Grave Problem with SSPX Policy of Being Okay to a Canonical Regularization without Rome’s Conversion

Bishop Bernard Fellay’s Doctrinal Declaration of April 15, 2012 is the worst act of His Excellency as Superior General of the Society of St. Pius X. With this Declaration, he was willing to sell the farm to Modernist Rome; however, for some reason or another, Rome refused. Against those of the Resistance who claim that the mindset of this Declaration has infected the SSPX from the top down (and it certainly has) and therefore one cannot remain silent, many priests and faithful who remain within the SSPX and refuse to speak out against the Declaration counterclaim that the Declaration has not become SSPX policy; therefore, there is no need to speak out. Since principle seems to be so important to these priests and faithful (and it should very well be), let us then look at what has indeed become official SSPX policy.


The SSPX General Chapter Statement of July 14, 2012 states that the SSPX superiors have “determined and approved the necessary conditions for an eventual canonical normalization”. The Statement itself does not outline these necessary conditions; rather, Fr. Christian Thouvenot, Secretary General of the SSPX, sent an internal letter to all SSPX priests in which the necessary conditions (and unnecessary conditions???) were outlined. The first condition is as follows:


“Freedom to keep, to transmit and to teach the sane doctrine of the unchanging magisterium of the Church and of the unchangeable truth of Divine Tradition ; freedom to defend, to correct and to reprove, even in public, those responsible for the errors or novelties of modernism, of liberalism, of The Second Vatican Council and their consequences.”


This necessary condition is the only one directly related to doctrine; hence, it is the most important. With this first condition, the SSPX is basically willing to set its doctrinal differences with Rome aside, so long as Rome gives the SSPX the right to teach the Faith and condemn the errors of Vatican II against the same Faith. The first fundamental problem with this position (while overlooking the fact that to ask for the right to do what is commanded by God is itself nonsensical) is that doctrine here is not given primacy; hence, what we have is a non-Catholic variant of ecumenism. The second fundamental problem is that since the SSPX does not demand from Rome the same as part of the agreement (that is, to teach the Faith and condemn the errors of Vatican II against the same Faith), contained within this position is an implicit but intrinsic proposition that Rome has the right to teach those errors it currently holds; hence, what we have is a non-Catholic variant of religious liberty. These two problems reduce the Faith to the level of opinion as is evident within the conciliar church and in its relations with the world. Unity for the sake of unity, whether intended or not, becomes the primary focus; however, a unity not based on the Faith is not of God.


Given the serious flaws with the first necessary condition, the SSPX leaders and the priests who explicitly consent to it are co-operating in objective grave sin against the Faith, at least on the level of principle. For those SSPX priests who remain silent, we can conclude without rash judgement that they let the SSPX leaders speak for them; therefore, they too co-operate in objective grave sin.


Let us pray and hope that good-willed priests come to realize the grave position of their society’s official policy and take the necessary course of action, that is, to speak out against it no matter the consequences.

Bishop Fellay Hints of GREC

As far as I am aware, it has been very difficult to get Bishop Fellay to speak about the SSPX’s involvement with GREC (Groupe de Réflexion Entre Catholiques or Group of Reflection among Catholics).  This group, founded in 1997, sought to reconcile the difficulties between Traditional Catholics, including the SSPX, and Rome.  In a conference given on November 10, 2004 by Bishop Fellay at St. Vincent de Paul Church in Kansas City, Missouri, he hints at GREC’s involvement with proposing doctrinal discussions to Cardinal Ratzinger between Rome and the SSPX.  These doctrinal discussions would then actually take place between 2009 and 2011 with the agreement of Pope Benedict XVI.  We see here, therefore, the influence of GREC working behind the scenes to reconcile the two parties.


So who was really the mastermind behind the plan of directing the course of the SSPX to its current day rot?  Was the SSPX really in control of its own destiny or was that destiny determined by powerful outside forces over the course of the last 15 years shaping the SSPX leadership to eventually abandon the position of Archbishop Lefebvre and the fight for Catholic Tradition?  Hmmm.




*** Note that Bishop Fellay states that the group was in Paris, that the Apostolic Nuncio was involved, and that a priest outside of the SSPX (perhaps Fr. Michel Lelong? – key member of GREC) brought this proposal to Rome.  The Apostolic Nuncio of France from 1999 to 2009 was Archbishop Fortunato Baldelli.  Fr. Jean de Morgon gives us this very name in his letter to Bishop Fellay back in February 2009.

Bishop Fellay Endorsed “Fraud, Schism, and Heresy” according to Fr. Paul Kramer

At the conference in London, England held on June 1 and 2, 2013 and sponsored by The Recusant Newsletter, Fr. Paul Kramer gave a conference on the Sunday.  In this conference, he spoke about the legitimacy of the promulgation of the New Rite of Mass under Pope Paul VI.  Without naming Bishop Fellay, Fr. Paul Kramer stated that to say that the New Rite of Mass was “legitimately promulgated” is an act, objectively speaking, of “fraud, schism, and heresy”.  The reference was directly made to the Doctrinal Declaration (or Preamble as some people call it) of Bishop Fellay dated April 15, 2012 and submitted to Rome.  Here is a link to the relevant extract of that conference:


Extract of Conference of Fr. Paul Kramer


To get the full context of the conference, you may listen to it at the link below:


Full Conference of Fr. Paul Kramer

A Case in Point

Question:  Some people say, “Yes, but Archbishop Lefebvre should have accepted an agreement with Rome because once the Society of St. Pius X had been recognized and the suspensions lifted , he would have been able to act in a more effective manner inside the Church, whereas now he has put himself outside.”


Archbishop Lefebvre:  Such things are easy to say. To stay inside the Church, or to put oneself inside the Church – what does that mean? Firstly, what Church are we talking about? If you mean the Conciliar Church, then we who have struggled against the Council for twenty years because we want the Catholic Church, we would have to re-enter this Conciliar Church in order, supposedly, to make it Catholic. That is a complete illusion. It is not the subjects that make the superiors, but the superiors who make the subjects.


The above is an extract taken from an interview given by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre to Fideliter magazine and published in its July/August 1989 issue.  Note how the Archbishop makes it clear that to think we could enter the conciliar church in order to make it Catholic is a complete illusion.  Yet today we have the superiors of the SSPX stating the opposite of what the good Archbishop emphatically claimed, despite the fact that these same superiors were once on board with his position.  These superiors now claim that we must join them in order to beat them!  The irony of it all is that the way the current SSPX superiors have acted towards those who have spoken out against a canonical regularization and the way most of these priests (and faithful) have responded have only demonstrated how right the Archbishop was. 


Back around the Spring/Summer of 2012, two bishops and several priests had spoken out against a canonical regularization, but where are they now?  After the July 2012 General Chapter, they are no longer fighting the good fight.  Some of them have even come to make excuses for the SSPX leadership or, even worse, have jumped on board the Bishop Fellay train.  There are also those priests who watched from a distance and never took a public stance one way or another, but were privately against a canonical regularization.  They cringed at the way their brother priests had been treated for speaking out.  I am sure many of us know some of these priests as we had come to respect them in their preaching of the truth and defence of the Faith prior to this SSPX crisis.  We thought them to be warriors.  However, to our disappointment, they never took a public stance in agreement with their private one.  Instead, they became either too busy making excuses for the SSPX leadership or have also jumped onto the Bishop Fellay train, albeit with one foot still not firmly entrenched on it.  Then, several weeks ago, the April 15, 2012 Doctrinal Declaration of Bishop Fellay came to light.  We thought we finally had what we needed to clearly demonstrate that Bishop Fellay had deviated, no longer simply from a position of prudence but from Catholic doctrine itself.  Our confidence was even further strengthened when Bishop Williamson, unjustly booted from the SSPX, wrote an open letter to SSPX priests that they ought to speak out against Bishop Fellay’s Doctrinal Declaration for the sake of the faithful.  “Yes!  The priests have to speak out now”, we declared.  But….unfortunately….’til this day, there has been hardly a whimper coming from the priests.  Instead, we hear Resistance priests telling us that they had spoken to several priests who had either defended Bishop Fellay’s Doctrinal Declaration or had brushed it off.  What a disappointment! 


I ask, “What has happened to the SSPX of old?  Where did it go?”  Barring a miracle, I think it is now safe to say that it has gone down the memory hole.  I hope to be proven wrong, but I am afraid not.  The slide of the SSPX will continue until it is in the arms of conciliar Rome.  And most of priests will go along for the ride until they find themselves at a point of no return.  Very sad indeed – the years after Vatican II all over again. 


Archbishop, you were right.  The superiors do make the subjects.  What has transpired in the past year within the Society you founded is just a case in point.                                        

Leaders of the Neo-SSPX

A few leaders of the neo-SSPX (Bishop Fellay, Fr. le Roux, Fr. Wegner, and Fr. Rostand – I don’t know the priest in the middle) smile for the camera while the saintly Archbishop, to whom these leaders claim fidelity, rolls over in his grave for what they are doing to the society of priests he founded.  Let us pray that these leaders come back to the position of the SSPX’s saintly founder.