Teenager Issues Challenge: Don’t Change The Mass – Let The Mass Change you…

Teenager Issues Challenge: Don’t Change The Mass – Let The Mass Change you…

Award-winning American author Dan Graham’s article Words That Count first appeared in our newsletter, Issue No. 51, September, 2008….Dan’s original article was easily one of the most popular we’ve ever published, as was the updated version published in the newsletter in 2010. In recent weeks I’ve been approached for copies of it (available on our website) so it might be worth airing it on the blog at this time.  American spellings prevail. 

Dan Graham, Award winning author
Dan Graham, Award winning author

This paper methodically compares the texts of the Tridentine Mass 1945 (TM) and the Novus Ordo Mass 1973 (NOM) so Catholics can better understand differences. The method is simple: off-the-shelf software WordListCreator™ alphabetizes and counts words in a text. I used the English translations. I simply compare the words and counts from both masses and ask: what does the NOM remove or add? My operating principle comes from St. Thomas Aquinas: whatever is objectively real is objectively true. This method helps avoid the acrimony that often derails fruitful discussions about the two masses. I present my two conclusions, then my supporting findings by working through a comparison of the words in the TM and NOM. Readers can review the data and come to their own conclusions. The first conclusion is that the two masses differ profoundly. Some argue that the differences in the two missals are trifling, a mere preference of style, but a close examination of the text proves otherwise.  Click here to read the entire article and then share your thoughts in the comments section below. 



For those Catholics who believe that the only change to the Mass has been the switch from Latin to the vernacular, this article will (or should) come as a shock.  However, the Catholic sense has been dulled to the point of extinction, so for a lot of Catholics, probably the majority, the “shock” will be nothing more than a mild surprise accompanied by a shrug of the shoulders and a “well, so what?”   Still, there’s been an increase in Catholics showing an interest in the Traditional Mass recently – at least, that’s been my personal experience. What about you? And what about the teenager who quoted a friend of his to me, a girl who had summed up the problems in the Church today with the words I’ve used in the headline above (may it not occur to her to sue me for copyright): “Don’t change the Mass” she reportedly said: “Let the Mass change you…” Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings, thou hast perfected praise. (Matthew 21:16)


“Do you realize that Jesus is there in the tabernacle expressly for you - for you alone?” St.Thérèse of Lisieux
“Do you realize
that Jesus
is there in the
expressly for
you – for you
St. Thérèse of Lisieux 

Comments (137)

  • Summa

    That is quite an interesting read. The questions that would crop up after such a reading would be around validity of the service itself and the consecration. In fact you might want to have a look at whether or not you are fulfilling the third commandment or the first and third precepts of the Church by attending the NOM.

    September 6, 2016 at 12:40 am
    • Michaela


      Even Archbishop Lefebvre did not say that the new Mass was invalid. As long as the correct matter, form and intention is present (and intention is presumed unless matter and form are not present) then the Mass is valid, since the Consecration is at the heart of the Mass.

      The thing is that validity is not enough, because all the prayers around the Consecration are there to make the Sacrifice and to make it pleasing to God, if you will.

      September 6, 2016 at 10:03 am
      • Summa

        Perhaps, but only in terms of validity, like the protestant baptism is valid too. The NOM is protestant, not Catholic.

        September 6, 2016 at 10:28 am
      • Prognosticum

        There is no such thing as ‘Protestant’ baptism, just baptism. You seem to be (shockingly) unaware that baptism may be imparted even by one who is himself unbaptised.

        September 7, 2016 at 7:51 am
      • Summa

        Prognosticum, you seem like a rude fellow, perhaps full of pride, but nonetheless I shall answer. First of all, let me point out that it is you and not I who capitalises the word protestant, as all can see from above.
        I used the small ‘p’ to denote all ‘Christian’ sects who are not Catholic. These sects use their own rites and liturgy which are obviously erroneous. The ceremonies that these protestants have might be called protestant baptisms.
        I’m not sure that I suggested or hinted in any way shape or form that I considered a protestant baptism as the only alternative to a Catholic baptismal ceremony.
        I do know of course that one can baptise In The Name Of The Father, and of The Son, and Of the Holy Ghost using Holy Water.
        What I cannot see is how you came to read my comments as in anyway shape or form suggesting that I would not know this?

        Quite (shockingly) arrogant on your behalf.

        September 7, 2016 at 8:03 am
      • Margaret Mary


        That’s a strange argument about using capital letters. I always write “Protestant” because it’s a proper name, just as I always write Adolph Hitler – doesn’t mean I approve of either, LOL!

        Also, anyone can baptise, yes, but only in a case of emergency.

        September 7, 2016 at 9:06 am
      • Margaret Mary


        What did you think about Dan Graham’s article on the Mass?

        September 7, 2016 at 9:10 am
  • Allan

    Surely if the Mass is valid then it IS pleasing to God – by definition?

    September 6, 2016 at 10:24 am
    • Laura


      Here is a good article on “valid versus pleasing to God” – I think you will find it very informative.

      The Dan Graham word count is fantastic. Every Catholic should read that and it will bring them to see that the new Mass is definitely not pleasing to God. It can’t be, with all those prayers cut out.

      Bravo to the teenage girl who helped with the headline – that headline says it all!

      September 6, 2016 at 10:37 am
      • RCA Victor


        That is really a marvelous and comprehensive study! Where did you find it?

        September 6, 2016 at 4:37 pm
      • Laura

        When I read Allan’s question I knew I couldn’t answer it completely myself, so I googled his question and I thought that article was the best one to come up. It really is a great page.

        September 6, 2016 at 5:35 pm
      • Lily


        There is loads of good stuff in that article, very clear etc. but this bit worries me:

        3. In my area there is no Traditional Mass except those Masses which are said by priests under the Indult of 1984. What about attending such Masses?

        NO. In such cases, the local bishop has made people sign an agreement that the New Mass is just as good as the old. Furthermore, the priest saying the Indult Mass usually has the permission to say it only if he assures the bishop that he will say the New Mass at least once a year. Lastly, when you attend an Indult Mass, you have the Traditional Mass, but New Sacraments. The New Sacraments are unacceptable for the same reasons that the New Mass is unacceptable. To accept them is to compromise. It’s better to stay at home and read the Missal, just as we said in answering the first question.

        I can’t see that it changes the Mass at all, if the priest is not fully committed to it. The indult Masses were still the traditional Mass, even if the priest had no problem with the new Mass. I, therefore, see the above passage as being nonsensical, actually, except the bit about the new sacraments. I’m thinking of when I would attend an indult Mass in a parish where it was offered, not my parish, only to attend the Tridentine Mass, not for any other reason. It didn’t matter to me if the priest had signed something to say he agreed with the new Mass. I didn’t know that and didn’t care. That part of the article smacks of extremism to me, and politically motivated, but apart from that, it was a very scholarly article, so I appreciate your posting it.

        September 6, 2016 at 5:51 pm
      • RCA Victor


        I used to attend a mid-week TLM at a conservative Novus Ordo parish (because I loved being in the old church), said by a priest who said both rites, until I was advised by our Prior (SSPX) a couple of years ago to stop because of his dual loyalty. Our Prior’s reasoning was that this dual loyalty compromised the integrity of his priesthood.

        I can’t say that I understand this entirely, but I since our Prior is also my spiritual director, I obeyed him. I’m guessing that if a priest has no problem with the NO, then he doesn’t have a very clear idea of what his priesthood is all about.

        Dan Graham’s article should be required reading in all NO seminaries. Fat chance though…..

        September 7, 2016 at 2:59 am
    • RCA Victor


      I hope you read carefully the article that Laura posted. This statement, about 2/3 of the way down, sums up the entire technical argument perfectly:

      “He [St. Thomas Aquinas] teaches quite clearly that what makes the offering of a sacrifice (like the Mass) pleasing to God is not what victim is being offered, but why the victim is being offered. As he says: “the offering of a sacrifice is not measured by the value of the victim, but by its signification” [S.T. II-II.85.2. ad 2]. Thus the value of the sacrifice of the Mass does not come from its being valid, but from the reason why it is being offered. St. Thomas confirms the above teaching when he says that sacrifices “are not deserving of praise except if they are done out of reverence for God” [S.T. II-II.85.3].

      We also know that the Novus Ordo was specifically designed by Annibale Bugnini – twice dismissed under suspicion of Freemasonry by two different Popes – in order to avoid giving offense to Protestants (6 of whom advised him and his committee on the creation of this liturgy). That is, it is an instrument of false ecumenism, which places the Church on the same level as false religions (a Masonic teaching).

      So the simplified question is this: how can a liturgy specifically designed to avoid giving offense to heretics possibly be pleasing to God?

      September 6, 2016 at 4:44 pm
      • Summa

        Michael Davies…
        The suppression in the Novus Ordo Missae, the new Mass, of so many prayers from the traditional Mass is a cause not simply for concern but for scandal. In almost every case they are the same prayers suppressed by Luther and by Thomas Cranmer.


        September 7, 2016 at 7:37 am
      • RCA Victor


        Thank God I’ve not had to attend a Novus Ordo since 2013 (it was a friend’s funeral – “The Rite of Christian Burial,” as it is now called), but I recall having an angry knot in my stomach and the strong urge to stand on my pew and shout “This is Luther and Cranmer!!” I apologized to my dead friend and left just before the Consecration began…in order to avoid causing a disturbance…

        (And when I returned to the Church in 1999, I didn’t even know there were two Masses and had not the slightest suspicion that there was anything wrong with the NOM. In fact, I was relieved that it was so similar to the Protestant services with which I had grown up.)

        September 7, 2016 at 4:56 pm
    • WurdeSmythe

      An Orthodox Mass is valid, and it is immensely displeasing to the Almighty because the Orthodox have broken Faith with the God they invoke at the altar by creating a monumental schism in His Church.

      September 10, 2016 at 4:11 am
  • editor

    Today’s post has just arrived and in among the (believe it or not) ticket orders for next May’s Conference (to add to those already received!), there was this nugget from the bulletin (dated 7th August) of the parish of The Sacred Heart and Our Lady of Lourdes, in Shrewsbury Diocese:

    “Just a thought”

    “Those who suggest that the Church has a limited future might just have been a little taken aback to see the spectacle of 3 Million Young (sic) people celebrating Mass with Pope Francis, in Poland, last week.

    What was more amazing was the depth of prayer and participation in a liturgy which, for many of our young people, is remote for them and says little to them.

    Yet, there they were, singing, praying and, what is more important, enjoying. At one point, the guy leading the liturgy suggested that there should be a moment of silence, and that is what there was, silence. 3 Million (sic) excited, involved, young people stood in silence with Pope Francis and prayed! Quite amazing considering the numbers.

    Last week, hundreds of our own young people travelled to Lourdes with the Diocesan Pilgrimage. They worked hard helping the sick. They had to get up early, work long hours and join in the prayer of the Pilgrimage.

    I asked how the youth had been in Lourdes and the answer was “incredible”.

    So there we are. Not a dying church but a vibrant and thriving church filled with young people looking for God.

    This is a church, though, that seems to have been preoccupied recently with a return to celebrating Mass with the priest’s back to the people.

    When liturgy makes sense and is inclusive 3 Million (sic) young people enjoy.

    Just a thought!” [Emphasis added]

    September 6, 2016 at 11:54 am
    • Frankier

      So, can we tell all the football clubs in Scotland who are struggling to get by on a weekly basis not to worry because the 60,000 at Celtic Park on Saturday will prove that their concerns are only in their minds.

      i hope the bishops in Scotland know of this good news. They can go ahead and cancel their church closing plans.

      September 6, 2016 at 2:00 pm
    • Laura

      That really is a superficial article from the church bulletin. Just because millions of teens are excited in the presence of a celebrity, even if the celeb is a pope, doesn’t mean they are living by the teachings of the Church. That’s highly unlikely, these days, unfortunately.

      September 6, 2016 at 5:36 pm
    • RCA Victor


      “…a liturgy which, for many of our young people, is remote for them and says little to them.”

      Exactly right, and whoever wrote this has hit upon the reason why young people are either leaving the Church in droves during their youth, or leaving as soon as they reach adulthood: the Novus Ordo says little to them.

      The author of this nonsensical drivel also fails to realize that he has contradicted himself: he begins by saying that the NO says little to young people, and concludes by rhapsodizing that the NO – i.e. the rite that was celebrated during WYD – makes sense, is inclusive and therefore enjoyable to young people!

      So thank you, apparently combined parishes of Sacred Heart and Our Lady of Lourdes, for hoisting yourselves with your own petard.

      September 7, 2016 at 5:05 pm
  • Helen

    What a lot of rubbish that report is! My 2 nieces were at WYD and said the enthusiasm in sexual activity in the tents matched that of the the liturgical one! The young people they met were completely ignorant about the most basic matters of faith and some said they never heard of mortal sin! Distribution of Holy Communion was like a cattle market with no reverence whatsoever. Hosts were being dished out in handfuls “to pass on”! It seems the young persons were no different to the run of the mill uni students in their immoral behaviour.

    My nieces said they would never go again.

    September 6, 2016 at 6:23 pm
    • editor


      That’s very interesting about your nieces. I’ve heard similar shocking stories (and read them in the secular press, unfortunately) following previous WYD events, but so far, yours is the first such report I’ve heard this time.

      I have just emailed the PP of The Sacred Heart and Our Lady of Lourdes, as follows,not holding my breath for a reply…

      For the attention of Fr John G Feeney

      We are discussing your bulletin piece “A Vibrant Church” on our blog at Catholic Truth

      I thought we ought to let you know, in courtesy, in case you wish to participate. Your optimism, based on a few million excited teenagers at a WYD event, is of much interest to those of us who are used to seeing teenagers who are committed to the Faith, love it, and who are NOT denying any doctrine or moral teaching and… and all the while, attending one of those Masses (attended by the saints and martyrs) where the priest leads the people in the worship of God. Thus, we’re delighted to see the back of him, so to speak! God bless.

      September 6, 2016 at 8:11 pm
      • RCA Victor


        Judging from the nature of his optimism, I’m guessing that Fr. Feeney is not a Feeneyite…

        September 7, 2016 at 5:06 pm
  • westminsterfly

    I was at the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham last week. I was present at a Solemn High TLM in the beautiful Slipper Chapel on the Monday, whilst in the field opposite, a big tent resembling Billy Smart’s circus had been erected for the ‘Youth 2000’ weekend (which – not by coincidence – falls on the same weekend as the annual Medjugorje pilgrimage – and don’t forget Youth 2000 was spawned in Medjugorje).

    While we had the beautiful sung High Mass in the Slipper Chapel, we were forced to listen to the booming ‘drum ‘n’ bass’ pop music emanating from the Youth 2000 ‘big tent’ outside. And from what I could see before and after Mass, there weren’t that many real youths there. Most of the ones I saw I would call young adults.

    Even as I was leaving Walsingham, and went to say farewell to Our Lady in the Slipper Chapel on the Wednesday, we were forced to leave the chapel because some aging hippie dressed in a habit (brother? priest?) was strumming the guitar and wailing in front of the Blessed Sacrament exposed, accompanied by a female friend sitting cross-legged on the floor, with hands raised in the air. The spirit of the 1970’s is still alive and well. So tragic.

    Some people wonder why I continue to go to Marian shrines, when abuses like this are par for the course. But I think we should do. Catholics should continue to frequent genuine Marian shrines – even if the TLM isn’t available. One can pray the rosary and do other devotions/penances. It gives honour to Our Lady and She won’t be outdone in generosity. Why abandon these hallowed places to those that follow the Novus Ordo and every novelty and disorder going?

    September 6, 2016 at 9:29 pm
    • editor


      Well said,. You make a very good point when you urge Catholics of the traditional hue not to abandon the Marian shrines. Well said.

      September 6, 2016 at 10:56 pm
      • westminsterfly

        By the way, speaking of Youth 2000 – did you see what the Vatican exorcist Fr Amorth said about those who reject Medjugorje? – he has lost the plot. Completely. If anyone ever has the misfortune to be possessed, don’t call him. http://www.mysticpost.com/vatican-exorcist-a-tragedy-that-many-christians-do-not-believe-in-medjugorje/

        September 7, 2016 at 12:01 am
      • editor


        Thank you for updating us on the Fr Amorth fixation with Medjugorje – as you say, he has now, clearly, lost the plot. And then some. I did laugh at your “If anyone ever has the misfortune to be possessed, don’t call him.” Priceless!

        It’s very worrying, to say the least, that the Vatican’s own exorcist can be, himself, so easily deceived by the Devil, who must be laughing his socks off – assuming demons wear socks…

        Goodness, the whole situation in the Church today is almost entirely farcical. What a mess!

        September 8, 2016 at 8:42 pm
  • John Kearney

    I really enjoyed reading this article by Dan Graham. I have been well aware of the changes since they first began. Take the Credo. When they all said WE BELIEVE I caused a stir when I decided that those around me did not believe for one second what I believed so I would say “I believe” I have loud voice and one time I received a lecture from the pulpit directed act me that we worship as a community. However there were changes made and we now say ‘I believe”. We do now say Consubstantial with the Father in the Creed, The changes also solved the Offertory and returned to ‘many’ but the progressives kicked and steamed at these changes. Merely retorted that since Jesus is reported to have used the word ‘many’ then so should we. The term ‘And with your Spirit’ came under attack also but this as I said goes back to the Thirdf Century and St Huypplitus who wrote a history of the Church until then and he describes how the priest turned to the people and said just that. We are talking here about something very Spiritual. I was well aware of the history of ‘For Thine is the Kingdom………” It was not in early translations of scripture and only appeared about the 11th century and the theory is that some monk added it to the side of the main translation of scripture and it was picked up as part of the main translation by other monks who used that script. It is so obviously6 Protestant that I keep silent. The most recent ‘event’ I caused a stir on was the sudden revelation from a priest that he does not change the Bread and Wine into the Body and Blood of Christ. The Reformation of Hocus Pocus was even used. Apparently that is what Catholics believed that he hd some kind of magic. The particular prophet this came from came to my parish to talk about this. I mentioned that of course the priest does not change the Bread and Wine into the Body and Blood of Christ and, yes, it was the Holy Spirit, but the Holy Spirit will not work unless the priest speaks the words. The way this one was going was the idea that we do not really need a priest and the laity, the Royal Priesthood could do it. Despite the use of the word Sacrifice in the NOM I have not in forty years head a priest call the Mass a Sacrifice. Even today I heard a priest address schoolchildren and tell them that the Mass is about Jesus giving himself to us in Communion. Had I challenged him the standard reply would have been “O they are too young to understand that” I do hope by the way the SSPX does get its prelature, it will be an oasis in the desert that ci can visit now and then. We have the Society at HIghclete just outside Basingstoke. I have no transport so I have to attend the local mainstream parish.

    September 6, 2016 at 9:31 pm
    • crofterlady

      John, why do you “have to go to the mainstream parish” because you have no TLM provision? Why do you torment yourself? I won’t reveal his identity in case of his probable persecution by his bishop. but a traditional minded priest told me that nobody can oblige us to attend the NOM. Period. I don’t anymore and I am now at peace. Every Sunday I read my missal, say the Rosary, read spiritual works and make a visit to the Blessed Sacrament in absolute serenity.

      The bishops are in dereliction of their duty to traditional Catholics by unnecessarily depriving them of the TLM, even willfully at times. May God forgive them and they WILL answer for it at their Judgement Day. They should read Dante’s prescription for negligent bishops when, in Inferno (his trilogy) they are consigned (as pillars of the Church) to spend eternity UPSIDE DOWN IN PILLARS in Hell.

      September 6, 2016 at 11:49 pm
      • Summa

        And when you do read the Divine Comedy, read Dorothy Sayers edition. Superb. I also believe Mark Musa’s translation is highly recommended by traditional circles.

        September 6, 2016 at 11:54 pm
  • Summa

    This video has just been posted http://www.newliturgicalmovement.org/2016/09/an-excellent-new-video-on-ad-orientem.html#.V89Rq0197C0
    Much to commend in it but it is unclear whether the call for ad orientem worship is TLM or NOM.

    Also this is a quick but interesting read on the 1984 Indult by ++Lefebvre

    September 7, 2016 at 12:44 am
    • editor


      I dislike this attitude towards the Mass – it strikes me as entirely contradictory and nonsensical. We lament the loss of the old rite but when priests begin to offer the old rite, we refuse to attend because they (often unwillingly) have to continue to say the new Mass. Talk about a conundrum.

      I have attended, when they were in use, the “indult” Mass – just because I wanted to attend the old rite Mass, nothing whatsoever to do with the politics employed by those “permitting” it. I knew that it was ridiculous to require “permission” but I’ve always been of the mind that allows someone who wants to make an idiot of himself, so to do.

      The same criticism may be made of Summorum Pontificum – there, too, the old Mass is supposedly only legitimate as long as we accept the legitimacy of the new. Who cares? I attend SP Masses and I don’t accept the new Mass – can’t stand it, as a matter of fact.

      It’s a pity there are those in the SSPX who persist with this mentality. It is, in my opinion, a great weakness.

      When SP was first published, Bishop Fellay exhorted all to encourage priests to offer the traditional Mass under the auspices of SP. If the Devil is doing his best – and he is – to scupper that process, we shouldn’t be helping him.

      There will be a traditional Mass in the Immaculate Heart of Mary in Balornock, Glasgow, on Sundays at 6 pm from this Sunday (11th September) onward. In the same parish there are novus ordo Masses. If I ever need to avail myself of the evening traditional Mass, I will. I will never attend the novus ordo Masses, (and the novus ordo in that parish is offered ad orientem) just because the priest offers the traditional Mass in the same parish, but I WILL, if necessary attend his traditional Masses – that is, if for any reason I cannot attend the SSPX chapel.

      September 7, 2016 at 10:34 am
      • Christina

        Thank you, Ed, for stating that position, the only one that makes total sense. I have never been able to understand those who try to convince traditional Catholics otherwise. Long before Summorum Pontificum, priests who celebrated the TM under the ‘Agatha Christi Indult’ at the instigation of Una Voce groups and with episcopal ‘permission’, did great work in maintaining a toehold for the true Mass in the wasteland of the Vatican II Church, where ‘schismatic’ was hissed at every mention of the SSPX. For a very short while I fell for this lie myself, but carried on trying to find priests willing (and often delighted and relieved) to celebrate the Mass of their ordination, that ‘obedience’ had robbed them of. I am more than happy to attend the TM celebrated with great solemnity and dignity by traditional orders, as well as supporting those good diocesan priests who celebrate it, often in the face of the abuse of fellow priests. One very orthodox priest I knew said that whenever he opened his mouth at a priests’ meeting there was a chorus of ‘Shut up Fred’.

        I wonder if anyone has an opinion about this requirement for priests of traditional orders to accept the legitimacy of the NOM in order to be ‘allowed’ to celebrate the TM? I think that saying this, but with mental reservations, would be morally justifiable and would effectively make the acceptance meaningless, but then I’m not a theologian, so just asking

        The headline article is magnificent, but the problem now, I think, is that in contrast to the immediate post-Vat.II generations who could be readily convinced by Michael Davies’s ‘Pope Paul’s New Mass’ that the NOM is a Protestant rite and be shocked at the realisation, today we have a mainstream Church whose members, old and young, are brainwashed into accepting that Vat.II’s diabolical version of ecumenism is the greatest good. We have had a succession of popes promoting it, and now we have a nightmarish one whose syncretism is leading almost all the flock into acceptance of the previously unthinkable. Under these circumstances an article such as this will fall on the deaf ears of most modern ‘Catholics’, and the young are inevitably the most deaf. Allowing for exceptions, such as Helen’s nieces, of course.

        It should be remembered that as well as the prayers of the Ordinary of the Mass, dealt with here and by previous writers, the prayers of the Proper of the Mass, specifically the Collects, Secrets and Postcommunion prayers, with their humble abasement of us men and our complete dependence on the Divine Majesty, were completely removed and replaced with prayers omitting these essential Catholic sentiments. Without knowing at the time that he was, or would become a Sedevacantist, I read, and was much impressed by Father Cekada’s little booklet ‘The Problems with the Prayers of the Modern Mass’. I don’t think his position alters the facts as he presents them in this little work, so I don’t know if my recommending it is allowed with impunity!

        September 7, 2016 at 1:26 pm
  • Therese


    It’s a pity there are those in the SSPX who persist with this mentality. It is, in my opinion, a great weakness.It’s a pity there are those in the SSPX who persist with this mentality.

    100% agreement.

    September 7, 2016 at 1:09 pm
    • Christina

      Therese, that’s 100% from me too.

      September 7, 2016 at 1:29 pm
  • John Kearney

    I paid moe attention at the Novus Ordo Mass this morning after reading Dan Graham. Yes, after the Canon the words Christ has Died, Christ has Risen, Christ will Come again did ring in my ears like that was it, we celebrated as Jesus said but in the real world there was only one Sacrifice so let us move on. There is one point I discuss with priests. Do you say the Silent Prayer, “By the mingling of this water and wine may we share in the Divinity of Christ who humbled himself to share in our Humanity”. It is a straight translation from the Latin. They all say yes, but I am left in doubt, although we did have a visiting priest who spoke it out loud. I visited a Catholic Church in Abingdon which goes back to the Middle Ages last week. They had a statue of Our Lady and Jesus which was found buried in the grounds of a pub but which dates back to the middle ages. It was beautiful. But one could see the absence of an altar rail, probably smashed at the Revolution and the Sactuary was bare which was unusual. I surmised that the Tabernacle which was on the altar standing on s small table structure had been removed at that time also, or it would have been on an altar, but some good priest had restored it. Brave man indeed.

    September 7, 2016 at 2:54 pm
    • RCA Victor

      John Kearney,

      That phrase (“Christ has died” etc.) is known as the “Memorial Acclamation,” and to the surprise of zero traditionalists it is also used by several Protestant sects, including Anglicans, Lutherans, Methodists and Calvinists. Oh the ecumenical bliss of it all!

      September 7, 2016 at 5:11 pm
  • spudeater

    As a post-Vatican II child (which I think places me somewhere between the Baby Boomers and the Millennials – whatever they are) I can safely say that up until relatively recently, I was blissfully but not invincibly ignorant about virtually everything concerning the Traditional Mass and its 40+ year old pale imitation. I’ve since managed to catch up with several strands of the Plot but until Dan Graham’s article, hadn’t come across such a convincing, succinct and easily understood dissection of the huge changes wrought by Bugnini and his heretical henchmen. (By the way, whoever approved that ‘reviewing committee’ to be made up of 84% Protestants – or maybe 100%? – should have been put on a diet of the Curé d’Ars 7 day old potatoes for the rest of their days). It goes without saying that this article should be required reading for every semi-comatose pew sitter in the country, indeed the world but how do you persuade someone poorly catechised and who views their faith as just another aspect of their lives, no more important than their political leanings or their study and career prospects to take more than a passing interest? Chuck in decades of ecumenical delirium (e.g. a nearby parish recently had the local Church of England vicar round to give the homily at Mass and the parish priest, a Canon no less, called him his “honoured guest”) and without the person having at least some capacity to think for themselves, I fear that battle would almost definitely turn out to be of the ‘losing’ variety. Will there ever be a ‘Restoration’ of the Church that brings enlightenment and the True Faith to the currently dazed and confused millions? I hope and pray that there will be.

    September 7, 2016 at 9:20 pm
    • RCA Victor


      I’m afraid the only mass restoration (you should pardon the expression) that will dawn upon the dazed and confused millions will be through the Consecration of Russia – which I imagine, not too naively I hope, as a kind of collective “road to Damascus” for both laity and clergy.

      In terms of more technical details, I also suspect that will be the act that officially undoes the satanic enthronement ceremony that took place on June 29, 1963, simultaneously by phone in Charleston, South Carolina (an Illuminati center) and somewhere in the bowels of the Vatican – as described by Fr. Malachi Martin in Windswept House. I am convinced it was that heinous act that has produced the deluded ecumaniac euphoria has that swept through the Church – much like John Lennon’s selling his soul to the devil produced the euphoria of the Beatles’ worldwide success/cult. It amplified a hundredfold the liberal rebellion that was bubbling underground for a century, and turned it into an irresistible wave of frenzied messianic madness.

      The VII revolution, I believe, is nothing more than a satanic euphoria. And those “mainstream” clergy who are not affected by it are apparently living in fear, largely, of resisting it.

      September 8, 2016 at 12:47 am
  • Christina

    As to your question at the end, Spudeater, I think the anwer is ‘No’. I can’t see that the ‘dazed and confused’ (add brainwashed with syncretism and false Vat.II ecumenism and with zero catechesis) could be part of a mass restoration of the faith, unless by virtue of a spectacular miracle. In purely human terms it took 14 years of sound Catholic education for me to know as much as I do about the faith, and I have yet a very long way to go. You, and many other bloggers have come further in a much shorter time, but you have human gifts that are not given to everyone. I do believe that God will make allowances for those millions of simple souls who have been scandalised by popes, bishops, pastors and others, and have lost, or never learned, the Catholic faith. Christ said “But he that shall scandalize one of these little ones that believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone should be hanged about his neck, and that he should be drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe to the world because of scandals. For it must needs be that scandals come: but nevertheless woe to that man by whom the scandal cometh”. He didn’t include the little ones in this dreadful condemnation.

    I think it more likely that the restoration will come to future generations because of the faith’s having been preserved by a few in this dark age in which Satan has been unchained.

    PS. Does anyone have an answer to the question in the 2nd paragraph of my 1.26pm post above? Please.

    September 7, 2016 at 10:35 pm
    • spudeater


      I like your reply and unfortunately agree with you that barring divine intervention of an unprecedented nature, the answer to my question is ‘No’ but couldn’t you at least have said ‘Maybe’ or ‘Wait and see’ or ‘With God all things are possible’? I know….probably not.

      September 7, 2016 at 10:59 pm
      • Christina

        Spud, it’s that glass of mine – always half empty. 😣

        September 8, 2016 at 12:45 pm
    • editor


      Your question:

      “I wonder if anyone has an opinion about this requirement for priests of traditional orders to accept the legitimacy of the NOM in order to be ‘allowed’ to celebrate the TM? I think that saying this, but with mental reservations, would be morally justifiable and would effectively make the acceptance meaningless, but then I’m not a theologian, so just asking.”

      My Reply:

      When I attended the first Mass of Fr Mawdsley FSSP at the Immaculate Heart of Mary parish in Balornock, Glasgow, a few weeks ago, I asked him whether or not the priests of the Society of St Peter have to agree to say the new Mass in order to gain access into a diocese and he said “no” – that where the bishops lays down that condition, the Society refuse to enter the diocese. I didn’t think to ask him about “accepting the legitimacy” but, as transpired in the conversation, he does accept the legitimacy because he said he would encourage someone to attend if there were no traditional Mass available.

      As for “mental reservation” to gain access, my own opinion is that it would not be morally justifiable, because by appearing to accept it, one is, in appearance, going along with the revolution, and that can only, surely, cause confusion if not scandal to those who know the truth about the genesis of the new Mass and the issues surrounding it. I am always dubious about the concept of mental reservation anyway since we wouldn’t have a martyr on the Church’s calendar if everyone used that “get out of jail card”!

      September 8, 2016 at 10:02 am
      • Laura


        “he said he would encourage someone to attend if there were no traditional Mass available.”

        That priest obviously doesn’t have a problem with the new Mass. If he tells people to attend it to fulfil the Sunday obligation, then why not just go along with it and say it himself? If it’s pleasing enough to God for Sunday worship, I can’t see how he can then make a case against it, to be honest.

        September 8, 2016 at 2:31 pm
      • Summa

        It is surely better Editor never to attend these masses?

        Fr James Mawdsley who was ordained on Saturday 2nd July in Bavaria, by His Grace Archbishop Guido Pozzo, Secretary of the Pontifical Ecclesia Dei Commission.

        This lot would happily see the destruction of the SSPX. They are complicit, all and one.

        From the mouth of Pozzo this year…The SSPX is still in an irregular position, because it has not received canonical recognition by the Holy See. As long as the Society has no canonical status in the Church, its ministers do not exercise in a legitimate way the ministry and the celebration of the sacraments…The gesture of Pope Francis to grant to faithful Catholics the opportunity of receiving validly and lawfully the sacraments of reconciliation and anointing of the sick by the bishops and priests of the SSPX during the Holy Year of Mercy is clearly a sign of the will of the Holy Father to favor the path towards a full and stable canonical recognition.

        September 8, 2016 at 10:25 pm
  • Josephine


    I don’t think that’s the position of the SSPX. The SSPX recommends avoiding all contact with the novus ordo, except for necessities like family funerals and weddings etc and then not to participate.

    I can’t imagine any SSPX priest taking part in a Chrism Mass under any circumstances. I don’t think you can transfer what is being quoted as the position of the traditional orders such as FSSP and ICKSP onto the SSPX. They’re different on this, as far as I know.

    September 8, 2016 at 2:19 pm
    • Christina

      Josephine, I meant that the position of the SSPX is the same as that of the traditional orders in that they acknowledge the validity of the NOM but no its liceity, i.e. the beginning of para.3 referred to the end of para.2!

      We’ve established that the FSSP don’t take part in any Chrism Mass either.

      September 8, 2016 at 10:34 pm
  • Laura


    “I wonder why one so often hears the lie, in traditional circles, that these orders (FSSP, ICKSP, etc.), are compromised because 1. they have to say an NOM once a year, 2. have to concelebrate the Chrism Mass (to show unity), and 3. have to accept the validity AND liceity of the NOM.”

    It’s not a lie. The FSSP, ICKSP etc have had to compromise. That’s why Fr Mawdsley would encourage someone to attend the new Mass if the old Mass wasn’t available. You would never find an SSPX priest doing that.

    They also compromise in other ways, otherwise they wouldn’t be allowed into a diocese. I haven’t heard any of the preaching but I can’t imagine they would be preaching against religious liberty or ecumenism, when it’s going on in the diocese around them, with the permission of the bishop. I also can’t imagine them criticising Pope Francis very much.

    It’s only because the SSPX refuses to compromise that they are still in an irregular situation, so it’s easy to deduce that there must have been some sort of compromise for the others to be allowed to say the old Mass and even have parishes in some dioceses.

    September 8, 2016 at 2:26 pm
    • Josephine

      This is the SSPX take on the compromise of the FSSP. It is very clear although I don’t agree with their conclusion “this is why we should not attend their Masses”. I don’t think it’s right to politicise the Mass like this, so I’d attend their Masses if I had to, but without thinking of them as “traditional” priests. I agree with the article on that.

      September 8, 2016 at 7:09 pm
      • RCA Victor


        Why do you think that is politicizing the Mass?

        September 8, 2016 at 9:38 pm
      • Josephine

        RCA Victor,

        I think that because if the priest is offering the traditional Latin Mass, then, Catholics should not be discouraged from attending just because he’s a member of a non-SSPX group.

        That’s what I mean by politicising – it’s the politics not the Mass which is important. When I attend Mass, I don’t think about the politics of it all. I have attended the indult Masses when they were on the go, and I do attend Summorum Masses now. It doesn’t mean I think the priest is right about everything, and I always remember that we wouldn’t have the Mass if it wasn’t for Archbishop Lefebvre and the Society. However, to say that Catholics may only attend SSPX Masses is to cross a line. What if there is no SSPX chapel within reasonable distance but there is a Summorum Mass? Are we really supposed to miss Mass rather than attend a Summorum Mass or an FSSP Mass? That cannot possibly be right.

        I think it must be displeasing to God to encourage somebody to miss Mass rather than attend a traditional Mass offered by a non-SSPX priest. That’s really wrong, IMHO.

        September 8, 2016 at 10:16 pm
      • RCA Victor


        Thanks, I agree with you to a certain extent, but note that the article you linked does not make a blanket condemnation of non-SSPX TLM’s, only of Fraternity TLM’s.

        As I said earlier on this thread (at least, I think it was this thread!), I don’t understand this fully, but I think it is directed at the lack of conviction and integrity (and faith) of those baker’s dozen priests who jumped ship in 1988 in order to be acceptable to Rome. That does not speak well of them at all. And this is not politics, this is a reflection on the character of their priesthood.

        That said, I myself used to attend (until Advent 2009) an Indult TLM, which was occasionally said by a Fraternity priest (who took potshots at the SSPX during his sermons), and we have a small group of parishioners in our SSPX parish who live 90 minutes away, and are thus occasionally constrained to attend a Fraternity TLM in their home city….esp. when the winter weather gets bad.

        So I agree with you on this, but on a certain continuum: if you can’t get to an SSPX Mass, or an ICK Mass, or a diocesan TLM, or any other TLM, then a Fraternity Mass is fine. As long as its not a Novus Ordo!

        September 8, 2016 at 11:53 pm
      • Summa

        So I agree with you on this, but on a certain continuum: if you can’t get to an SSPX Mass, or an ICK Mass, or a diocesan TLM, or any other TLM, then a Fraternity Mass is fine. As long as its not a Novus Ordo!

        Unfortunately the Mass is not the only thing. If it was then the valid NOM would be fine to attend. But it is most displeasing to God. The clergy of FSSP and others have time and again attacked the SSPX in their sermons on matters of ‘obedience’, ‘schism’.

        But they would wouldn’t they. A heavy conscience will bring out the worst in some, won’t it?

        Ergo, because the Ecclesia Dei groups…

        #1. Sold out and Collaborate with Modernism
        #2. Accept the NOM
        #3. Attack the SSPX on occasion

        I would never attend. To keep the 3rd Commandment one must…

        Keep the Lord’s Day HOLY


        Attend Sunday Mass, if that Mass or the circumstances surrounding those Masses are a danger to souls or in some way undermine the remnant of the True Faith that lives through the SSPX.

        September 9, 2016 at 12:03 am
      • Summa

        NB: The FIRST paragraph in my reply above is not mine but I am quoting RCA Victor.

        September 9, 2016 at 12:19 am
  • Summa

    so I wonder why one so often hears the lie, in traditional circles, that these orders (FSSP, ICKSP, etc.), are compromised

    It is not a lie. They are compromised. They are collaborators in the poisoning of the Church. They turned their backs on Tradition and accepted the NOM. Their whole Ecclesia Dei existence relies on their explicit acceptance of the NOM.

    September 8, 2016 at 9:43 pm
    • Christina

      Summa, re lie. I apologise for using the word but see my reply to Laura about what I claimed were untruths.

      September 8, 2016 at 10:22 pm
      • Summa

        Christina, these Priests are being untruthful. They say they don’t have to say NOM once a year. In fact the real truth is…

        1) They may not say the NOM ever, but…
        2) As far as the authorities are concerned, they say they do!

        They are in fact disobedient in the real sense of the word. Why? Because by accepting the Ecclesia Dei commission, they have made it clear that they accept the NOM and their obligations to it. The fact that they might not say the NOM is irrelevant.

        I guarantee you, every one of them would say the NOM if the Vicar of Rome told them to.

        September 8, 2016 at 10:37 pm
  • Summa

    John Paul II from Ecclesia Die 1988….In the present circumstances I wish especially to make an appeal both solemn and heartfelt, paternal and fraternal, to all those who until now have been linked in various ways to the movement of Archbishop Lefebvre, that they may fulfil the grave duty of remaining united to the Vicar of Christ in the unity of the Catholic Church, and of ceasing their support in any way for that movement. Everyone should be aware that formal adherence to the schism is a grave offence against God and carries the penalty of excommunication decreed by the Church’s law.

    And some bowed low, took the 30 pieces of silver and shared it amongst themselves.

    September 8, 2016 at 10:05 pm
    • Josephine


      I think that’s very harsh and an extreme position. It’s the Mass which is important, not whether the priest offering it also accepts the NOM – that’s a pity but it doesn’t take away from the power of the traditional Masses he’s offering.

      You must remember, this was a new situation and in 1988 there were some of the Society priests who didn’t know what was the right thing to do. Hindsight is a great thing but most of us don’t have it. They did what they thought was right at the time, and at least they were doing their best to keep the old Mass alive, according to the lights they had at the time.

      I don’t know what Archbishop Lefebvre said about the ones who broke away and formed the FSSP at the time, but I’d be surprised if he condemned them. I don’t think we should do so either.

      September 8, 2016 at 10:21 pm
      • Summa

        I’m sorry Josephine, but they are quislings. The Ecclesia Dei commission was ALL about divide and conquer, destroy the old Mass. The only reason the FSSP et al exist today is because of the SSPX remain strong. They exist and are used by bishops to keep Catholics away from SSPX Masses.

        The Ecclesia Dei groups would have been disbanded long ago if the SSPX had faltered.

        September 8, 2016 at 10:31 pm
      • editor


        Everything you say is correct in the sense that the other Orders/Societies etc have had to compromise up to a point – but the fact is, the SSPX didn’t falter and it is thanks to the Society that the Mass is spreading whether through the other Orders/Societies or Summorum Pontificum. Some of the compromise might be, for example, a Summorum Pontificum priest who has to continue to say the new Mass because that’s what he was ordained to say.

        It’s not easy for some of these priests, brought up in the new Mass, good enough and grace-filled enough, to have learned the old Mass and desire to offer it, to just completely down tools and refuse to say the novus ordo. It would be wonderful if they could, of course, but we have to try to understand their situation, taking into account, their own characters, lights etc. I say that, coming from a position of impatience myself. I imagine that I would tell my bishop to take a hike if he thought I would continue to say the novus ordo now that I know better, blah blah, but then, we can’t all be like me… 😀 You will, I hope, get my drift…

        I never discourage anyone from attending the Mass no matter where it is available. I do say that if there is a Society chapel available, that should be our first loyalty because, as already pointed out, there wouldn’t be any other Orders/Societies OR Summorum Pontificum, but for the existence and persistence of the SSPX. So, that should be the first loyalty of all Catholics seeking a traditional Mass, for this reason: that it sends a clear signal to the Bishops of the central role of the SSPX in the crisis in the Church today.

        The fact is that, however, not everyone can get to a Society chapel and then, of course, it is better that they attend the old Mass wherever they find it, whatever the motives or shortcomings of the priests/Orders/Societies involved.

        My final word on this for now is that I believe it is important to encourage all traditional Mass attending Catholics to read the works of Archbishop Lefebvre, such as his Open Letter (available to read on our website Links page) in order to highlight the truth that it is not “just” the Mass which is important, but the whole package, that they really need to embark on a programme of re-education in the Faith – and that’s a good place to start. Then they will come to see (and hear, or not hear!) for themselves that their priests, while offering the ancient Mass, may not be offering solid sermons which teach about the dangers to the Faith in the modern Church, thanks to modernist clergy and hierarchy. That is certainly available in SSPX chapels.

        I’m still fighting off, almost there, my annoying cold and cough, so not going to chatter on (don’t all cheer at once!)

        September 8, 2016 at 10:45 pm
      • Summa

        Thanks for your detailed reply Editor. I will politely disagree with you.
        The very fact that the Ecclesia Dei groups are using the facilities of the Diocese means that they will always use kid gloves or shy away completely from the Modernism rife in the Church hierarchy.

        The fact is they will toe the party line. The party line is evil.

        September 8, 2016 at 10:54 pm
      • editor


        You can disagree with me all you like, politely or otherwise, but I’d like to know what, precisely, you are arguing: do you think it’s better to miss Mass rather than attend a Mass offered by an FSSP priest, Institute of Christ the King priest, or diocesan priest who offers the Mass as a result of Summorum Pontificum? Is that your position? To argue that we can keep the Sabbath holy by NOT attending the traditional Mass for the reasons you give, does not, it seems to me, stand up to examination. The fruits and graces of the Mass do not depend on the views of the priest offering it. So, the key question I’d like you to answer is this: is it only Masses offered by the SSPX priests that are acceptable in God’s eyes?

        In fact, it is not true that [non SSPX priests] will “always shy away from the modernism rife in the Church hierarchy” – I know of a Scots priest where his sermons have been completely clear on, for example, the unacceptability of Amoris Laetitia, to the point that people have upped and walked out of the church during his sermons. His attempts to introduce traditional teaching, devotions etc into the parish has made him very unpopular with so many parishioners that I’ve heard him say he no longer sets any store by numbers. He is renowned for his zeal in many different ways, so I think it is a mistake to think of the non-SSPX priests as all being deficient by contrast with the Society priests. Next time we meet in person, ask me to elaborate on this, although you ought to be prepared not to like a lot of what I will say.

        I have encountered one FSSP priest who bad-mouthed the SSPX to me, quite openly at a public event. I doubt if he’ll ever forget our conversation. I’m told he is now on the road to recovery. However, the above mentioned diocesan priest speaks highly of the SSPX clergy, so I think it’s unjust to tar them all with the same brush.

        I look forward to reading your answer to my initial question, because only if the answer to that question is “yes” could you possibly justify arguing against attending non-SSPX Masses. So, for ease of reference, here’s that question again: is it only Masses offered by the SSPX priests that are acceptable in God’s eyes?

        September 9, 2016 at 12:43 am
      • Summa

        Editor said..You can disagree with me all you like, politely or otherwise,

        Thanks Ed, I have that in writing 😉

        is it only Masses offered by the SSPX priests that are acceptable in God’s eyes?

        No. I’m saying that there is a grave danger to souls of laity who attend Masses by Ecclesia Dei groups, due to their acceptance of Vatican II, their Modernist overlords and their subordination to Modernist Bishops.

        As ++Lefebvre says, it is only be the Grace of God that he was outside of the Concoliar Church (not the TRUE Church) that he was able to keep the Faith alive through the formation of Holy Priests.

        The Ecclesia Dei groups are within the Conciliar Church WILLINGLY.

        Under these PRESENT circumstances, I would not trust them as far as I could throw them.

        The Scots Priest you refer to, albeit his good intentions and courage in homily, by association accepts the Conciliar Church and the NOM.

        September 9, 2016 at 12:52 am
      • editor


        You are wrong – the Scots priest does NOT “accept the Conciliar Church and the NOM” in the sense of fully approving it. From my first days attending SSPX chapels, I could see the danger of extremism and I’m sorry to say I see it in your posts today.

        For, unless I’m misreading you (and I apologise in advance if that is the case) you appear to be saying that “outside the SSPX there is no salvation” and that is a heresy.

        September 9, 2016 at 1:03 am
      • Summa

        Editor, I’m sorry you are wrong and thanks for apologising in advance 😉

        I trust you are not willingly ignoring what I said above…I’ll repeat…

        No. I’m saying that there is a grave danger to souls of laity who attend Masses by Ecclesia Dei groups, due to their acceptance of Vatican II, their Modernist overlords and their subordination to Modernist Bishops.

        Your Priest accepts it by the fact that the Ecclesia Dei groups are in substance originated within it.

        I’m absolutely sure, Editor, that your Priest has pangs of conscience about being part of the Conciliar Church too.

        To the charge of heresy, give me a break Ed! See my paragraph that starts with No.

        But to be clearer… before the council the SSPX did not exist yet the Mass of Pius V did. All was good. The Church fell away, a remnant remained true and shot forward straight as an arrow and it is attacked to this day by not only the Conciliar Church but by some of the feathers that fell from it.

        To conclude. It is absolutely fine to attend Mass outside of the SSPX chapels. But not those chapels that are imbued by the Conciliar Church either explicitly or implicitly.

        That kind of narrows things down a little. But to give you an example, when I was in CA recently the closest Mass I could have attended would have been a non-SSPX Chapel run by Fr Hogan in San Jose. That would have been fine.

        It would not have been fine to visit the ICK Immaculate Heart of Mary in the same city.

        Why because the former does not accept the Conciliar Church whilst the latter does.

        I’m sure that this example satisfies the charge of heresy.

        September 9, 2016 at 1:18 am
      • editor


        Darn! If you were a heretic, think of the fun we could have had.

        I know that the priest where I regularly attend SP Masses is doing everything in his power to restore Catholic Tradition in his parish. His sermons are absolutely sound. That’s the only place where I attend apart from the Society. I think, therefore, that we can deduce what Father thinks of the “Conciliar” Church. I don’t like the term, by the way, and I long ago decided to speak only of the Church, which is infected by modernism and in which battle we must engage, as Soldiers of Christ. It’s too easy to slip into the error of a defectible Church, so I avoid using the term and certain others coined by “traditionalists”.

        I restrict my argument to the one set out in my (I sincerely hope) final post on the subject below.

        Now, I’m off – things to do, people to see, blah blah!

        September 9, 2016 at 10:18 am
      • Christina

        Josephine, I agree 100%.

        September 8, 2016 at 10:37 pm
      • Summa

        Josephine, I’m sorry but you are being hoodwinked.

        If you really want to know the thinking of the FFSP v SSPX read this here. It will take you all of 5 minutes.


        September 8, 2016 at 11:18 pm
      • Christina

        Summa, that horrified me, and doesn’t sound like the FSSP as I know it today. On re-reading and reflection I wonder about the motives of the SSPX releasing the old history of an unfortunate eisode but bearing a more recent date. This link, if one disregards the Michael Voris distraction gives quite a different perspective.


        Josephine, if you read Summa’s link you might also like to read this one for balance. I like the writer’s attitude towards these disputes between traditional groups.

        September 9, 2016 at 12:35 am
      • Summa

        Christina, Voris HATES the SSPX.

        September 9, 2016 at 12:44 am
      • Christina

        Summa, you think I don’t KNOW Michael Voris hates the SSPX??

        I linked moderate article calling for traditionalists of various affiliationns to stop fighting among themselves and work together for what we ultimately all want for the restoration of all things in Christ.

        You see the name Michael Voris, a red mist descends, and that is that. If you were not blinded by your fixed prejudice you would have at least read a little further and seen, from the writer’s somewhat crude description of MV, that he is no fan of that gentleman either!

        Sadly it isn’t possible to have a reasonable discussion in the face of blind prejudice, but at least there are experts on this blog, who’ll give it their best shot!

        September 9, 2016 at 1:39 pm
      • Summa

        Christina, out of charity I’ll ignore the ‘prejudice’ and the ‘red mist’ comments. I only add this: I would not link to Michael Voris, now knowing what I know of him, just as I wouldn’t use a KJV of the Bible to articulate a point I was making.
        All the best.

        September 9, 2016 at 11:23 pm
      • Christina

        Big time gap here, Summa, ‘cos I’ve not had reliable wifi for a while The whole point was that it was NOT a link to Michael Voris! The writer merely mentioned him (with no affection), you saw the name and jumped to a totally wrong conclusion. Hence the prejudice and red mist remarks, which you undertandably chose to ignore.

        September 14, 2016 at 11:40 am
  • Summa

    For those on here who look with fondness to the smells & bells of the Ecclesia Dei groups either by vocally supporting them or by attending their Masses, I present to you the words of the saintly ++ Marcel Lefebvre…

    “It is obvious that by putting themselves (FFSP, ICK etc) in the hands of the present conciliar authorities, they implicitly accept the Council and the reforms that came from it, even if they receive privileges which remain exceptional and provisional. Their acceptance stops them saying anything. The bishops are watching them.” (Letter to Fr. Daniel Couture, March 18, 1989)

    and to those who take the Ecclesia Dei Catholic position or tho those who are sympathetic to it…

    “What Church are we talking about? If it is the Conciliar Church it would supposedly have been necessary for us (who fought against her for twenty years and who want the Catholic Church) to re-enter the Conciliar Church to make it, as it were, Catholic. This is a complete illusion. Subjects do not make the superiors; it is the superiors who make the subjects. With all the Roman Curia and in the midst of all the bishops of the world who are progressives, my voice would have been completely drowned out. I would have been incapable of doing anything to protect the faithful and the seminarians. They would have said to us: “Well, we are going to give you this bishop to do the ordinations; your seminarians will have to accept these professors from such and such a diocese.” It is impossible! In the Society of St. Peter they have professors from the diocese of Augsburg. Who are these professors? What do they teach?” (Fideliter, no. 70:6-8.)

    September 9, 2016 at 12:24 am
    • editor


      With respect, at the time of the silly “resistance” (to nothing) movement within the Society, one of the (American, I think) Society priests wrote an excellent article in which he pointed out that it is a mistake to quote – as Gospel – the words of Archbishop Lefebvre, especially in the early days of the Society’s life following the 1988 consecrations. That’s what the “resistance” bunch do in order to justify their rebellion against Bishop Fellay.

      I doubt very much indeed if the Archbishop would still be saying the same thing, or at least, I doubt if he would write off all non-SSPX Masses (although I do understand reservations about the FSSP, given their open hostility towards the Society even in public on occasion).

      Remember, it is, as the priest-writer to whom I refer above, pointed out, a fact that nobody, including Archbishop Lefebvre, expected the crisis in the Church to last as long as it has done. Archbishop Lefebvre actually amended some of his own statements, as has been quoted on this blog in the past.

      But above all, we need to remember that, saintly as the Archbishop was, without a doubt, and I, personally, believe that he will one day not only be canonised but pronounced a Doctor of the Church – nothing more certain – nevertheless, he was not infallible. The issue is not so much what he said way back in 1989, but what would he be saying now, in this worsening situation, with, nevertheless, the Cardinal Burkes, Bishop Schneiders and growing numbers of diocesan priests showing traditional leanings…

      September 9, 2016 at 12:58 am
      • Summa


        I chose those words carefully from + Bernard Tissier de Mallerais’ biography and I stand by by them in being as apt today as they were back then.

        I have no schismatic mindset and I abhor the ‘Resistance’, but I see them as no different from the Ecclesia Dei groups: they broke away from the TRUE Church:- FSSP et al to Conciliar acceptance, Resistance to Legalism, Sedevecantism,

        September 9, 2016 at 1:05 am
      • editor


        So you ARE saying that “outside the SSPX there is no salvation”?

        September 9, 2016 at 1:11 am
      • Summa

        Ed. No I’m not saying that.

        September 9, 2016 at 1:21 am
  • Summa


    Where does the name come from?

    These communities bear the generic name of “Ecclesia Dei communities” because most of them depend on the commission (small group of bishops and priests designated by the Pope to take charge of a specific matter) of the same name, founded in Rome following the episcopal consecrations of 1988 in order to receive the priests and seminarians who left the Fraternity of Saint Pius X.

    The words “Ecclesia Dei” are the title of document of John Paul II that excommunicated Abp. Lefebvre on July 2, 1988: we can thus say that all these communities are established on this excommunication and, therefore, benefit from the heroic act performed by Abp. Lefebvre on June 30, 1988. If the founder of Écône had not first announced (May 29, 1987) then proceeded (June 30, 1988) to the consecration of bishops, the Roman authorities would never have granted the traditional liturgy to all these communities.

    Does the Vatican ask these communities for assurances in order to grant them the right to celebrate the ancient liturgy?

    They must in fact recognize the new Mass as a fully legitimate rite; because the so-called traditional liturgy is considered by the Roman authorities as only an “extraordinary rite” of the Mass, compared with the new Mass, which is the “ordinary rite”, that is, the usual way of celebrating Mass. Moreover, in 2000, Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos reminded this to the superiors of the Fraternity of Saint Peter regarding a group of their priests who also wished to celebrate the new Mass.

    The members of these communities must therefore abstain from any criticism regarding Vatican II; they must specially accept – or, at least, they must not criticize – religious liberty and ecumenism. That is why they are so disturbed by these inter-religious ceremonies as practiced in Assisi: it devastates them, undoubtedly, but they cannot protest publicly.

    Why isn’t the Society of Saint Pius X part of these communities?

    The 1988 consecrations helped save Catholic Tradition not only by ensuring the transmission of the sacrament of Holy Orders – and, therefore, of the Traditional Mass and sacraments -, but also by protecting a small part of the Church’s flock from the errors of Vatican II. Alas, these conciliar errors still devastate the Church, and rule even in Rome. In order to protect oneself efficaciously, it is therefore necessary to keep one’s distances from the Roman authorities.

    Can you give us an analogy?

    In times of an epidemic, the most basic prudence demands one to separate the sick from the healthy. Some contact remains indispensable in order to care for the sick, but it is limited to the smallest possible [level] and surrounded by great precaution. The same goes for the current situation: one cannot visit in a habitual manner the conciliar authorities without exposing oneself to catching their errors. The example of the Ecclesia Dei communities is the manifest evidence of that.

    Have the members of the Ecclesia Dei communities truly admitted the conciliar errors, or are they satisfied with keeping silent about them?

    Without the intention of judging the internal dispositions or possible exceptions, it seems that most of their members have ended up, unfortunately, adhering to the Conciliar errors. They began with a silence that they considered prudent. They have had to increasingly show signs of good will regarding the Roman authorities. They have been placed in submission, without even noticing it, to the pressure of Liberalism – which is more efficacious when it seems less forceful. They have ended up forbidding themselves to think differently from what they said and did. In short, they have been completely swallowed by the machinery in which they had imprudently placed their finger.

    Is this acceptance of the conciliar errors common to all Ecclesia Dei communities?

    There are nuances, certainly, but, in a general fashion, all these communities currently adhere to the conciliar errors. At the moment of the ralliement of July 1988, Le Barroux had publicly posed as a condition, “that nothing liturgical or doctrinal be demanded from us in return, and that no silence be imposed to our anti-Modernist predication.” However, in the following month of October, a monk noticed “a certain relativization of the criticism of religious liberty and of the meeting of Assisi” inside the abbey. Le Barroux would even try to publicly justify the errors of Vatican II. The Fraternity of Saint Peter, which intended, at the beginning, to carry on the inside of the Church exactly what the Society of Saint Pius X did, has suffered the same fall.

    Have not these communities remained firm, at least, on the liturgy?

    Far from resisting firmly, they have all more or less accepted the new liturgy, which they avoid attacking frankly, in any event: Dom Gérard, the former abbot of Le Barroux, had to concelebrate the new Mass with the Pope on April 27, 1995. Father Wach, the superior of the Institute of Christ the King, had already to do the same on Decemver 21, 1991. Bp. Rifan also concelebrated the new Mass on September 8, 2004. The Fraternity of Saint Peter has had to accept the principle of concelebration of the Chrism Mass of Holy Thursday with the diocesan bishop.

    In return for these concessions, do these communities at least receive vast possibilities for their apostolate?

    The situation varies widely according to the countries and the dioceses, but most bishops remain very restrictive regarding these communities. Even those who are not hostile to them hesitate to receive them, for fear of their clergy and active laymen. Rome fears, from its side, the reactions of the bishops. The situation of these communities would be of an extreme fragility without the counterweight of the Fraternity of Saint Pius X.

    September 9, 2016 at 2:00 am
  • Summa

    And how one FSSP parishoner responded to the above article…

    I go to the FSSP mass in Sydney and I must admit that the criticisms of the FSSP being silent on important issues have weight. The positive teaching is good and modernism is denounced at times, and some aspects of ecumenism are attacked, but there is never criticism of the Novus Ordo as such, and the social kingship of Christ is not taught. I am not sure that the evils of ecumenism and of religions other than the Catholic faith are fully explained, and the fact that most Australian bishops, clergy and religious are modernists and are a threat to the faith is never stated. (I must except the ex-FSSP Fr. Glen Tattersall from this stricture on not preaching the social kingship of Christ; his sermon at the end of the Christus Rex pilgrimage this year was a good and brave exposition of it.) Of course if they were to do any of these things they would probably be expelled from the diocese. But this silence is a silence about teachings of the faith and about threats to the souls of their faithful, and I do not see how it can be justified. The argument that it is necessary to keep this silence in order to have a presence in the diocese boils down to an implicit argument for the SSPX’s policy; if you have to endanger the souls of the faithful in order to get canonical approval to operate in a diocese, then you are justified by a state of necessity in operating without such approval.

    September 9, 2016 at 2:02 am
    • editor


      There is nothing in either of your latest posts that I do not already know, with all due respect. I really don’t have a lot of time for the FSSP because the only priest I’ve ever met, didn’t make a good impression on me and he did, as I’ve already reported, publicly insult the SSPX. However, I have heard of at least one other priest who does preach well and who – to the best of my knowledge – has never insulted the Society, so I suppose we have to acknowledge that there are good and bad (and indifferent) everywhere. The Society priests are not perfect either – and the ones I know are the first to acknowledge this fact.

      I am already on public record here, just about every time this issue is raised, as saying that parents with children (like my own niece) rightly determine that they will only take their offspring to Sunday Mass / Holy Days at SSPX chapels to ensure that they do not imbibe the ethos of modernism, even if they do not hear heresy preached. Things like the paper stall, bulletins containing adverts for ecumenical events etc. – she wishes to protect them from all of this until they are old enough to understand. In fact, however, she allows me to take my (almost) 14 year old Great Nephew to some of the weekday SP Masses and he quickly came to the view that he much prefers the Society chapels for a number of reasons – he’s a server and the sacristan at the Society chapel has taught him all of the strictly correct traditional customs, so when he sees less than that, he doesn’t like it. But he will ask to come with me because, in his own words, he wishes to attend as many Masses as possible, in order to win grace. “Out of the mouths of babes…”

      I, as an adult who is fully informed, will (and do) attend other Masses when necessary, because, if Archbishop Lefebvre accepted that even the novus ordo is valid, when the necessary conditions are met, then so, too, is the old Mass and my first concern is to receive the graces of the Mass – not, as someone so aptly put it above, to concern myself with the politics of the Ecclesia Dei Commission. My first loyalty is to the SSPX so if there is a Mass in the Society chapel on the same day as – for example – the local Summorum Pontificum Mass, I will go there. But I do go to the SP Masses on days when there is no Society Mass, and I am confident that my soul is not endangered. Remember, Bishop Fellay told us to support SP priests when SP was first published. How do we do that if we refuse to attend their Masses when possible, or recommend others to do so? Indeed, our SSPX priests know that I attend the SP Masses and have never said anything negative about it at all. I’m told that one of them helped that priest in his early stages of learning the old Mass.

      Indeed, I see it as something of a duty to attend when I can because in the parish where I attend the SP Masses, the priest provides a cup of tea after some of the Masses and I have the opportunity, therefore, to discuss the crisis in the Church with the laity who attend there, some of whom are woefully ignorant of the very basics and even some who are reasonably informed, looked aghast the first time I mentioned that the buck stops with Pope Francis.. We are Confirmed as Soldiers of Christ, and supposed to take every opportunity to defend and spread the Faith. There’s really not a lot of that going on in the SSPX congregations, in my experience of attending for over ten years now. There is a decidedly UN-Catholic ghetto mentality, unfortunately. “I’m all right Jack, so let me keep my head down until this evil period in the Church passes.”

      When I meet people who would like to attend a traditional Mass but cannot attend our Mass because it is too early, for example (I’m thinking of one lady in particular who is a carer for an elderly friend who lives some way from her own home, so there is no way she could get into town for our 9.45.a.m Mass much as she would like to, and has done on occasion when free, temporarily, of her carer-commitment) I recommend whatever other Mass is available, while explaining that when possible, I recommend the Society chapel and mention briefly the motivation behind allowing the other Masses in the first place. They understand that. It’s certainly a reason to attend the Society in preference, but it’s not a reason to fail to attend Mass at all. To slightly paraphrase Joseph’s words to his brothers who had treated him so badly, Pope John Paul II/Ecclesia Dei thought they were doing damage to the SSPX but God decided otherwise.

      Now, I am going to be away from my computer for most of today, but there really isn’t anything more that I can add to what I’ve already said. There is no sin in attending Masses offered by priests who are not SSPX priests, so the judgment call on whether or not to do so, falls to us as individuals. We are not religious, bound by a vow of obedience, so we may differ in our opinions on this (and on certain other matters) from the Society clergy, without committing sin. I’ll leave it at that

      September 9, 2016 at 10:01 am
      • Therese


        But he will ask to come with me because, in his own words, he wishes to attend as many Masses as possible, in order to win grace. “Out of the mouths of babes…”

        Precisely. If one’s faith is well founded and understood, as I had the pleasure of witnessing is the case of your great nephew, there can be no danger of “infection” in attending a non-SSPX TLM. Indeed, the presence of such well-informed and devout youths will be wonderful examples to those who are returning to Tradition.

        There’s really not a lot of that going on in the SSPX congregations, in my experience of attending for over ten years now. There is a decidedly UN-Catholic ghetto mentality, unfortunately. “I’m all right Jack, so let me keep my head down until this evil period in the Church passes.”

        I’ve been attending for over 40 years, and that has also been my experience, sadly. I think a lot of this has to do with the lack of any real parish life, which is understandable as the priests have such large areas to cover, and often their absence is filled by one or two rather over-zealous – not to say bossy and judgemental – lay people (usually women…..)

        I have heard some excellent sermons from SSPX clergy, but they are preaching to the converted, and if the converted don’t take the opportunity to share such excellent teaching with fellow Catholics when they get the chance to – such as at non-SSPX Masses, because they don’t want to be “infected” by Modernism, then they aren’t the kind of soldiers of Christ that He needs and for which the Church is crying out.

        That’s my two-penn’orth anyway.

        September 9, 2016 at 8:49 pm
      • Summa

        Therese said…Precisely. If one’s faith is well founded and understood, as I had the pleasure of witnessing is the case of your great nephew, there can be no danger of “infection” in attending a non-SSPX TLM. Indeed, the presence of such well-informed and devout youths will be wonderful examples to those who are returning to Tradition.

        Hi Therese, I have to disagree with you here. You see to say that there can be no danger of “infection” in attending a non-SSPX TLM. smacks of either ignorance of the skill and intelligence of these clergy or it’s unsupported pride.

        If I was to use the analogy of modesty: there is a TLM community (non SSPX) not too far from us. They have youth groups, which are supervised – all good so far. The youth dress inappropriately: girls wear jeans, above the knee skirts, the boys similar. They think this is okay, the parents do, the TLM priests do.

        I would not mix my children in these groups, for I know the mindset and peer pressure is an evil habit waiting to be planted in their heads: that this apparel is fine. Or worse still, that they begin to think they are immune to immodesty and are not affected by it. But the more you attend such places, especially parish condoned places, and you see and hear a different reality of what you are seeing and hearing at the SSPX Church, the evil seed is sown.

        So please think carefully on this one. We all are vulnerable and we should not place ourselves willingly in the occasion of sin or adopting practices that place pressure on us to conform to evil.

        September 9, 2016 at 11:34 pm
      • Therese


        I quite agree with you about protecting your children – as far as you are able – from the pressure to conform to lower standards because of peer pressure, and I would protect them from harmful influences when they are too immature to resist, but there will come a time when your children must stand on their own two feet. When that time comes, they will not be much use as soldiers of Christ if they confine themselves to mixing only with those who share their beliefs. Don’t you agree?

        You are quite right to say that we are all vulnerable, and it behoves us to think very carefully to ensure that our actions are in accordance with our beliefs.

        September 10, 2016 at 10:07 am
      • Summa

        Therese I agree.

        September 10, 2016 at 11:00 am
      • editor


        There are young people in our Glasgow SSPX chapel and no doubt others as well, who wear short skirts and even tight trousers. I don’t like it at all. I hate seeing it on the streets, I hate seeing it in church. But, no matter where we go these days, the secular influence is to be found. I know that the parents have spoken to these youngsters but they are not children; they can’t be forced. Despite as good a Catholic upbringing as possible, they follow the crowd when it comes to fashion – at least for now. Hopefully, they will (literally!) grow out of these hideous fashions but I wouldn’t write them off or ban them from attending Mass. Good, carefully thought through sermons on the topic rather than a blanket notice in the church porch, might help a lot, but my point is, this phenomenon is to be found in Society chapels, if not in Australia (lucky you) then here in Scotland, lamentable as it is.

        So, instead of protecting your children from these misguided youngsters by keeping them away from the church, is it not better to point out that this dress is displeasing to God – not to say unattractive? Is it not better to present your own children as models, good examples of young people appropriately dressed, fashionable while not immodest? No girl has to wear a skirt around her ankles in order to be modest. Common sense and a cultivation of good taste should suffice to help them to choose fashions wisely.

        The key to education in the Faith is a combination of protecting and preparing. The parents who protect their children without preparing them, find that their children go the way of the world. I know of such cases and it is tragic, and all because the parents lacked elementary common sense, let alone good teaching skills.

        September 10, 2016 at 11:05 am
      • Summa

        Editor says So, instead of protecting your children from these misguided youngsters by keeping them away from the church, is it not better to point out that this dress is displeasing to God – not to say unattractive? Is it not better to present your own children as models, good examples of young people appropriately dressed, fashionable while not immodest? No girl has to wear a skirt around her ankles in order to be modest. Common sense and a cultivation of good taste should suffice to help them to choose fashions wisely.

        You may have misread my post but I don’t keep my children away from our SSPX chapel. I said … there is a TLM community (non SSPX) not too far from us. They have youth groups, which are supervised – all good so far. The youth dress inappropriately: girls wear jeans, above the knee skirts, the boys similar. They think this is okay, the parents do, the TLM priests do.

        I would not mix my children in these groups,

        Hope that clears things up.

        September 11, 2016 at 3:34 am
      • Summa

        Editor, I tried to respond to the post above (September 9, 2016 at 10:18 am) but I sort of covered my answer to Therese at (September 9, 2016 at 11:34 pm).
        Editor, lovely lady that you are, (and you can buy me a cup of tea and a caramel wafer when we next meet, for saying that) with lorry loads more knowledge on these issues than I have, you mustn’t think you are immune.

        There is always danger when we expose ourselves to the Conciliar Church. And the Conciliar Church is what they are.

        Despite the betrayal of the Ecclesia Dei priests in 1988 to accept the spirit of modernism in Vatican II, the Church has got exponentially worse. They have had really had no effect on halting this. In fact you might say they have hastened it through allowing those laity to stay with the Modernist leaders of the Church, the Pope and Bishops.These good folk might have come back to the Catholic Church in the SSPX if they had not an alternative.

        I accept that the SP Priest you refer to is Catholic. I accept that too. But the fact remains that the groups he belongs to are compromisers.

        I also know that the world is not black and white. But in some things it is.

        September 10, 2016 at 12:04 am
      • editor


        I’ll certainly treat you to tea and biscuit next time you’re in these parts. Just wait till I can find something “helpful” to put in the tea 😀

        However, I can see that we are not going to agree on the matter of attending non-SSPX Masses.

        I’m disappointed that you do not see the way that the Holy Spirit is working in the Church, having used the SSPX – as Athanasius has pointed out – to begin the restoration of the Faith and the Mass.

        I believe that Archbishop Lefebvre would be delighted to see the groups springing up for the purpose of spreading the ancient Mass and to see the most modernist pope ever, keen to regularise the Society – whatever his motives, which – as in the case of Joseph and his brothers – God will use to His own good ends.

        I presume that you are in a place where you have reasonable access to an SSPX chapel so you may not have to think about attending anywhere else. If your children faced being raised without the Mass, I would be very surprised indeed if you stuck to your view that outside the SSPX there is no Mass, if not no Faith.

        You say somewhere that just by hearing an attack on the SSPX or a heresy during a sermon, someone’s Faith is endangered. Only if there are no soldiers of Christ around to point out the heresy! The bunch who attend Mass then race home to watch Eastenders or whatever the latest soap is, are about as Catholic as my mobile phone, and that even if they are wearing skirts around their ankles.

        We can’t separate Christ from His Church and similarly we cannot separate the Mass, catechesis and Catholic Action. If a priest preaches open heresy, then someone has to correct him. I once told a PP of mine that if he preached publicly against Catholic marriage again, I would publicly correct him.

        I’ve also corrected the SSPX priests whom I’ve heard saying – over and over again, when referring to the crisis in the Church – that “all we can do is pray”. Rubbish. We must pray AND ACT. Young people hearing that falsehood over and over again are not going to grow up as thinking Catholics who know they have a duty to defend and spread the Faith whenever and wherever possible.

        It’s true that not everything is always black and white and that there are occasions when something IS black and white. The SSPX vs everyone else is one of those in the category of not everything is black and white.

        September 10, 2016 at 10:52 am
      • Summa

        Editor says…However, I can see that we are not going to agree on the matter of attending non-SSPX Masses.

        Well I don’t know. We presently disagree, but that doesn’t have to mean permanently. I keep an open mind and weigh up arguments, as we all should.

        I would be very surprised indeed if you stuck to your view that outside the SSPX there is no Mass, if not no Faith.

        Editor, I really have to pull you up now, in the politest way, and ask you to refrain from this line you are taking.

        I have quite clearly indicated on this thread using the San Jose example, that attending a TLM outside of an SSPX chapel is okay. I gave you a concrete example of TWO TLM non SSPX chapels in San Jose in which I would not go to one but I would go to the other.

        I don’t think it’s fair to continue on this tack do you? I certainly have never said that there is no Mass outside of the SSPX and certainly have never said anything about no Faith outside of the SSPX.

        I have only ever said that the SSPX have retained the Faith, the Liturgy and the Mass whilst the Ecclesia Dei groups have compromised. I have intimated that compromise is dangerous and compromisers are prone to defend the indefensible by attacking those who have not compromised.

        That is all Editor.

        September 11, 2016 at 4:04 am
      • editor


        I’ve just read Athanasius’ reply to you below, at 3.06 pm and I really can’t improve on that, she said with gritted teeth.

        I do thank you, though, for “pulling me up in the politest way” since I’m keen to get into the Guiness Book of Records – now that I’m almost finished The Man Who Was Thursday (GKC)! – and it is surely a first – I’m usually pulled up in anything but a polite way – so thank you for that 😀

        And I accept that I may well have misread your core position, due to the many statements about avoiding “Ecclesia Dei groups”, so, if I’ve misunderstood your position, I do indeed agree that it wouldn’t be fair to continue the discussion on that subject.

        I agree wholly with Athanasius’s post just mentioned (3.06pm) so if we can agree on that as the core position of us all, then we can all live happily ever after.

        I will add only that I have now examined the link you gave to the report about FSSP critics of the Society and they are truly shameful. Shameful. I couldn’t agree more and if I ever met with one of them, I would give him the same merciless treatment that I doled out to the last FSSP priest who insulted the Society to my shocked face. However, and I say this simply to underline the key distinction that I think must be made, not to reignite the debate, IF and only IF I were unable to attend a Society Mass and one of those nasty critics were offering Mass at a time that I could attend, I would attend because the Mass is more important than his ignorant views about anything, SSPX included.

        I’d be happy to leave it there, not in order to get the last word but because I’m going offline for a while and I wouldn’t want to leave you thinking YOU’D got the last word! Kidding!

        September 11, 2016 at 4:32 pm
  • Athanasius


    You make some very valid points about non-SSPX “traditional” groups such as FSSP, ICK, etc., they don’t speak up for doctrine as they should. However, their priests are saying the old Mass and are generally sound in doctrine, which can’t be said in respect to the average Novus Ordo parish. Surely this is positive for the Church, an indication of a slow return to supernatural health?

    It is frustrating that these groups do not stand as firmly in the face of liberalism as the SSPX, whose unmovable position gave them life in the first place. Still, it has to be said that these groups are growing very strongly all over the world, a clear sign that numerous priests and faithful, not to mention an increasing number of prelates, want the old faith back. So a lot of priests and faithful are afraid to join the SSPX for various reasons, a great pity. Nvertheless, life is not that easy for those priests even in so-called “full communion” with Rome. Many of them still take a lot of stick for sticking by the old Mass and orthodoxy. Let’s not be too harsh on them. I know many very good and holy priests who now celebrate the old Mass within a modern diocesan setting. It’s far too simplistic to accuse them all of cowardice. I’ve done it in the past and I now regret it. Let’s just thank God that so many want to see the old faith back.

    Btw, when I was on holiday in Italy I fulfilled my Sunday obligation more than once at a Mass of the FSSP or ICK and thought nothing of it. I am fully supportive of the SSPX, have been for 30 years, but they can’t have chapels everywhere, even with the best of intentions.

    Let me just say, though, that if an SSPX church was close by then I would always go there first. None of the others have shown the same level of fidelity under persecution as the SSPX.

    September 9, 2016 at 12:59 pm
    • Summa

      Athanasius, it’s for everyone’s own conscience. God speaks to us through our conscience after all.
      Questions I ask myself: Where would the SSPX be today if they had not been betrayed in 1988? Where the Church?
      What did the Ecclesia Dei groups have to accept to get a licence from Rome?
      Do Ecclesia Dei priests attack the SSPX?

      and more like that. When I reflect on these questions, my decision is easy, given the present circumstances.

      September 9, 2016 at 11:40 pm
      • Athanasius


        It is important when speaking of conscience to be aware that conscience has to be properly formed. There is such a thing as a badly informed conscience, as you know. Just look at all those Catholic politicians who vote in favour of immoral laws telling us that they are at peace in their conscience with their day-job decisions.

        In cases where Sunday obligation can only be fulfilled by attendance at a non-SSPX TLM, it would be a mortal sin not to attend since there is neither proximate nor remote danger to faith involved.

        “Where would the SSPX be today if they had not been betrayed in 1988? Where the Church?”

        Both would be worse off. The SSPX would have remained the sole provider of TLM’s, or almost the sole provider, which would have denied the Mass to many tens of thousands of Catholics worldwide. Benedict XVI would not have felt the same urgency to pen Summorum Pontificum, rehabilitating the ancient Mass and clarifying that every priest has a free right to celebrate it. A substantial number of priests and prelates would not have had the opportunity to learn or re-learn the celebration of the old Mass, which many have since come to love, and the SSPX would today be in a much weaker position that it presently is. In many cases the prelates and priests in the mainstream Church who have come to love the TLM recognise that its survival is largely due to the work of the SSPX. That makes them more favourable to the SSPX than they would otherwise have been.

        “What did the Ecclesia Dei groups have to accept to get a licence from Rome?
        Do Ecclesia Dei priests attack the SSPX?”

        They had to accept the legitimacy of the New Mass and all the documents of Vatican II. Yes, it was compromise with error on their part.

        But God brings good out of everything. We are now almost 30 years on from 1988 and attitudes have changed a lot over time, especially towards the SSPX. We cannot hold grudges and live in the past. What started out as John Paul II’s attempt to undermine and close down the SSPX has actually worked the other way. Numerous TLM institutions have arisen and grown alongside the SSPX, spreading the Mass far and wide and teaching a whole new generation of priests and faithful to know and love it. This is having an effect on a restoration of orthodoxy, albeit slowly, and is bringing the SSPX more into focus as the institution that had it right from the outset.

        Now we have Bishop Fellay telling us that even before an agreement has been reached with Rome, bishops in Italy are asking the SSPX to found a seminary in their country. Who could have imagined such a thing just 10 years ago?

        September 10, 2016 at 12:39 am
      • Summa

        In cases where Sunday obligation can only be fulfilled by attendance at a non-SSPX TLM, it would be a mortal sin not to attend since there is neither proximate nor remote danger to faith involved.

        That is not true. There is a danger to souls through a priest preaching in a homily, a position that exonerates, for example, the Ecclesia Dei acceptance of Modernist Rome. The real danger is those sermons on obedience. That is where Ecclesia Dei groups are most painfully touchy, I would imagine.

        Both would be worse off.

        Perhaps and perhaps not. We will never know. But I can quite easily turn it around and say, both would be better off. More TLM SSPX priests, more pressure on Rome to reign in Modernism.

        The real poison that has been spread consciously by John Paul II, is the wedge that has been driven within the TLM movement. There are more than plenty of Eccelsia Dei priests who will take the uncharitable self justification attitude that the SSPX are disobedient, that they are obedient, that the SSPX are schismatic etc.

        September 10, 2016 at 1:27 am
      • Athanasius


        I think it highly unlikely that Ecclesia Dei priests use their sermon time to promote their position, it has certainly not been my experience, limited as it is. It’s more probable that the sermon will focus on the Gospel of the day, or some other spiritual subject, in which Ecclesia Dei priests are certainly more sound than Modernist parish clergy.

        No, I would rather they were there as an alternative for weaker souls than the Novus Ordo. We cannot judge every soul by our own standards. You’re too harsh, and I say that with charitable respect.

        You speak of this wedge John Paul II drove within the TLM movement, yet you yourself enforce it by your comments. I know a number of Non-SSPX TLM priests who never say nasty things about the SSPX. In fact, I have heard one or two even compliment the SSPX. I suspect you’re fixating more on what the Roman heads of Ecclesia Dei have said rather than what individual priests on the ground are saying. There is no evidence whatsoever to support your fears.

        September 10, 2016 at 3:12 pm
      • Josephine


        I’ve actually heard of more than one priest, diocesan and religious, who have encouraged people to attend SSPX chapels and I’ve also heard of more than one who would consider joining the Society if things get much worse. How they can get much worse is anybody’s guess, LOL!

        September 10, 2016 at 3:29 pm
      • Summa

        I think it highly unlikely that Ecclesia Dei priests use their sermon time to promote their position, it has certainly not been my experience, limited as it is.

        I have heard audio sermons to the contrary, limited I agree. But it only takes one…

        September 11, 2016 at 3:38 am
      • Summa

        St. Thomas Aquinas, in his commentary on Eccl. 3:27 (“A stubborn heart shall fare evil at the last; and he that loveth danger shall perish therein”) says: “When we expose ourselves to danger, God abandons us.”

        September 11, 2016 at 6:22 am
      • Athanasius


        Your quote from St. Thomas is out of context. Those who attend non-SSPX TLM’s rather than participate in the Novus Ordo are certainly not courting danger, much less sin. Besides, the exposure that St.Thomas refers to is wilful exposure. I would ask you which of the two Masses – Novus Ordo or Ecclesia Dei TLM – is the more dangerous to Catholic souls?

        We have to be careful not to misapply the teaching of the saints to suit our own personal inclinations. We have already seen the devastating consequences of this with the liberals on the one hand and the sedevacantists and so-called “Resistance” people on the other.

        As I said before, I agree that the SSPX is the institution that stands out for its fidelity to the faith under persecution. Nevertheless, these other organisations, which were founded initially to destabalise the SSPX, are now, in our own time, closer to the SSPX in belief than they are to Modernist Rome. God has brought much good out of something that was intended to do harm. That’s what God does, brings good out of evil.

        This ‘us and them’ attitude only harms the Church and souls. I don’t like isolated Ecclesia Dei condemnations of the SSPX any more than you do, but neither have I liked some of the sermons of SSPX priests in the past that have bordered on formal schism. Thankfully, many of those rabble rousers have moved on to form their own wee bitter sect. I suspect the same element within the Ecclesia Dei organisations are likewise drawing closer to the margins of isolation.

        Most people just want their faith back and the Church to be healthy again. We live in times of great religious ignorance that demands of us the utmost charity, patience and prudence in these delicate matters. Eyes are slowly being opened by grace, we should not be too quick to poke them with a sharp stick.

        September 11, 2016 at 3:06 pm
      • Summa

        Hi Athanasius

        Your quote from St. Thomas is out of context.

        In point of analogy, it is quite relevant.

        I would ask you which of the two Masses – Novus Ordo or Ecclesia Dei TLM – is the more dangerous to Catholic souls?

        Well the former of course, but it’s the wrong question. You should ask, is there a danger to Catholic Souls by going to Ecclesia Dei Group Masses?

        Given the large amount of evidence I have given, I’m sure you will agree, that there is a danger. Yes, in some cases, like Editor’s example of the midweek Mass she goes to, there is practically none, now that she knows the priest. But again I point you to the evidence, substantial that it is, and I say that there are dangers.

        The dangers must be understood on two levels. The first is the skill of the Priest in presenting the Ecclesia Dei position and the second is in the intelligence of the recipient. That requires some reflection and I would say that in the majority of cases, the Ecclesia Dei priest has the upper hand.

        I also disagree with you that these are fading problems. We have FSSP district superiors like Fr Hygonnet, circulating letters denouncing the SSPX and sowing error amongst the Faithful.

        Fr Hygonnet condemns the SSPX for pointing out the errors of the Pope…

        If [a Catholic] unfortunately happens to believe that the Pope is erring dangerously or acting against Faith and Morals, he closes his mouth, if necessary he draws a veil over what seems a betrayal or a scandal to him, and above all he refrains from denouncing it, especially in public! He prays and waits for the Supreme Magisterium to explain what may seem ambiguous or wrong in the Pope’s teaching. There is no other Catholic way

        Keep silent? That from a District Superior? Logic tells you two things here

        #1. His subordinates will follow suit and shy away from condemning error

        #2. The Faithful will be lead off the cliff.

        In actual fact, the real crux of the matter is that they sold out and they continue to sell out.

        I’m sorry that those words seem harsh and I would love to be presented with evidence to the contrary, but you must call a spade a spade.

        There is a danger to souls who attend Ecclesia Dei parishes, just as there is a dangers to souls who attend NOM.

        St. Athanasius would have condemned them too.

        September 11, 2016 at 10:22 pm
      • Margaret Mary


        You seem to think that the priest is more important than the Mass, ignoring everything that both Editor and Athanasius have said to show that the Mass is the Mass, no matter what the priest believes about the SSPX.

        I think someone would have to be very weak indeed to be swayed by a priest who is publicly uncharitable about other priests – e.g. FSSP Vs SSPX. I think your assessment of the intelligence of congregations is a bit insulting, if I may say so. I’ve been present at FSSP Masses and not heard anything untoward but I’m intelligent enough to know anyway that if the priest is being uncharitable and using the pulpit to attack other traditional priests, then he’s not a good priest. It doesn’t change his ability to offer the Mass though, and that’s really the most important thing that you can’t seem to accept.

        You seem to want to believe that all “Ecclesia Dei” priests are bad and you quote “Fr Hygonnet condemns the SSPX for pointing out the errors of the Pope…” What planet is he on? Most Catholics nowadays know that Cardinal Burke and Bishop Schneider also point out the errors of the Pope so he’s obviously not very well informed or not very intelligent. Even so, as Editor has emphasised, if someone couldn’t get to an SSPX Mass, they could go to his Mass. I think that’s the issue, not whether there are anti-SSPX priests out there. They are not in a majority, I agree with Athanasius on that, and sorry that you don’t see it. I know of FSSP priests who actually speak very well of the SSPX, so they’re not all bad.

        I also disagree that St Athanasius would have condemned the “Ecclesia Dei” groups – I’m sorry if what I am about to say sounds harsh but your posts are screaming out at me that you do not see God at work in the Church today, as the number of traditional Masses spreads across the world and the number of religious (trad) orders grows and grows.

        You are being completely illogical in saying that only the SSPX is right, but I think others have shown that more clearly than I could, so I will only stress the point that others have already made, that the Society has been used by God to spread Tradition, so that we now have the FSSP and ICK, all thanks to the SSPX. You don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater – i.e. denounce the Masses of the “Ecclesia Dei” groups because the priests, some of them, are hostile to the SSPX.

        September 11, 2016 at 10:55 pm
      • Summa

        Margaret Mary
        I’ve tried hard to show evidence to support my views.
        Your post above is really just finger pointing and full of ‘You’ this and ‘You’ that.
        So I won’t waste your time or mine in making any response.

        September 11, 2016 at 11:01 pm
  • RCA Victor


    This is probably gratuitous after Editor’s and Athanasius’ posts, but I thought you did an excellent job outlining the Ecclesia Dei subterfuge on an institutional level. However, since the modern Church has been reduced to a confused checkerboard – some dioceses orthodox (white), most darkened and obscured by Modernism (black) – and not only dioceses but even individual variations from priest to priest, I think we pewsitters have to take that into account when choosing where to attend Mass (SSPX chapels being at the top of the list, obviously). Thank God I don’t have to make such a choice, but if I did I would make sure the priest in question was (a) fully orthodox, and (b) was respectful of the SSPX, at a minimum.

    I suppose, in this discouraging environment of a snail’s pace restoration of Tradition, that we have to, first of all, choose our battles, and secondly, sow seeds of fidelity where we can.

    September 9, 2016 at 4:54 pm
    • Summa

      RCA Victor, yup, these are delicate issues. I think I have been pretty consistent on here and have not said that every Ecclesia Dei priest attacks the SSPX. I am saying that the Ecclesia Dei groups in themselves were born out of hatred for the SSPX and used as wedge to split the TLM laity.

      If I may use the term – It was a way out for the bedwetters.

      September 9, 2016 at 11:44 pm
      • Margaret Mary


        If that is true, that they were born out of hatred for the SSPX, that the SSPX should not respond with hatred, nor should anyone associated with them.

        I may be wrong, but I am detecting hatred in your comments about the “Ecclesia Dei” groups and that cannot be right.

        I think Archbishop Lefebvre would be delighted to know that he has been proven right so clearly, that his Society has spawned other traditional groups and the Mass is now spreading fast. I can’t get my head round your way of thinking at all – sorry.

        September 11, 2016 at 11:00 pm
      • Summa

        I’m not really sure you understand Margaret. They were born out of hatred of the Conciliar Church.
        The Ecclesia Dei groups are merely pawns.
        And talking about hatred, you seem to have an obsession about answering my posts at the moment about how wrong I am, seemingly finding all else of the group absolutely fine.
        I’ll leave you with that thought…

        September 11, 2016 at 11:07 pm
      • Margaret Mary


        I don’t know what you mean about “having an obsession about answering my posts at the moment about how wrong I am, ” – I don’t have an obsession, I just had a little bit of time to blog and (to be honest) felt frustrated that you were still saying the same thing despite all the posts from others showing that your position is not right.

        For example you still keep on about the Ecclesia Dei groups being merely pawns – others pointed out that that was the intention of Pope John Paul II but God has used that and turned it to good. You can’t seem to see that or you don’t want to see it. It’s you who is obsessed not me.

        I’m really not interested in the groups so it’s not that they are “absolutely fine” – but if I want to attend a Traditional Mass, and there’s only an FSSP or whatever church available, I’m not going to not attend just because Pope John Paul II wanted them as pawns! LOL! He’s given us more priests to give us the Mass! That’s the most important thing!

        September 11, 2016 at 11:15 pm
  • Athanasius


    There is some truth in what you say, but let us not forget that in some cases at least a certain Bishop Williamson may have had a little to do with the departure of a few priests from the SSPX back then. It’s also worth noting that the same Bishop today, and the so-called “resistance” people, consider Bishop Fellay to be one of those “bedwetters” for even considering a reconciliation with Rome. Things are never as black and white as they appear.

    September 10, 2016 at 12:59 am
    • Summa

      I think the 1988 collaboration of some SSPX priests with Modernist Rome had nothing to do with Williamson and from all I have read has never been raised.

      Here is the pretence played about by one ex SSPX priest, Fr John Emerson

      Q. Father, you are a priest of the Society of St. Peter. When and how did the Society come into being, how does It operate, and what is its purpose?

      A. It came into being on July 18th, 1988, at a meeting at the Cistercian Abbey of Hauterive near Fribourg, Switzerland. We met there — I wasn’t yet a member, so I wasn’t there — the Society met there, about 10 priests and a number of seminarians, all of them, except one or two, persons who had just left the Society of St. Pius X because of the schismatic consecration of four bishops by Archbishop Lefebvre. They were all convinced this was not simply a further necessary disobedience in order to keep tradition alive, but a true break with Rome, and they could not in conscience go along with it — particularly after Rome had offered everything that Archbishop Lefebvre had ever wanted of substance. Rome had offered it all, and we were scandalized he refused it, truly scandalized. We weren’t simply surprised or unhappy, we were scandalized because he was our spiritual father and we trusted him, and he did not do in the end what was right.

      Q. Perhaps we can conjecture later as to his motives …

      A. Sure, we will.

      For the rest of the self-justification, you can read the whole interview here https://docs.google.com/document/d/1gYv07gGZSdMnplPe0SSSJpIouzTLOFq7hZQO3W8jUM0/edit

      September 11, 2016 at 6:17 am
      • Margaret Mary


        A friend of mine in Edinburgh who attends Fr Emerson’s Masses has told me several times that he speaks completely positively about the SSPX now and is very friendly with Society priests.

        I think it’s likely that at the time, things were so unusual and the whole situation was out of the ordinary, that people made mistakes, said things they didn’t mean and so on.

        I don’t think we should judge so much on what people said way back at the beginning of this, but what they are saying now. Now, Fr Emerson is friendly towards the Society and I think that shows humility.

        September 11, 2016 at 11:03 pm
  • Summa

    Here is a sermon by an FSSP priest (now Diocesan) on the SSPX…


    How charitable! Every sacrament performed and public mass performed by the SSPX is a Grave Offence Against God!

    If you want bucket loads of eveidence of FSSP agression towards the SSPX read this…


    That’s why I take the position I take.

    September 11, 2016 at 5:59 am
    • Margaret Mary


      I’ve checked your links and they are no reason to take the position you take. You are taking a really illogical position based on a minority opinion. Most FSSP priests would not think like that now, I’m sure about it. There will always be the odd one, that’s probably true, but it’s not fair to dismiss everyone in these traditional groups because some of them are anti-SSPX. There are stories told by people about the SSPX that are not very edifying, and some people have written off the Society because of those few bad apples. It’s what people do about the Church itself! They quote examples of unChristian behaviour and have no time for the Church as a result. LOL! Evil is everywhere – it’s the mystery of iniquity, but we should cherish the fact that the Mass is now more widely available and some of us who are not near a Society chapel can now get to a Mass somewhere.

      September 11, 2016 at 11:09 pm
      • Summa

        Can you continue to ignore everything I have posted on the FSSP et al and the acceptance of the NOM etc. If you continue to ignore it, then you have a point!

        September 11, 2016 at 11:12 pm
      • Summa

        Margaret Mary… I’ve checked your links and they are no reason to take the position you take. You are taking a really illogical position based on a minority opinion.


        September 11, 2016 at 11:14 pm
      • editor


        I’ve only skimmed some of these latest comments, the exchange between MM and your good self, and I really think there is no more to be said.

        We’re not going to agree on this, so let’s leave it there.

        September 11, 2016 at 11:39 pm
      • Summa

        I’m in complete agreement with you Ed.

        September 12, 2016 at 1:09 am
      • editor


        Always a wise move… 😀

        September 12, 2016 at 8:31 am
      • Summa

        Amongst other things, I’m reading the Catechism of the Council of Trent. I do think It’s worth revisiting one thing which was mentioned above on the intelligence of the Faithful.
        I won’t respond directly to the post, but on my reading today, the Council Fathers were explicit in their advice to priests in their catechising…

        Age, capacity, manners and condition must be borne in mind, so that he who instructs may become all things to all men, in order that he may be able to gain all to Christ, prove himself a dutiful minister and steward, and, like a good and faithful servant, be found worthy to be placed by his Lord over many things The priest must not imagine that those committed to his care are all on the same level

        I would have thought this was obvious and on reflection, this underpins my whole thrust in this thread: that dangers exist because by degree, we hold only a certain level of understanding and knowledge to be able to discern right from wrong when it comes from the mouth of a pastor.

        One only has to look at our Pope to see how much heresy comes forth and is bought in bucket loads by the Faithful.

        It is my opinion that the safest bet (i.e. don’t play with matches) is to avoid those places of worship that either in person or by association have accepted the NOM and the Fruits of Vatican II.

        Anyway, just a thought. (reading the Catechism does that to you) 🙂

        September 13, 2016 at 6:18 am
      • editor


        With all due respect, this latest post from you reveals that you really did not understand all along the core of what we were saying. I’m really weary of this but will try one more time. After this, you have the last word because I will take it as read that you are a candidate for a novena to St Jude 😀

        I have NEVER advocated going to non-SSPX Masses as a first choice, or for parents to take their children. I explicitly gave the example of my niece who goes to the Society chapels with her offspring to make sure they will grow up with an undiluted Catholic Faith (having said that, the point was once made by a visitor to our First Communions Mass that the sermon on the Eucharist was aimed at the adults, not the First Communicants.)

        The point most of us have tried to make is that it would be sinful for us – in the absence of SSPX Masses – to fail to attend a non-SSPX Mass, no matter the politics and preaching of the priest – because the Mass is the important thing. Frankly, sermons go over the heads of most young people and anyway, if they are of an age to understand, such as my own teenage nephew, then it is up to the parent to make sure he/she understands and listens with a critical ear to what the priest says. My own nephew could see that the FSSP priest to whom I have referred in other comments, was in the wrong. And, moreover, he recognised the weakness of the priest’s arguments and was not impressed by his description of them as “wolves”. Far from putting my nephew off the Society, that priest reinforced his understanding of the nature of the crisis in the Church and reinforced, too, his respect and love for the SSPX. He was singularly unimpressed by that FSSP priest – the only one he’s encountered.

        Look – it seems obvious to me. If you would prefer to miss Mass in case the priest says something with which you disagree, then you need to follow your own lights. Objectively, that is a mortal sin, but I’m NOT going to re-engage in this discussion because I believe your mind is made up. Because some (FSSP) priests hate the society, their Mass are to be avoided. Quite possibly. But not if they are the only Masses available. That’s about as clear as I can make it. And as for the closing words of your quote from the Catechism: The priest must not imagine that those committed to his care are all on the same level any FSSP priest who bad-mouthed the SSPX in his sermon or otherwise publicly, ought to be corrected by the Soldier of Christ listening to him! Feedback is all the rage these days, so don’t forget to correct him, with bells on, after Mass and tell him that the only reason you attend his Mass is because there is no SSPX chapel nearby and that every time he bad-mouths the Society, you will correct him personally and make sure that the rest of the congregation know that he is plain wrong. Better than committing the mortal sin of missing Mass unnecessarily.

        Now, please do not try to answer that – it is crystal clear and if you think that it is not a mortal sin to miss Mass because the priest may criticise the SSPX, then I strongly suggest you don’t broadcast the fact!

        September 13, 2016 at 10:33 am
      • Summa

        Hi Ed.
        Well I have understood, just disagree.
        I’m pretty sure you would rather have respectful discussion and debate?
        The matter of mortal sin you raise is just wrong, considerting the conditions necessary, but we won’t go into that as I have the last word 😇

        September 13, 2016 at 10:51 am
      • Michaela


        There are three conditions for mortal sin – the object is grave matter. It is committed with full knowledge. It is done with deliberate consent.

        I can’t imagine going to confession and saying that I missed Mass because the Mass was offered by an FSSP priest who hates the SSPX and might say things about them that I disagree with. I know that missing Mass is a grave sin unless I have the care of the sick, elderly or infants and just cannot go or I’m sick myself, but I’ve never heard any priest saying we could miss Mass if we disapprove of the priest.

        The new Mass is different, as it is a complete break with the Catholic theology of the Mass (see letter from Cardinal Ottaviani to Pope Paul VI) but if there is a true Mass available, it would be a mortal sin to miss it on the grounds that you don’t approve of the priest’s attitude to the SSPX or the Order he belongs to.

        There is so much confusion in the Church these days that although an FSSP might say something objectionable, even something positive about this pope, I can’t see that is an exemption from the conditions of mortal sin. You know the truth, you can teach your children, so there is no danger to souls there. You can pre-warn other people who are just feeling their way just now, because I agree that it is the Mass that matters. SSPX people refuse to go to the new Mass because it is a break with the traditional Catholic Mass, not because they disapprove of the priests saying it.

        September 13, 2016 at 12:31 pm
  • Josephine

    This is an interview about the FSSP and there is only one reference to the SSPX which is a very positive one. http://www.catholicworldreport.com/Item/3937/the_priestly_fraternity_of_st_peter_traditional_liturgy_booming_vocations.aspx

    September 13, 2016 at 1:55 pm
  • Summa


    Taken straight from an SSPX seminary…


    Question 13: What are we to think of the Fraternity of Saint Peter?

    Since the introduction of the new sacramental rites, Rome had allowed no Society or Congregation exclusive use of the older rites. Then on June 30, 1988, Archbishop Lefebvre consecrated four bishops to ensure the survival of the traditional priesthood and sacraments, and especially of the traditional Latin Mass. Suddenly, within two days, Pope John Paul II recognized1 the “right-fill aspirations” (for these things) of those who wouldn’t support Archbishop Lefebvre’s stance, and offered to give to them what he had always refused the Archbishop. A dozen or so priests of the Society of Saint Pius X accepted this “good will” and broke away to found the Society of Saint Peter.

    The Society of Saint Peter is founded upon more than questionable principles, for the following reasons:

    (i) It accepts that the conciliar Church has the power:

    to take away the Mass of all time (for the Novus Ordo Missaeis not another form of this, QUESTION 11 1°),
    to grant it to those only who accept the same conciliar Church’s novel orientations (in life, belief, structures),
    to declare non-Catholic those who deny this by word or deed,2 and,
    to professes itself in a certain way in communion with anyone calling himself “Christian,” and yet to declare itself out of communion with Catholics whose sole crime is wanting to remain Catholic.3
    (ii) In practice, the priests of the Society of Saint Peter, having recourse to a Novus Ordo bishop willing to permit the traditional rites and willing to ordain their candidates, they are forced to abandon the fight against the new religion which is being installed:

    they reject the Novus Ordo Missae only because it is not their “spirituality” and claim the traditional Latin Mass only in virtue of their “charism” acknowledged them by the Pope,

    they seek to ingratiate themselves with the local bishops, praising them for the least sign of Catholic spirit and keeping quiet on their modernist deviations,4 even though by doing so they end up encouraging them along their wrong path, and

    note, for example, the Society of Saint Peter’s wholehearted acceptance of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (QUESTION 14),acceptance of Novus Ordo professors in their seminaries, and blanket acceptance of Vatican Us orthodoxy (QUESTION 6).

    They are therefore conciliar Catholics and not traditional Catholics.

    This being so, attending their Mass is:

    accepting the compromise on which they are based,
    accepting the direction taken by the conciliar Church and the consequent destruction of the Catholic Faith and practices, and
    accepting, in particular, the lawfulness and doctrinal soundness of the Novus Ordo Missae and Vatican II.

    That is why a Catholic ought not to attend their Masses.


    I’m with the SSPX on this one.

    September 13, 2016 at 10:18 pm
    • editor

      Summa, we’ve already had that posted – probably by you – and taken into account in our discussion.

      You are perfectly free to be “with the SSPX on this one” just as others are perfectly free not to be with them on this one!

      If you are unable to attend an FSSP Masses because of the 1988 situation and the points made in the above undated article, so be it.

      I could attend an FSSP Mass every day of the week and it would not adversely affect my faith one bit. Whoever wrote the above undated article is not infallible and I am not bound to accept those opinions on pain of sin, so as you are perfectly free to be “with” the SSPX on this, I am equally free to reject this view.

      Now, can we just agree to disagree on this as [rest of this comment deleted as it might annoy Summa intensely! 😀 ]

      September 13, 2016 at 10:36 pm
      • Summa

        Fair enough we’ll move on.

        September 13, 2016 at 10:38 pm
  • gabriel syme

    I would choose to attend an SSPX mass first and foremost, if available. In Germany recently, I drove some 45 minutes to a tiny SSPX Chapel in a farming community, rather than attend the various novus ordo Churches on our doorstep. It was the devil’s own job to find the tiny SSPX Church, but it was a great experience and I dont have the stomach for the mainstream Church in Germany anyway.

    (Attending mass in a foreign country really brings home the genius of the Church having its own language. Its just the same mass and you can participate and follow along as normal, whereas at the novus ordo abroad, you don’t understand a word – right enough, in many places, that would probably be a blessing).

    However, I would never turn my nose up at the FSSP or any Diocesan provision. While it isn’t uncommon to meet clergy (of any affiliation) who are snooty about the SSPX, there are good priests in the FSSP / Dioceses too.

    I have heard SSPX priests refer to the FSSP as “pseudo-traditionalists” which I though was unkind at first, but I have gradually come to understand and accept this argument – as per the info in Summas link above.

    But with the state of the Church today, I think we should always seek to build bridges and find allies. Common ground is a positive in today’s world and I think its better to look for friends, than to cut our nose off to spite our face.

    These is no doubt the SSPX is the engine room of tradition, and the pillar upon which the Ecclesia Dei communities and Summorum Pontificum rests. This is true, even if some newly ordained priests speak ill of them. I think the priest who spoke ill of the society, mentioned by Editor, will come to his senses sooner rather than later, especially when he encounters the enemies of tradition.

    At the mass the priest in question offered that day, he was assisted by an FSSP priest (ordained by ++Lefebvre and still sympathetic to the SSPX), a Diocesan priest (sympathetic to the SSPX) and at least one server who also serves for the SSPX. If he had known that, he would probably realise how silly his comments made him look. But then, such a young priest will have had a very different life experience and formation to his seniors and this difference in perspective / understanding is undoubtedly at the root of his opinion.

    In my opinion, we should not condemn others who lack the courage or vision to speak as the SSPX speaks. Not all men are bold men, of the calibre of ++Lefebvre or +Fellay – yet they are still good men. Rather we should encourage them and support them. To be honest, men like ++Lefebvre are very rare and we can see this through the fact that it was essentially only he and +de Castro Mayer who had the vision to see, the courage to speak and the resolve to act, in the wake of V2.

    Personally I think if the SSPX regularisation occurs, (as I think it ultimately will), then it will signal a tipping point where others will find the strength to speak out about the Novus Ordo and the state of the Church. And the authorities will find themselves in a real pickle, as they can hardly run a double standard in the Church (though we all know of the scheming, underhand ways of modernists).

    September 13, 2016 at 10:48 pm
    • Summa

      Gabriel, do you know if the Ecclesia Dei groups take the Oath Against Modernism?

      That information alone would be helpful.

      September 13, 2016 at 11:03 pm
      • editor


        Seems the FSSP do – click here

        September 13, 2016 at 11:52 pm
      • Summa

        That’s interesting. I’m tempted to go about contradiction now, but you’ll close the thread 🙂 Suffice to say, the comments on that link beat me to it.

        September 14, 2016 at 12:02 am
      • Margaret Mary


        Would you prefer them not to take the oath against modernism?

        September 14, 2016 at 10:04 am
      • Summa

        No, but I suppose you would like me take that position Margaret Mary?

        September 15, 2016 at 1:21 pm
  • Zara

    What is your all’s opinion of Thuc line Bishops & Priests?
    The last 5 Bishops he consecrated 1981-1984 were Catholic priests and not in any way schismatic.
    Fr.Des Lauriers (consecrated by Archbishop Thuc 1981) helped write the Dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary circa 1950.
    Fr.Storck whom Archbishop Thuc consecrated in 1984,had PhD and was ordained in traditional rite by Bishop Kurz circa 1972.
    These men were not in any way non Catholic or schismatic prior to receiving episcopal consecration from Archbishop Thuc.
    My opinion is modern day Thuc line clergy are one of 4 groups who have valid apostolic Catholic succession.
    The others being SSPX, SSPV & the Bishop Hnilica group in England.
    Some say the Duarte Costa line is valid but that is a somewhat complex line & subject matter.

    November 18, 2016 at 3:54 pm
    • editor


      Why are you asking about this?

      November 18, 2016 at 7:13 pm
  • Athanasius


    The Thuc line bishops are schismatic, no question about that. Most, if not all of them, and there are quite a few (!), are declared sedevacantists who have gone on to consecrate their very own bishops. It’s a completely different situation to that faced by Archbishop Lefebvre in 1988, who only consecrated the four bishops that were necessary to maintain Traditional priestly ordination and administer confirmations. These SSPX bishops never refused to recognise the legitimacy of the Pope or subimt to his authority in all that is truly Catholic.

    Besides this, Archbishop Lefebvre had a purpose; he was head of an institution of priests formed for the old Mass, an institution of 500 priests, with seminaries and religious houses. The Thuc bishops are just roving rebels without a cause.

    November 18, 2016 at 8:24 pm

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