay asserts his Protestant refusal to obey the highest earthly authority in the Church:

    The head of the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) has indicated that the traditionalist group remains at odds with the Vatican on key issues regarding the teachings of Vatican II.

    In a sermon delivered on February 2 at St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary, Bishop Bernard Fellay said that the unresolved issue in talks between the SSPX and Rome is the Vatican’s insistence that the traditionalists accept the authority of the Council. “And practically, at many levels, we have to say no,” he said. Bishop Fellay elaborated:

    The key problem in our discussions with Rome was really the Magisterium, the teaching of the Church. Because they say, "we are the pope, we are the Holy See" – and we say, yes. And so they say, "we have the supreme power," and we say, yes. They say, "we are the last instance in teaching and we are necessary" – Rome is necessary for us to have the Faith, and we say, yes. And then they say, "then, obey." And we say, no.

  4. We shall see the FSSPX regularised very soon now.
    Much prayer and scrifice will pay off soon.

  5. No, they are not at odds. Catholic Culture, following some distorters in the Italian media and also in some English-speaking blogs, is WRONG. Not merely mistaken, but wrong.

    We are right: it was never supposed to be seen as a no to the Holy See. Let us give the Bishop, and the Vatican negotiators, some credit: after all these years of negotiations, instead of saying no to the face and directly, he would say no in a sermon thousands of miles away?...

    And Côme de Prévigny, our guest, presents his editorial view on the matter - which appears to be as close to the essence of the matter as one can possibly get.

    "He who has ears to hear, let him hear."


  6. Francis7:05 PM

    We all know there will be a negative reaction from the enemies of Our Lord and of His Catholic Church if and when the FSSPX becomes in "full communion" with Rome. The talmudists will be of course the most vocal, the leftists and liberals inside and outside of the Church will be a close second along with the secular and Christophobic "main stream" media. Satan and his minions will slowly be driven out of the Church through the Vatican II gateway while tradition and orthodoxy will slowly return in the Church with the help of the SSPX.

  7. Confusius7:09 PM

    Reconciliation is on the way. And the Church will be all the stronger and purer thanks to it. But the wolves are circling so we must not cease to pray. The attacks on the Holy Father when he grants canonical recognition to the SSPX will be ferocious, the big guns will start booming from Tel Aviv to Berlin and Washington. But the world will see that Benedict XVI is a shepherd of courage and justice. St Peter, pray for us!

  8. I am praying with such heatfelt longing. Yet I cannot see one stumbling block being surmounted. How can the Pope accept as is a society that thinks that himself and all juridically established the Catholics bishops save one throughout the world are constantly participation in a Mass that amounts to poisoned soup? Would the society admit that it is not intrinsically a near occasion of sin to attend the Novus Ordo or that the Mass of the Pope may be pleasing to God? This seems unlikely. My hopes can't get too high until I understand how a solution to this is possible.

  9. He can eventually acknowledge this recent thesis that defended, in Rome, that, " the authority of the magisterium of Vatican II is that of a homily in the 1960s."

    No, this will never happen. The Holy See will hold to the definitions given in Donum Veritatis. Vatican II pronouncements demand obsequium religiosum... it is perfectly possible to disagree with the concept of religious liberty as formulated in DH, as it isn't a de fide teaching. But still, one has to "will not to dissent", have a "religious respect" towards the authority which taught the doctrine in question.

    But the problem is that the SSPX accuses the council of heresy, and that is an extremely serious accusation. If they said "Yes, we acknowledge DH as a valid act of the magisterium but we can not accept it in conscience because we think it is wrong, we hold to the concept of toleration as expressed by Leo XIII", then there would be no problem.

    But they go further an say that DH is heresy against previous magisterial pronouncements. Well, that is something which must be demonstrated using methodology of dogmatic theology and meeting the highest standards of theological rigor. Father Gleize's text is very far from being a serious defense of the SSPX positions.

    May I mention professor Thomas Pink's paper regarding religious liberty one more time? Sorry to bother you again and again with it, but that is the theologigal level both the SSPX and the Holy See should be aiming for.

  10. Ivan K7:19 PM

    I pray that this analysis is true and that the situation is resolved soon. There are, I suspect, many in the Vatican who would be happy to see this drag on up to the point when the Holy Father is no longer capable of signing the papers--which, let us be realistic, could happen soon and suddenly given the Holy Father's age.

  11. Ligusticus7:19 PM

    Rome, please choose.

    Aut Schüller, aut Fellay : tertium non datur.

  12. Ivan K7:26 PM


    The same question can be asked of all the bishops and priests who are refusing to implement summorum pontificum. How many of them view the TLM as 'poisoned soup'? Think of all of the calumnies against tradition that have been standard fare for the fully regularized Novus Ordo Catholic. Yes, this is a 'tu quoque' argument, but in this case it is relevant. We are living in a time of deep division in the Church, and it's not just the SSPX who think that both Vatican II and the Novus Ordo are poisoned soup. Given the orgy of wanton destruction of churches, altars, vestments, etc. that occurred as a result of the Novus Ordo, 'poisoned soup' is not the worst that could be said about it. Yes, yes, I know: that was all 'misinterpretation.' But how can we honestly call an event 'misinterpretation' when it is the norm--when the majority of priests, bishops, seminaries are using the full force of their authority to implement it?

  13. Presbyter7:37 PM

    It is very clear that things are at a critical juncture, and could go either way.

    This is not a time for speculation, but for prayer and fasting.

    Oremus, jejunemus. Ut unum sint!

  14. Ivan K7:39 PM

    @ElErmita 'has to "will not to dissent", have a "religious respect" towards the authority which taught the doctrine in question'

    I'll assume that it is true that the SSPX have said that DH includes heretical propositions. Why would the claim that it does amount to a lack of respect for religious authority?

    Let's suppose that a priest says something heretical in a homily. Would it be a lack of respect for religious authority to point out that what he has said is heretical? Is the person who points that out showing disrespect for the office of priest? I doubt it.

  15. Is Bishop Fellay floundering or grasping to find No, No for the SSPX ultimate response? The status-quo may suit him for now.

    St Petersburg, Fl

  16. The guest posts by Come de Previgny have been much appreciated. Can any information on the writer's location, position and background be provided?

  17. Ivan K7:47 PM

    Perhaps the SSPX should use a Vatican II document to support their case. Take the following excerpt from Unitatis Redintegratio:
    ‘On the other hand, the separate Communities have sometimes developed certain aspects of the revealed truth better, so that in the situation of division, the Catholic Church cannot fully and concretely develop her own catholicity…"

    It's possible, therefore, that the 'separated' SSPX developed doctrine better than the 'fully regularized' clerics.

    THis proposal is tongue-in-cheek, of course, but it is interesting how paradoxical and contradictory are some of the utterances of Vatican II. Maybe that is why the Holy Father said the following: "not every valid council in the history of the Church has been a fruitful one; in the last analysis many of them have been just a waste of time."

  18. P.K.T.P.7:56 PM

    When distinguishing between common S.S.P.X thinking and official S.S.P.X positions, we must keep in mind that the S.S.P.X has no Magisterium. Therefore, the official positions of the Society, in their detail, may, in some cases, be not yet formulated exactly. They can only be known when the Society identifies them exactly and officially.

    On the 'submission of mind and will', there are standard accepted degrees of this, and Rome could permit a certain latitude in making a doctrine open to discussion within due parameters, avoiding all polemics. I don't see that as an insurmountable problem.

    On a more practical level, the problem may be the division caused within the S.S.P.X even by an arrangement. If Bishop Fellay responds to a recognition of canonical status (e.g. by a thank-you letter), or if he accepts a larger canonical structure (e.g. an international and personal diocese or ordinariate), some Society members will leave. Even when he said 'thank you' for the 2009 lifting of the decree of excommunication, two or six Society priests walked out--over just that.

    I cannot, at this point, see a doctrinal agreement or even an agreement over the principles and criteria of doctrinal interpretation. It is 'contra-indicated', to borrow medical jargon. To make an arrangment possible, the Pope will have to take some unilateral action to recognise the Society and then to 'upgrade' its status under the 1983 Code. He could do this on the grounds that the Society's positions are not sufficient to place it beyond communion with the Holy See. There would need to be an agreement for ongoing discussion on doctrine, I should think.

    Only prayer can make this work. The two sides are too far apart to make it humanly possible. The real problem is that the revolutinoaries in the Church in the 1960s and 1970s were Protestant through and through in their theology, and they had a profound affect--afflict--on Holy Church.


  19. Joseph8:18 PM

    Ivan K.,

    Certainly you are aware that the vast majority of bishops and priests don't know the TLM. So, it is hardly a case they view the TLM as poison in the same sense that the SSPX regards the Novus Ordo. More likely it is indifference or ignorance.
    The next step, beyond making the TLM available in every diocese, is to ensure that it is taught, at least as an option, in every Latin Rite seminary in the world. This will take many years to fix.

  20. @El Eremita: But the problem is that the SSPX accuses the council of heresy, and that is an extremely serious accusation.

    You are absolutely correct, it is an "extremely serious accusation."

    As Catholics, nothing is more serious than Heresy, and losing our souls. I don't care if I live five seconds or five hundred years if I can save my soul. Losing one's life is inconsequential compared to one losing their soul for all eternity.

    But here is what a major theologian within the Vatican has to say on the matter:

    "In all truth Modernism hid itself under the cloak of Vatican II's hermeneutic...The new rite of Holy Mass practically silenced the nature of sacrifice making of it an occasion for gathering together the people of God...the eucharistic gathering was given the mere sense of sharing a meal together...After having said all of this about Vatican II, if someone were to ask me if, in the final analysis, the modernist corruption had hidden itself within the Council documents themselves, and if the Fathers themselves were more or less infected, I would have to respond both yes and no...But yes as well, because not a few pages of the conciliar documents reek of the writings and ideas of Modernism--this can be seen above all in GS." Msgr. Gherardini, Vatican Council II, a Much Needed Discussion.

    Who with eyes to see with can't say we're in a crisis of Modernism in the Church?

  21. Ivan K.9:57 PM


    I disagree. The problem isn't just that bishops don't know the TLM. Many--the vast majority, it seems--are actively blockading the EF and censuring priests who express an interest in celebrating it. That happened recently in my Archdiocese. The Archbishop has a reputation for orthodoxy and has made efforts to improve the celebration of the Novus Ordo in the Cathedral. All the same, he made life very uncomfortable for a priest in the archdiocese who chose to celebrate the TLM. According to that Archbishop, there is already one TLM parish, and the archdiocese doesn't need more TLMs. So, yes, I would say that that Archbishop treats the TLM as if it is a 'poison' that needs to be contained. Unfortunately, that attitude is still the norm among bishops.

  22. Tradical10:43 PM

    Hi El Eremita,

    "... Vatican II is that of a homily in the 1960s.
    No, this will never happen. The Holy See will hold to the definitions ..."

    Never is a very definitive word. Many thought the same about many of the actions of various Pontiffs.

    Why should this 'never' not occur?

    What do you fear if the Pope were to perform such an action as nullifying (explicitly or implicitly) the patrimony of V2?

    If the Pope did perform such an action ... what would be your response?

  23. @Ivan K,

    That's not what I said. On one hand, anybody can dissent from non-definitive teaching as long as the obsequium religiosum is given, as it isn't binding in concience. But heresy isn't non-definitive teaching... heresy is heresy.

    But the SSPX still hasn't demonstrated the heretical nature of the teachings they reject... so they either accept DH as "authentic magisterium" while resepectfully dissenting from it (here we will have two opposing but valid theological theories) or they demonstrate that DH is heresy. They can't just say "that is not traditional" or "that contradicts this and that document" or "that's modernist", they have to demonstrate it using the methodology of dogmatic theology. Again, read Donum Veritatis regarding theological dissent.

    @Knight of Malta,

    I don't deny what Gherardini says, but such perspective won't help to solve a single problem (much less the whole crisis). If theologians want to help in this, then they should narrow the discussion to the particular problems (even better, the particular theological propositions), instead of making such broad statements like "Vatican II brought a modernist crisis". We've all already figured that out by ourselves I think.

  24. flannery11:12 PM

    The mark of a saint is obedience. The sspx and the fssp are not obedient to the living Magisterium. They may or may not be evil, but they are not saints.

    These protestants need our prayers, but we don't need them in the church until they put aside their stubborn pride and humbly obey the Vicar of Christ.

  25. Anonymous11:17 PM

    Flannery, while the SSPX are in an irregular position, the FSSP is in perfect communion. This pope erected their order. So do some studying before you make your accusations.

  26. Tradical11:56 PM


    For the sake of argument let's say the SSPX is correct about V2.

    In this scenario Neo-Modernistic heresy is rampant in the Church from the lowliest pastor to the upper echelons of the Vatican - perhaps even the Pope is tainted or ineffective in containing the rebellious priests and Bishops.

    These same Bishops are trying to stop the work of one of the few Bishops not in league wit them.

    These Bishops convince the Pope that he should suppress the congregation and a later Pontiff is convinced to excommunicate the Bishop.

    In this case, with the faithful crying to this Bishop for priests and sacraments untainted by the heresy, what is this Bishop to do?

    I'm looking forward to the insight your answer will provide.


  27. Ivan K12:33 AM

    El Ermita,

    Fr. Gleize articulates the SSPX position and he does not use the word 'heresy.' The claim is that no. 2 of DH contradicts 'the teachings of Gregory XVI in Mirari vos and of Pius IX in Quanta cura as well as those of Pope Leo XIII in Immortale Dei and those of Pope Pius XI in Quas primas.' In other words, there is a contradiction. Whether or not there is a contradiction should be open to discussion, especially when even the Holy Father has said that Vatican II was pastoral in character.

    DH cannot possibly be understood, in its totality, to be part of the infallible teaching of the Church because of its hyperbolic, imprecise language and its political character. It demands, for example, that 'the right of the human person to religious freedom is to be recognized in the constitutional law whereby society is governed and thus it is to become a civil right.' Really? Does that mean that any state that protects religious freedom but has not encoded it in the constitution is in violation of Church teaching?

    Here is a hyperbolic passage from DH2: 'the right to this immunity [from interference with religious freedom] continues to exist even in those who do not live up to their obligation of seeking the truth and adhering to it and the exercise of this right is not to be impeded, provided that just public order be observed.'

    Really? So if a state were to have laws restricting the right of a satanic cult to sacrifice chickens to the devil they would be in violation of the infallible teaching of the Church? Would a statesman who gives such an order be excommunicated?

    How far must a state go in promoting this 'fundamental human right'? Ought it to to subsidize private satanic schools? Should 'Satan day' be a public holiday? etc. etc.

    So you see DH is hardly immune to criticism; in fact, its over-the-top and imprecise language invites criticism.

    I'm not accusing the autheors of DH of heresy. I'm accusing them of foolishness.

  28. JTLiuzza12:46 AM

    Hurling the slander "protestant" at the SSPX is difficult to understand.

    If you go back to just 1950, not 500 years ago, and give a faithful Catholic soul, a good Priest perhaps, a glimpse at the present state of affairs, where would he find the protestants in the Church?

    We're not the first souls in the Church militant to be living through a period of great heresy.

    When the SSPX are regularized, the wailing and gnashing of teeth will be something to behold. I'm still in my forties so hopefully I'll be around to see it.

  29. THE

    Freezing dark
    Wrapped gray chapel
    In a foggy-cold.

    But warm inside
    Yellow candles spark
    In the brilliance
    Of the Monstrance bold.

    A distinctive nature
    Knelt in prayer
    A Bishop cast
    In Our Lord’s own mold.

    He’d never admit –
    Would never dare –
    “Just pray for me.”
    He’d scold.

    But this is a man
    A true Catholic Shepherd
    An Alter Christus
    To behold.

    And he will not hunt you
    Like a devouring leopard -
    But lure
    With his Fisherman’s Gold!

  30. Ivan K12:54 AM

    El Ermita,

    Please read the following passage from Gregory XVI's Mirari Vos and please explain how it is NOT in direct logical conflict with no. 2 of Dignitatis Humanae:

    "14. This shameful font of indifferentism gives rise to that absurd and erroneous proposition which claims that liberty of conscience must be maintained for everyone. It spreads ruin in sacred and civil affairs, though some repeat over and over again with the greatest impudence that some advantage accrues to religion from it. "But the death of the soul is worse than freedom of error," as Augustine was wont to say.[21] When all restraints are removed by which men are kept on the narrow path of truth, their nature, which is already inclined to evil, propels them to ruin. Then truly "the bottomless pit"[22] is open from which John saw smoke ascending which obscured the sun, and out of which locusts flew forth to devastate the earth. Thence comes transformation of minds, corruption of youths, contempt of sacred things and holy laws -- in other words, a pestilence more deadly to the state than any other. Experience shows, even from earliest times, that cities renowned for wealth, dominion, and glory perished as a result of this single evil, namely immoderate freedom of opinion, license of free speech, and desire for novelty."

  31. Sorry, there were several typos in the original wording - I have just corrected them.


  32. I see now that the same Italian media who just yesterday (Friday) were proclaiming that the Bishop's sermon meant a final no, are now, based on the same sermon, saying that, "the door is not closed". Well, well... What a surprise! We were right all along? Naturally, we see things as they are, not as we want them to be. Yes, the sermon was stern, but it was positive. Côme de Prévigny's guest comment explores this even further.


  33. @PKTP: Only prayer can make this work

    Truer words were never said!

    I think this year is going to be a tough year. But God gloriously rose his son from the horror of his death, making "all things new."

    The Poet-Priest, Gerard Manley Hopkins also wrote:

    ...Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
    And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
    And wears man’s smudge and shares man’s smell: the soil
    Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.
    And for all this, nature is never spent...

    Never taking anything for granted, we must roll-up our sleeves, and toil-on!

    Having FSSPX fully integrated into the Church would be an adrenaline shock to the betterment of the Church!

  34. Thomas M.4:32 AM

    What glorious news. A glimmering ray of hope. Let us all pray that this will succeed. May God see it done.

  35. @Ivan K,

    First of all, if you are really interested in the subject of religious liberty, I suggest you to read this.

    Meanwhile, let me tell you that in order to determine that there is a contradiction between two theological propositions, you need to establish that both refer to the same object/have the same subject-matter. Here you have the first problem: both Mirari Vos and Dignitatis Humanae teach about something which is called "religious liberty", but the truth is that the meaning of this term is different in each text. In Mirari Vos, "liberty of conscience" designates a lack of obligations towards the Truth; in DH, it designates a right to not be coerced by the state in religious matters.

    Expressed in negative sense: DH teaches that the State has no authority (by itself) to exercise coercion on religious matters. Mirari Vos condemns the proposition that human beings have no obligations towards the Truth.

    By now you should know that DH says about itself that "it leaves untouched traditional Catholic doctrine on the moral duty of men and societies toward the true religion and toward the one Church of Christ." Furthermore, DH also leaves untouched the previous doctrine regarding the coercitive authority of the Church... which was even confirmed in our present Code of Canon Law. (Can. 1312 §2: The law may determine other expiatory penalties which deprive a member of Christ's faithful of some spiritual or temporal good, and are consistent with the Church's supernatural purpose.) So, if there is a contradiction it is less than obvious, except for the similar terms being used to refer to different things.

    If you can demonstrate that somewhere, some Pope or council taught in a definitive way that the State has an intrinsic authority to use coercion in religious matters (your best bet would be Quanta Cura), then yes, DH would be heresy. But that would make Leo XIII's Immortale Dei a "close to heresy" pronouncement, for it says:

    "Whatever, therefore in things human is of a sacred character, whatever belongs either of its own nature or by reason of the end to which it is referred, to the salvation of souls, or to the worship of God, is subject to the power and judgment of the Church. Whatever is to be ranged under the civil and political order is rightly subject to the civil authority. Jesus Christ has Himself given command that what is Caesar's is to be rendered to Caesar, and that what belongs to God is to be rendered to God."

    Such pronouncement would also make a heretic of Suarez:

    Punishment of crimes only belongs to civil magistrates in so far as those crimes are contrary to political ends, public peace and human justice; but coercion with respect to those deeds which are opposed to religion and to the salvation of the soul, is essentially a function of spiritual power, so that the authority to make use of temporal penalties for the purposes of such correction must have be allotted in particular to this spiritual power. (quote extracted from the paper I linked before).

    You will be amazed to know that Suarez's view was the common teaching from Trent to Mirari Vos. Please, read the paper that I linked, and even if you don't agree with the author's conclusions, you will see that the theological issue of religious liberty is much, much more complicated than what most traditionalists think.


  36. This gives great hope over the way the last article was presented by the nay-sayers.

    What is interesting is the way Sacrosanctum Concilium is treated by liberals in the same way Summorum Pontificum is treated, complete disdain and lack of regard. The demanded assent to Vatican II is only for the nonsense the liberals want. Anything which actually gives ground to Tradition is soundly disregarded with conniption fits and mud-slinging. This is evident over the past forty years.

    We can only hope and pray things will resolve themselves for the sake of Tradition. Am I wrong in thinking this is the last great battle for Tradition in our generaton if things don't go well for the SSPX?

    In prayer,


  37. Joseph said, "Certainly you are aware that the vast majority of bishops and priests don't know the TLM. So, it is hardly a case they view the TLM as poison in the same sense the SSPX regards the Novus Ordo. More likely it is indifference or ignorance.

    The next step, beyond making the TLM available in every diocese, is to ensure that it is taught, at least as an option, in every Latin Rite seminary in the world. This will take many years to fix."

    First of all, yes, it can be ignorance or indifference but it can and also be with passionate hatred of the Tridentine Mass and Tradition. That also has to be acknowledged as part of the problem.

    Now, as regarding the inability to say the Tridentine Mass, it's time they learn. Like any professional, i.e., lawyer, doctor, engineer, etc., he needs to update his skills. Any member of the Clergy who thinks ordination is it and the rest of his priesthood is just coasting along thereafter is sadly mistaken.

    Any professional who does not update his skills becomes incompetent of them.


  38. Barbara10:37 AM

    "We are ready"

    If this is truly the postion of good Bishop Fellay and FSSPX, then that's all I need to know. The when and how is up to Our Lord and His Mother, and the prayers and sacrifices of the faithful who truly love the Church and the Holy Father who desires complete union. It's inevitable.

    Honestly, I have to confess that it gets a bit tiresome the throwing around of the "disobedient" bit regarding the FSSPX, by people who do not seem to be even a little informed as to the reasons for the existence of the Fraternity. Just a smidgen of intellectual honesty would clear all the prejudice up in no time. The FSSPX protestants? What nonesense!

    If I did a little homework on the matter , not being involved directly with the Fraternity, anyone can...

    I can hardly wait for the great day when we will receive the great news!

  39. Florian1:26 PM

    In Italy they Insult THIS blog, and say that THIS blog, distorted (too positively, for the Society) Fellay's otherwise clear (for the NO) words...

    Now: I wonder why the same Italian neocons don't ask neighbouring Austrians, and the hundreds of schuellerite (parish!) priests the same act of formal submission asked to the Fraternity. Now the gravest problem is the Pfarrerinitiative spreading to whole Europe, certainly not the SSPX!

  40. LOL, Florian, who is "insulting" us?...


  41. Florian3:00 PM

    Well, maybe not really "insult", but in prominent Italian neocon blogs, in some way "Rorate" is being portrayed as a sort of filo-lefebvrist Pravda, moreover full of "insults" (this is the word in this case) to the Pope.

    However, may i share wholeheartedly your LOL ?

  42. Well, there is one thing we share with Правда, and that is its meaning - Truth. Could you e-mail us, Florian? newcatholic AT gmail DOT com.

  43. Msgr. Lefebvre and now SSPX were and are now placed in the classic 'Catch 22' position.

    In the UK and Ireland the Bishops' Conferences and Clergy associations pay only lip-service to BXVI and Rome, either ignoring edicts, emanating therefrom, or disdainfully criticising the same.

    The hierarchies attitude to the TLM is generally one of acceptance only if pressure arises from an SSPX chapel.

    Illuminating was the article in the December 25th. edition regarding the Bishop of Little Rock, Anthony Taylor and his attitude to clergy of a traditional leaning.

    If Vatican II is De Fide, which it is not, then how dose one account for the devastation all around us?

  44. P.K.T.P.5:05 PM

    El Eremita:

    No, you may not mention Professor Pink's paper as you play theologian on this blog.

    We are forgetting context here. The Preamble was not about religious liberty. It was about the "principles and criteria" to be used to interpret disputed documents on religious liberty and at least three other subjects. You cannot get to the disputed doctrine until you have agreed on the means of interpretation.

    As far as I can tell, Bishop Fellay and his Society have not agreed on the "principles and critera". He apparently sent a flat refusal to the Preamble on this subject. Rome asked him to re-draft it, and he did. He sent a second document having unknown content. Rumour--and only rumour (in other words, the assessment of Italian journalists) claims that Rome has found the second reply to be useless.

    As far as I can see, there is zero movement forward on the principles to be applied when getting to the doctrine; therefore, discussion of the doctrine cannot be resolved.

    Despite this, Bishop Fellay is signalling that Rome might confer some sort of recognition or status on the Society.

    How can this be possible? It would be possible if Rome found that the disagreements, however serious, were not sufficient to put the Society or its members into states of formal schism, heresy or apostasy.

    Unless, by some miracle, there has been a behind-the-scenes resolution on "priniciples and criteria" or--even more miraculously--on the disputed doctrinal points themselves, the ball is in Rome's court, for the Society lacks the jurisdiction to confer anyting on Rome. Rome must now choose to 'recognise' or not to recognise; to confer a status or not to do so. Once this is done then, yes, the Society might have to choose whether or not to accept or refuse an augmented canonical status for itself and its affiliated religious orders.

    Playing amateur theologian on blogs can be fun but, in this case, I don't see how it can have any applicability, since we don't know what all the arguments are or even what they disagree over in regard to the pinciples and criteria. AS a result, we have no way of assessing the 'level' of Dr. Pink's or Fr. Gleize's papers. We'd be poking in the dark. We can say a few basic things about the process and the 'signals' but we must be careful about that.

    I sometimes ask a student to answer the question because he seems to be raising his hand. In fact, he was only scratching himself. Bishop Fellay says , "We are ready". But what is he referring to? We need a bit more to go on. Yes, there are positive signs but that's about it.

    What we do know is that the ball is in Rome's court and the Pope is getting haggarrd and tired as he approaches his 85th birthday. We also know that the P.C.E.D. is too busy analysing the Society's replies and planning useless and unwanted changes to the 1962 Missal that it is not implementing U.E. As a result, the 'gang of six' bishops in north-east France, and most other bishops aruond the world, are ignoring or obstructing "Summorum Pontificum". the months pass and faithful traditionalists cannot get their petitions for Latin Masses astisfied. Five humdred petitions in France alone are outstanding. All of this nonsense is a distraction from THAT fact.


  45. Confusius6:39 PM

    Please pray for the Cardinal Archbishop of Vienna, who isn't going o take it at all well when Rome gives canonical recognition to the SSPX.
    You might remember that when the Holy Father lifted the excommunications Cardinal Schoenborn came out with all barrels blazing against Bishop Williamson, and made it clear that he was displeased with the Pope's decision. When a short while later Archbishop Zollitsch Of Freiburg (chairman of the German Episcopal Conference) denied that Our Lord's Crucifixion had any atonement value, Cardinal Schoenborn suddenly didn't seem so courageous any more and not a peep was hear from Vienna. Typical conservative who believes "no enemies to the left of me, no friends to the right of me". He ain't gonna be pleased when the SSPX are very much on board....

  46. Enough with the incidental debate on religious liberty and other specific doctrinal matters, which is to be closed now.



  47. Ligusticus9:59 PM

    "Ce matin une messe pontificale au faldistoire a été célébrée par Mgr Tissier au séminaire d'Ecône."

  48. @ Eremita:

    Regarding the false dichotomy you have made between the civil authority and the religious authority in citing Immortale Dei's distinction of simple division of labor between the two united in the Faith:

    Pius XII, Mystici Corporis:

    "We therefore deplore and condemn also the calamitous error which invents an imaginary Church, a society nurtured and shaped by charity, with which it disparagingly contrasts another society which it calls juridical. Those who make this totally erroneous distinction fail to under­stand that it was one and the same purpose - namely, that of perpetuating on this earth the salutary work of the Redemption - which caused the Divine Re­deemer both to give the community of human beings founded by Him the constitution of a society perfect in its own order, provided with all its juridical and social elements, and also, with the same end in view, to have it enriched by the Holy Spirit with heavenly gifts and powers."

    You were correct to say 'our best bet'to refute your mistaken idea that because there is a division of labor in the state between 'civil' and 'religious' matters, that there must be a separation of power or that one may be secular, as asserted at Vatican II, is Quanta Cura. It does refute it. That is why SSPX, in defending the necessity of the confessional Catholic state, studied Quanta Cura in Kansas City this last October. Quanta Cura teaches over and over that there is no possibility of a successful secular state, because justice is violated in denying Christ His Crown earned by His God head first, the hypostatic union that gives Him rule over us, but also by His death for us. This is what Vatican II denies, this is what the American heresy denies.

    The traditional teaching regarding coercion is that it may not be used for an interior belief, but well may be used for exterior behavior. The constitution of the Catholic Spanism state said, for example, that "the profession and practice of the Catholic religion . . .shall enjoy official protection. No one shall be molested for his religious beliefs nor for the private exercise of his cult. No ceremonies or external manifestations other than those of the State religion shall be permit­ted." The traditional distinction was between private and public beliefs, not between Church and state, as you have done.

    Suarez also was speaking of a division of responsibility, not a division of beliefs, one secular, one religious.

    Ottaviani summed up the Catholic teaching on the matter: where Catholics are in the majority, the state has the obligation to profess Catholicism, and from that three consequences flow:
    1. the social and not merely the private profession of Catholicism; 2. legislation inspired by the full concept of membership in Christ; 3. the defense of the religious patrimony of the people against every assault aimed at depriving the people of the treasure of their faith. Notice Ottaviani is saying the state has this obligation, not the Church.
    Therefore we are obliged in justice to seek a state in which Christ is named King (Quanta Cura), and that state is obliged to offer the external honor due Him. Not the internal, but yes, the external. There is no provision in tradition until Vatican II introduced the equivocation in DH, for the external practice of error, and that has wrecked us. Meanwhile, the political situation has changed, with the islamic call for their own religious states, with our western secular societies in advanced decline, with Hungary waking up and reclaiming our patrimony, the time is ripe to rid ourselves of Americanism and return to the traditional teaching. For that to happen, SSPX must win, because the present pontiff is still dazzled by the teaching of the Council, still insisting on 'liberty.' These are practical matters, abortion, contraception, euthanasia, usury. We are being slowly beggered by the separation of Church and state. The doctrinal issues affect our bread and butter, as well as our souls.


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