There’s an unfortunate video circulating on the internet showing former SSPX Superior General Bernard Fellay informing Catholics in the Philippines that Conciliar Church officials think the Society of St. Pius X “is Catholic.”
Ostensibly, this is a moment of joy for the Archbishop’s Society.
“Finally, the stench of “schism” has been lifted!” Bishop Fellay seems to think. “Rome is our friend! Or at least no longer hostile to us! You see, they really do want to let us try our little experiment of Tradition!”
Could His Excellency be more out of touch?
At a time when Archbishop Carlo Vigano, the former Apostolic Nuncio to the US, has put his life on the line by going public with we all knew to be true – that there are corrupt, sex-obsessed homosexuals running the show at the Vatican – Bishop Fellay wants to draw our attention to the “good news” that these sick perverts think we are Catholic?
My goodness. Talk about not just having a tin ear but possessing a complete and utter ignorance of the Gospel. Did Christ not say “If they hated me they will also hate you. No servant is greater than his master”?
How dear Bishop Fellay went from supporting an open letter in 1988 saying his excommunication was a “mark of honor” to now being overjoyed that those same authorities think the Society “is Catholic” is a tragedy almost beyond compare in the modern world.
The reason Bishop Fellay is so obsessed with being seen as Catholic by the Francis regime is, quite simply, because he’s a liberal driven by human-respect and marketing gimmicks.
Archbishop Lefebvre (not a liberal) was ultimately not concerned with what Modernist Rome thought of him. He sought to please God first, not men. Politicking and PR moves, in other words, were not his thing. He was despised by the occupying powers in the Vatican due to his unrelenting exposing of error and insistence that Rome come back to Tradition. Near the end of his life, he undoubtedly wised up to their tricks and realized that to try and reason with men so completely drunk on Modernism was to engage in a dialogue of death – an utterly futile effort.
Bishop Fellay, on the other hand, is, as Pope Francis once said, “a man with whom one can dialogue.” Such a revelation indicates he doesn’t even attempt to convince Pope Francis of the truth of Tradition. Rejecting prudence, he, like a dog going back to its vomit pile, constantly meets with with the usurpers in Rome destroying the Church – not to get them to come back to the Syllabus but, ultimately, to find a fancy way to say “we agree to disagree,” for that is what a practical accord without doctrinal consensus truly is.
The friendly contacts the Society has had with the Modernist Church and its bishops have undeniably influenced the way it conducts itself. Embarrassing initiatives like the failing FSSPX/News website refuse to give any sort of reporting on issues that might cast Francis in a negative light is just one instance of this.
The essential question that must be asked in all this is: To what end? What purpose or advantage does a Roman recognition of the SSPX’s “Catholicity” serve?
SSPX mouthpieces will tell you it allows them to have a foot in the door with possible conservative converts who may be interested in the Archbishop’s arguments, but because the SSPX is “irregular” they tend to stay away. They’ll also say that it might allow them better press coverage in mainstream Catholic journals and give the Society more opportunities with local ordinaries.
To this it must be said: And? So what?
If anything, “conservative” Catholics who actually might be tempted to attend SSPX chapels are probably scratching their heads and asking themselves: “Uh, Bishop Fellay, you do realize Francis is a complete and utter modernist burning down the Church, right? He covers up for sex abusers. You might not want to boast about how much he likes you. In fact, it’s probably a a better sign if he doesn’t like you.”
Ultimately, God gives His grace to those who pursue truth. “Knock and you shall find. Seek and it will be given to you.” The truth is the truth. If “conservative” Catholics don’t come to the SSPX already, so be it. I’ll pray for them that their hearts open up and realize the Archbishop is correct. But, as the Archbishop once said, to have persons who aren’t totally convinced of the Society’s purpose and mission come to their chapels would end up diluting them. The world and the Church must conform itself to Tradition, not the other way around. The potential flock of converts the Society has its eyes on is a mirage. As we’ve blogged about before, those people simply will not come.
The Archbishop made the calculation long ago that it was better to speak the truth, undiluted, and to carry the subsequent badge of being a “schismatic” from the Conciliar Church with honor. For the Society to play these PR games by stitching together wordplay that tries to trick souls into coming to them is a high wire act that, throughout history, God has never rewarded. Whenever human wisdom concocts some clever series of arguments, God removes his protective hand. And that is no doubt what is happening to the Society today. They despise being considered “beyond the pale” and are working around the clock to get that label removed. As a result, they have compromised who they are and day by day become ever more a shadow of what they used to be.