Rorate Caeli

Bishop Fellay speaks to USCCB's Catholic News Service: Video

This is the video of the interview granted by the Superior General of the Society of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX), Bishop Bernard Fellay, to the Catholic News Service (CNS) of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB),  in the General House of the Society, in Menzingen (Zug), Switzerland - it provides the context to the somewhat garbled format used in the written version of the interview (posted here on May 11). 


  1. Anonymous7:48 PM

    For everything I have read and entries I have seen in some Traditionalist blogs Fellay is treated a traitor, I am not surprised at all of this but I hate to it happen.

    TradiProtestants are a taugh and rough bunch to dealt with.

    We must pray for Our Holy Father and Bishop Fellay.

    The Fraternity has a better chance of surviving inside the Church than as Schimatics and Heretics.

    Prayer is the only way we can help this situation because the enemy will find a way to create division one way or the other.


  2. I liked what I heard.

  3. Jason C.7:59 PM

    First time I'd heard His Excellency speak; seems like a nice, genuine man.

    Also, the quality of those little short videos is very good. Did anyone watch the one on Bl. John XXIII's secretary? Really well-done video. If that were all my poor pastor's (and then my bishop's) USCCB "tax" went to fund, I'd be all for it!

  4. Fr G Dickson8:01 PM

    I see in Bishop Fellay a truly Catholic Bishop who faithfully holds the patrimony handed to the SSPX by their founder, Archbishop Lefebvre. Bishop Fellay's attitude is balanced without being weak, and his insight into today’s Church incisive: there is a slow but steady recovery of Tradition in the Church worldwide and in Rome itself, and this can only be strengthened by the return to regular status of the SSPX. I do hope his fellow Bishops and the whole of the SSPX will come to see the wisdom and prudential acuity of their Superior General.

  5. Michele Ghislieri8:09 PM

    Terrific video!
    God bless our pope!

  6. This is also the first time I've seen him, and I thought he acquitted himself well, despite obviously being asked a few 'gotcha' type questions.

    That said, I don't like hard-edited videos like this. Did anyone else note the hard cut after a couple of places? I would especially think the 'provoke the opponent or the persecutor' part probably had more context with it.

  7. CNS announces that this is the "first part" of the interview; Part 2 should be released shortly.

  8. A. M. D. G.8:40 PM

    What else is there to say...

  9. Joseph8:47 PM

    Also the first time I've heard him speak. He seems filled with genuine Catholic humility and charity. We desperately need him and his priests fully integrated into the Church.

  10. Jack O'Malley8:55 PM

    Mgr Fellay, speaking of the Holy Father, "if this recognition happens, it is thanks to him, definitely, and him alone."

    What a humble and holy man, Bishop Fellay is. A worthy successor to Mgr Lefebvre. May His Holiness enjoy many more fruitful years and may he remember Mgr Fellay at a consistory in the near future.

  11. A wonderful little video that I hope many will watch. I would imagine that this is the first time that many Catholics would hear Bishop Fellay speak. Many probably don't even know that he speaks English.

    God's providence is so clear in that he has been at the helm of the SSPX and is the right man to both negotiate with Rome and give a public face and voice for the society.

    Long live Pope Benedict XVI and God bless Bishop Fellay as well!

  12. Wonderful interview.

    Nothing more needs to be said other than, we need to pray for the SSPX to finally be fully home.

  13. I really looks to me like in some places the editing has been done in a way that will ultimately take things out of context and give a spin on the topics that is probably not representative of Bishop Fellay's overall view of the topics as a whole. Truth is found in proportion; these snippets probably do not do justice to that proportion.

  14. Agreed. CNS would have done a much better job had they simply released a transcript (Q&A format) of the entire interview. Naturally, a video must be edited, but still in a way that retains the same format.

  15. Actually, it will be because of OUR LADY and SHE alone. If this happens and IF it is good for the Society, who alone has maintained the Faith. If this is anything but glory for God, then man can take credit. May the Society of Saint Pius X continue to convert catholics back to being Catholics. Starting with the one in the pointy hats.

    I continue to pray and sacrifice for this pope. Though he has a long way to go, he has been the first glimmer of hope to set right the TRUTH of the Catholic Church. So sufferings continue to be offered up for him. BUT there are FOUR faithful Bishops and some 500 faithful priests to whom I shall always, always be grateful. For them...I give ALL.

    Vive le Christ Roi!

  16. Anonymous9:58 PM

    This video strikes me as attempting to provoke, rather than unify.


  17. Our Catholic Capitol must have all of its connections to Tradition restored and the Holy City of Rome must cast off its faux humility for it has not a whit to be humble about.

    Jesus Christ established one Church. Period. That all, from the Pope to Pat and Pam Pew Dweller, are members of that one true Church is a cause for great joy for everyone and while it ought be the case that all, from Pope to Pat and Pam Pew Dweller, ought be personally humble it has always been gravely wrong and it will always be gravely wrong to humble the one true Church so that it is seen by all as one among many ways to Heaven.

    Triumphalism must be restored to the Holy City of Rome in such glory that all who are not members of Jesus' one true Church will have a great passion to convert from their false religions so as to be able gain the Graces necessary to reach Heaven and avoid Hell and it is only via the Sacramental System of the Catholic Church that such graces can be gained and the regularisation of the SSPX will be the beginning of the end for the new theologians who razed the bastions of the Church Jesus established and left desolation in its wake.

    It is time for the wake of the New Theology and the restoration of Thomism and Tradition and Triumphalism.

  18. NIANTIC10:39 PM

    Can you imagine if all our bishops were of the caliber of H.E.Bishop Bernard Fellay?
    Rock solid, faithful, courageous, fearless, humble and kind and deeply in love with our blessed Lord and Lady and His Holy Church. How we desperately need such men as bishops and priests. Real "HE" men.....! Pax et bonum.

  19. Sidney Jude, TO/SSPX12:08 AM

    What a kind, charitable and humble bishop! I am so comforted that he is at the helm of the SSPX in these dark times. I will continue to pray and sacrifice for his intention and the intention of the whole Society.

  20. This is a disturbing video, assuming it has not been edited dishonestly. I have seen Bishop Fellay speak many times (on video), and this is a quite different Bishop Fellay.

    H.E. begins by saying that it is wrong to think of SSPX vs Rome. He, himself, has talked in those terms many times. He then talks (very vaguely) about the current crisis in the Church, but does not use the word "crisis" or the word "Modernism." In fact, it sounds like he is embracing the "Spirit of Vatican II" cant, though he does not use that phrase either: "Many people have an understanding of the Council which is a wrong understanding."

    The whole video is like that. Whether by Bishop Fellay's intent or by the video editor's intent, the interview comes across as nearly an endorsement of the neoCath position. What would Mark Shea, for example, find objectionable in this video?

    Imagine that you wanted the SSPX to split. This is the video you would make. The rational fear that trads have (based on Campos and the FSSP) is that they will be muzzled and then assimilated into the neoCath borg, should they come back to Rome. And, taa daa, here is the (apparently) borg-enhanced, newly neoCath Bishop Fellay reciting the party line. He even claims to have had a kind of conversion experience: "In [the doctrinal] discussions . . . we see that many things we would have condemned as being from the Council are, in fact, not from the Council."

    See, if you read the actual documents of VII and ignore the Spirit of VII, you'll see it's not so bad . . .

  21. Spy Kid12:52 AM

    I've watched Bishop Fellay speak many times before....but he looked nervous here to me. Not sure what this implies...

    Spy Kid

  22. Anonymous2:08 AM

    I see this video as tactical propaganda, not as a counter attack to a ‘front line’ alternative SSPX position, held by more than a few; but of the mentality… a (passive) ‘advertisement’ to bring peace and calm to a potential division.
    Calm, rational, ‘authority’ underpins this entire short video ‘insinuating’… , charity and ‘wisdom ’, from the Pope and a Superior General. I don’t fall for it.
    Tone of voice, intention, means nothing… I don’t care what he sounds like… it’s only the juvenile who gets hooked into it, you need to look past that.
    This is edited, cut and rehashed for the purpose of what? Frankly… I’m a bit insulted, to think that this effort will pacify, or ease, or settle the concerns of those waiting for some definitive, concrete feedback, this is wishy washy and boarders on condescendence.
    Jim, South Australia

  23. I can't believe people are actually disturbed by this interview. Do you expect him to be provocative? Keep in mind his audience and the firestorm that will follow any regularization.

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  25. Bill said.."He even claims to have had a kind of conversion experience: "In [the doctrinal] discussions . . . we see that many things we would have condemned as being from the Council are, in fact, not from the Council.""

    Do you deny that statement? Is there not a mass-misinterpretation of the Council documents?

  26. The Sermon on the Mount's echo7:01 AM

    This video, despite its flaws, has an overall aura that brings to mind the Divine Master's words:

    "Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God."

    If any were to find fault with H.E. Bishop Fellay, the "Prince of Peace" can exalt His servant higher by reiterating before us:

    "Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven.

    "Blessed are ye when they shall revile you, and persecute you, and speak all that is evil against you, untruly, for My sake. Be glad and rejoice, for your reward is very great in Heaven."

    May the Holy Spirit strengthen and illumine the Sovereign Pontiff and H.E. Bishop Fellay in order that they may courageously DO the Will of the Holy Trinity despite the difficulties.

  27. Lets pray that the post-V2 Church will remember the following rule:

    "lex orandi, lex credendi, lex vivendi".

    Once this is affirmed and accepted in the light of the Apostolic Tradition, then the meeting between Pope Benedict XVI and Msgr. Fellay will yield fruits for the Catholic Church.

  28. Andrew12:10 PM

    Another great interview with the Superior of the SSPX can be found aon Salt and Light Television.

  29. Mi-Ka-El3:52 PM

    Bishop Fellay is not afraid to go in the Lion's den and duke it out one-on-one with satanic forces inside the Vatican and the mainstream church.
    He is a true disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ and is ready to fight for the ONE TRUE FAITH and put it back to its proper place where it truly belongs!, ROME!

  30. Pilgrim said...
    Bill said.."He even claims to have had a kind of conversion experience: "In [the doctrinal] discussions . . . we see that many things we would have condemned as being from the Council are, in fact, not from the Council.""

    Do you deny that statement? Is there not a mass-misinterpretation of the Council documents?

    Deny what statement? Certainly, I agree that there has been a mass misinterpretation of the Council. That is not what he is saying, though. He is saying that there are condemnable things which he thought were authentic interpretations of the Council which he now knows are not. What are these things?

    If you go on in the video, he talks about religious liberty---and, maybe, this is one of the things his opinion has been changed about. What he maybe is saying there is that what really happened at the Council was that what the Church used to call "toleration," She now calls "liberty," and that nothing at all really changed, substantively. Now, for myself, I like that position and that style of position. John XXIII, after all, said that the Council's purpose was to restate the same faith in different language.

    But, there are real problems with that view. H.H. Paul VI's Vatican basically ordered Franco to change Spain from a Catholic confessional state to one which has religious liberty, conventionally defined. Was Paul VI one of the people who misinterpreted VII? And it's not just Paul VI. As far as I can see, essentially nobody in a position of authority agrees with this view of what the Church teaches regarding religious liberty.

    What I know is that this video portrays (accurately or not) a Bishop Fellay considerably closer to the Conservative position than the public Bishop Fellay of even a year or two ago. This is certain to agitate those inside the SSPX who are already suspicious of him, no? Why did he do this, again assuming that it is him and not the editing talking?

  31. That statement seems(if authentic) to admit some fault with certain aspects of the Society's interpretation or understanding of the Council. What I am saying is, is the Society immune to that mass-misinterpretation phenomenon? Or, does that only apply to the left?

    He says many things, not all; which suggest there may be other things they believe do come from the Council. He does not say,"everything that we had thought was from the Council, is in fact not from the Council" ,which would've been quite a conversion and a concern for some.

    He was careful with his language because he is talking to the most mainstream catholic media outlet, who more than likely would use anything they could to make a negative headline. When they didn't get what they were looking for, they went to the liberal bread and butter..Williamson, etc.. If he went in guns blazing he would've kicked up a huge backlash and for what purpose? As usual, he was acting with the prudence that shows why he is the superior and not the letter-leakers, have mercy bloggers, and ignis ardens armchair analyzers.

  32. I see both Bill and Pilgrim's points. I have been attending SSPX chapels for almost 30 years and I have read many articles and books by Archbishop Lefebvre and SSPX priests. I think the main arguments and positions of the SSPX are absolutely correct but I have also seen more than a few SSPX representatives assume the worst when interpreting a particular passage of Vatican II or a papal or Vatican document when a more benign interpretation was equally possible or even more likely.

    That having been said, I was and still am somewhat concerned by the irenic tone of the interview. I would not have wanted him to come in with "guns blazing" but he could have simply reiterated the SSPX's position that one of the problems of VII is it's ambiguity. Yes, when one can interpret it in line with Tradition one should, but the Council led to much confusion because of this very ambiguity. And he could have reaffirmed that there are a few places in the VII documents that seem to be impossible or very difficult to reconcile with Tradition (like Religioius Liberty). For all we know he did say this and it was edited out, but the press usually only protects those with whom it agrees (Catholic press included). If they did ask "gotcha" questions as some have suggested and he said anything contrary to the Vatican line, even in a charitable way, why would they edit that out? It's unfortunate that Bishop Fellay didn't insist on the whole interview being published in print form to give context to the video. I fear this video might be used by those on the "hard-right" of the SSPX to convince a greater number to reject an agreement.

    At any rate I love and trust Bishop Fellay and we should all pray for him and the Pope as well as the other three bishop and all the SSPX priests, religious and faithful.

  33. Matamoros6:29 PM

    Bishop Fellay's tone seems the right one for his audience which here is not the SSPX but the Church in general in a country like the U.S.

    The declaration by the Curia that the three Bishops will now be called to account individually for their private letter does not augur well for any real future toleration of the SSPX, regardless of the canonical status that is worke out. We would all like to see the Society benefitting from official approval but this should never be done at the expense of silencing the kind of language that is its mark and that of its founder. Yes, thundering about the crisis and not sparing the Pope annoys most Catholics, but somebody has to do it. Since pasteurisation seem to have been practiced on all those who have been "integrated" so far, we are left with one conclusion: any "solution" must include all four Society bishops if it's to have any great benefit for the Church. Otherwise, we might as well stay where we are a bit longer.


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