Lord grant us many holy and alert priests
Yours in Christ
RIP: Dr. Eugene F. McKenzie
He was the local dentist who defended Archbishop Lefebvre and the SSPX
against Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen in 1978 the year before Archbishop
Sheen's death in December 1979. Father Carl Pulvermacher published the
letters in the Angelus in November 1978.
May God rest his soul.http://www.angelusonline.org/index.php?section=articles&subsection=show_article&article_id=128
EDITOR'S NOTE: The following three letters addressed to Father Carl
Pulvermacher, a lady named Barbara and to Bishop Fulton Sheen were sent to
us by Dr. EuGene McKenzie.
*Dear Father Carl:*
Enclosed you will find a copy of a letter sent recently to a housewife who
lives near Topeka, from Bishop Fulton Sheen. You will note the effort
encourages one Mrs. Rew to continue her efforts to draw away from our
congregation in St. Mary's at the St. Pius X Chapel, her friend and one of
I couldn't resist answering the good Bishop. I do not know if your policies
allow printing this material but if you wish that is fine.
Dr. EuGene F. McKenzie
*September 21, 1978*
I thank you for your kind letter and I admire you as the mother of eight
small children. I am sure you are busy, but happy.
If you have any influence on your friend I would beg you to influence her
to leave the so-called Society of Saint Pius X. This group has no
ecclesiastical approval, and indeed, it can lead her and possibly her
family into schism and even heresy.
The Vatican Council approved the updating of the Liturgy and amongst the
changes were those recommended for the Mass. The changes made by Pope Paul
VI were not doctrinal changes, they merely changed from Latin to the
vernacular. There have been many changes in the Mass down through the
The Lord never said Mass in Latin; He used the language of the time.
Moreover, the change in translation does not alter the meaning of the text.
I am always looking for translations that make the Scriptures more
understandable and clear.
Since I never write to anyone unless they have written to me I shall not
write to Mrs. Richardon. I beg of you to tell her that she should withdraw
from that schismatical sect as soon as possible, or suffer the consequence
of possibly finding herself outside the Church.
God love you!
�� Fulton J. Sheen
*September 30, 1978*
*Most Reverend Fulton J. Sheen *Titular Archbishop of Newport
Enclosed find your letter recently received by a housewife in this area. I
respond because of your sweeping condemnation of the Society of St. Pius X
and by inference, its founder, Archbishop Lefebvre. Also, your letter has
been copied and distributed by its recipient. I will show that you have
affixed your name to a litany of false and misleading statements. If I had
not seen this letter I would not have believed that the famous Fulton Sheen
could author it. Charity compels me to ask whether in fact the author was
some untrained underling? I speak to your letter.
1. ("THE VATICAN COUNCIL APPROVED THE� UPDATING OF THE LITURGY AND AMONGST
THE CHANGES WERE THOSE RECOMMENDED FOR THE MASS.") The Vatican Council
never hinted at what has become� a� revolution.� The� � Council� �
never intended� � that� � Latin� � should be removed from the Mass. The
Fathers (were� � you� � there?) allowed the option of the vernacular for
some opening� � prayers. They never hinted at the possibility of altering
the Canon nor especially the Consecration. As you know, Article 36 of the
Constitution on the� Liturgy reads:� "The use of the Latin language shall
be maintained (servetur) in the Latin rites."
Why do you continue to violate this law? There is not a line in the
Constitution on replacing our altars with tables; not a suggestion that the
priest should face the congregation. The late English Cardinal Heenan
testified that when the Fathers voted for the Constitution they did not
foresee "that Latin would virtually disappear from Catholic Churches."
The late Archbishop Dwyer writing of the euphoric spirit of the Fathers on
the day they voted in favor of the Constitution by 2,147 to 4, comments
with the sadness and wisdom of hindsight: "Who dreamed on that day that
within a few years, far less than a decade, the Latin past of the Church
would be all but expunged, that it would be reduced to a memory. The
thought of it would have horrified us, but it seemed for far beyond the
realm of the possible as to be ridiculous. We laughed it off."
One prelate, who fulfilled important functions during the Council,
expressed himself strongly on this matter in 1969: "I regret having voted
in favor of the Council Constitution in whose name (but in what a manner)
this heretical pseudo-reform has been carried out, a triumph of arrogance
and ignorance. If it were possible, I would take back my vote, and attest
before a magistrate that my assent had been obtained through trickery."
(Mgr. Domenico Celada)
Finally, the Council took for granted the Bull Quo Primum which guarantees
"in perpetuity" the right of any priest to say the Immemorial Mass
(Tridentine) and the right of the laity to hear the same. It never even
hinted at replacing the old Mass with the Novus Ordo��� how could it���the
Council closed in 1965. The Novus Ordo was not promulgated until 1969! Why
do you then illegally refuse the priests and laity of your diocese the
right to this Mass? Please don't reply like most diocesan papers that the
Constitution Missale Romanun issued by Paul VI to institute the Novus Ordo
rescinds Quo Primum and thus the Tridentine Mass-that is a lie!
If you have read the original Latin document you found it doesn't even
mention Quo Primum but is merely a "permission" to say the Novus Ordo. The
liberals try to make of this "permission" a binding law by "mistranslation"
when going from the Latin to English, French, Italian and German. How does
it happen, your Excellency, that these "experts" all made the same
linguistic error on the fourth from last line of the document Missale
Ro-manum? You haven't read it? Like the bishops of the nation you took the
word of the liberal peritti Yves Congar for this?
2. ("THE CHANGES MADE BY POPE PAUL VI WERE NOT DOCTRINAL CHANGES, THEY� �
MERELY CHANGED FROM LATIN TO THE VERNACULAR.") This statement, and from a
Bishop, is so unreal as to leave the reader stupified. We know that Pope
Paul did not actually author all the radical liturgical changes which bear
his name, but to say that this revolution was essentially linguistic in
character, well, this is to ask not to be taken seriously.
According to Dietrich Von Hildebrand Pope Paul's Novus Ordo "merely
changed" 70% of the Tridentine Mass. A grand total of thirty-five prayers
have been replaced or discarded. The contrast from the old Roman Missal
which you compiled, to the new Missalettes, is so stark as to defy
comparison. If your above state ment were even partly true Catholics could
go right on attending the new Mass and use their old missals by just
reading the English section. Try it, Bishop Sheen. It would be like going
to see the Yankees play with a program from the Bolshoi Ballet as a guide.
3. ("THERE HAVE BEEN MANY CHANGES IN THE MASS DOWN THROUGH THE CENTURIES.")
No informed critic of the new Mass has ever suggested that the Missal of
St. Pius V was untouchable or that Quo Primum precluded any reform of the
Missal by subsequent Pontiffs. Archbishop Lefebvre has made no such claims.
The historical evidence is there to show that up to 1969 when the Novus
Ordo was imposed, the changes in the Mass for 1500 years were conducted
with the utmost reverence and caution. Pope John XXIII's "reform" is
typical of the changes which appeared only rarely. After much research and
discussion that Pope allowed the Last Gospel to be dropped on occasion,
altered the calendar slightly and timidly inserted the name of St. Joseph
into the Canon. You surely know that numerous scholars of late have
demonstrated that there is no possible comparison with what Pope Paul VI
has permitted and the revisions of the Popes who went before him.
The following lines are from a 1952 edition cf a book entitled This is the
Mass: "The Mass became set much as we now know it, insofar as concerns its
broad structure, at about the close of the third century. Although this or
that part may show some growth or diminution in importance, the general
plan of the ceremony is even now just as it was then."
Those lines���that book was written by two experts on the Mass; their
names: Henri Daniel-Rops and Fulton J. Sheen.
You chide us for turning to the Society of St. Pius X for our Immemorial
Mass because only these priests of Archbishop "Lefebvre have the courage to
bring to us what you and the nation's bishops should be providing.
You know better than I that this Novus Ordo which you defend is shockingly
similar to the heretical rite devised by the heretic Thomas Cranmer during
Henry VIN's time. You know that Cramer successfully devised a three-pronged
attack to destroy the Mass and the Faith in England.
First, he replaced the altars with tables, "Altars for that odious
sacrifice, tables for memorial meals."
Second, he replaced "abominable Latin" with vernacular so that later he
could gradually mutilate the prayers.
Third, came communion in the hand; thus in time the idea of the Real
Presence, which he hated would be diluted.
In exactly twenty years Cranmer crushed the Faith in England. In the last
ten years you and the Bishops of America have reduced Mass attendance by
Is the pattern similar?
Who is leading who into "schism and even heresy"?
A few years ago an American Bishop wrote these lines in the preface to his
Sunday Missal of the Tridentine Mass. These words sum up the case made by
Archbishop Lefebvre and his men:
"There is no communion rail without an altar, For only a Sacrifice leads to
by Fulton J. Sheen
Be careful great, great Bishop of the television screen, that your sharp
pen does not become your scourge, for you may learn one day, like Paul of
Tarsus, that in pummeling the elderly French Archbishop you had, in fact,
struck the naked body of the Saviour.
Dr. EuGene F. McKenzie
Saint Marys, Kansas 66536