The good news from the General Chapter of the Society of St Pius X which closed on Saturday is that the SSPX, led to the brink of suicide, has been given a reprieve by the Chapter. However, if the following words, spoken in an interview broadcast worldwide, are any indication of the mind of the leaders still in place for another six years, prayers must still go up for the reprieve to last. Here are the words (which may or may not still be accessible on the Internet – see Catholic News Service):—
“Many people have an understanding of the Council(Vatican II) which is a wrong understanding, and now we have people in Rome who say it. We may say, in the Discussions(between Rome and the Society of St Pius X, from 2009 to 2011), I think, we see that many things which we(in the SSPX) would have condemned as coming from the Council are in fact not from the Council, but from the common understanding of it.”
To comment, we must go back to Vatican II. Containing both truth and error, its 16 documents are profoundly ambiguous and contradictory. Following Archbishop Lefebvre, the SSPX has never said that the documents contain no truth, but it has always accused them of containing serious errors, for instance the doctrine that the State has no right to repress non-Catholic religions. Conciliar Rome has always defended the documents, for instance by referring to the opposite truths contained in them, such as that every man must in matters religious find out and profess the truth. But the truths have never been the problem. The problem is the error and the contradiction. For instance, if a mass of individuals, such as the State, may be neutral in religion, why should the single individual not be? The contradiction opens the door wide to the liberation of man from God – liberalism.
The Doctrinal Discussions of 2009 to 2011 were set up to examine the doctrinal clash between the Romans’ Conciliar subjectivism and the SSPX’s Catholic objectivism. They showed, of course, that the clash is profound and irreconcilable, not between Conciliar truth and Catholic truth, but between Conciliar error and Catholic truth, in effect between the religion of man and the religion of God.
Now comes the speaker to state that the “people in Rome” are right, and that “we” are wrong, i.e. the SSPX, because “many things” the SSPX has constantly condemned as coming from the Council come only from a “common understanding” of the Council. In other words, the Archbishop and his Society were wrong from the beginning to accuse the Council, and accordingly to resist Conciliar Rome. It follows that the episcopal consecrations of 1988 must have been an unnecessary decision, because Conciliar bishops could have been trusted to look after Catholic Tradition. Yet the Archbishop called those consecrations “Operation Survival,” and he called trusting Conciliar Rome “Operation Suicide.”
Today the speaker – consistently with his words quoted above – is certainly favouring a Rome-SSPX agreement. Moreover he is quoted as suggesting in Austria two months ago that this agreement would entrust Conciliar Rome with choosing the SSPX’s future bishops. Then unless Rome has stopped being Conciliar since the Archbishop’s day, and all the evidence cries out against such an illusion, the Archbishop would have said that the speaker was promoting “Operation Suicide” of the SSPX – unless the speaker has since disowned these words.