Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Saner (SSPX) heads prevail...

By Brian Kopp

RorateCaeli has a "Breaking News" report:

I.Media: SSPX asks for removal of excommunications

Fr. Z. also has news of hopeful developments:

Behind the scenes SSPX things are brighter than they may seem

Thank you, Lord, for answered prayers.

Now would be a good time to review what RorateCaeli has dubbed The One-Two-Three Strategy:

"the Fraternity of Saint Pius X remains faithful to a line [which has been] clearly expressed and regarding which it has not wavered:

- obtaining the two preconditions, which are the withdrawal of the decree of excommunications and the freedom of every priest to celebrate the Mass of Saint Pius V;

- the resolution of doctrinal questions;

- the search for the most adequate canonical solution."


According to RorateCaeli:

Swiss news agency APIC adds the following: " 'The letter is on the Pope's bureau,' it [the Pontifical Commisson Ecclesia Dei] has indicated, noticing that 'discretion' should be kept in this affair."

Meanwhile, the official SSPX news agency, DICI, has published the first official communiqué of the Fraternity on current events

Here's a translation of SSPX media outlet DICI's official communiqué from RorateCaeli:

On the matter of the ultimatum of Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos

On June 4, 2008, at the request of Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos, president of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, the Superior General of the Fraternity of Saint Pius X, Bishop Bernard Fellay, went to Rome, along with the 2nd Assistant General, Father Alain-Marc Nély.

In the course of the meeting, a memorandum, in the form of an ultimatum, was given to him, being an answer demanded by the end of the month of June. On June 23, contrarily to custom, Italian daily Il Giornale revealed the existence of this ultimatum and published its content, on the next day, in its electronic edition. The information was picked up in the following days by the entire international press. Therefore, in addition to the urgency of the ultimatum, there was media pressure.

The document of Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos included five demands: besides a positive answer asked for before the end of June, the Fraternity of Saint Pius X, in the person of its Superior General, should commit (1) to "a response proportionate to the generosity of the Pope"; (2) "to avoid every public intervention which does not respect the person of the Holy Father and which may be negative to ecclesial charity"; (3) to "avoid the claim to a Magisterium superior to the Holy Father and to not propose the Fraternity in contraposition to the Church"; (4) to "display the will to act honestly in full ecclesial charity and in respect for the authority of the Vicar of Christ".

It should be noticed that the very generic, not to say vague, character of the proposed demands contrasts remarkably with the urgency of an ultimatum. These conditions seem to aim the achievement of a climate favorable to an ulterior dialogue, rather than being precise commitments on exact points. The Fraternity of Saint Pius X wishes that this dialogue be situated at a doctrinal level and take into consideration all questions which, if evaded, would run the risk of turning obsolete a canonical position established in haste. It considers that the prior withdrawal of the decrees of excommunication of 1988 would favor the serenity of such dialogue.

The Fraternity of Saint Pius X does not claim to exercise a Magisterium superior to that of the Holy Father, neither intends to oppose itself to the Church. Following its founder, it intends to transmit that which it has received, that is, "that which has been believed always, everywhere, and by all". It makes its own the profession of faith which Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre addressed to Paul VI on September 24, 1975: "It is to His Vicar that Jesus Christ entrusted the mission to confirm his brothers in the faith and that He demands to watch so that every bishop will faithfully guard the deposit, according to the words of Saint Paul to Timothy."

It is in this sense that Monsignor Fellay responded to the ultimatum in a letter to Pope Benedict XVI, on Thursday, June 26, 2008. Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos simply noticed the reception of this response on the following day.

Until further information is available, no other comment will be made.

Father Alain Lorans