I saw this post yesterday and I presumed that someone would
reply substantively, and now, I'm a bit surprised that no one has.
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.
Yes, this AFD is pretty bad stuff. And it's actually
understandable that +Fellay would want it to be kept from
publication and from public view. I had actually wondered if
he would even dare to deny that it was authentic. But he
has not, even though he has expressed great disapproval
of its unauthorized publication.
With this Declaration, he was willing to sell the farm to Modernist Rome; however, for some reason or another, Rome refused.
It was interesting that +TdM was quoted saying that he
thought it was the intervention of Our Lady that prevented
apostate Rome from accepting the AFD, and it was a miracle.
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.
I have heard them say that it is very fortunate that this
has not been made into a 'deal' with modernist Rome,
and then without taking a breath, they say that furthermore,
+F has "rescinded it." Yet they are unable to explain how
anyone can "rescind" what they believe. This AFD is a
declaration of what the SSPX believes. How can the author
claim that the Society no longer believes this? It makes no
sense. It does not add up.
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:
It is noteworthy that the 6 Conditions were not made part of
the GC Statement of July 14th. Why would their distribution be
delayed by weeks, and only sent out to the priests? And were
the priests likewise instructed not to make these Conditions
public? It would seem so, because no priest did publicize them.
We on CI only learned about them because certain Resistance
priests made them known, and +W put them in his EC (sometime
in September or October? -before or after his illicit 'expulsion'?)
“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.”
I find it curious that here, the phrase, "unchanging magisterium"
is used, whereas in the AFD the phrases, "the later Pontifical
Magisterium,"and "the truths previously taught by the
Magisterium of the Church" and "with this Magisterium" are
found all in one paragraph (III.5) of the AFD.
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 thing that comes to mind to me with this is, that this
"Faith" could be something very different to the Modernists
in Rome than it is to traditional Catholics, and, if so, the whole
content of this first "necessary Condition" collapses into nothing.
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.
I would rather say, a non-Catholic variant of FALSE ecumenism.
It's important to 'nail down' the falsehood of ecumenism,
because the Modernists and neo-Modernists alike tend to
forget that ecumenism is false. We should remind them!
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.
This is a very good observation. It is, by the way, related to
my concern that the word "faith" means something else to
the Modernists than it does to real Catholics, and the
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.
I would say "a unity not based on the one, true Faith is not
of God." Again, Modernists need to be reminded of the
uniqueness of the Catholic Faith, for they are prone to
deconstruct that for their nefarious purposes, and they must
be stopped in their tracks.
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.
While this term "objective grave sin against the Faith" might
be well enough stated, it should not be overlooked that this
is, according to the Angelic Doctor, the most serious of all
sins, for it is sin against faith that separates us from God,
and separation from God is the essence of eternal
damnation. Therefore, objective grave sin against the Faith
is the essential cause of anyone in the depths of hell forever.
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.
It would seem that any good priest who adequately thinks
about this warning would have much less scruples about
standing up to do the right thing, come what may!
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.