The problem of the June 13 letter from Society of St Pius X headquarters in Menzingen, Switzerland, meant to “set the record straight on marriages” after Rome’s April 4 proposal to facilitate the integration of Society marriages into the Conciliar structure, is no small problem of merely this or that argument or this or that detail. The problem is the total Conciliar mentality of the churchmen making the proposal. In the immortal words of one of the three Society theologians who, led by Bishop de Galarreta, stood up to four Roman “theologians” in the “Theological Discussions” of 2009 to 2011, the four Romans were “mentally sick but they have the authority.” Such is the Romans’ (objective) “mental sickness” that many a believing Catholic is tempted to conclude that they have lost all Church authority. Alas, they still at least appear to have it, so that in the name of “obedience” they are objectively destroying the Church, whatever may be – God knows – their subjective good intentions.
Thus the first major part of Menzingen’s Letter on Marriages (see last week’s “Comments”) argued that Rome’s April 4 proposal was merely to bring Society marriages back into line with the Church’s ancient and reasonable practice since the Council of Trent. Yes, Menzingen, but what is reasonable law worth when it is to be applied by “mentally sick” administrators? A profound scholastic axiom says, “Whatever is received is received in the manner of the receiver.” Sane Tradition in the hands of (objectively) insane churchmen is liable to become insane. For instance in the third part of the Letter Menzingen claims that to officialise Society marriages will make them more secure. Secure, did you say? When today’s Church officials are virtually turning official annulments into “Catholic divorce”?
The second main part of the Letter sets up eight main objections to Rome’s proposal in order to refute them. The essence of most of the objections is that, in context, to accept Rome’s proposal means going along with the Conciliar betrayal of the Faith: with the Conciliar theory and practice of marriage (1,2), with the Conciliar condemnation of previous SSPX marriages (3), with the new Code of Canon Law (8), and so on. Menzingen’s answer is that taken merely in itself, abstracting from its context, the Roman proposal is doing no more than to make available to Society couples an extra way of getting married in harmony with the official Church. Yes, Menzingen, but how can a marriage be celebrated in real life without a context? And how can any official Church context be anything today other than Conciliar?
The fifth objection is a classic example of Menzingen’s Cloud Cuckooland reasoning which separates the inseparable: to the objection that Rome’s easing of access to the officialising of Society marriages is merely the cheese on a Personal Prelature mousetrap, Menzingen replies that “in itself ” cheese is only cheese! Menzingen even recognises that Rome’s proposal itself mentions that it is a step on the way to the Society’s eventual “institutional regularisation,” in other words that the cheese is, objectively, part of a trap. Menzingen’s answer is that to avoid all such traps, the Society would have to cut all contacts with Roman officials, which Archbishop Lefebvre said in 1975 that he would never do.
Yes, Menzingen, but that was before another 13 years of contacts and negotiations with the Romans finally proved to the Archbishop that they had no real intention of looking after Tradition. Then and only then did he consecrate four bishops to look after Tradition (as they did until 2012), but never did he refuse all future contact with the Romans. He only said that henceforth doctrine had to precede diplomacy, so that contact could only be resumed when the Romans returned to the great Papal condemnations of liberalism and modernism. And since 1988? Menzingen pretends that Rome has changed for the better, so that a trap is no longer a trap! Oh, Menzingen! You have caught the Romans’ “mental sickness”!