FishEaters Traditional Catholic Forums

Full Version: Has SSPX reconciled with Rome?
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
Pages: 1 2
Hello...

I'm just wondering if anyone out there has a status of SSPXs' reconcilliation with Rome? Their website has an article regarding the inter workings of reconcilliation but that was a good number of months ago. Does anyone have an update? 

 Gratias et pax!
De jure (according to law) there is no change in the canonical status of the SSPX. 

Their canonical status depends on whether the 1976 "suppression" was legitimate and valid or not. The Holy See assumes this was valid, but the appeals (which are suspensive — suspends the judgement util resolved) were never heard.

Arguably then, the SSPX has a canonical status as a Society of Apostolic Life, which the Holy See refuses to recognize.

De facto the SSPX enjoys a fairly normal situation. 

They are permitted to ordain their own priests. They can hear confessions (they have jurisdiction directly from the Pope). They can validly and legitimately witness marriages, which decree also seems to allow them to say Mass. Their bishops validly confirm. In fact the granting of confessional faculties alone, some argue, is equivalent to giving them a canonical mission (which is to say the opposite of what Benedict XVI said that "do not legitimately exercise any ministry in the Church," since they now do have certain "ministries" given by Pope Francis).

Cardinal Burke made the argument that the SSPX were in "schism" because while they have these privileges and approvals directly from the Pope, this is unprecedented as regards Canon Law. Sadly, because it's unbecoming a scholar and good Canonist, the good Cardinal uses this term in a very lose sense, so loose that it's demonstrably contrary to basic logic and contrary to the canonical definition of schism.

In short, a great deal has changed, and not much has changed. The waters here are still pretty muddy, even if now the case that the SSPX is fully Catholic and in good standing is far stronger.

As regards the "inner workings" since they are "inner" and don't concern us, it's probably best to leave those to the various authorities, not to worry about them and just try to worry about your own soul.
(01-29-2018, 12:19 AM)MagisterMusicae Wrote: [ -> ]De jure (according to law) there is no change in the canonical status of the SSPX. 

Their canonical status depends on whether the 1976 "suppression" was legitimate and valid or not. The Holy See assumes this was valid, but the appeals (which are suspensive — suspends the judgement util resolved) were never heard.

Arguably then, the SSPX has a canonical status as a Society of Apostolic Life, which the Holy See refuses to recognize.

De facto the SSPX enjoys a fairly normal situation. 

They are permitted to ordain their own priests. They can hear confessions (they have jurisdiction directly from the Pope). They can validly and legitimately witness marriages, which decree also seems to allow them to say Mass. Their bishops validly confirm. In fact the granting of confessional faculties alone, some argue, is equivalent to giving them a canonical mission (which is to say the opposite of what Benedict XVI said that "do not legitimately exercise any ministry in the Church," since they now do have certain "ministries" given by Pope Francis).

Cardinal Burke made the argument that the SSPX were in "schism" because while they have these privileges and approvals directly from the Pope, this is unprecedented as regards Canon Law. Sadly, because it's unbecoming a scholar and good Canonist, the good Cardinal uses this term in a very lose sense, so loose that it's demonstrably contrary to basic logic and contrary to the canonical definition of schism.

In short, a great deal has changed, and not much has changed. The waters here are still pretty muddy, even if now the case that the SSPX is fully Catholic and in good standing is far stronger.

As regards the "inner workings" since they are "inner" and don't concern us, it's probably best to leave those to the various authorities, not to worry about them and just try to worry about your own soul.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

MagisterMusicae,

Your whole post is wonderful, but you did not answer my initial question. I have a few questions regarding your statements made.

With what other orders does this particular situation make "fairly normal" ?

So, de jure, in addition to The Holy Sees’ assumption that the suppression was legitimate; yet the judgment was never heard?

           According to the Code of Canon Law, only the Pope has the authority to “suppress” a religious order that has a Bishops approval, and from what I understand, it was an attempt suppression; a request from the irregular commission to Bishop Mamie to suppress the Society. This was a request for the Bishop to suppress, asking the wrong authority.

            Muller: "The canonical excommunication for the illicit ordinations has been lifted from the bishops, but the sacramental de facto excommunication for schism remains; they have departed from communion with the Church. We do not follow that up by shutting the door, we never do, and we call on them to be reconciled. But on their part too, they must change their attitude and accept the Catholic Church's conditions and the Supreme Pontiff as the definitive criterion of membership."

             I have not heard or read anything from Rome, nor the SSPX on the reconciliation moving forward. In response to your “inner” workings not concerning us; they most certainly do, as We, the laity are the very makings of the Church, and if the SSPX still needs to be reconciled, what are we waiting for?

             In regards to your “not to worry about them and just try to worry about your own soul,” comment, my post, this post; is me worrying about my own soul. I’m doing my homework on where I can practice my faith with others knowing it’s not in schism, and is to be considered Roman Catholic. 

So, again, has the SSPX reconciled with Rome? If you don't know, simply state so.

What Magister is saying is that they are not fully reconciled with Rome - officially.  There are also not in schism by any real definition.  That's the "Cliff's Notes" version.   Big Grin
(01-29-2018, 02:09 PM)Fontevrault Wrote: [ -> ]What Magister is saying is that they are not fully reconciled with Rome - officially.  There are also not in schism by any real definition.  That's the "Cliff's Notes" version.   Big Grin

In other words: it's complicated!
(01-29-2018, 03:29 AM)Laetitia Wrote: [ -> ]So, de jure, in addition to The Holy Sees’ assumption that the suppression was legitimate; yet the judgment was never heard?

According to the Code of Canon Law, only the Pope has the authority to “suppress” a religious order that has a Bishops approval, and from what I understand, it was an attempt suppression; a request from the irregular commission to Bishop Mamie to suppress the Society. This was a request for the Bishop to suppress, asking the wrong authority.

One established only the Holy See (either the Pope or the relevant congregation, usually the Congregation for Religious) has the power to suppress a religious institute, whether of diocesan or pontifical right.

Three Cardinals who called Archbishop Lefebvre to Rome over the leaked private statement told Msgr Mamie that he had the power to suppress the SSPX. He did not, but did so anyway. Afterward when this was questioned by Archbishop Lefebvre, Cardinal Villot, Secretary of State (who was an open enemy of Lefebvre) claimed that it was in fact the Pope that gave this permission, but no evidence to that end has ever been produced. The head of the Apostolic Signatura (who would hear the appeal) was ordered by Cardinal Villot to refuse to hear it on the basis that there is no appeal against the Pope (a circular argument, since it was precisely that that Lefebvre was looking to determine by appeal).

So that's part of the muddy waters.

De jure it is not clear that the SSPX was suppressed, and there is a good case to be made that it was not.

De facto the Holy See acts as if it were.



(01-29-2018, 03:29 AM)Laetitia Wrote: [ -> ]Muller: "The canonical excommunication for the illicit ordinations has been lifted from the bishops, but the sacramental de facto excommunication for schism remains; they have departed from communion with the Church. We do not follow that up by shutting the door, we never do, and we call on them to be reconciled. But on their part too, they must change their attitude and accept the Catholic Church's conditions and the Supreme Pontiff as the definitive criterion of membership."

There is no such this as a "sacramental de facto excommunication for schism". You will not find such a thing in any Canon Law, Moral Theology or Church history textbook.

In fact, there was never any "excommunication" for schism in the first place, so there is nothing to "remain".

The only canonical penalty was for the Bishops consecrated in 1988. It was not for schism, and never was claimed to be for schism. It was for the canonical crime of consecrating a bishop without papal mandate, as is clear in Ecclesia Dei afflicta. While it was never an officially "declared" penalty, so some could doubt given other Canon Laws whether it was really incurred, that's a closed point now. Whatever it's status before, it is clearly is gone.

No other canonical penalties were declared on the SSPX bishops, priests or religious. Certainly no "excommunication" for "schism". Nothing. Zero. So there's nothing to "remain".

I do remind you that it was Cardinal Müller, as Archbishop of Regensburg, who threatened to excommunicate the newly ordained priests at the anyone who participated in the ordinations at the Zaitzkofen seminary in 2011, because they were doing so illegally. Bishop Fellay approached the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (of which Müller was not yet head) about the matter, and he was told to move the ordinations to Ecône, so as not to have to deal with Müller.

Cardinal Müller has consistently been an opponent of the SSPX, and this show in most everything he has done and said. He was a major force in blowing up the past efforts at some canonical agreement. He is well-known to be hyperbolic in his words toward the SSPX to the point of obvious falsity (like this "sacramental de facto excommunication for schism")

(01-29-2018, 03:29 AM)Laetitia Wrote: [ -> ]I have not heard or read anything from Rome, nor the SSPX on the reconciliation moving forward. In response to your “inner” workings not concerning us; they most certainly do, as We, the laity are the very makings of the Church, and if the SSPX still needs to be reconciled, what are we waiting for?

The Church is not a democracy. It is for the superiors of the SSPX and the Holy See to work out under what conditions a formal canonical status my be reached. Quite simply the details of that are none of our business.

We are not the superiors nor do we have any responsibility for the matter. Only those people mentioned (the superiors and the Pope) have the duty, therefore the grace of state to worry about such matters.

(01-29-2018, 03:29 AM)Laetitia Wrote: [ -> ]In regards to your “not to worry about them and just try to worry about your own soul,” comment, my post, this post; is me worrying about my own soul. I’m doing my homework on where I can practice my faith with others knowing it’s not in schism, and is to be considered Roman Catholic.

The Holy See has said many times that one can attend an SSPX Mass, and within that least few years, confirmed that it can approach an SSPX priest for Confessions by removing the doubt around jurisdiction. The Pope thinks the SSPX is Catholic. I don't see why that is not sufficient?
I'm new at this so please forgive me for being dense.
.
Can I go to Mass and receive communion and be in good standing with the Roman Catholic Church? Meet my Sunday obligation, full blessings and graces, etc.?  The Body and Blood of Our Lord, Jesus Christ?
Can I raise my children in the SSPX and be sure I am raising them in the True Church?
.
I understand that SSPX is "closer" to RCC than, say, the Baptists down the road, but is it the same?  I don't want to depend only on the impression this Pope gives us - he gives lots of impressions - I just need the truth.
.
If we are still dealing with the Pope's impressions and "maybe's", then what do I need to look for the know when/if the SSPX is in full communion?  A specific letter or statement?
(01-29-2018, 10:43 PM)MaryTN Wrote: [ -> ]I'm new at this so please forgive me for being dense.
.
Can I go to Mass and receive communion and be in good standing with the Roman Catholic Church? Meet my Sunday obligation, full blessings and graces, etc.?  The Body and Blood of Our Lord, Jesus Christ?
Can I raise my children in the SSPX and be sure I am raising them in the True Church?
.
I understand that SSPX is "closer" to RCC than, say, the Baptists down the road, but is it the same?  I don't want to depend only on the impression this Pope gives us - he gives lots of impressions - I just need the truth.
.
If we are still dealing with the Pope's impressions and "maybe's", then what do I need to look for the know when/if the SSPX is in full communion?  A specific letter or statement?

There is no such thing as "full" or "partial" communion in the traditional understanding of the Church. Communion is exclusive. You are either in communion, or you are not.

"Partial" communion was a neologism of the New Theology (condemned by Pius XII) which sought to suggest that Christ's Church was more extensive than the Catholic Church. Protestants and Schismatics could be "somewhat Church" because they still have Scripture, and certain doctrines, even if they reject others and reject the authority of the Pope. The problem is that if one rejects any article of the Faith, he rejects God's authority, so rejects the whole Faith. A Protestant is not "in partial communion", he is not in communion and does not have the Faith. A schismatic is not "in partial communion" he rejects the Papacy, so rejects Christ.

Baptists are not Catholics.

The faithful of the SSPX are Catholics. Full stop. So are the priest-, brother- and sister-members of the SSPX.

The issue is one of a canonically-approved organizational structure. Everything else clouds the issue. 

The question with regards to you fulfilling your Sunday obligation were long-ago answered by the Ecclesia Dei Commission. (Yes you can go, you fulfill your Sunday obligation, and you can even contribute modestly to the collection.) 

That response was given by Msgr Perl (who was secretary of the PCED) first in a May 28, 1996 private letter, then repeated in the public letter Protocol No. 236/98 (March 6, 1998), again in a private response on Sept 27, 2002, again in Jan 2003, and again March 20, 2009. Each time the response (while not recommending attendance) assured people that it did fulfill the Sunday obligation and was not a sinful act.

As regards the other questions, I think you best bet is to see what are the fruits of the various SSPX chapels and communities. Every place, like every diocesan parish, will be different, and some may be great venues of Catholicism, and others not. Some schools may be bastions of orthodoxy and grace, and others in shambles. There is no easy answer to that question, but the answers themselves certainly have nothing to do with the canonical status of the SSPX.
(01-29-2018, 12:19 AM)MagisterMusicae Wrote: [ -> ]Cardinal Burke made the argument that the SSPX were in "schism" because while they have these privileges and approvals directly from the Pope, this is unprecedented as regards Canon Law. Sadly, because it's unbecoming a scholar and good Canonist, the good Cardinal uses this term in a very lose sense, so loose that it's demonstrably contrary to basic logic and contrary to the canonical definition of schism.

I recall reading a tecent comment from Cardinal Burke that amounted to no Mass is better than going to a SSPX mass. And he is supposed to be one of the few 'traditional' Catholic cardinals?
(01-29-2018, 12:19 AM)MagisterMusicae Wrote: [ -> ]They can validly and legitimately witness marriages, ...

MM, cite, please? I'm on an FB page where someone has just said, '
Their (the SSPX) marriages are invalid. And the result is fornicating relationships'
Pages: 1 2