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http://www.sspx.org/theological_commissi...1-2012.htm

Fr. Michel Simoulin:

"We are no longer
in 1975 with Paul VI
nor in 1988 with John Paul II,
but in 2012 with Benedict XVI"




5-11-2012

Editorial from L’Seignadou on the relations with Rome, by Fr. Michel Simoulin (May 2012)



Fr. Michel Simoulin, chaplain of the Fanjeaux community wrote this editorial for Seignadou (Sign from God). He served alongside Msgr. Ducaud Bourget at Saint-Nicolas du Chardonnet from 1980 to 1983, was rector of the University of St. Pius X, director at the Econe seminary, prior at Lyon, France, and SSPX District Superior of Italy.  read at DICI >




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I do not know what the situation will be at the time of the publication of this bulletin, but I think that it is useful to reflect together on the current events. I do not speak about this “republican” masquerade we are living through [the elections in France], but about our relations with Rome.



Recently, somebody sent me a text with this question: “When will we return to the fundamentals of our Society? When will we have the humility to respect the heritage of its founder?”



I believe that I know a little our Society – of which I have been member for 35 years – and thus to have the right to remind all that our “fundamentals” are engraved in golden letters in our statutes:



the goal of the Society is the priesthood and all that refers to it and only what relates to it, i.e., such as Our Lord Jesus-Christ wanted it when He said: Do this in memory of Me.



Such is the heritage of our founder, such are our “fundamentals”; we do not have any others, and we do not want to have others. The Society is not an army raised up against Rome, but an army formed for the Church.



Then, allusion is made to Archbishop Lefebvre’s refusal to follow the path towards an agreement in 1988. And the Archbishop is quoted: “With the protocol of May 5th we would have died soon. We would not have lasted a year…” All this, of course, intended to warn us and to invite us to refuse any Roman offer, something that we should do “under pain of death”.



Yet another echo reaches me: “in Rome serious things are happening, very serious… but I cannot tell you more!” Not that this of much help for me!



Then, let us be reasonable. To do so, it will be good to remember a little the events of 1988. After having signed the draft of an agreement on May 5th (which was not yet an agreement, but was nonetheless a very imperfect and even dangerous text, and which did not let Archbishop Lefebvre sleep in peace), on the morning of May 6th the Archbishop wrote a letter to Cardinal Ratzinger, not to retract his signature -



Yesterday, with a real satisfaction, I put my signature to the protocol prepared on the previous days. But, you noted yourself a deep disappointment at the reading of the letter that you gave me with the answer of the Holy Father about the episcopal consecration



- but to urgently require that this consecration could take place on June 30th, in order to be certain of having a bishop to continue his work. This letter of May 6th is entirely and exclusively concerned with this one point:



If the answer were to be negative, I would find myself obliged, in conscience, to proceed to the consecration, based on the approval given by the Holy See in the protocol for the consecration of a bishop member of the Society.



Thus, the reason for stopping the process was neither a doctrinal question nor the statute offered to the Society, but the date of the consecration of the bishop that had been granted. And it should be noted that the rupture of the relations was decided then, not by Archbishop Lefebvre, but by Cardinal Ratzinger, who refused this episcopal consecration for June 30th.



If, indeed, Archbishop Lefebvre had accepted that the protocol of May 5th were not to have been followed by this episcopal consecration, then, yes, “with the protocol of May 5th we would have died soon. We would not have lasted a year…”, because without a bishop, we would have been delivered to the good (or bad) pleasure of Rome and the bishops.



After our Jubilee [pilgrimage] of the year 2000, Rome took the initiative of new relations. Today, the same cardinal become Pope has told us that the Tridentine Mass was never abrogated (July 7, 2007):



It is thus allowed to celebrate the Sacrifice of the Mass according to the standard edition of the Roman Missal promulgated by Bl. John XXIII in 1962 and never abrogated;



he rehabilitated our four bishops (January 21, 2009); he accepted that we hold doctrinal discussions during two years… all things that Archbishop Lefebvre did not require in 1988. It is not exaggerated to say that Bishop Fellay obtained more than what Archbishop Lefebvre required, without however having the same prestige or moral authority. Then, must we be even more demanding than Archbishop Lefebvre and Bishop Fellay?



Whatever the state of Rome is, whatever still remains worrisome in Rome, simple good sense and honesty should lead us to consider the current situation with different eyes than in 1988! To take up the formula of one of our bishops, we should not fall into “eighty-eightism!”[1]



We are no longer in 1975 with Paul VI nor in 1988 with John Paul II, but in 2012 with Benedict XVI. You can tell me as much as you want that the state of the Church is still very alarming, that our Pope has a sometimes strange theology, etc… we have said it enough, it seems to me, but you cannot tell me that the state of things is the same as in 1988 or even worse. To do so would be contrary to reality and to the truth, and can only be the effect of a more or less secret refusal of any reconciliation with Rome, perhaps even of a lack of faith in the holiness of the Church, composed of poor sinners but always governed by her head, Jesus-Christ, and sanctified by the Holy Ghost. The SSPX is not the Church and it can “respect the heritage of its founder” only by preserving his spirit, his love for the Church and his desire to serve her as a loving son, in fidelity to the founding blessings.



I do not know if all realize the weight of this decision, which belongs only to Bishop Fellay, a decision that was entrusted to him again last October by our Superiors meeting in Albano, a decision considered together with his assistants: What does the Church expect from the Society in 2012? How must the Society answer to the “needs” of the Church today?



This requires a highly supernatural virtue of prudence, to a degree that none of us has the grace to reach, because it does not pertain either to our abilities or to our responsibility. Only Bishop Fellay and his assistants have, by definition, the totality of the information required to judge rightly about the current situation. The question that each one must rather ask himself refers to our benevolence towards authority and, especially, to our trust in that authority. For twelve years Bishop Fellay has been arguing with Rome, with ups and downs, to finally arrive at the results quoted above, and even to an amazing result that perhaps nobody has even noticed: these doctrinal discussions, which did not make any noise in the market place, have enabled us to say to Rome what we think… to the point of making the discussions end abruptly!



And yet, what hasn’t been said about the silence of the superiors around these discussions and about the documents exchanged these last months, and about their great discretion out of respect for Rome and the Holy Father? It has all been interpreted as a form of dissimulation, and even the beginning of a compromise. How can anyone doubt the uprightness of our superiors in such a gratuitous and arbitrary way?



No one knows yet the conclusion that Benedict XVI will want to give to these twelve years of slow work, of searching for a better understanding, and to the prayers and rosaries accumulated. The time is now for prayer, as we were asked by Bishop Fellay, and for trust in the Church. The Immaculate Virgin, who we will particularly honor during this month of May, will obtain for us all the necessary graces, if we want nothing other than the victory of Her Son and of the Church.



Source: L’Seignadou reprinted in DICI #254, 11-5-2012

In another decade or so the SSPX will not have anyone in Rome to discuss this with, the top people will not have been trained as well as the older generation was, even though they choose novelty over solid truth.
If we are in 2012 and not in 1975 or 1988, why are they bellyaching about the SSPX "getting more" than Archbishop LeFebvre would have settled for? 

What was needed in 1975 cannot be the standard for 2012.  In 1975 Summorum Pontificum would have been implemented much more successfully because most priests in 75 were trained in the TLM and in many cases the same obedience that lead to the Novus Ordo would have aided the TLM. 

Restoring the traditions requires a lot more 32 years later than it did 5 years later. 

In 1972 with a letter by Cardinal Danielou, people thought the "abuses" of Vatican II were going to end and we were through the "silly season" of 7 years after Vatican II.  We're now 47 years after the closing of the Council. 

You can't on one hand appeal to the fact that times have changed and then complain that many in the SSPX have dug in deeper because the times have changed.
(05-11-2012, 09:56 PM)Gerard Wrote: [ -> ]If we are in 2012 and not in 1975 or 1988, why are they bellyaching about the SSPX "getting more" than Archbishop LeFebvre would have settled for? 

What was needed in 1975 cannot be the standard for 2012.  In 1975 Summorum Pontificum would have been implemented much more successfully because most priests in 75 were trained in the TLM and in many cases the same obedience that lead to the Novus Ordo would have aided the TLM. 

Restoring the traditions requires a lot more 32 years later than it did 5 years later. 

In 1972 with a letter by Cardinal Danielou, people thought the "abuses" of Vatican II were going to end and we were through the "silly season" of 7 years after Vatican II.  We're now 47 years after the closing of the Council. 

You can't on one hand appeal to the fact that times have changed and then complain that many in the SSPX have dug in deeper because the times have changed.

This makes sense to me.
Unless someone can correct me, with this deal...the only thing that is going to change is the SSPX will have full faculties within the Catholic Church. They will still be able to fight against the council as they always have done. They just need to be respectful and not call the Pope a heretic.

So what will they say when he presides over Assisi 4? Or tells the SSPX to stop prosletizing in China or Russia?

If you can't call a Pope out for heresy then you're not free. That is a string attached.
No-one under the Pope is "free". He's an absolute monarch, even if Vatican II changed the rules a bit.
(05-12-2012, 02:25 AM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: [ -> ]No-one under the Pope is "free". He's an absolute monarch, even if Vatican II changed the rules a bit.

If he truly is the pope, which is what the SSPX says, ultimately they must accept this deal. "Resistance" is not justified, regardless of what many have been saying for 42 years.
Resistance is futile.
(05-12-2012, 02:27 AM)Crusader_Philly Wrote: [ -> ]
(05-12-2012, 02:25 AM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: [ -> ]No-one under the Pope is "free". He's an absolute monarch, even if Vatican II changed the rules a bit.

If he truly is the pope, which is what the SSPX says, ultimately they must accept this deal. "Resistance" is not justified, regardless of what many have been saying for 42 years.

Poor deluded St. Paul...."I resisted him to his face, because he was to blame."
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