Sunday, January 20, 2013

Lefebvrians: Church extends a hand to the SSPX in an eight-page letter

[ In light of rejection by the SSPX of legitimacy of Vatican II liturgy and reforms and recent statements by SSPX leader Fellay that Jews are "enemies of the Church" (see denouncement by Vatican Cardinal Kurt Koch here who asked if SSPX could really be considered Catholic at all ), how should this new olive branch, apparently taken at the Pope's instigation, be interpreted? If only this much effort had been taken to maintain unity with, say, Bishop William Morris (Austrailia) ) or Fr. Roy Bourgeois (USA), or Fr. Tony Flannery (Ireland) who dared entertain the notion that females might be called to the priesthood ]

Vatican Insider
Jan. 20, 2013

ROME- The Holy See has made another reconciliatory gesture toward the Society of St. Pius X; the Vice President of Ecclesia Dei, Augustin Di Noia, to whom Benedict XVI entrusted the Church’s scorching dossier on the Lefebvrians, has written to Bernard Fellay. The letter was addressed to all priests in the Fraternity and pointed out a path towards resuming a dialogue which had been interrupted last June.

........ The Holy See was expecting a response within weeks. But a response never came. The Lefebvrians examined the Vatican proposal and there were pre-existing internal tensions which led to the expulsion of Richard Williamson, one of the four bishops ordained by Mgr. Lefebvre in 1988. Williamson had unfortunately become famous for his denial of the Holocaust and the killing of Jews in gas chambers. ..... the new Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Gerhard Müller, strongly criticised the Lefebvrian position, while the debate is still going over Fellay’s controversial statements regarding “the Church’s enemies,” who apparently opposed an agreement with Rome – the Lefebvrian bishop included the “Jews” among them

Di Noia’s gesture is new. ..... According to authoritative French Vatican correspondent Jean Marie Guenois, it was Benedict XVI’s idea to send the letter which he apparently re-read and authorised. The letter, Guenois informs, speaks of the strong need to “overcome” existing “tensions”. .... In terms of the interpretation of the Second Ecumenical Vatican Council, one of the most controversial points in the dialogue, Di Noia considers relations still “open” and “full of hope”, despite some recent declarations by the Lefebvrians. This is probably the first time the Vice President of Ecclesia Dei officially and with such authority recognised the existence of a fundamental impasse in relations with the SSPX and the lack of progress made regarding the interpretation of the Council.

The second part of the document underlines the importance of unity in the Church and therefore of the need to steer clear of “pride, anger and impatience.”


Rome is now waiting for a response, in the hope that it will be a positive one this time.

Full article at the Vatican Insider

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